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An alleged screen capture of the ATI version of Rydermark (saved and reposted to preserve metadata)

An alleged screen capture of the NVIDIA version of Rydermark (saved and reposted to preserve metadata)

A difference map of the two images
"Rydermark developers" make bold claims which turn out to be nothing more than a Photoshop hoax

It would appear The Inquirer was quick to jump the gun on a story accusing NVIDIA of lying about full DirectX 9 support. The story accused NVIDIA of not allowing developers to use 24-bit or 32-bit shader precision. Instead it claims NVIDIA forces developers into using 16-bit shader precision as the technique is faster. This is a problem as DirectX 9 compliancy requires 24-bit shader precision or better.  "Rydermark" is not a commercially shipping application yet, and has had very little information published to confirm its authenticity.

The original story lacked any type of physical evidence and The Inquirer claimed its sources were developers for the program. Images allegedly proving that NVIDIA forces developers into using 16-bit shader precision were posted on The Inquirer. The posted images compared a rendered scene in Rydermark 2006 between ATI and NVIDIA graphics cards.

It turns out the images "proving" NVIDIA’s wrongdoings were nothing more than poorly done Photoshopped images.  The NVIDIA rendered image appeared to have blurrier water while the ATI rendered image had sharper water detail. However, the ATI rendered image just didn’t look right with poor cut offs and a creation date three minutes after the NVIDIA rendered image.  A difference image of the two JPG files can be seen to the right, with the outline of the modified  area clearly visible in the ATI image.  This would suggest the NVIDIA image was the original source image, and that the ATI version was modified afterwards.

A difference of the metadata from both images reveals that the NativeDigest delimiter is identical for both images, but has two different InstanceIDs.  This would be consistent with an image that was modified and saved twice.  In the author's defense, images that are created and saved on his computer have distinct metadata tags that are very easily identifiable.  These are not present in the two images supplied by The Inquirer for "Rydermark" -- suggesting the images may not have been modified by the author.

There’s been an outcry of The Inquirer images on various forums including Ace’s Hardware, AnandTech and Beyond3D.

Update 07/19/2006: The Inquirer has posted something resembling a rebuttal to this article. Incredibly, a user from the forums managed to track down some of the stock art used in the screen renders, and believes the entire image is actually fraudulent.

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Dailytech are Nvidia/Apple shills anyway
By Sharky974 on 7/19/2006 7:00:57 PM , Rating: -1
Like most politically correct websites. They obviously have a dog in this fight (Nvidia, as Dailytech is part Nvidia owner, ok I made that up, they just act like it but dont actually get paid).

Dailytech annoys me. Stop being so fucking biased with your sidebar headlines. Which basically read like this everyday: "Microsoft is stupid, The RIIA is stupid, ATI is stupid, Apple is great, Nvidia is great"

I'd say wait for unbiased sources. PC hardware websites are no longer willing to do image qaulity anaylsis that may make Nvidia look bad, so we'll have to wait for the inquirer and see if they come up with anything imo. The Inq may actually have the balls to do something Dailytech, and virtually every other politically correct PC hardware website on the web today, wouldn't dare, and that is, call out Nvidia. So all eyes on Inq, I know Dailytech is scared to give me the truth that's for sure.

And I'm sure Nvidia is cheating
By Sharky974 on 7/19/06, Rating: 0
RE: And I'm sure Nvidia is cheating
By Justin Case on 7/19/2006 8:44:41 PM , Rating: 2
First of all, they know 99% of tech "journalists" have zero technical knowledge. And then there's the state of media in general: big media is controlled by advertising, and small, independent media is seen as "unprofessional" by the clueless masses, who think a big site full of ads must somehow be more reliable (it's a bit like concluding that, since McDonald's makes a lot of money, their food must be the healthiest).

That's why I prefer to read sites like Dan's Data, etc., that have nothing to lose by pissing off the "big boys". No direct ad revenue, no free pre-release samples or party invitations. And he gets his hardware from a shop, so you know he's testing the same product consumers will get, not a sample carefully picked by the manufacturer to make sure it overclocks better, etc..

The Inquirer often reaches nonsensical conclusions, but they do make real investigation journalism, which is something very rare these days. They were reporting on Yamhill (EM-64T), or Sun's Opteron servers, for example, five months before anyone else (and most "IT news" sites said they were crazy).

RE: And I'm sure Nvidia is cheating
By Knish on 7/20/2006 1:55:43 AM , Rating: 3
They were reporting on Yamhill (EM-64T), or Sun's Opteron servers, for example, five months before anyone else (and most "IT news" sites said they were crazy).

They were also reporting R520 had 32 pipelines, Dell would never use AMD processors, and something about 666 hitler nazi babies or something. Sorry, I like my news real rather than first.

By Justin Case on 7/20/2006 1:54:26 PM , Rating: 2
The R520 was planned to have 24/32 pipelines. Lots of sites reported on it. Low yields made ATI change its mind, and release it with 16 pipelines (but at a higher clock speed) instead.

