AMD has officially released Catalyst 12.8, bringing official support for Windows 8 and DirectX 11.1 to the company's products for the first time.
For those who have taken the plunge and installed one of the pre-release versions of Windows 8 - or who are about to install the 90-day trial version of Windows 8 Enterprise Edition
, released by Microsoft today - the updated Catalyst package promises some shiny new features. Chief among the Windows 8-specific changes are support for the new WDDM 1.2 driver model with target-independent rasterisation (TIR) for boosted anti-aliasing quality, native support for stereoscopic 3D games and applications, use of the unified video API for simultaneous video and gaming playback as well as boosted transcoding performance, improved sleep and resume performance, optimised GPU power consumption, and full support for AMD Eyefinity, OpenCL, OpenGL, UVD, Crossfire and OverDrive technologies.
For those still on Windows 7, an upgrade may still be worthwhile: the upgrade fixes a raft of bugs in previous driver releases, including the correct restoration of underscan and overscan settings on reboot, fixes for crashing in Crysis Warhead, a solution for the green-hue problem with Radeon HD 7000 series boards in dual graphics mode, and additional fixes for other titles including Call of Duty: Black Ops, Star Wars: The Old Republic, Dirt Showdown, Max Payne 3 and Deus Ex: Human Revolution.
As always, there are still one or two glitches which need to be worked out. AMD warns that this latest driver release can cause problems with flickering lights in Max Payne 3 when used with a triple-Crossfire setup, texture flickering in F1 2011's lowest graphics profile, and poor performance in Crossfire mode for Enemy Territory: Quake Wars and Rage. Windows 8 bugs still noticed include blocky corruption of Flash content, a failure to deinterlace video properly using MPC-HC and PowerDVD, crashes in Civilization IV's DirectX 9 mode, and further crashes in Total War: Shogun 2 and Rage.
If those flaws haven't put you off, you can read the full release notes and download the driver update directly from AMD