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AMD's latest GPU driver promises up to a 9% performance bump in The Medium

AMD Radeon RX 6800 XT
(Image credit: AMD)

Owners of an AMD Radeon graphics card stand to receive a free performance boost in The Medium, simply by installing the latest Adrenalin 2020 Edition GPU driver (version 21.2.1). The driver is tuned for the third-person horror game, and according to the release notes, it offers up to a nine percent performance boost on the Radeon RX 6800 XT, versus the previous driver release.

AMD's performance claim is based on the company's own testing, with the resolution cranked to 3840x2160 (4K) and settings dialed up to High. The testbed it uses these days employs the company's own hardware—specifically, a Ryzen 9 5900X CPU, paired with 16GB of DDR4-3200 RAM. I only point this out because in the past, many of AMD's performance claims were tied to Intel hardware.

There are no other specific metrics outlined, but the general takeaway is that AMD's driver team massaged the 21.2.1 release to eek out the best performance for The Medium. It's equivalent to what Nvidia would call a 'Game Ready' driver.

The Medium is worth checking out if you're into the horror genre, and especially if you have an affinity for old school Resident Evil games (minus the guns). In our review (92 verdict), Leana called it "one of the best third-person horror games I've ever played," noting the sharp writing and strong acting.

In addition to being primed for The Medium, the latest GPU driver also fixes a small pile of bugs, including two display flicker issues. Here's a full list:

  • Display flicker or corruption may be experienced when two displays are connected to Radeon RX Vega series graphics products with at least one display set to a high refresh rate.
  • Screen flickering might be observed when using MSI Afterburner.
  • Radeon recording and streaming features may fail to enable on AMD Radeon HD 7800 series graphics products.
  • Some models may fail to render or may render incorrectly when using SketchUp on Radeon RDNA graphics products.
  • Some Samsung CRG9 series displays may experience a black screen when waking from sleep.
  • Metro Exodus may experience intermittent application crashes with DirectX Raytracing enabled.
  • Video playback on secondary displays may experience stutter while playing Doom Eternal on the primary display.

Beyond the annoying flickers, the bug fix that stands out the most is the one that resolves Samsung CRG9 displays whacking users over the head with a black screen when waking from sleep. Those 49-inch monitors are not cheap, after all.

The release notes also highlight almost as many known issues. Here's a look:

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  • Hitman 3 may experience an application crash in the Apex Predator mission on Radeon RX 6000 series graphics products.
  • Radeon FreeSync may fail to enable in Forza Horizon 4.
  • AMD is currently investigating end user reports that Radeon Software may sometimes have higher than expected CPU utilization, even when a system is at idle. Users who are experiencing this issue are encouraged to file a bug report in Radeon Software.
  • Brightness flickering may intermittently occur in some games or applications when Radeon FreeSync is enabled, and the game is set to use borderless fullscreen.
  • Enhanced Sync may cause a black screen to occur when enabled on some games and system configurations. Any users who may be experiencing issues with Enhanced Sync enabled should disable it as a temporary workaround.

You can grab the latest driver through AMD's Radeon Software utility, or head over to AMD's driver download page to download and install it manually.

Paul has been playing PC games and raking his knuckles on computer hardware since the Commodore 64. He does not have any tattoos, but thinks it would be cool to get one that reads LOAD"*",8,1. In his off time, he rides motorcycles and wrestles alligators (only one of those is true).