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VideoCardsForArchiCAD12

Recommended Video Cards for ArchiCAD 12

Improvements in ArchiCAD 12

ArchiCAD 12 introduces full hardware acceleration in 2D views on the Windows platform, using DirectX technology. This means that all drawing tasks, previously performed by the CPU, are now taken over by the graphic card. This provides better performance, and introduces new features such as anti-aliasing in all 2D views. In 3D, OpenGL engine is used, as in previous versions.

On Mac, ArchiCAD 12 uses the Quartz drawing engine in 2D views, which uses partially hardware acceleration, and partially CPU using multi-threading. In 3D, OpenGL engine is used.

These changes employ the latest technology in graphic display, so selecting a capable video card, and using the proper drivers is essential.

General Video card requirements for ArchiCAD 12

PC: Open GL and DirectX 9 compatible graphic card with 256 MB or more on-board video memory is recommended to fully exploit hardware acceleration capabilities.

Mac: Open GL compatible graphic card with 256 MB or more on-board video memory is recommended to fully exploit hardware acceleration capabilities.

"Professional" vs. "Gaming" video cards

Graphic card manufacturers typically have different product lines targeted for "gamers" and "professional users". While the hardware setup is very similar in case of both cards, there are key differences in their firmware and driver. "Gamer" cards (such as Nvidia GeForce and Ati Radeon) are optimized for 3D games, where speed is more important than image quality. Typically a 3D model in a game contains a low number of polygons with textures applied to them, while in CAD polygon count is high, and the quality of the still image of the wireframe or shaded model is more important than navigation speed. Also, professional cards' memory usage is optimized for using multiple application windows, while in gaming this is not relevant. Another key difference between the two product lines is the way they are delivered and supported. Professional cards (such as Nvidia Quadro and ATi FireGL) are built according to the video chip manufacturer's references, so you can always be sure that the driver delivered by the video chip manufacturer (e.g. Nvidia or ATI) fits your card. The manufacturers of gaming cards (such as ASUS, Sapphire, Gigabyte, PNY, etc...) may diverge from the chip manufacturer's references, so their drivers may not be compatible with the chip manufacturer's reference driver. Also, the product life cycle and driver release cycles are much shorter in case of gaming cards.

Graphisoft cooperates with Nvidia and AMD to test and certify video card drivers for the Nvidia Quadro FX and the ATI FireGL series. These product lines are recommended by Graphisoft for ArchiCAD 12.

Installing video card drivers (Windows)

Video cards only perform properly, if they have a hardware vendor supplied driver (not system built-in driver) installed correctly. It may happen that remnants of a previous installation interfere with the current driver installation. If you experience display issues with the drivers listed below, please "clean-install" the driver again. "Clean-install" means removing all previous driver files before installing a new driver. Unfortunately, a simple uninstall may not efficiently remove all components of a driver. There are tools that can do it, like ATI's cat uninstaller cat uninstaller or third party tools like driver cleaner or driver cleaner pro 1.5

Video card drivers for laptops (Windows)

In most cases, graphic card drivers for laptops are supplied by the laptop manufacturer, and graphic card vendor supplied drivers (so called "reference drivers") will not install on laptops. This makes it practically impossible for us to test laptop video cards. If you are experiencing display issues with your laptop, and your supplier does not offer you a driver update, you might try - at your own risk - to tweak a desktop driver to work on your laptop. Note, that this is obviously not encouraged by your laptop supplier. mod tool for ATI cards nvidia laptop drivers

For reasons detailed above, we can not recommend any specific card and driver combination for laptops. However, there are professional video cards available for high-end laptops, such as the Nvidia Quadro, which are just as good as their desktop counterparts. We have also good experiences with most of the standard Nvidia cards, somewhat worse experience with AMD/ATI cards, and very bad experience with on-board intel graphic cards. Definitely avoid the latter.

Video card drivers for Macs

Since Macs come with a default video card (with one optional choice at some series), and the drivers are bundled with system updates, we can not recommend a specific card or driver. Mac OSX's graphic engine, Quartz does not allow an application to directly access video card functions, which minimizes the possibility of application-specific display problems. Currently there is one known OpenGL bug that is not ArchiCAD-specific, and seems to affect all Macs with ATI cards. see details on AC-Talk


Test Results - Windows XP (32 bit)

Nvidia Quadro FX cards

The following video cards have been tested for ArchiCAD 12 on Windows XP (32-bit):

Product

Range

Video RAM

Driver

Notes

FX 350*

Entry-level

128

6.14.11.6947

Error N1

FX 370

Entry-level

256

6.14.11.6947

Error N2

FX 550

Entry-level

128

6.14.11.6947

Error N3

FX 570

Entry-level

256

6.14.11.6947

Passed

FX 1700

Mid-range

512

6.14.11.6947

Passed

FX 3500

High-end

256

6.14.11.6947

Passed

FX 3700

High-end

512

6.14.11.6947

Passed

FX 4600

High-end

768

6.14.11.6947

Passed

*legacy product

ATI FireGL cards

The following video cards have been tested for ArchiCAD 12 on Windows XP (32-bit):

Product

Range

Video RAM

Driver

Notes

V 3200

Entry-level

128

8.453.1

Error A1

V 3300

Entry-level

128

8.453.1

Passed

V 3400

Entry-level

128

8.453.1

Passed

V 3600

Entry-level

256

8.502.0

Error A4

V 5000*

Mid-range

128

8.453.1

Error A2

V 5200

Mid-range

256

8.453.1

Passed

V 5600

Mid-range

512

8.502.0

Error A4

*legacy product

Gamer cards

Some popular gamer cards tested for ArchiCAD 12 on Windows XP (32-bit):

