Nvidia Forceware 280.26 Driver Analysis

/ 5 years ago


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As we started to analyse AMD and their Catalyst drivers as they release them, in the hope that performance may be improved in each new release, we thought that it would only be fitting if we gave Nvidia and their Forceware drivers the same golden star treatment.

Nvidia don’t seem to have much of a release plan or schedule as of late, and simply release updated drivers as they are ready, which generally means that the majority of bugs are fixes have been ironed out, but obviously they can’t guarantee this as with all new software, new bugs are spawned.

It is worth noting that Nvidia do release beta drives to the public but we will only be focussing on official released drivers much like 280.26 which is said to offer a lot of new features and support for 3D Vision, Photoshop and much more, but for now we’re going to take a look to see what improvements if any are noticeable in the set of benchmarks and games that we use on a day to day basis.

Release notes

[COLOR=#000000]This is the first WHQL-certified from the Release 280 family of drivers.You can read more about this family of drivers on

This driver package supports GeForce 6, 7, 8, 9, 100, 200, 300, 400, and 500-series desktop GPUs as well as ION desktop GPUs. This driver package also includes the 3D Vision Controller driver.

New in Release 280.26


  • Enables SLI technology on SLI-certified motherboards with AMD chipsets: 990FX, 990X, and 970.

NVIDIA 3D Vision

  • With Release 280 drivers, the 3D Vision Controller driver is now included with all GPU driver installations. Users are no longer required to install a separate 3D Vision Controller driver or CD driver. This driver includes the 280.19 3D Vision Controller driver. For more information, please view this knowledgebase article for more information.
  • Adds support for viewing and YouTube 3D with NVIDIA SLI PCs. Please view this knowledgebase article for more information on 3D Vision Window Mode.
  • Adds support for new 3D Vision monitors: ViewSonic V3D245
  • Adds support for Window mode for 3D Vision Video Player. This requires v1.7.2 or higher of the player.
  • Adds support for new 3D Vision projectors: Acer X1111, BenQ W710ST, and NEC NP-V300W
  • Added the following 3D Vision game profiles:
  • Alice Madness Returns
  • Back to the Future (Episodes 1-5)
  • Call of Juarez: The Cartel
  • Chuang Shi Xi You (创世西游)
  • Dao Jian 2 刀剑2
  • The Darkness 2
  • Dead Island
  • Deep Black
  • Dou Zhan Shen 斗战神
  • Dragon Ball Online
  • Dungeons and Dragons: Online
  • Gods & Heroes: Rome Rising
  • Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1
  • L.A. Noire
  • League of Legends 英雄联盟
  • LEGO Pirates of the Caribbean
  • Lord of the Rings Online: Shadows of Angmar
  • The Lord of the Rings: War in the North
  • Mars
  • Might & Magic Heroes VI
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Mount & Blade: With Fire and Blade
  • RAGE
  • Red Orchestra 2: Heroes of Stalingrad
  • Rise of the Immortals
  • Rusty Hearts
  • Serious Sam 3: BFE
  • Virtua Tennis 4
  • Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine

[*]Update the following 3D Vision game profiles

  • Crysis 2 – rating changed to Excellent. NVIDIA recommends using the v1.9 game patch.
  • Deep Black – rating change to 3D Vision Ready
  • Super Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition – convergence changes and rating changed to 3D Vision Ready


  • Installs HD Audio driver version
  • Installs PhysX System Software to version 9.10.0514
  • Supports playing back Blu-ray 3D discs when connecting your GPU to an HDMI 1.4 3D TV. Playback requires compatible software application from CyberLink, ArcSoft, Roxio, or Corel. For GPU and system requirements, visit the NVIDIA Blu-ray 3D website.
  • Supports the new GPU-accelerated features in Adobe Creative Suite 5 including Photoshop CS5.
  • Supports GPU-acceleration for smoother online HD videos with Adobe Flash.
  • Supports OpenGL 3.3 for GeForce 8-series and later GPUs.
  • Supports OpenGL 4.1 on GeForce 400 series and later GPUs.
  • Supports single GPU and NVIDIA SLI technology* on DirectX 9 and OpenGL.
  • Supports GPU overclocking and temperature monitoring by installing NVIDIA System Tools software.
  • Users without US English operating systems can select their language and download the International driver here.


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  • ryandigweed

    wow.. very nice article. i think there was only 1 benchmark in which the older driver scored higher..I thought beta drivers were bad, and not good to upgrade to. But i guess i got a whole new outlook to it, and i just might upgrade to the latest beta drivers.. :)also, is there a way to subscribe to articles to be notified when theres a new comment?..