Nvidia just broke the 300-mark with its latest 301.24 beta drivers, and according to the green gaming camp, these are a little more special than your usual incremental update, sporting brand new features and gaming performance – particularly for Skyrim players who will see up to 24% improvements. Read the full post for performance benchmarks and visual IQ comparisons and download the 301.24 beta drivers to try for yourself.
An essential upgrade for all GeForce users, these drivers enable NVIDIA FXAA, NVIDIA Adaptive VSync, and NVIDIA Frame Rate Target on all GeForce 8-series and later GPUs and also add new NVIDIA Surround features for all Surround-capable GPUs. Also included are numerous performance improvements for top titles, new SLI profiles, and new 3D Vision profiles.
Nvidia FXAA Technology
With the release of the GeForce 301.24 beta driver, a high-speed, shader-based anti-aliasing technique can be applied directly to hundreds of games through the NVIDIA Control Panel. Called NVIDIA FXAA, this technique is up to 60% faster than 4xMSAA, and can produce results equal to or better than the ageing anti-aliasing solution. Furthermore, FXAA is able to anti-alias increasingly-popular transparent textures, as shown in our Batman: Arkham City Graphics Breakdown and Performance Guide, making it the clear winner in many of today’s games.
NVIDIA Adaptive VSync
Many gamers enable Vertical Synchronization (VSync) to prevent screen-tearing, an unsightly occurrence caused by frame rates exceeding a monitor’s refresh rate. The downside is the occasional and equally annoying stutter when frame rates drop below the locked VSync frame rate, and again when they return to the locked rate.
To fix the problem, the GeForce 301.24 beta drivers come loaded with NVIDIA Adaptive VSync, an automated technique that disables VSync when frame rates fall below the locked rate, and re-enables it when they return to the locked rate, significantly reducing stuttering whilst still preventing tearing.
NVIDIA Surround Enhancements
The GeForce 301.24 beta drivers introduce several new NVIDIA Surround features for our multi-monitor users. To learn more, click each link below.
NVIDIA Surround Accessory Display: Enable a fourth ‘Accessory Display’ to check emails, browse the web, or access other applications while in-game.
NVIDIA Desktop Management: Maximize applications to a single physical display when in Surround mode.
NVIDIA Desktop Management: Confine the Windows Taskbar to the center display.
NVIDIA Bezel Peeking: ‘Peek’ behind monitor bezels to reveal obscured menus and game information.
NVIDIA Central Display Acceleration: Play single-screen games at full speed on Surround setups.
NVIDIA Custom Resolution Management: Add or remove Surround resolutions to improve compatibility in applications and games.
Our engineers have once again delved back into the GeForce driver’s code, optimizing and tweaking wherever possible. The result: improved performance on GeForce 400 and 500-series GPUs in the two dozen games we ran through our labs (GeForce GTX 680 users received these improvements as part of the launch-day 301.10 driver).
The largest improvement was again found in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, the world’s most popular role-playing game. As the chart below shows, performance increased by 17-20% at 2560×1600 using the most demanding game settings available (similar gains were recorded at 1920×1080).
New & Updated SLI Profiles
As always, our new GeForce driver includes new and updated profiles for today’s top titles, increasing performance and unleashing the full power of SLI systems.
Call of Juarez: The Cartel
Counter-Strike: Global Offensive
Deus Ex: Human Revolution – The Missing Link
Left 4 Dead
Orcs Must Die!
Risen 2: Dark Waters
The Darkness II
New & Updated 3D Vision Profiles
New and updated 3D Vision profiles are also included in the GeForce 301.24 beta drivers, helping you get the best possible experience when playing in stereoscopic 3D using our industry-leading technology.
All Zombies Must Die! – Rated Fair
Ghosts ‘n Goblins Online – Rated Good
Krater – Rated Poor
Oil Rush – Rated 3D Vision Ready
Postal III – Rated Good
Rayman Origins – Rated Good
SevenCore – Rated Fair
Stacking – Rated Good
Unigine Heaven Benchmark v3.0 – Rated 3D Vision Ready
Wargame: European Escalation – Rated Good
Warp – Rated Good
Wings of Prey – Rated Fair