Feature Articles
AMD's Radeon Software Adrenalin Edition comes loaded with tons of new features
By John Law - 12 Dec 2017,10:00pm

AMD's Radeon Software Adrenalin Edition comes loaded with tons of new features

AMD’s Radeon Software Crimson ReLive Edition is coming to the end of its life cycle. In its stead, AMD’s latest driver update come with both a plethora of new features and updates, along with a brand new name for it: Radeon Software Adrenalin Edition, or Radeon update 17.12.1, for those of you who are both numerically and procedurally-inclined.

To be clear, the new Adrenalin Edition drivers is an update for many of the already existing Radeon Software features that were introduced prior. Like all new things, however, it also comes with some new (and pretty interesting) features. So then, here’s what’s new, and what’s been updated.

Oh, and just in case you’re wondering: The Adrenalin part of the name doesn’t stem so much from the testosterone rage-inducing chemical, but rather, its name stems from the Adrenalin Rose.


Watt Watt Watt?

It's just not a Radeon Software driver without the presence of WattMan.

A lot of the currently existing features within Radeon Software weren’t bad per se, but back then, features such as Radeon Relive and WattMan were still in its infancy stage. With the new Adrenalin update, Radeon users will now be able to save and load not just one, but multiple custom overclocking profiles.

In addition to the this, AMD is also allowing users to share and load third-party WattMan profiles that are created by different Radeon users. This, in a sense, is a good thing, because it allows seasoned overclockers to share their profile with other users who want to make the most out of their cards, but don’t really have the technical details about it.


Radeon Chill

Introduced back when AMD launched its new Radeon RX series GPUs, the fundamental task of the Radeon Chill feature is to reduce power consumption by dynamically regulating framerates, based on a player’s movement in-game. With the Adrenalin update, Radeon Chill will support almost every title (both indie and triple A) that has already been released in the market.

Further, AMD’s tweaking and improvements allows the feature to be 60 percent more efficient in its GPU power consumption that the previous version of the software. There is a catch: the feature will only work if the game has an exclusive fullscreen mode.


Radeon FreeSync (Enhanced Sync)

Jokingly referred to as the ‘Poor Man’s FreeSync,’ this feature does what you would expect it to: minimize screen tearing in-game. According to AMD, this was the number one most wanted feature by Radeon users, allowing users to individually choose which game they would want FreeSync to be active, and which one they don’t. Just to be clear: this feature wasn’t available in the previous versions of the Radeon Software.

With Adrenalin, the new feature is also available on all GCN-based products, as well as all AMD-powered notebooks. Last but not least, the new Radeon FreeSync will also have better Vulkan and mGPU support.


Radeon ReLive

Unsurprisingly, AMD’s in-game video capture and streaming software has also been given a bump in accessibility. Originally, access to Radeon ReLive was done via the tab in the Radeon Settings window. With the Adrenalin update, the Radeon Relive tab will now split open in three different sub-sections: a Gallery tab, an Accounts Tab, and a Resource Center tab.

Radeon ReLive comes with three tabs: Gallery, Accounts, and Resource Center.

The Gallery tab essentially manages, organizes, and uploads all of your captured moments in gaming, while the Accounts tab was made to support several social media platforms that are currently available, including Facebook, YouTube, Twitch, and Mixer to name a few.

As an extra added bonus, AMD has also included a custom streaming key inside the Accounts tab, which is meant to support social media platforms that are yet to be supported.

The last tab, the Resource Center, is basically a hub that provides news and information for any and all Radeon-based. Basically, it’s like when you visit AMD’s homepage, except that the homepage is built into Radeon Relive.

Feature and performance-wise, Radeon ReLive will now have chat integration with in-game streaming. The new Adrenalin version of this feature will also have improved in-game capture performance: AMD says that the new drivers will have up to 84 percent lower FPS overhead whenever users begin recording anything. This is good news, as previous versions of the feature would cause games to take a hit in the framerates upon activation.

The Adrenalin version of Radeon Relive also supports the new Vulkan API, so Vulkan-centric titles such as DOOM or the latest Wolfenstein 2: The New Colossus shouldn’t have problems running parallel with it.

Among other things, the new Radeon Relive also comes with Chroma Key Support (to allow streamers’ videos to blend into the game backgrounds) and the ability to adjust the volume for different audio tracks in-game.

Radeon Overlay

The new Radeon Overlay gives you access to Radeon controls in-game. No more hitting Alt+Tab!

To bring all of its updated core technologies together, the Adrenalin update also comes with one new feature: Radeon Overlay. Essentially, the new Radeon Overlay can be accessed and activated via a combination of key presses (in this case, it’s Alt+R). Once activated the Overlay window pops up on the right side of a display.

AMD didn’t hold back with this new feature either. Opening it gives you access to all of the new core technologies that we’ve listed in-game. Need to tweak the brightness and contrast levels? Simply click on the color tab.

Want to start a gameplay recording session? Click the ReLive tab in the Overlay, and choose between recording, streaming, or simply taking a screen shot of the scene.

Think some scenes don’t need to run at such high framerates? Go ahead and set the frame rate cap via the Frame Rate Target Control (FRTC) tab. On it, Radeon users can choose between a minimum of 30 fps and up to a maximum of 300 fps.


AMD Link

Introducing AMD Link.

Last, but not least, is a brand new smartphone app that AMD created to work in tandem with its new Adrenalin drivers: AMD Link.

AMD Link functions much in the same way as Sony’s PlayStation app does: Radeon users essentially download the app on to their smart devices first. Once downloaded, they can then connect the app to their PC, either by scanning a QR code that is generated via the AMD Link tab in the Radeon Settings windows, or even through manual input.

Once connected, users will have remote access to all of the same core Radeon technologies, such as ReLive and Enhanced Sync. Not only that, but users can also use AMD Link as a second screen to view their computer’s performance and framerates. This tab basically shows users a real-time inforgraphic that changes according to the workload and demand of a game title.

At the time of writing, AMD told us that the AMD Link app will be available on both iOS (iOS 10 onwards) and Android devices running Android 5.0 Jelly Bean and above. There is only one caveat to the app for now: the app does not yet support remote access and viewing, so users will need their smart devices connected to the same network as their gaming rig in order to see make the most out of the app.