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Old Feb 24, 2003, 02:12 AM   #1
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Jessman512
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Talking Something to think about...

Ok, first of all I'd like to say that this thread is not for flaming, so if u feel compelled to do so, please leave.

That said, I feel that there are many things which ATI is doing wrong, and or things that can be improved. In addition, I have some simple questions that i'd like answered (if possible) about the slew of driver issues, people seem to be getting (view these forums). I'm going to compare ATI to Nvidia in many of my questions and statements - please know I'm ONLY doing this because ATI and Nvidia are the only real graphics competitors today, and I feel Nvidia is the best (although I own a BBATI 9700pro).

1. I realize Nvidia gets dev's to add driver support for thier cards, (i don't consider this to be cheap its smart this way their cards work well with games) why doesn't ATI do the same thing/as much as Nvidia?

2. Why doesn't ATI allow BIOS updates ? - yes there are risks, and they can cause problems, but thats the same with any BIOS/firmware upgrade and I can still update my mobo, IDE drivers, etc.

3. Why doesn't ATI ever really just straight up improve a driver, like nvidia, whereas they offer up to a 25% boost in speed, although i doubt most cards get that much, my bro's geforce 3 ti500 got +11% and didn't lose any visual quality. Instead, we see, improved application xxx with on 7500 +10% (that doesn't help anyone for the most part). I want to see a +XX% D3D/OpenGL speed or fixed all stuttering.

I have owned 3 ATI cards (only BBATI) and 2 Geforces (only visionteks) and ATI cars are mainly just a hassel for me so the next card I buy will likely be a geforce, unless ATI starts getting into gear and making their cards as well as geforces. I never had one issue with my 2 geforces in anything! As for my radeons, well they are at the other end of the spectrum, issues with many things. NOTE: The only issues i got with my 9700pro are driver bugs.

Please feel free to answer my questions and or voice your opinion about what ATI should improve / what they are doing right, but please don't flame - thank you.
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Old Feb 24, 2003, 02:22 AM   #2
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1) I believe that ATi would prefer to have developers write directly to OpenGL or Direct3d specifications.

2)BIOS updates are not needed

3)I have never seen nVidia have a driver increase in the way that you have stated. Like ATi, I have seen speed increases in certain applications where in others it has cause performance to suffer. There has also been variations in image quality in regards to different nVidia driver revisions (and in some cases, broken or missing effects alltogether)
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Old Feb 24, 2003, 02:27 AM   #3
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I think it all comes down to question 1. By optimizing for nVidia's cards, they are in constant contact with nVidia throughout the entire development of their game. Whenever they come across a problem, they can either rewrite the code to work around the problem or they can contact nVidia and get them to fix the bug. You have to understand any new driver released by nVidia has bug fixes for games that have yet to be released. On the other side of the equation, you have ATI. Most of the bugs dealing with ATI's drivers are not found out about until after the game has been released. My point is you don't know about the bugs in the nVidia drivers because they were fixed long before the game was released. Now I'm not saying ATI has no driver bugs that are their own but they are blamed for things they could not avoid.

As far as bios updates, ATI has stated there is no need for bios updates because the only thing the bios does is initialize the card. Once Windows loads, the driver updates anything dealing with the card. Basically, the only reason to update the bios would be to fix something dealing with your system boot process.

Last edited by ChrisW : Feb 24, 2003 at 02:31 AM.
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Old Feb 24, 2003, 02:32 AM   #4
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First of all, of course BIOS updates are not needed, but ATI should provide them (as many nvidia card makers do) to fix problems.

Second, why isn't ATI involved in the dev. of game just like nvidia?
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Old Feb 24, 2003, 02:33 AM   #5
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Never had an ATI card so far.
My Radeon 9700 should arrive any minute here.

I currently own a GF 3 TI-200 and had a GF 2 MX before.
I used 3dfx cards before and i loved them.

Let me say one thing: I am no newbie and i always sorted my problems with the nvidia cards BUT:

They suck! They friggin suck so damn bad.

