There's no doubting the benefits of GPU acceleration. In the right scenario, a modern GPU's massive parallel processing capability can offer rapid acceleration for common applications. Audio and video encoding comes to mind.
Trouble is, we've always found that freeware applications that can tap into a GPU's power are few and far between. Take for example NVIDIA's CUDA, applications built on the programming language are plenty quick, but they tend to arrive with a price tag that nobody really wants to pay.
In order to make the benefits of GPU acceleration clear to the masses, we reckon we need enabled apps to become freely available - and ZOTAC's doing exactly that.
Starting August, the NVIDIA partner will be bundling its Graphics Plus-compatible GeForce graphics cards with what it calls the "ZOTAC Boost" software bundle. That'll consist of three CUDA-accelerated video applications, and security software in the form of Internet Security from BitDefender.
ZOTAC's bundle of video apps consists of:
- vReveal from MotionDSP
A CUDA-accelerated app that enhances videos recorded in low quality.
- Super LoiLoScope Venus from LoiLo Inc.
A CUDA-accelerated program designed for simple, fun and intuitive video editing.
- Badaboom Media Converter from Elemental Technologies
A CUDA-accelerated video conversion application that converts videos from virtually any file format to files compatible with nearly any media player – including the iPod, Apple TV, Zune, BlackBerry and more.
All three could be useful, and they'll highlight a GPU's usefulness in multimedia scenarios, but there's a catch. All three bundled video apps are only valid for a 30-day trial, and even the anti virus runs out after 90 days.
ZOTAC's efforts to kick-start the adoption of CUDA-accelerated are appreciated, but we reckon we still need a selection of genuinely free apps.