Posts Tagged ‘ graphics ’

IE10 Preview: HTML5 First Look

Internet Explorer 10 logo

Over the last year we’ve been putting every new major mobile platform through a battery of tests to assess how they stack up as an HTML5 application platform. So far, it’s been thumbs up on Apple, RIM and HP tablets and thumbs down on Android tablets. But we’re still crossing our fingers that the Ice Cream Sandwich release of Android will make the grade.

To date, we haven’t spent time on Windows phones, mostly because the Windows Phone 7 browser was so poor that it wasn’t worth evaluating. However, at the Windows Build conference last week we got our hands on a developer preview tablet running Windows 8 and Internet Explorer 10. We wanted to share our first impression of the HTML5 experience. Simply put, (and with the caveat that we were running on the notably overpowered developer preview hardware) the IE10 HTML5 experience is one of the best we’ve seen on any platform to date. After a decade of web neglect, Microsoft is back with a vengeance.

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Intel’s latest graphics driver boasts 37 percent 3D gaming performance gain

If you own a high-end graphics card then you know that applying the latest graphics driver update is probably going to give your games a bit of a performance boost as well as sort out a few bugs. What kind of performance gain you see depends on the games and the age of the card, but a single-digit percentage gain is most likely.

Intel also has to release graphics driver updates for the chips it sells that include an integrated graphics solution. For example, the latest Sandy Bridge Core processors with Intel HD Graphics 3000 integrated. What we didn’t expect to see is the latest version of Intel’s drivers boasting as much as 37 percent 3D gaming performance gain in a certain Blizzard-developed title.

That’s exactly what Intel is claiming though, with the release notes accompanying driver versions 15.22.50.2509 and 15.22.50.64.2590 listing substantial performance gains for six popular titles. Here’s the games and claimed frames-per-second gain you should experience:

  • Starcraft 2: Wings of Liberty – Devil’s Playground – 37% gain
  • Dawn of War: Chaos Rising – 29% gain
  • Battlefield: Bad Company 2 – 28% gain
  • Supreme Commander 2 – 16% gain
  • DIRT 2 – 12% gain
  • Resident Evil 5 (Benchmark) – 10% gain

The reference machine used to log those gains was an Intel Core-i7-2677M running at 1.8GHz on an Intel 6 Series Chipset coupled with 4GB RAM and Hitachi 320 hard drive. The Intel graphics and Media Control Panel Power Plan was set to “Plugged In, Balance” and the games were all running on low settings.

The new drivers also fix an issue with HDMI monitor connections crashing machines intermittently, and rendering artifacts have been resolved in a long list of titles. Any games using OpenGL should also see some performance improvements due to a new extension, performance optimizations, and a few fixes.

One thing is clear, if you run a version of Intel’s HD Graphics solution then it’s definitely worth updating your drivers if you use your laptop for gaming or anything involving 3D rendering.

Read more at the Intel Graphics Media Accelerator Driver page and associated release notes (PDF), via Hot Hardware

Adobe Flash Player 11, AIR 3 to arrive next month

Today, we’re excited to announce that Adobe Flash Player 11 and AIR 3 will be launching in early October. These milestone releases introduce the next generation of the technologies that deliver stunning content and apps to over a billion people — across screens including Android, iPhone, iPad, BlackBerry PlayBook, Windows, Mac, and connected TV devices — pushing the boundaries of what’s possible on the web.

Flash Player 11 and AIR 3 take these even further by introducing Stage 3D, a new architecture for hardware accelerated graphics rendering that delivers 1000x faster rendering performance over Flash Player 10. It enables new classes of console-quality games and immersive apps, such as Tanki Online and Zombie Tycoon (see videos below). Stage 3D enables content that efficiently animate millions of objects on screen, smoothly rendered at 60 frames per second — the result is fluid, cinematic app and game experiences. Additionally, these releases deliver new features to support theater-quality HD video, native 64-bit optimizations, high-quality HD video conferencing, and a powerful, flexible architecture for leveraging native device and platform capabilities. We’re turning the dial up.

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