Nvidia drivers are a piece of crap.
There was the detonator 30.92 (or so). They were quite nice and stable.
But now: One after the other driver gets released and they are damn bugged. Some driver has prblems with this game some with that game.
With 40.72 some games run but others give you bad graphics.
So i go for the 41.09 wich give me bad textures with some older games.

Nvidia can't make a new driver that messes up graphics with old games.

Maybe you don't have many games on your system and never noticed.

There also was BIG PROBLEMS when i switchef from 30.xx driver series to 40.xx.
I always unistalled em correctly but they always leave some stuff on your system if you don't use regedit yourself.

So the old nvidia driver affects the newer one in a negative way.

I for my part am done with nvidia. I never liked the cards.
I had to buy one after 3dfx was bought and no new good 3dfx cards where there but now with ATI and their fast card nothing holds me back.

IMO atm only ppl who just don't know it better buy a nvidia product.

What you gonna buy?
A slow and old GF4?

The incredible expensive and loud FX that uses cheating drivers so it fast enough in 3dmark?
(They don't render all effects in 3dmark2003 that should tell you a lot about their drivers!!!)

Just my 2 cents


EDIT: performance increase in drivers????
Never ever had a faster driver thn the 30.xx series.
Go figure. (ohh 40.41 was fast but crashed games)

Last edited by mustrum : Feb 24, 2003 at 02:36 AM.
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Old Feb 24, 2003, 02:34 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by Jessman512
First of all, of course BIOS updates are not needed, but ATI should provide them (as many nvidia card makers do) to fix problems.

Second, why isn't ATI involved in the dev. of game just like nvidia?
I agree, I think they should be doing the same thing nVidia is doing. They need to ship developers their cards (for free) and be in contact with them. Why they are not I can't understand.
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Old Feb 24, 2003, 02:34 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by Jessman512
First of all, of course BIOS updates are not needed, but ATI should provide them (as many nvidia card makers do) to fix problems.
What problems have you run into that you think are BIOS related?




my point exactly.....
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Old Feb 24, 2003, 02:41 AM   #8
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Wait a minute, do u think that because i don't know which issues are due to the BIOS (because i didn't make it) that the BIOS is perfect and doesn't contain issues, wow, thats funny.
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Old Feb 24, 2003, 03:00 AM   #9
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wtf how you gonna expect this to not turn into a flamewar with questions like that.. shoulda just asked "WHY DOES ATI SUCK AND NVIDIA DOESNT" .. anyways

Quote:
First of all, of course BIOS updates are not needed, but ATI should provide them (as many nvidia card makers do) to fix problems.
uh.. ask ati card makers to release bios updates? its not ATi's job to do it.. they're obviously trying to get out of the card manufactuaring area just like nvidia is.. or put less money into it .. either way you cant possibly be pissed at ati for not releasing bios updates.. if you dont like it, email one of their 10+ manufactuars and ask them.. then once they start doing it, buy one of their cards..

this is as stupid as complaining that nVidia doesnt release enough bios updates because "JOE's local repackager" doesnt release them..

Quote:
Second, why isn't ATI involved in the dev. of game just like nvidia?
uh sorry.. but "THE WAY ITS MEANT TO BE PLAYED" doesnt mean nvidia had a hand in it more then ati. Financially.. maybe.. Technically.. PROBABLY NOT .. Of course when nVidia funds one of their awesome tech demos it's going to get more attention, but who gives a shiet about some of the crap nvidia pays devs to make run better on their cards?

the reason you dont see "ATI IS TEH BEST BUY ONE OF THEIR CARDS NOW" in every game is MOST LIKELY because ATi is marketting their fckin product right now.. not their name (like nVidia).. not because ATi isnt involved

devs will want their games to run great on the majority of systems.. ATi is selling pretty well right now and devs ARE taking notice.. there will be a few who have either sold out or just have no clue (Epic).. but they are few.. plenty of games out their with ATi only optimizations, that has to say something.. hell, even ut2k3(With the fatass nvidia advertizement in the intro) supports truform, a feature no nvidia card to date has

----------

another person looking for reasons to put down ATi .. personally i think whatever they're doing right now is working.. awesome drivers, great cards, they're selling nicely, they're gaining quite a few people to manufactuar/produce their cards and system builders are jumping onto the ATi bandwagon.. how the hell could anyone possibly think they're doing wrong..


