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I am considering purchasing a Radeon VE for my HTPC. I keep reading that Radeon PQ is superior to VNvida. Plus, I need two outputs now. My budget is limited, so the VE looks like a good deal ($52 locally).


However, I have also seen numerous posts related to the instability of ATI's drivers. My question is, has anyone tried the XP drivers for the ATI cards and found them to be stable?


Thanks.
 

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Hi,


I am running Windows 2000 with Radeon VE drivers and I can say that there are a few gotchas. It doesn't seem to handle the dual head thing as well as it could. People have reported good success with Windows98SE and WinME, but Windows 2000 still has a few issues.


Now, what does this say about WinXP? I don't know, but I would _guess_ that ATI is just a bit behind in developing for the NT-based platform.


Jake
 

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Thanks for the quick reply! :)


Jake, could you elaborate what you meant by "a few gotchas" referring to the dual head capabilities? Also, do you know of any of the "other" issues in 2000?


Any one else have any experience with the XP Drivers?


Dave
 

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Alright... Here are my issues (posted elsewhere).


+ First, the ATI Radeon VE doesn't always turn on a head on boot. Not sure why, but sometimes, both screens will start dark, then fire up once Windows starts.


+ The DVI-I head (I think it is only this one) stutters whenever you click on the little red ATI icon in the system tray to bring up the menus. Don't know why this is. Doesn't really cause any problems, but it is a bit annoying, methinks.


+ The hotkeys don't do exactly what they are supposed to. There is actually a difference between clicking a hotkey (for a Scheme) and going to the display settings->advanced->Displays dialog and changing the setup manually. This is probably the most annoying thing about the VE. It is a problem in the 3276 drivers as well as those new 3281 betas.


+ There seems to be a problem with either PowerDVD XP or with the ATI drivers in that PowerDVD doesn't use the overlay mode of the card. This results in poor quality video on BOTH heads. I've been able to get around it by manually changing the display settings so that the projector head is the ONLY display, then changing back to dual-head, but it's a pain and I don't know _exactly_ what sequence does the desired thing yet.


I'd like to say that I _am_ pleased that I can run two heads on a graphics card which, in general, does good things for HTPCs. I'm optimistic that these are driver issues and can be fixed in updates, but they are annoying. I haven't tried the new TheaterTek DVD player to see if it works better with the dual head capabilities.


I'm still waiting for a flawless dual-head setup. Hotkeys sure are nice, but I can't understand why they're different form changing the settings manually.


Cheers,

Jake
 

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Thanks again, Jake. It sounds like I need to hold off on the VE until the drivers get straightened out (for 2k/XP).


Dave
 
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