GeForce Release 270 driver digs deep for more FPS

Behind the scenes here, we’ve been hearing whispers about a major driver update from Nvidia for quite some time now. These milestone updates come along every so often from each of the major GPU makers, bringing with them some notable performance increases and interface tweaks. AMD saw some nice gains in its drivers not long ago, and now it’s Nvidia’s turn. A first beta version of the Release 270 GeForce drivers is now available via the green team web site. Here’s a direct link to the page for the Win7 64-bit version, and the 32-bit version is available right here.

Nvidia cites a number of (mostly) recent games as beneficiaries of performance increases in Release 270, including Call of Duty: Black Ops, Civ V, and benchmarking favorite Far Cry 2. The claimed increases range from 4-11% on the GeForce GTX 580 and from 4-19% on the GTX 560 Ti, and the claims apply in varying measure to both single-card and SLI configs.

More eye-popping are the numbers for Dragon Age 2, where Nvidia apparently had ample room for improvement. A single GTX 560 Ti is cited as "up to 241%" faster, while a pair in SLI can reach 461% faster. The GTX 580 benefits even more, with single-card gains of 326% and dual-card improvements of 516%. Sounds like some basic problems were worked out, no?

Release 270 also introduces a new feature called Nvidia Update, which will optionally harangue you to update your video drivers whenever a new revision is released. One may choose one’s preferred level of nagging, nagging interval, and whether or not beta drivers should be included in the onslaught. Once you hear of the new drivers, you’ll still have to download them via Nvidia’s website and do the Windows installer dance, as always. True auto-updates are not one of Release 270’s superpowers, sadly.

3D Vision, on the other hand… That particular ability is enhanced in Release 270 in several ways, including triple-display 3D Vision Surround frame rate gains of "up to 350%" and improvements of 1.2-8.3 times the prior release in select shooters (mostly Valve Source engine games, looks like) when the 3D Vison substitute crosshair is enabled. 3D Vision can now coexist with Windows Aero, so you can get that special feeling of nausea right on the Windows desktop, too.

There are a host of other improvements related to 3D Vision, including more game profiles, embedded drivers for the IR emitter that controls the glasses, and expanded support for HDMI 1.4 displays.

We’re hoping to check out Release 270’s performance improvements for ourselves. If you’re a GeForce owner, you may want to do the same.

Comments closed
    • derFunkenstein
    • 12 years ago

    a 240% increase means 340% of the performance, so I guess I still over-estimated. 5×3.4 = 17.

    So I did some bad math. But given the extra enabled hardware of the 560Ti and the higher clock speeds, you will most likely be fine.

    Also, Bioware supposedly fixed it in the retail release, so the base FPS are hopefully higher, and the percentages take it from “slow” to “smooth” or something similar.

    • HisDivineOrder
    • 12 years ago

    I bet they wished they could have included these with the GF590 launch if they improve things so much…

    • The Wanderer
    • 12 years ago

    Last time I checked, there was no GUI tool for installing the Nvidia GPU drivers on Linux; there was just a ‘NVIDIA-version_and_plaform_numbers.run’ shell script, which would error out on you if run while X was running.

    It’s possible that that’s changed since the last time I updated the drivers on my (currently sole remaining) Nvidia-based machine, but I’d be surprised if so. The Nvidia “how to install” README specifically begins with an instruction to “shut down all graphical programs and exit X”:
    [url<]http://us.download.nvidia.com/XFree86/Linux-x86/260.19.44/README/installdriver.html[/url<] Unless you're referring to a version of the driver installed via a distro-specific package-management tool, such as apt-get (or a graphical analogue like synaptic). I didn't think of that, because if I recall correctly, the Nvidia binary drivers weren't available via Debian's repositories last time I was looking to set up an Nvidia-based machine. However, given that the repository versions of the drivers tend to lag behind by a month or more, I wouldn't really expect enthusiasts to be running those versions anyway...

    • Vinceant
    • 12 years ago

    No mobile chip support in this driver batch, either. I thought the point of these driver packages was to have just one download no matter the chip you had? Also, supposedly, they were merging the mobile and desktop driver sets, guess that fell through somewhere along the line.

