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Print 23 comment(s) - last by Ringold.. on Dec 6 at 7:26 PM

New version adds support for Radeon X1800 and X1600

Folding@Home has released a new Folding@Home GPU client. This brings the GPU client up to version 5.91 beta2. While previous Folding@Home GPU clients only supported ATI Radeon X1900 series graphics cards, the latest beta2 adds support for more GPUs. This release adds support for ATI’s Radeon X1800 and X1600 series of graphics processors.

As the Folding@Home GPU client relies heavily on pixel shader performance, the performance differences between the X1900-series and other ATI GPUs is tremendous. The Folding@Home GPU FAQ claims:
We now support serveral classes of GPU boards, including X1600, X1800, and X1900 class GPU's from ATI. At the launch, we supported X1900 cards only. X1800 cards do not provide the performance seen in X1900's and so we strongly recommend X1900 class cards (although we now officially support X1800). X1900 and X1800 cards are actually quite different -- they have different processors (R520, R530 vs. the R580 [in the X1900 series]). The R580 makes a huge difference in performance -- its 48 pixel shaders are key, as we use pixel shaders for our computations.
The latest beta2 release still only supports ATI GPUs. There’s no mention of support for NVIDIA GPUs at the moment. The latest Folding@Home GPU client can be downloaded from the Folding@Home download page.


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Why No nVidia Yet?
By AggressorPrime on 12/5/2006 3:04:00 PM , Rating: 2
Are they pro-ATI or something? They say they want the best performance, but they first invest in ATI's mainstream before they go to the most powerful GPU, the G80. Their saying that ATI has faster GPUs for this type of processing than nVidia is as ridiculous as ATI saying that their mainstream GPUs totally own the GeForce 7950 GX2. I have a feeling some money is being transferred here...




RE: Why No nVidia Yet?
By SmokeRngs on 12/5/2006 3:36:47 PM , Rating: 3
Have you looked at the timeline for this? You obviously haven't because you would know that the 8800 series of cards didn't even exist at the time this was started.

From memory, the 7xxx series of nVidia cards just didn't cut it for use in this. It was slower than most good CPUs. There were dramatic performance improvements when running it on the newest ATI cards.

From what little I've heard, there might be support for nVidia cards but if so, the only cards supported would be G80 or newer. I would expect to see a client for this, but it might take some time. Stanford is working on the beta for the current ATI GPUs and probably doesn't have much to spare for working on the nVidia equivilent. Besides, much of the client for the different GPUs would probably be the same. Get the client stable and out of beta for the ATI cards and much of the groundwork will probably be finished for the nVidia client.

Trust me, I hope they get a client out for G80. I have someone that's probably giving me an 8800GTS. I would like to use it for folding too.


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