*also if i sounded like i was flaming i didnt mean to.. its just how i am*
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Old Feb 24, 2003, 03:09 AM   #10
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Yeah, well if Nvidia is paying dev's to support their cards, why can't ATI do the same - what is ATI too poor?

I'm comparing ati with nvidia because they are the only real card makers now, i, my friends, and my brother have never had issues with nidia cards, however, ati is quite the comtrairy, thats why im asking these questions, and hoping for non-flame feedback.
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Old Feb 24, 2003, 03:17 AM   #11
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I don't think ATI should pay deveolpers to support their cards. I just think they should pimp their cards. They need to send them cards so they have no excuse but to test them and maybe send them ATI t-shirts and stuff. Basically, get on their good side.

Most games people have problems with are fixed by a game patch or a driver update. There is no reason why these things can't be fixed before the game it released (if both sides are working together).

Last edited by ChrisW : Feb 24, 2003 at 03:20 AM.
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Old Feb 24, 2003, 03:52 AM   #12
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Anyone remember the 'Mojo Day' events last September? (I think there were two.) There were even news posts about them on the main Rage3D page.
Those were presentations for developers about the new technology and EVERY attendant got a FREE Radeon 9700 Pro. Many known game deveopers were there.
I really can't see what more should ATi do, I think it just takes time before we see the effects...
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Old Feb 24, 2003, 03:52 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally posted by Jessman512
Wait a minute, do u think that because i don't know which issues are due to the BIOS (because i didn't make it) that the BIOS is perfect and doesn't contain issues, wow, thats funny.
I'm sure that if there were any truly major issues caused by the BIOS, then ATi would release a flash, but if there are no major issues which affect everyone, then there is no point releasing a flash.
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Old Feb 24, 2003, 04:59 AM   #14
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ATI DOES send cards to developers. They HAVE a developer program. BUT the devs have to register with ATI to get the bonus stuff, I believe. ATI also programs drivers to fix problems for devs.

I believe the developers so far haven't been taking advantage of this very much. You can't force them to optimise for ATI hardware.
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Old Feb 24, 2003, 05:59 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally posted by mustrum
Never had an ATI card so far.
My Radeon 9700 should arrive any minute here.

I currently own a GF 3 TI-200 and had a GF 2 MX before.
I used 3dfx cards before and i loved them.

Let me say one thing: I am no newbie and i always sorted my problems with the nvidia cards BUT:

They suck! They friggin suck so damn bad.

Nvidia drivers are a piece of crap.
There was the detonator 30.92 (or so). They were quite nice and stable.
But now: One after the other driver gets released and they are damn bugged. Some driver has prblems with this game some with that game.
With 40.72 some games run but others give you bad graphics.
So i go for the 41.09 wich give me bad textures with some older games.

Nvidia can't make a new driver that messes up graphics with old games.

Maybe you don't have many games on your system and never noticed.

There also was BIG PROBLEMS when i switchef from 30.xx driver series to 40.xx.
I always unistalled em correctly but they always leave some stuff on your system if you don't use regedit yourself.

So the old nvidia driver affects the newer one in a negative way.

I for my part am done with nvidia. I never liked the cards.
I had to buy one after 3dfx was bought and no new good 3dfx cards where there but now with ATI and their fast card nothing holds me back.

IMO atm only ppl who just don't know it better buy a nvidia product.

What you gonna buy?
A slow and old GF4?

The incredible expensive and loud FX that uses cheating drivers so it fast enough in 3dmark?
(They don't render all effects in 3dmark2003 that should tell you a lot about their drivers!!!)

Just my 2 cents


EDIT: performance increase in drivers????
Never ever had a faster driver thn the 30.xx series.
Go figure. (ohh 40.41 was fast but crashed games)
i completely agree with what you are saying as ive experienced the very same when i had been using a gf2mx for 2 years. their drivers were hel for the reasons you just stated.
heck the 12.81's i found to be the most stable! and gfx error free.
that 25% increase was only ever PR. but how the little we know.
the rage pro i had used with the 3dfx v2 sli was nice and stable and never an issue was to be had.

im now a proud owner of a radeon 9700 pro bought weeks after released. one of the reasons for choosing the top of the range ATI card as apposed an the top of the range nvidia card was (is) due to nvidias poor driver record.
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Old Feb 24, 2003, 07:21 AM   #16
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This may seem a little OT:

Jen-Hsun yelled at an employee, "DO YOU SUCK? IF YOU SUCK JUST SAY SO!".