I never saw them state as a fact that Dell "would never use AMD processors" (and I don't see how anyone could write - or read - that as a "fact"). I did see Charlie post (in a signed editorial) that he personally didn't believe it would ever happen, and saying that he'd dress up as a bunny if it did (a bet with Rahul Sood). Rahul's position was in fact mentioned in the same article, so they were giving you both sides of the "story" (which was, in both cases, simply opinion, not the result of any investigation or interview with a Dell "mole").

I can't seem to find any references to the Hitler nazi babies, but maybe I still need a few drinks to catch up with you.

But on one thing we agree: I too like my news real (i.e., something that is new, and that didn't come out of a mega-corporation's PR department). The fact that they usually get them first is simply a bonus.

RE: Dailytech are Nvidia/Apple shills anyway
By Knish on 7/20/2006 1:48:44 AM , Rating: 3
Microsoft is stupid, The RIIA is stupid, ATI is stupid, Apple is great, Nvidia is great

Do you only hear what you want to hear?

Praise for Microsoft:

Praise for british RIAA:

Praise for ATI:

Apple slammed:

NVIDIA slammed:
(honestly, how could you even suggest this is an NVIDIA friendly place after that)

Yep, NVIDIA is sure paying for Dailytech to run around and trash its products, leak the roadmaps and banter with the product managers.

The Inq may actually have the balls to do something Dailytech, and virtually every other politically correct PC hardware website on the web today, wouldn't dare, and that is, call out Nvidia.

Sharky, what little bit of dignity you had left just went out the window. Tell Fudo I say hi when you see him at work.

RE: Dailytech are Nvidia/Apple shills anyway
By Sharky974 on 7/20/2006 5:42:10 AM , Rating: 1
Uhh, the ATI and MS stories you listed are hardly glowing praise, they're simply reporting. I suspect many of the rest of your links are the same. I'll give you they scorned Nvidia there, but there's still no doubt in my mind Kubicki is a big time NV fanboy. Example, I'll bet big money he has NV in his personal rig. How would I know that if I wasn't pretty sure of myself.

Meanwhile you ignore Dailytech's daily politically correct bashing of MS, RIAA, and ATI. While heaping praise on Nvidia, Apple, etc.

The funny thing is Anand himself is not very biased. He treats ATI, AMD, NVIDIA, and INTEL, as well as APPLE, fairly. It's his sub-editors that write many CPU and GPU reviews, and especially the dailytech editors and Kubicki that seem to be the worse. I understand not a lot can be done about this, Anand cannot write everything on the site, but it's still a bit obnoxious, especially the consistently slanted dailytech headlines on the sidebar.

By KristopherKubicki on 7/20/2006 6:14:35 AM , Rating: 2
Neither ATI nor NVIDIA are on speaking relations with DailyTech, and I can pretty much assure you there is no fanboyism for either camp here.

RE: Dailytech are Nvidia/Apple shills anyway
By Frumious1 on 7/20/2006 4:27:52 PM , Rating: 2
Read the "quite obvious" thread above and then try to tell us you think the images are real again. You don't even need to be a "graphics expert" to spot the errors. Seriously, there is no way to get that effect without some seriously stupid Photochopping.

Pixel shaders work on textures and polygons (like water), not on portions of some of the water and not other portions, plus parts of the railing and feet. Ugh. I'm guessing if we could see the real identities of Sharky and Justin Case that they would be Inq staffers. Thanks for coming over here to promote your lies, guys.

By Scorpion on 7/20/2006 7:32:09 PM , Rating: 2
Here's another good discussion about the images, which follow along my own initial thoughts.

The whole rendering looks like it was constructed using 2D images of the building faces, and most obvious, the people. They completely look like sprites to me. Some people in that thread even found openly available images that look extremely likely to be the source for the "render".

There is an even an analysis of this Rydermark's previously released screenshot, where there is clearly something not right about the reflection in the water.

The sharpening brush is PLAINLY obvious, and now the entire benchmark is suspect at even stressing any 3D capability whatsoever with what looks to be mostly "3D" appearing 2D textures.

I hardly read the Inquirer, but my god, this is the worst journalism I've ever seen. Not to mention the response attack from the Inq. Inq has no credability with me at all, and this Fuad guy should clearly not be a journalist. Funny how this all happened the day after I watched the movie "Shattered Glass".

By Justin Case on 7/20/2006 8:19:11 PM , Rating: 1
Pixel shaders work on textures and polygons

Wrong. You are confusing pixel shaders with multitexturing. Pixel shaders are small programs that modify pixel data. The output can then be used as a texture, but there is no reason why pixel shaders can't run on 2D screen space (Windows Vista does this a lot, for example, and so do modern video editing and compositing programs).

In fact, most Photoshop filters and brushes can be implemented as pixel shaders (the reason why they're not is that different graphics cards produce slightly different results, and professional software needs to be consistent).

And no, I don't work for the Inquirer or any other news site or hardware manufacturer. Maybe that's why I don't have to worry about posting hollow "articles" to defend my sponsors.

"So if you want to save the planet, feel free to drive your Hummer. Just avoid the drive thru line at McDonalds." -- Michael Asher

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