This is how graphics driver updates are supposed to go down: beta drivers come out, and after a while, the latest beta features are rolled into a WHQL release—that is, a release blessed by Microsoft's Windows Hardware Quality Labs.
That's just what's happened today. A set of Catalyst 13.12 WHQL drivers have just popped up on AMD's website, and according to the official @CatalystCreator Twitter feed, these are "basically . . . the WHQL version of the 13.11 Beta V9.5 drivers." For the record, the beta V9.5 drivers came out on December 3 and are still the latest ones out there. Or they were, before today's update came along.
Anyway, if you're already running those, you're probably already all set. If you're upgrading from the last WHQL release, which was posted in September, then you have a fair number of new features to look forward to:
- Support for the R-series Radeon family.
- Improved CrossFire multi-GPU scaling in Call of Duty: Ghosts multiplayer, Splinter Cell Blacklist, Saints Row 4, and Metro Last Light.
- AMD Enduro profiles for XCOM: Enemy Unknown, Need for Speed Rivals, Total War: Rome 2, Battlefield 4, Saints Row 4, Splinter Cell Blacklist, and FIFA 14. (Enduro is AMD's switchable graphics technology for notebooks.)
- Frame pacing support for multi-GPU configs. Note that the frame pacing implementation in this driver still doesn't work with resolutions above 2560x1600 unless you're running a Radeon R7 260X, R9 290, or R9 290X. Broader frame pacing support will arrive next month in a beta driver.
AMD has also squashed a good number of bugs since September's Catalyst 13.9 release. Here are the highlights, in the company's words:
May resolve intermittent black screens or display loss observed on some AMD Radeon™ R9 290X and AMD Radeon R9 290 graphics cards Resolves intermittent crashes seen in legacy DirectX® 9 applications AMD Radeon™ R9 290 Series - Power Tune update to reduce variance of fan speed / RPM PCI-E bus speed is no longer set to x1 on the secondary GPU when running in CrossFire configurations Resolves intermittent flickering seen on some AMD Radeon R9 270X graphics cards Resolves Corruption issues found in Starcraft Resolves image corruption seen in Autodesk Investor 2014 Resolves intermittent black screen when resuming from a S3/S4 sleep state if the display is unplugged during the sleep state on systems supporting AMD Enduro Technology Resolves intermittent crashes experienced with Battlefield 4 on Windows 8 based systems