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Old Feb 24, 2003, 10:32 AM   #17
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1) Games should be written to d3d/opengl, not to vendor specific extensions. Oh hell, why don't we go back to Glide??? Would you be happy then?

2)Yes, I've always gotten massive performance increases by flashing the bios on all my nVidia cards. (The sarcasm meter just went through the roof in case you were too dense to detect it). If something was broken that a bios flash would resolve, I'm sure they would provide the option.

3)Arrrrggg! This is what bothers me the most. I've had nVidia cards since the Riva 128, the 3.0a and 3.1 Catalysts are as good or better than the nVidia drivers I've used. When nVidia gets these "amazing performance increases", chances are good they only fixed something that was broken in the first place. Also, I never got tired of playing the "let's see which game's performance gets tanked with this latest beta set" driver game while I was using nVidia.

I can't speak for everyone of course, but this is the extent of my "driver problems" since buying my first ATI (my current 9700 Pro).
1)Motocross Madness 2: Texturing issue in supercross...fixed in the very next set of drivers after I noticed it.
2)Tribes 2: Blackout issue in the menus when using AA...No idea if this has been fixed as I was just testing and no longer play it. I have heard it was game specific and can't be fixed through drivers though, don't know if that's true or not.
3)MOH-Spearhead: Stuttering issue while playing online using the 3.0 Catalysts(the openGL issue), this was fixed very shortly afterwards with the 3.0a.
4)Nolf&Nolf2: Severe stuttering throughout both games. Oh, WAIT! That's right it wasn't a driver issue anyway as it turned out, it was a system specific issue related to my Highpoint RAID controller. My point being, I would guess people frequently jump to the conclusion "it must be a ATI driver issue" when the problem lies elsewhere.

I've had far more experience with nV cards than ATI obviously, and would have no problem buying another one. However, I've seen the other side of the fence now and for that to happen they would not only have to best ATI in performance, but image quality as well. At the very least be nearly equal in IQ and best them convincingly in performance. From what I've seen lately from nVidia, they seem to be going in the opposite direction...Rendering errors and overestimated performance should be thier new motto.
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Old Feb 24, 2003, 10:46 AM   #18
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3) Educate yourself (25%=3Dmark)

Quake 3



3Dmark 2001



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Old Feb 24, 2003, 11:43 AM   #19
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Default idiology

ATi's driver idiology is to collect as many driver issues as possible, then fix or find a work around for those issues. Main reason why ATi doesn't release drivers every couple of days like nvidia. Because ATi puts time and effort on improving quality and fixing problems their drivers actually combine major changes along with minor ones.

Nvidia's idiology is quite different. Nvidia's driver team releases drivers for minor problems and work arounds consistantly to make it look like they have the best drivers team. They also have another developement team to fix major problems which take their sweet a$$ time, every month and a half compared to ATi's usually 3-4 weeks which releases a driver for both minor and major fixs, and work arounds, plus performance enhancements. Nvidia uses the minor bug fix releases that come out every 3-5 days as a marketing scheme.

So Nvidia's only advantage right now is putting out small fixes every 3-5 days, but does people actually give a crap if these fixes only fix a problem such as glowing lights in SoF 2? Which you can even hardly notice unless you look for it in the train station level? Heck no. Its time to look at marketing strategies people, nvidia is only better than ATi in marketing. I have owned nVidia boards before and found ATi as the only company closest to home of the quality graphics that the 3Dfx boards produced. The only thing nVidia has in common with 3Dfx is good marketing plain and simple. For all of those 3Dfx fans out there, try an ATi Radeon board because it will bring home the quality graphics you're looking for.
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Old Feb 24, 2003, 11:21 PM   #20
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No, ATI does NOT release BIOS updates under ANY conditions, ATI tech support told me so, they said they instead use driver updates (which cannot fix all issues). Remember the 9700pro crap, whereas so many people were having agp 8x issues when the 9700pro first came out, then instead of releasing a new bios ati just made better card revisions, 1.0, 1.1 ,1.2, 1.3 (mines new 3.0) and gave the newest cards (mine) the 8.004 bios.

