Whatâ€™s truly impressive though is the ATI stated that the converter application is completely software - it doesnâ€™t actually use the GPU in any way. ATI has however, locked the application to only work on Radeon X1000 cards. This is likely to get other Radeon users steaming under the collar though some smart boffins have already got it working on other ATI cards and I imagine it won't be too long until it is ported to nVidia cards. However, ATI promised that they are working on fully exploiting (or leveraging in PR speak), the power of the X1000 GPU to accelerate the transcoding in hardware. How fast it could then make the transcoding process Godfrey Cheng declined to say. Near instant, perhaps? Iâ€™d take that. He did explain however, that ATI is able to achieve this level of encoding performance as it holds considerable Intellectual Property (IP) regarding video encoding and decoding including several patents. Essentially itâ€™s been doing this stuff for years on its All-in-wonder cards so it's a dab hand.
Where all of this stuff could really come together is with next year Intel ViiV platform, which will specify a particular CPU, chipset, LAN and Windows Media Center. Needless to say, the X1000 series could be an ideal partner.
So all in all ATI was pretty pleased with what it was showed us bullishly claming that it had achieved dominATIon. Did you see what it did there? Clever huh.
Undoubtedly though this is good news for Radeon X1000 owners Iâ€™d recommend downloading the 5.13 driver as soon you can get your mitts on it this Thursday. It might even be enough to sway those wavering between nVidia and ATI for their next graphics card. It certainly raises the bar for video quality and performance on the PC and I for one, am looking forward to see if, and how the competition responds.
The best thing though, is that ATI is promising even more improvments via its drivers in the coming months. Who says graphics cards have got boring?