Office 2010 to Make Itself Faster With Your GPU

Office 2010 will be hitting next month and with it will come GPU acceleration of your productivity software. While we won't be seeing HDR effects in your Word processor, Office 2010 will harness some of your GPU to make the graphical effects less intensive on the CPU.

AMD blogged about this very topic yesterday, pointing out the system requirements of Office 2010 lists this: Use of graphics hardware acceleration requires DirectX 9.0c compatible graphics card with 64 MB or higher video memory.

With that, you can expect the following whiz-bang hotness from Office 2010:

  • Transform images into compelling, vibrant visuals using new and improved picture editing features such as color saturation and temperature, brightness and contrast, and advanced cropping and background removal tools, along with artistic filters such as blur, paintbrush, and watercolor.
  • New slide transitions and animation effects that look similar to graphics you’d see on TV.
  • Dozens of additional SmartArt layouts to create many types of graphics such as organization charts, lists, and picture diagrams.
  • The ability to turn presentations into high-quality videos with narration to share with virtually anyone through e-mail, via the Web, or on DVD.
  • Embed and edit video files directly in PowerPoint 2010. Easily trim your video to show only relevant sections and apply a variety of video styles and effects—such as reflections, bevels, and 3-D rotation

While the new effects may not be groundbreaking, any time that the system can offload some of the work from the CPU onto the GPU (if it's better for the job) is a good thing.

Marcus Yam
Marcus Yam served as Tom's Hardware News Director during 2008-2014. He entered tech media in the late 90s and fondly remembers the days when an overclocked Celeron 300A and Voodoo2 SLI comprised a gaming rig with the ultimate street cred.
  • joytech22
    Well i don't normally use Word for graphical presentations but i guess it's good for anybody looking for a nice speedup when you have a bunch of things in the doc.
  • shin0bi272
    Or you can keep your version of office that you already have and buy an SSD "It is the same price" - Ron White
  • TunaSoda
    As long as we can disable it
  • Jarmo
    Sheesh, I remember when 486 made office blazing fast. Things just keep on improving.
  • Bolbi
    TunaSodaAs long as we can disable itUm, why? It's not like you're going to need that GPU for anything that can't spare a little processing power at the the same time that you're putting together a presentation.
  • killerclick
    I'm guessing this will be useless for now. Still good that they're trying.
  • figgus
    Is it just me, or does it look like they are trying to square off with Adobe? Half that feature list seems to be a new market segment for Office.

    EDIT: Not sure why I got a thumbs down, but at what point did MS start dealing with graphic editing tools more sophisticated than paint? Admittedly, we still use 2k3 where I work, but there is no real editing of images in there. Mostly resizing and whatnot just to jam it into a PowerPoint. Traditionally, most graphic work has been Adobe's turf..
  • apache_lives
    are we going to see benchmarks of nvidia and ati's latest cards comparing performance? LOL
  • scott_madison1
    As we get into the future you're going to see many more applications starting to use the gpu when they can. Get used to it, it's a nice feature!
  • jitpublisher
    It's pretty obvious some of you don't use Microsoft Office in an office or professional environment. I am already thinking of ways I can jazz up my next presentation. They should have been implementing some kind of acceleration years ago.