New Features Of The Release 80 Driver, Continued
Another feature that brings their drivers up to par is what NVIDIA refers to as "cross-card compatibility." SLI no longer requires that graphics cards used in SLI be identical. You can now take a card from Asus and mix it with a card from BFG, XFX, EVGA or whomever you bought your graphics card from. The only stipulation is that the GPU cores must be identical. Therefore, a 7800 GT cannot be mixed with a 7800 GTX. However, regardless of the clock speeds, memory densities or frame buffers, as long as the cores are the same, anything goes.
For graphics cards like the 6600LE and others on the bottom of the performance ladder, SLI can be enabled without the SLI bridge. Although some of the cards can handle SLI without the connector under the Release 80 driver, we recommend that you use the connector if the cards have the pins for the connector. If there is extra available bandwidth across the connector, you might as well use it.
In addition to adding more profiles for games and improvements to existing ones in D3D, NVIDIA added improved SLI performance and a streamlined list of application profiles for OpenGL. They also added more to their TV/HDTV support under SLI as well as made improvements to their adaptive interlacing and inverse pulldown 3:2 and 2:2. Release 80 also provides support for some new configurations for SLI on specific motherboards and cards. The new additions are below.
There is one more thing that we wanted to pull out of the release notes that we are sure many have overlooked. The last time NVIDIA announced a new driver, the 7800 GT was just around the corner. We are not going to start speculating but there is an interesting read on two pages in the release notes. The first appears on page 49 and states...
The second appears on page 50 and states the following...
We have nothing more to say about this but thought it was worth pointing out what NVIDIA stated about new GPU support. We will leave you to the rumor mills and the juicy gossip you hear on the forums.