How to Do an AMD Radeon Driver Update

AMD drivers must be updated on Radeon graphics cards for proper functioning and performance. Radeon cards can be updated manually, automatically or with the AMD Radeon update tool.

The following guide focuses on updating Windows 10 drivers but can be similarly applied across the different versions of Windows.

What Does the Radeon Driver Do?

The AMD Radeon driver is a software application that is written to the hard drive to allow communication between the video card and PC. Without the graphics driver, the PC would have no instruction on how to communicate with the graphics card and would not be able to draw the pixels you see on the monitor. Driver updates are usually a good idea when upgrading Windows.

What Happens When You Don’t Update Drivers?

Contrary to belief, if there are no issues with your current graphics card, an update may not be required; however, if any of the following situations apply you might consider upgrading:

  • New software: Upgrade if you recently installed a newer 3D game, operating system version, or application
  • Enhancements: Upgrade if you are looking for new features or performance improvements
  • Poor Graphics: Upgrade if you are currently experiencing issues or driver conflicts.

Without the proper driver updates, you’re more likely to experience crashes, graphics issues, and slow render times. Fortunately, Windows provides a quick and easy way to update drivers.

How to Update AMD Drivers with Windows

Through the Windows Device Manager, your drivers can be updated automatically. Windows will search your computer and the internet for the latest drivers and install them. Here’s how:

  1. Go to the Start search bar, and look up Device Manager
  2. Go to Display adapters and locate your AMD Radeon Graphics Card

  1. Right-Click your graphics card and select Update Driver.
  2. Search automatically for updated driver software and follow the directions.

Update AMD Radeon Drivers Manually

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As an alternative solution, AMD drivers can be updated manually. It is more time-intensive then using the Windows update tool, but you’ll know exactly what you’re installing (Windows doesn’t always find the newest driver). For manual installs, the graphics card must first be identified.

How Do You Identify Your Radeon Graphics Card?

An AMD Radeon card can be identified by its box, label, or through the PC. Here’s how:

  • Original box – On the original box, the model will be located in the center with the manufacturer label towards the top half of the box.
  • By sticker label – The sticker label is normally located on the side of the graphics card and will contain the manufacturer and model of the graphics card.
  • Identifying your Graphics Card by software – Your operating system can be used to identify your graphics card – described in the next section.

How to Identify the Graphics Card Through the Operating System

The graphics card can be identified through the operating system using the device ID and subsystem vendor ID. It is the preferred method when a physical inspection of the graphics card is not feasible. Here is how you identify your graphics card:

  1. Go to the Start search bar, and look up Device Manager
  2. Go to Display adapters and locate your AMD Radeon Graphics Card
  3. Right-click the graphics card and select Properties
  4. From the Details tab, select Hardware Ids from the Property dropdown
  5. From the menu, we see that our AMD Radeon device ID string is: PCIVEN_1002&DEV_15DD&SUBSYS_84AE103C&REV_C5

From the string ID, we can deduce that the Device ID is 15DD, and the Subsystem Vendor ID is 103C.

Note: When determining the graphics card model and manufacturer, only the SUBSYS and DEV values are used. Use the list to determine the manufacturer:

Subsystem ID Manufacturer
1002 AMD
1025 Acer
1028 Dell
103C HP
1043 ASUSTEK
104D Sony
106B Apple
107B Gateway
1092 Diamond Multimedia
1179 Toshiba
1458 Gigabyte
1462 MSI
148C PowerColor
1545 VisionTek
1682 XFX
16F3 Jetway
17AA Lenovo
17AF HIS
18BC GeCube
196D Club 3D
1DA2 Sapphire

After you’ve located the Subsystem Vendor ID and Device ID you can proceed on to the AMD website to download the specific drivers for your device. Next step, you’ll learn how to install them.

How Do You Do a Manual Install?

After you identify the graphics card, the manual install should be a breeze. Here is how you do it:

  1. Go to the Start search bar, and look up Device Manager
  2. Go to Display adapters and locate your AMD Radeon Graphics Card

  1. Right-Click your graphics card and select Update Driver.
  2. Browse my computer for driver software and follow the directions.

Use the AMD Radeon Update tool

If the manual install seems a bit involved, AMD provides an autodetect tool that is compatible with any Windows 7 and Windows 10 PC running Radeon graphics cards. The tool will detect the graphics card model and version of Windows installed on your PC, and then allows you to install the most recent compatible driver. Here is how it works:

  1. Go to the AMD support page and download the Auto-Detect tool for Radeon Graphics drivers
  2. Open the download and Install the application
  3. Accept the License Agreement
  4. AMD will find the latest drivers for your system that can be installed with one-click

Note: AMD will only install graphics card drivers, for a more comprehensive driver solution: Driver Support will update all of your drivers.

Make Sure Your Radeon Drivers Stay Updated

The AMD Radeon graphics card can do strange things when drivers are not updated. It’s best to keep drivers updated to prevent graphics card issues and glitches. Windows provides an automatic update tool (that does not always work the greatest). It’s best to consider automatic driver updates for the latest updates and to keep your system running smooth.

Trust Driver Support for all your driver needs. Regular device driver updates should not take up all your time, let Driver Support track down and update drivers for you. Keep your graphics running smooth, and your system updates worry-free. 

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Driver Support is an independent service provider for software products. It is a tool to help identify out-of-date or missing device drivers. Software Principles.
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