Product

Range

Video RAM

Driver

Notes

Asus Geforce 8500 GT

Mid-range

256

6.14.11.7516

Passed

Asus Geforce 8600 GT

High-end

512

6.14.11.6921

Passed

Asus Geforce 8800 GT

High-end

512

6.14.11.6921

Passed

Asus Geforce 8800 GTX

High-end

768

6.14.11.6921

Passed

Sapphire Radeon HD V 2400 XT

Mid-range

256

8.476

Error A3

SApphire Radeon HD V 2600 XT

Mid-range

256

8.476

Error A3


Test Results - Windows Vista (32-bit)

Nvidia Quadro FX cards

The following video cards have been tested for ArchiCAD 12 on Windows Vista:

Product

Range

Video RAM

Driver

Notes

FX 350*

Entry-level

128

7.15.11.6947

Passed

FX 370

Entry-level

256

7.15.11.6947

Passed

FX 550

Entry-level

128

7.15.11.6947

Passed

FX 570

Entry-level

256

7.15.11.6947

Passed

FX 1700

Mid-range

512

7.15.11.6947

Passed

FX 3500

High-end

256

7.15.11.6947

Passed

FX 3700

High-end

512

7.15.11.6947

Passed

FX 4600

High-end

768

7.15.11.6947

Passed

*legacy product

ATI FireGL cards

The following video cards have been tested for ArchiCAD 12 on Windows Vista:

Product

Range

Video RAM

Driver

Notes

V 3200

Entry-level

128

8.453.1

Error A4

V 3300

Entry-level

128

8.453.1

Error A4

V 3400

Entry-level

128

8.453.1

Error A4

V 3600

Entry-level

256

8.502.0

Passed

V 5000*

Mid-range

128

8.453.1

Error A4

V 5200

Mid-range

256

8.453.1

Passed

V 5600

Mid-range

512

8.502.0

Passed

*legacy product

Gamer cards

Some popular gamer cards tested for ArchiCAD 12 on Windows VISTA:

Product

Range

Video RAM

Driver

Notes

Asus Geforce 8500 GT

Mid-range

256

7.15.11.7516

Passed

Asus Geforce 8600 GT

Mid-range

512

7.15.11.6925

Passed

Asus Geforce 8800 GT

High-end

512

7.15.11.6925

Passed

Asus Geforce 8800 GTX

High-end

768

7.15.11.6925

Passed

Sapphire Radeon HD V 2400 XT

Mid-range

256

8.476

Passed

Sapphire Radeon HD V 2600 XT

Mid-range

256

8.476

Error A4


Error Descriptions

The related Error messages for Nvidia cards:

  • Error N1: Rectangular bounding box appears around polygonal Gradient Fill.
  • Error N2: Very slow performance in OpenGL 3D.
  • Error N3: No antialiasing in 2D hardware accelerated mode.

The related Error messages for Ati cards:

  • Error A1: No feedback while rotating trace reference.
  • Error A2: No feedback while moving drawing content or rotating trace reference.
  • Error A3: Hardware acceleration turns off. Rotating trace reference is jittery.
  • Error A4: Rotating trace reference is jittery.


Test Results for Virtual Building Explorer - Windows XP (32 bit)

Nvidia Quadro FX cards

The following video cards have been tested for Virtual Building Explorer on Windows XP (32-bit):

Product

Range

Video RAM

Driver

Notes

FX 370

Entry-level

256

6.14.11.8120

Passed

FX 570

Entry-level

256

6.14.11.8120

Passed

FX 370 LP

Mid-range

512

6.14.11.8120

Passed

FX 580

Mid-range

512

6.14.11.8208

Passed

FX 1700

Mid-range

512

6.14.11.8120

Passed

FX 1800

Mid-range

768

6.14.11.8208

Passed

FX 3500

High-end

256

6.14.11.8120

Passed

FX 3700

High-end

512

6.14.11.8120

Passed

FX 4600

High-end

768

6.14.11.8120

Passed

FX 4800

High-end

1536

6.14.11.8120

Passed

ATI FireGL cards

The following video cards have been tested for Virtual Building Explorer on Windows XP (32-bit):

Product

Range

Video RAM

Driver

Notes

V 3600

Entry-level

256

8.563.0

Error B1

V 5200

Mid-range

256

8.563.0

Error B1

V 5600

Mid-range

512

8.563.0

Error B1

Gamer cards

Some popular gamer cards tested for Virtual Building Explorer on Windows XP (32-bit):

Product

Range

Video RAM

Driver

Notes

Asus Geforce 6600

Entry-level

256

6.14.11.8206

Passed

Asus Geforce 8500 GT

Mid-range

256

6.14.11.8120

Passed

Asus Geforce 8600 GT

High-end

512

6.14.11.8120

Passed

Asus Geforce 8800 GT

High-end

512

6.14.11.8120

Passed

Asus Geforce 8800 GTX

High-end

768

6.14.11.8120

Passed

Sapphire Radeon HD V 2400 XT

Mid-range

256

8.582

Error B1

SApphire Radeon HD V 2600 XT

Mid-range

256

8.582

Error B1


Error Descriptions

The related Error messages for all cards:

* Error B1: Texture scaling problem in "Fixed" OpenGL precision mode. Please use "Float 1" or "Float 2".


Categories: CategoryHardware CategoryVideoCards CategorySpeed

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