Print 21 comment(s) - last by cheetah2k.. on Feb 1 at 2:22 AM

NVIDIA still doesn't have final WHQL certified drivers for its flagship DX10 compatible GeForce 8800-series graphics cards

Microsoft’s Windows Vista released into consumer hands today. AMD released the WHQL certified Catalyst 7.1 for Windows Vista 32-bit and 64-bit editions yesterday. NVIDIA, well NVIDIA is doing something because there are still no final WHQL certified drivers for its flagship GeForce 8800-series graphics cards.

While beta drivers are available for GeForce 8800-series users to enjoy Vista, the lack of final drivers is a bit strange. The GeForce 8800-series is the first DirectX 10 compliant add-in graphics card available and with NVIDIA aggressively touting the feature, you would think the drivers would be out of beta by now. Instead of releasing final GeForce 8800-series compatible ForceWare release 100 drivers, users are treated with a new beta released today in time for the Windows Vista launch. The ForceWare release 100 driver arrives the same time as NVIDIA sent out a press release claiming “NVIDIA and Windows Vista Deliver Outstanding New 3D Computing Experience.”

In the same press release, NVIDIA claims:
NVIDIA is the only graphics company with four generations of GPUs and MCPs to be certified by Microsoft to be Windows Vista Premium Ready, and the only graphics company to release Microsoft DirectX 10-capable GPUs. For consumers, this means a stellar out-of-the-box experience with Windows Vista driven by the NVIDIA hardware inside the PC.
This is slightly amusing as the latest generation of NVIDIA GPUs lack final drivers. I do not think users that jumped on the GeForce 8800-series bandwagon will have stellar out-of-the-box experiences with Windows Vista using beta drivers. System manufacturers with GeForce 8800-series Windows Vista systems will not exactly be too pleased either, considering it is not good business practice to sell consumers systems with drivers of questionable stability.

For those lucky enough to own a GeForce 8800-series graphics card and already hopped on the Windows Vista bandwagon, the latest ForceWare release 100 drivers are available for Windows Vista 32-bit and 64-bit releases. Users of other NVIDIA products can grab the final ForceWare release 95 for Windows Vista 32-bit and 64-bit editions.

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By The Boston Dangler on 1/31/2007 2:04:58 AM , Rating: 4
This is all part of Nvidia's year-long nosedive. The excellent 7 series cards may be the last decent product we see from them.

The ultra-cheesey control panel in the vid driver is, well, ultra-cheesey. Most of the settings I see on the internet are not present on my comp. Also among the missing is the free-of-charge Purevideo. I installed the trial version, and viola!, there it is (very disappointing, BTW). The nTune software will kill my machine the moment the exe runs, despite using the latest (likely last) BIOS.

On the hardware side (or would that be the other cheek?) the ultra-expensive 680i chipset is nearly beaten by it's brother at half the cost or less. SLI is a scam, and now I'm to buy 3 vid cards??!!

The 8800 series is a bloated pile of garbage, regardless of how many bungholiomarks it scores. I guess it takes after Vista's lead in that respect. Not having a final driver upon Vista's release is inexcusable. A premier manufacturer hyping their premier product for a premier platform that everyone in the world knows is coming and then, WHOOPS!

People paid $450 - $600+ for the card, and up to $400 for Vista, and are rewarded with a Win2K interface.

By cheetah2k on 1/31/2007 3:03:35 AM , Rating: 5
The GF7xxx series was indeed a good lot, if you can excuse the bad voltage regulators and crashing experienced by many disgruntal users. Me, i had a leadtek 7950GX2, probably the best card i every owned, but just didnt have the texture fill rates required to withstand an orbital strike in 2142 up close.

The ultra cheezy control panel with the 97.xx drivers does indeed suck. However walz over to and pick up a good set of 97.92's with the old coolbits back in style. Ntune was a sorry mistake with mobo incompatibility, and should never have hit the internet. Rivatuner or Ati Tools are much better alternatives!

The 680i, while being expensive, is the only platform currently offering exclusively 3 x full size PCI-e slots. The idea is good, the concept even better for having SLI + physix. No need to babble on about this, no one is scamming you to buy 3 video cards!

The 8800 is indeed NOT a pile of garbage. While I have 2 of 8800GTX's curtesy of XFX (and modded with XXX bios) only 1 of these babies creamed any benchmarks i ran with Quad 7950GX2's. If you can afford it, get it, if not stick with the 79xx series until you need to jump to DX10 (don't expect this will happen too soon - at least for games anyways)

And lastly, my initial thoughts on Vista Ultimate have been quite negative. I hope M$ gets their act together with driver partnering and support (and maybe more useability in SP1) so that slack a$$es like Nvidia get their products ready for OS launches!

Oh, and a parting word. Who wants to sue Nvidia first, for claiming their 8800 series is Vista ready??? I got dibbs on 1st place in the line!

By The Boston Dangler on 1/31/2007 9:31:55 AM , Rating: 1
Release Highlights:
WHQL Certified.
NVIDIA PureVideo™ HD driver with support for the following features:
Blah blah blah.

Hmmm, looks like it says it's included. As for installation, I've got a this technique I call "double-click the .exe" Works every time. Enjoy your Dell.

By fil6786 on 1/31/2007 10:22:00 AM , Rating: 2
this just goes to show that nvidia jumped into direct x10 first due to some intimidation from the r600. Its been out for 3 months and not having the final drivers seems kind of weird to me.

By Aikouka on 1/31/2007 1:21:51 PM , Rating: 2
The drivers containing PureVideo does not mean you have PureVideo available. The drivers containing it means that you'll have the ability to use PureVideo. As there were PureVideo capable cards at one point but the drivers did not support PureVideo. There were also cards that were touted as PureVideo capable, but their implementation ended up being broken, according to nVidia. I believe the 6800 Ultra was one of those cards.

So, essentially, the driver translates the PureVideo calls for the video card to use, but you still need to buy PureVideo itself. I can see how the text would be confusing.

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