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AMD's FreeSync and VESA A-Sync discussion

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ShintaiDK

Lifer
Apr 22, 2012
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I dont see an issue supporting multiple versions/standards. However cost is the deciding factor.
 

BrightCandle

Diamond Member
Mar 15, 2007
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It would be possible to have a monitor do both. It could have a gsync module in it and a async monitor controller/scalar. In addition it would need some sort of chip to accommodate both chips talking to the panel so that they couldn't both write out to panel at the same time and it would need to control the choice between them from the panel input controls or from the inputs.

Its certainly possible and I don't know whether Nvidia would want to partner on it, I very much hope they would be willing too, but I also suspect the cost might be prohibitive, because while gsync is currently ridiculously expensive the addition of an additional controller and a custom chip to pull it altogether would be quite a premium on top.
 

exar333

Diamond Member
Feb 7, 2004
8,518
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It would be possible to have a monitor do both. It could have a gsync module in it and a async monitor controller/scalar. In addition it would need some sort of chip to accommodate both chips talking to the panel so that they couldn't both write out to panel at the same time and it would need to control the choice between them from the panel input controls or from the inputs.

Its certainly possible and I don't know whether Nvidia would want to partner on it, I very much hope they would be willing too, but I also suspect the cost might be prohibitive, because while gsync is currently ridiculously expensive the addition of an additional controller and a custom chip to pull it altogether would be quite a premium on top.
True, plus the need to 'tune' and validate for multiple technologies could be expensive. The hardware behind the scenes might not play well either (this scaler needed for gsync doesn't work for Async, or the like). Just speculating. Not impossible, but will people pay an even higher premium for this?
 

BrightCandle

Diamond Member
Mar 15, 2007
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One of the questions Tom Peterson was asked something like this, not so much freesync and gsync but rather dvi/displayport/vga or something like that. His answer gave me the impression async and gsync is possible in a similar way. Have a listen to the Q&A of that interview and it might very well be simpler than I suggested.
 

know of fence

Senior member
May 28, 2009
555
2
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Having read it multiple times now. It's scaler not scalar.

A scalar is that vector algebra thingy, something related but different to video scalers. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Video_scaler

It's like some sophisticated Europeans pronounce PIVOT-function with a silent T as if Monsieur Pivot was some kind of French portrait impressionist or sth. :D
 

Abwx

Diamond Member
Apr 2, 2011
9,268
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Probably part of what he was alluding to here.

https://twitter.com/amd_roy/status/511571245834326016
DP 1.3 is indeed a necessary feature for thoses new scalers to work accordingly.
The article say that panels are expected for Q1 2015, and no more talks of updating firmwares of previous gen displays but cost of scalers updates will be negligible anyway, the thing is that they wont be sold according to theit cost but to desirability of this feature, even if it cost only 2$ manufacturers will try to cash on the novelty, hence the 20-30$ delta at retail estimation from AMD.
 

Despoiler

Golden Member
Nov 10, 2007
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DP 1.3 is indeed a necessary feature for thoses new scalers to work accordingly.
The article say that panels are expected for Q1 2015, and no more talks of updating firmwares of previous gen displays but cost of scalers updates will be negligible anyway, the thing is that they wont be sold according to theit cost but to desirability of this feature, even if it cost only 2$ manufacturers will try to cash on the novelty, hence the 20-30$ delta at retail estimation from AMD.
No, DP 1.3 was just the other announcement for the day. 1.2a is the current spec that supports A-Sync.
 

Mand

Senior member
Jan 13, 2014
664
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No, DP 1.3 was just the other announcement for the day. 1.2a is the current spec that supports A-Sync.
A-Sync support is also included in DP1.3, however it's not mandatory in either of them.

Also I really don't see how people don't think display vendors aren't going to upcharge for FreeSync support, regardless of how much the new scaler costs.
 

SoulWager

Member
Jan 23, 2013
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Looks like the exact same information that AMD has been telling us all along. The only thing new I see is the release of the names of the companies that will actually be producing the scalers.
Nope, AMD has been telling us all along that it would work with existing scalers. That there's actually some progress being made is good news.
 
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Despoiler

Golden Member
Nov 10, 2007
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A-Sync support is also included in DP1.3, however it's not mandatory in either of them.

Also I really don't see how people don't think display vendors aren't going to upcharge for FreeSync support, regardless of how much the new scaler costs.
Strawman. The point people have been making is that the standards approach won't even remotely approach the cost of the G-Sync module. Look at it another way. G-Sync is taking business away from these semiconductor companies. They are not going to let Nvidia get to the point of going to an ASIC G-Sync solution where they would have another competitor in the market or they would have to potentially license Nvidia IP, which cuts into their margins. Therefore if there is a price premium it isn't going to be too high that would allow G-Sync to survive.

