AMD has rolled out two new Catalyst drivers for its Radeon graphics cards. Catalyst 12.6 is the first official WHQL driver in two months, while the beta version of Catalyst 12.7 offers plenty of performance optimizations for among other Skyrim and Shogun.

AMD has with Catalyst 12.6 WHQL focused on bug fixes and stability where it has fixed a bunch of problems from previous driver versions. This includes the frustrating ZeroCore bug where the system hang after coming back from sleep mode (S2/S3). A complete list of what AMD has fixed is found below;

  • AMD Radeon HD 7900, AMD Radeon HD 7800 Tri-CrossFire configurations + Eyefinity no longer results in a BSOD when launching a DirectX application
  • AMD Radeon HD 7900, AMD Radeon HD 7800 Eyefinity/Multiple Display configurations no longer results in a BSOD when using desktop applications
  • AMD Catalyst 12.6 includes some additional fixes(not found in the AMD Catalyst 12.6 Beta) for the AMD Radeon™ HD 7900, AMD Radeon HD 7800, and AMD Radeon HD 7700 graphics cards for issues related to the GPU hanging when the system goes to sleep. Please ensure that your System BIOS is up to date. Some occurrences of this issue may be related to outdated System BIOS.
  • Resolves CrossFire scaling issues seen in AMD Catalyst 12.4 with Elder Scrolls: Skyrim CrossFire • AMD Catalyst Control Center – Overdrive page is no longer intermittently missing
  • AMD Catalyst Control Center – GPU Activity gauge is no longer missing
  • AMD Radeon HD 7900 CrossFire Configuration – no longer results in system hang after cinematic in Call Of Duty: Black Ops
  • Heroes and Generals: Blocky corruption in scenes with smoke effects when run in DirectX 11 mode are no longer experienced.
  • Dirt Showdown: Improves scaling for CrossFire configurations using the AMD Radeon HD 6000 Series
  • HDMI audio is no longer disabled if the connected HDTV is powered Off/On.

– More on the Catalyst 12.6 WHQL drivers and download link here.

Catalyst 12.7 Beta are the same drivers we used in our review of Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition and here we are offered free performance in several big titles. AMD has managed to find up to 25% better performance in Elder Scrolls: Skyrim and 20% better performance in Total War: Shogun. In total there are ten or so games that have been substantially improved and this is something we mentioned in our review of AMD’s latest graphics card flagship.

  • Up to 25% Skyrim
  • Up to 6% in Crysis 2
  • Up to 20% in Total War: Shogun 2
  • Up to 3.3% in Battlefield 3
  • Up to 6.9% In 3DMark™ 11
  • Up to 4.8% in Aliens vs. Predator
  • Up to 6.5% in Batman: Arkham City
  • Up to 8% in Crysis Warhead
  • Up to 7.2% in F1 2010
  • Up to 8% in Just Cause 2
  • Up to 12% in Wolfenstein MP

AMD Catalyst 12.7 Beta also supports anti-aliasing with Blizzard’s popular title Diablo 3, which can be activated through the driver control panel. More information on Catalyst 12.7 Beta can be found at the AMD website.

Download AMD Catalyst 12.8 Beta for Windows 7 and Windows Vista (171MB)

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