    • jplayer01
    • 12 years ago

    o_O But … 200% of 5 FPS is still only 10 FPS. Ordered a GTX 560 an hour ago. Should I be worried?

    • crabjokeman
    • 12 years ago

    Still no GT440 support in Linux. Get on it, Nvidia.

    • fishyuk
    • 12 years ago

    I’ll second that, very high was totally unplayable on my 460. Nice they’ve fixed it but by chance my 6950 arrived in the post this morning, need better DA performance at 2560×1440 but main reason is some very flaky (unacceptable) display port behaviour from nVidia outside of gaming (at least on my 460).

    • Bensam123
    • 12 years ago

    I do like auto-update, it probably isn’t like a slipsteam which automatically retroactively updates out of date components and instead just takes you to the website or downloads the normal 120mb installer. :l

    • crazybus
    • 12 years ago

    In my experience with Windows 7, installing directly over the old ones works the best, and a lot of the time a reboot isn’t even required.

    • grantmeaname
    • 12 years ago

    Or, like, use the built in GUI tool for it…

    • countcristo
    • 12 years ago

    My mind is retarded as in I’m retarded, but I read that title as GeForce Release 270 driver digs deep for more peePS. Too much burnin of the midnight oil.

    • The Wanderer
    • 12 years ago

    Or on Linux.

    Though you do need to shut down X and do it all from the command line, last time I checked, which is probably tantamount to requiring a reboot for anyone who uses a graphical login.

    • ace24
    • 12 years ago

    I haven’t uninstalled before updating in years and never had a problem. Hell, on Win7 you dont even need to reboot.

    • ShadowTiger
    • 12 years ago

    Nvidia claims you don’t need to uninstall your drivers to install newer ones… what do you guys think?

    • r00t61
    • 12 years ago

    I dream of a world with a unified GPU ISA so that we can stop depending upon drivers.

    Of course, then we’ll have to start depending upon compilers.

    Why is computing always lose-lose :-)?

    • SecretMaster
    • 12 years ago

    Yowza Nvidia is juicing their drivers.

    • pot
    • 12 years ago

    These drivers are working great for me, Dragon Age 2 performance is much improved. I also appreciate the update drivers functionality.

    • Silus
    • 12 years ago

    I was talking about performance improvements, not 3d vision game profiles!

    Also, those ridiculous conspiracy theories are getting worse and worse…

    • kamikaziechameleon
    • 12 years ago

    The novelty of playing 3 screens in 3D is definitely there. Maybe one day I’ll be rich enough.

    • kravo
    • 12 years ago

    It says:
    “Added the following 3D Vision game profiles:
    -Alice Madness Returns
    -Crysis 2 (including multi-player demo)
    …”

    I can be completely wrong about it, but maybe those rumors are true, saying that nV payed off EA so the dx11 version gets released after everything is set for the gtx 590’s big debut. If so, they’ll need proper drivers as well – maybe this is what they’re waiting for.
    And also, if you check out the console commands (you can find them here:
    [url<]http://www.fpstime.com/2011/03/crysis-2-console-commands-to-customize-your-graphics/[/url<] ), there's one which says: r_ShadesDX11 "1". And a bunch of other entries that aren't dx9 related (as far as I know). But I can be wrong. Anyways, I hope that nV was a *insert insult* and the above turns out to be true. Sorry for being a bit off topic.

    • derFunkenstein
    • 12 years ago

    The DA2 performance is probably related to the super high settings and DX11 – it was a 3-5fps slideshow at 1920×1080 and no AA on my GTX 460. Now we’re talking upwards of 30fps.

    • l33t-g4m3r
    • 12 years ago

    What? Crysis2 the dx9 console port? I doubt there’s really a need to do anything with that game, as you yourself have verified.

    • l33t-g4m3r
    • 12 years ago

    Yay, new drivers.

    • Silus
    • 12 years ago

    Weird that there’s no mention of Crysis 2 improvements. Being one of the driving forces behind Crysis 2, one would think that NVIDIA would have gains in this game. Maybe only in the WHQL version…

    The game already runs like a charm, so it’s not really a problem, just “weird”…

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This

Share this post with your friends!