Nvidias Dynamic Contrast Enhancement and Colour Enhancement
With the 9600 and 9800 series of graphics cards Nvidia have added two new video features to PureVideo HD. Dynamic Contrast Enhancement takes each frame and calculates enhancement values for that frame which is a change from older methods of contrast enhancement which apply the same changes to every scene, regardless of whether enhancement is required.Â Â Colour Enhancement analyses the tone of an image and dynamically adjusts it for each frame. The example Nvidia use to describe this is “skin tones changing from flat to vibrant”.
We decided to test these options and the results follow, it should be noted that we also enabled the noise reduction feature in the Nvidia drivers and set it to a level similar to ATI. (ATI enable noise reduction by default). In theory, this should represent the best image quality Nvidia has to offer, without changing edge enhancement values. When we asked ATI what settings we should use for testing, ‘default’ was the response, so we can assume that the screenshots produced so far represent their best image quality.
Please note for these tests we have supplied lossless quality BMP’s so you are able to look at the high resolution images yourself. That said, we are aware that not everyone will be on high speed broadband so there are JPEG versions available as well (by simply clicking the images), however please be aware that JPEG format is a lossy format, and introduces its own artifacting via compression. They are merely included as an fast loading reference for your perusal – the BMPS should be viewed for closer study.
Media Enthusiast Observations:
Whereas the background was negatively impacted by enhancements in previous images we see that this is not the case with this scene. The main benefit is that the right side of Daniel Craigs face is much more visible now, as is some detail in the foliage to the right. ATI still have more facial detail here though and a different tone to the Nvidia image.
Enhanced Left / Original Right
Expert Observations: This image has a more positive end result with enhanced settings on. Daniel’s face has around 15-20% less yellow content in most areas. If you study the close up you will notice the enhanced image has considerably less yellow throughout, this benefits his blue eye, as it now looks much clearer and more defined. There is also around 10% less black in this region.