If you have an AMD/ATi graphics card, you might have noticed that the GPU Scaling options portion of the control panel seems to be grayed out (aka. disabled), if you can even find it hidden deep in the monitor attributes page. It seems that as of a few releases ago (though I’m not sure when, possibly 9.3), the option is only changeable when your screen resolution is not at your LCD’s native (max) resolution. Yes, that’s a statement from an official AMD forum moderator. I don’t know what happens on CRTs, but this seems kind of idiotic.
The primary reason for changing this setting is to run games at appropriate aspect ratios, stretched, or 1:1 as preferred by the user. However, you can’t access the control panel while in the game. When you switch back to the desktop to use it, the resolution should also be back to native. So what do you do?
The solution is to change to a lower desktop resolution temporarily to enable the feature and set the desired setting before changing back. Of course, this will displace any windows and desktop icons not within the confines of the lower resolution.
Is this a game-breaking (no pun intended) design mishap? No… but it is an inconvenience that doesn’t make much sense. As of this writing, the latest Catalyst version is 9.7. Here’s hoping they decide to revert this design change in the near future.
UPDATE 8/17/2009: What do you know, they just released version 9.8.