While AMD sticks like clockwork to its monthly graphics driver release cycle, Nvidia continues to take a more liberal approach, dropping major WHQL-certified releases every few months with betas in between. This morning, Nvidia released its first WHQL ForceWare drivers since June for GeForce 6 through GeForce GTX 200 cards.
Nvidia claims the new ForceWare 178.13 driver set improves performance quite dramatically in several games. Compared to the 175.19 WHQL ForceWare driver, the firm says users can look forward to these gains:
Single GPU increases up to 11% in 3DMark Vantage (performance preset) Single GPU increases up to 11% in Assassin's Creed DX10 Single GPU increases up to 15% in Bioshock DX10 Single GPU increases up to 15% in Call of Duty 4 Single GPU increases up to 8% in Enemy Territory: Quake Wars 2-way SLI increases up to 7% in Bioshock DX10 2-way SLI increases up to 10% in Company of Heroes: Opposing Fronts DX10 2-way SLI increases up to 12% in Enemy Territory: Quake Wars 2-way SLI increases up to 10% in World in Conflict DX10
The "release highlights" page for this revision also mentions the following features: PhysX acceleration for all GeForce 8, 9, and GTX cards with over 256MB of RAM; support for Folding@Home; support for two- and three-way GeForce GTX 200 SLI setups in Intel Skulltrail motherboards; and support for 3D Stereo Technology. Nvidia mentions that "numerous 3D application compatibility fixes" are on the menu, too, although the Vista release notes don't appear to be up yet.
You can grab ForceWare 178.13 drivers for Windows Vista x86, Windows Vista x64, Windows XP, Windows XP Pro x64, and Windows Server 2003 x64. Links to the release notes are on the driver download pages.