Wheres the 8.004 bios on the ati site huh, it obviously,fixed something, so why not release it to possibly resolve some people's 8x problems (i have none)? I know one can find BIOS' at omegacorner, (mine has it anyways) but what about the others that don't have a new card like me and got issues, whats ATI doing to help them. HAVE U GUYS SEEN THE POST 8X ISSUES AND ATI FIX, it got the most responses EVER, like 770. However, ATI NEVER released a BIOS update like peeps said they would, or anything else to fix it. ATI really came through for those guys huh?

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Old Feb 24, 2003, 11:28 PM   #21
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HEY SMARTASS..

WWW.NVIDIA.COM

FIND ME A BIOS UPDATE.. I BET YOU CANT
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Old Feb 25, 2003, 12:23 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally posted by Jessman512
No, ATI does NOT release BIOS updates under ANY conditions, ATI tech support told me so, they said they instead use driver updates (which cannot fix all issues). Remember the 9700pro crap, whereas so many people were having agp 8x issues when the 9700pro first came out, then instead of releasing a new bios ati just made better card revisions, 1.0, 1.1 ,1.2, 1.3 (mines new 3.0) and gave the newest cards (mine) the 8.004 bios.

Wheres the 8.004 bios on the ati site huh, it obviously,fixed something, so why not release it to possibly resolve some people's 8x problems (i have none)? I know one can find BIOS' at omegacorner, (mine has it anyways) but what about the others that don't have a new card like me and got issues, whats ATI doing to help them. HAVE U GUYS SEEN THE POST 8X ISSUES AND ATI FIX, it got the most responses EVER, like 770. However, ATI NEVER released a BIOS update like peeps said they would, or anything else to fix it. ATI really came through for those guys huh?
IIRC, the AGP8 issue had more to do with early motherboards than with the ATI cards. Case in point, I have one of the first Radeon 9700 Pros to become available in Europe, and it has worked like a charm with my Asus A7N8X Deluxe. No problems at all with AGP8.
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Old Feb 25, 2003, 02:16 AM   #23
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i have the 8.004 bios with a 1.1 card.
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Old Feb 25, 2003, 02:25 AM   #24
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Talking Too Funny!

OMG some peeps are here are really uninformed, hello ErrorSz if u missed the 8 million times one can view this on their website, nvidia makes graphics card chipsets not cards hehe. I can't believe u don't know this, thus they don't make bios updates for cards they don't have lol, what r u thinking?

But take a look here www.msi.com.tw , they make geforces, and updated BIOS' like 1-2 months, i know because i used to have a MSI geforce 3 ti500. They have a program called live update, it even makes the driver, bios, etc. updating easy as all hell if ur a "n00b."

EDIT: And in regard to the other posts saying i got a 1.0 card and no 8x issues, well take a look at the thread with 750 posts lol, just because u got lucky doesn't mean that that card/bios wasn't really flawed. My friend couldn't get his 9700pro working right at all, then he rma'ed it and got a 3.0 like me, guess what all problems sloved, now it would have been nice and easy for him if ati could have just allowed him the choice to update his bios. And that is just one issue trust me there are others, most we don't know about, but if ati could provide us with some fixes that would be nice. I mean whats wrong with some peeps here, u guys sound pro no bios updates, as paying customers ati should provide us with a needed support (and then some) to ensure all of our cards work as they should. In my opinion, ati broke the term plug and play, nvidia created it .

Last edited by Jessman512 : Feb 25, 2003 at 02:40 AM.
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Old Feb 25, 2003, 02:41 AM   #25
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Jessman, didn't it ever occur to You that perhaps there were some other changes in the later revisions apart from the BIOS? I think if the problems could be solved by a simple BIOS update, why would ATi do so many RMA's ? They aren't stupid You know...
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Old Feb 25, 2003, 02:45 AM   #26
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Of course their are other changes than, an updated bios, but that doesn't mean an updated bios couldn't fix anything - or just one issue. And ATI has had a no bios update policy forever, this isn't a new thing, that just applys to the 9700pro, c'mon...