Nope, AMD has been telling us along that it would work with existing scalers.
They said it was possible with a firmware update, which it is. I proved that it was as long as the board was of the programmable type. The input and output physical layer specs were not changed when DP 1.2a was revised. It's a logic only change.
 

Mand

Senior member
Jan 13, 2014
664
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Strawman.
Then why did someone in this very thread claim AMD says it would be $20-30 retail?

Yes, the big news is the announcement of hardware partners. That is very important, we didn't know that before, and it's a good sign.
 

Abwx

Diamond Member
Apr 2, 2011
9,268
1,152
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Then why did someone in this very thread claim AMD says it would be $20-30 retail?
You should put things on perspective, the scalers are very low cost chips whose price must be in the 2-3$ range at most, firms like Realtek would be very pleased to add a feature that would allow them to sell the chips for 3-4$ instead, monitors manufactures will also cash on the novelty and add let say 10-15$ to their prices and so on down to the retail level where it will amount to 20-30$, so it s only an opportunistic price hike that will be leveled down to the real costs and margins, something like 3-4$ at retail, once more than a handfull of manufacturers propose the feature.
 

SoulWager

Member
Jan 23, 2013
155
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You should put things on perspective, the scalers are very low cost chips whose price must be in the 2-3$ range at most, firms like Realtek would be very pleased to add a feature that would allow them to sell the chips for 3-4$ instead, monitors manufactures will also cash on the novelty and add let say 10-15$ to their prices and so on down to the retail level where it will amount to 20-30$, so it s only an opportunistic price hike that will be leveled down to the real costs and margins, something like 3-4$ at retail, once more than a handfull of manufacturers propose the feature.
The opportunistic price hike will likely be more like $50~100 leveling down to $20-30 when multiple manufacturers come online, and $0-10 when the scaler manufacturers decide it's more expensive to maintain two SKUs than to just make everything a-sync compatible.
 

SoulWager

Member
Jan 23, 2013
155
0
71
Strawman. The point people have been making is that the standards approach won't even remotely approach the cost of the G-Sync module. Look at it another way. G-Sync is taking business away from these semiconductor companies. They are not going to let Nvidia get to the point of going to an ASIC G-Sync solution where they would have another competitor in the market or they would have to potentially license Nvidia IP, which cuts into their margins. Therefore if there is a price premium it isn't going to be too high that would allow G-Sync to survive.



They said it was possible with a firmware update, which it is. I proved that it was as long as the board was of the programmable type. The input and output physical layer specs were not changed when DP 1.2a was revised. It's a logic only change.
Why are you even arguing this anymore? If that was an acceptable solution, AMD would have used it to get time to market down. Instead we see an announcement about brand new scaler ASICs. Figuring out what happened isn't exactly rocket science.
 

Despoiler

Golden Member
Nov 10, 2007
1,941
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Why are you even arguing this anymore? If that was an acceptable solution, AMD would have used it to get time to market down. Instead we see an announcement about brand new scaler ASICs. Figuring out what happened isn't exactly rocket science.
In regards to product development. AMD cannot tell another company, even if it is a partner in a new product, how to conduct or market their product. It's obvious just looking at AMD GPUs. AMD has it's own marketing scheme, Sapphire has theirs, XFX, MSI, Asus, etc. They all use AMD GPUs, but their marketing and release schedules are ultimately up to the AIB. The only thing AMD has absolute control over is when the NDA drops.

Nowhere in the announcement does it say anything about new ASICs. As I just said, there is nothing the spec changed on layer 1. If the chip is programmable, then all they are doing is updating the firmware base with the new logic and making it available to their display partners. If they are fixed function chips then new ASICs would be required. Most of the boards are programmable though. Again, these are the board makers not the display manufacturers. We haven't heard anything from the display manufacturers, so it's premature to say anything about how they intend to release the new functionality. It could be a firmware flash or it could be a completely new display line with it's own branded marketing.
 

SoulWager

Member
Jan 23, 2013
155
0
71
In regards to product development. AMD cannot tell another company, even if it is a partner in a new product, how to conduct or market their product. It's obvious just looking at AMD GPUs. AMD has it's own marketing scheme, Sapphire has theirs, XFX, MSI, Asus, etc. They all use AMD GPUs, but their marketing and release schedules are ultimately up to the AIB. The only thing AMD has absolute control over is when the NDA drops.

Nowhere in the announcement does it say anything about new ASICs. As I just said, there is nothing the spec changed on layer 1. If the chip is programmable, then all they are doing is updating the firmware base with the new logic and making it available to their display partners. If they are fixed function chips then new ASICs would be required. Most of the boards are programmable though. Again, these are the board makers not the display manufacturers. We haven't heard anything from the display manufacturers, so it's premature to say anything about how they intend to release the new functionality. It could be a firmware flash or it could be a completely new display line with it's own branded marketing.
These people make the actual ICs. If it was just a firmware flash we'd already have products on shelves.
 

