Print 17 comment(s) - last by Thorburn.. on Jun 19 at 1:28 PM

Hardware transform and lighting and shader model 2.0 for Windows XP GMA X3x00 users

Intel has released a pre-beta driver for Broadwater G965 and GM965 chipsets that enable hardware transform and lighting. Hardware transform and lighting were touted with the Intel GMA X3000 and X3100 integrated graphics cores, however, current release drivers did not enable the feature, despite Intel demonstrating games running with hardware T&L on GMA X3x00 hardware.

Now nearly a year after the Broadwater launch, users can take advantage of hardware T&L on G965 and GM965 hardware in Windows XP. Windows Vista users need not apply, as Intel does not have the hardware T&L enabling Vista driver ready yet. Intel promises Windows Vista hardware T&L drivers in the “coming weeks.”

Intel has validated the pre-beta driver for the following games:
  • Battlefield 2
  • Battlefield 2142
  • Call of Duty 2
  • Elder Scrolls IV: Obliviion
  • Vanguard: The Saga of Heroes
  • Rainbow Six: Vegas
  • Age of Empires 3
  • Final Fantasy XI Bench 3
  • Unreal Tournament 2004
Despite enabling hardware T&L on G965 and GM965 chipsets, the pre-beta release 14.31 drivers only support shader model 2.0. Intel plans to have production drivers capable of shader model 3.0 by the end of August 2007 for Windows XP and Vista operating systems.

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RE: Uh, ok
By Targon on 6/19/2007 7:31:43 AM , Rating: -1
Integrated video doesn't HAVE to be bad though. ATI/AMD and NVIDIA integrated video may not be good enough for any gamer, but it's good enough for games that are four years old or older in some cases. The key is DirectX 9 in HARDWARE, something that Intel still doesn't provide.

That is the one thing that stands out about this Intel information, it enables Shader model 2.0 and T&L via drivers. If it didn't provide these abilities previously, then it says this is a software implementation, and not hardware, which means that your CPU utilization will go through the roof.

Now, why would ANYONE who wants/needs Shader model 2 and/or T&L go with Intel video if the performance will be horrible compared to ANY other GPU out there?

RE: Uh, ok
By Thorburn on 6/19/2007 7:41:58 AM , Rating: 3

The key is DirectX 9 in HARDWARE, something that Intel still doesn't provide.

Thats the whole point of this story.
The X3x00 IGPs performed T&L and SM3 support in software.

This is saying that now its running on hardware (albeit in SM2.0 not 3.0 form) - the IGP hardware - so CPU utilisation will fall and performance should go up.

The hardware functionality has always been there, these are just the first drivers to utilise it.

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