Didn't u see the petition for BIOS updates a while back, this community demands that type of support, and ati's reply was no, actually, I don't even think they bothered to replied lol. Wheres the customer support there huh, and ati is always talking about how they have good support now with good drivers, etc.

This is just one of many things i find worng with ati, i'd like to be able to buy my card install the drivers, and play games - like i can with geforces, radeons quite are the opposite.

Last edited by Jessman512 : Feb 25, 2003 at 02:52 AM.
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Old Feb 25, 2003, 02:52 AM   #27
Hellbinder
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Quote:
EDIT: And in regard to the other posts saying i got a 1.0 card and no 8x issues, well take a look at the thread with 750 posts lol, just because u got lucky doesn't mean that that card/bios was really flawed. My friend couldn't get his 9700pro working right at all, then he rma'ed it and got a 3.0 like me, guess what all problems sloved, now it would have been nice and easy for him if ati could have just allowed him the choice to update his bios. And that is just one issue trust me there are others, most we don't know about, but if ati could provide us with some fixes that would be nice. I mean whats wrong with some peeps here, u guys sound pro no bios updates, as paying customers ati should provide us with a needed support (and then some) to ensure all of our cards work as they should. In my opinion, ati broke the term plug and play, nvidia created it .
Good Grief...

I thought you didn't want to start a flame war, and you actually were going to present some valid points.. Um yeah right... Next...

Check your history... especially when the GF3 was released. You are also intentionally ignoring the Truth that Severl MOBO compnaies released AGP 8x boards based on pre-Finalized Beta specs for AGP 8x. Yes there were several people that had AGP 8x issues. The problem is you never see the people without a probelm. They dont post.

Virtually NO IHV releases Bios updates for their Video card. Unless something is broken. If fact in all my years of Graphics card owning I have only EVER needed, or was offered a Bios update Twice. First was for my Rendition Verite 1000, the second was for my Savage 2000.

For the Developer issue. ATi is definitly Turn the corner on this. About 10 of the biggest games of 2003 will include PS 1.4 support. Thats just for starters.

Driver performance.. Yeah whatever.. Nvidias First big performance increase was when they initially introduced S3TC. It sped them up, but hacked their IQ to Crap for 16bit S3TC ever since. After that its mostly been increases in benchmark applications only. The negative of which has been a STEADY decrease in all their older cards performance and Compatability. That would include screwing up the GF3.

Both Ati and Nvidia claim Driver performance increases from time to time. Both have Driver issues From time to time. The GF2 has serious Stuttering problems for the first few months of its exsistance etc etc etc..

To think that ANY company can avoid all problems with the vast array of Hardware, and Game Developers.. its just Fantasy land.

ATi has some pretty awesome drivers now. Not to mention the most feature Rich Control panels.
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Old Feb 25, 2003, 02:56 AM   #28
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This is just one of many things i find worng with ati, i'd like to be able to buy my card install the drivers, and play games - like i can with geforces, radeons are the opposite.
Complete Bullshit.

Don't want to start a flame war my ass...

I not even going to justify that Nvidiot Bullshit with an answer.
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Old Feb 25, 2003, 02:57 AM   #29
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Originally posted by Hellbinder
To think that ANY company can avoid all problems with the vast array of Hardware, and Game Developers.. its just Fantasy land.

ATi has some pretty awesome drivers now. Not to mention the most feature Rich Control panels.
I'll agree with the control panal part. Sometimes installing new ATI drivers can be a real pain though.
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Old Feb 25, 2003, 02:57 AM   #30
Jessman512
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ATI considers themselves the "Industry Standard" in customer support for graphics cards (their own words @ www.ati.com ). Now when many other companies provide updates, (look above for one) i think the "Industry Standard" could manage it don't you? lol

I have not flamed anyone, I have stated my opinions with more than just cause and done so in a fairly mild manner, im not saying things like ssmartass and bullsshit u are.

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