Despoiler

Golden Member
Nov 10, 2007
1,941
748
136
These people make the actual ICs. If it was just a firmware flash we'd already have products on shelves.
That's what I just told you. They make the boards, but they don't make the monitors. They officially committed to supporting the spec so now it is in the hands of the display manufacturers. If the board is programmable all they did do is release a new base firmware. The display manufacturers have to take that firmware, add in company branding, add or subtract supported features, QA it, and then we will see the final product.
 

SoulWager

Member
Jan 23, 2013
155
0
71
That's what I just told you. They make the boards, but they don't make the monitors. They officially committed to supporting the spec so now it is in the hands of the display manufacturers. If the board is programmable all they did do is release a new base firmware. The display manufacturers have to take that firmware, add in company branding, add or subtract supported features, QA it, and then we will see the final product.
They don't make "boards" that go into monitors, they make chips. The fixed function portions of the chip also have to be compatible with variable refresh.
 

BrightCandle

Diamond Member
Mar 15, 2007
4,762
0
76
Its funny this timeline 100% matches the timeline that the Eizo rep told me about in March. He said that the scaler developers were looking at releasing chips for the end of the year and that we would start to see monitors first half of 2015. He also said they weren't all that interested and they weren't keen to accelerate their plans. So far everything he has said has been absolutely 100% accurate, and the time it was in direct contradiction to a lot of things AMD was saying.

Its nice we now have some scalers that control monitors that can support this announced, now we need some monitor manufacturers to claim they are making them and announce some products. Presumably next month AMD still intends to show off a number of models to the press to play with? So we should get some more details about at least what sort of panels are coming out.

We can't say a thing on price yet. First some manufacture partners are needed, then some monitor models and finally we'll get pricing. Its certainly not looking like this year at this point, 1H 2015 at the earliest if the progress is really just that the scalers are only just now becoming available or finishing development at this point.
 

rgallant

Golden Member
Apr 14, 2007
1,361
11
81
Its funny this timeline 100% matches the timeline that the Eizo rep told me about in March. He said that the scaler developers were looking at releasing chips for the end of the year and that we would start to see monitors first half of 2015. He also said they weren't all that interested and they weren't keen to accelerate their plans. So far everything he has said has been absolutely 100% accurate, and the time it was in direct contradiction to a lot of things AMD was saying.

Its nice we now have some scalers that control monitors that can support this announced, now we need some monitor manufacturers to claim they are making them and announce some products. Presumably next month AMD still intends to show off a number of models to the press to play with? So we should get some more details about at least what sort of panels are coming out.

We can't say a thing on price yet. First some manufacture partners are needed, then some monitor models and finally we'll get pricing. Its certainly not looking like this year at this point, 1H 2015 at the earliest if the progress is really just that the scalers are only just now becoming available or finishing development at this point.
just saying

the gsync capable 680 was released in mar. 2012 so nv had from mar. 2010 [two years for a gpu ark.]to bring gsync to market so that is 4.5 years lol by the gpu tech leader.
[also mand\mand12 still can't find a swift per his post as of today after 4.5 years]

I think gsync was a after thought after loosing market share , and was the response from amd imo
 
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3DVagabond

Lifer
Aug 10, 2009
11,951
201
106
A-Sync support is also included in DP1.3, however it's not mandatory in either of them.

Also I really don't see how people don't think display vendors aren't going to upcharge for FreeSync support, regardless of how much the new scaler costs.
Cuts out the Video card vendors upcharge, though.

These people make the actual ICs. If it was just a firmware flash we'd already have products on shelves.
It's a bit more involved than that to bring product to market.

Its funny this timeline 100% matches the timeline that the Eizo rep told me about in March. He said that the scaler developers were looking at releasing chips for the end of the year and that we would start to see monitors first half of 2015. He also said they weren't all that interested and they weren't keen to accelerate their plans. So far everything he has said has been absolutely 100% accurate, and the time it was in direct contradiction to a lot of things AMD was saying.

Its nice we now have some scalers that control monitors that can support this announced, now we need some monitor manufacturers to claim they are making them and announce some products. Presumably next month AMD still intends to show off a number of models to the press to play with? So we should get some more details about at least what sort of panels are coming out.

We can't say a thing on price yet. First some manufacture partners are needed, then some monitor models and finally we'll get pricing. Its certainly not looking like this year at this point, 1H 2015 at the earliest if the progress is really just that the scalers are only just now becoming available or finishing development at this point.
Keep in mind that DP 1.2A that supports the adaptive sync standard is only ~5 months old. This is pretty fast adoption. It took ~10 months to see the first retail Gsync monitor from the time final working models were demoed. Nothing happens overnight.

Just as a side note, Gsync monitors were supposed to be out 2nd Q and didn't make it until well into the 3rd Q. You didn't see people dramatizing that though.
 
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