Software Support > GroovyMAME

Powerstrip and GroovyMAME


I haven't been following the recent discussions too closely, but would it be possible to get an overview of what Powerstrip does and how it fits into the overall GroovyMAME plan?


PowerStrip is a tool that can enable custom video timings for a wide range of video cards, by directly accessing the hardware registers, bypassing the video drivers. Once loaded, you can use its API to remote control its functionality from your application.

GroovyMAME can't access video hardware directly because it's an user mode application. What it does is to use ATI drivers methods to enable custom video timings. However, this is restricted to some versions of Catalyst drivers and the hardware supported by them. These custom timings can be updated dynamically (we haven't found the same functionality in other drivers/cards).

By means of PowerStrip, GroovyMAME can potentially extend this feature to any card supported by that tool. At this point, PS support is still preliminary and limited to the current desktop resolution, being able to tweak it to any vertical refresh, without resolution switching, that's why it's suggested for LCD screens where you can already benefit from it.

Eventually, this feature will get integrated in the modeline engine, so mode switching with modeline recalculation will be possible for any video card.

There will be some limitations however: no new resolutions can be created on the fly, we can only tweak existing ones. So a mode table will still be necessary and the total number of resolutions supported by the driver will still be an issue.


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