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In Adobe Photoshop CS5 Extended (perhaps in earlier editions too), under 'Edit > Prefs > Performance > GPU Settings (Advanced Settings)' you can choose the level at which Photoshop will utilise your gfx card: Basic, Normal or Advanced.

Default is 'Basic', and there comes a warning with 'Normal' or 'Advanced' stating that it 'may cause visual defects on some GPUs'.

What constitutes a visual defect? Does it mean on-screen rendering whilst these settings are in use, or something which might permanently damage my GPU?

Thanks

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It means on-screen rendering while these settings are in use. It does NOT mean something that might permanently damage your GPU. (It's just badly worded.)

My version of CS5 automatically selected "Normal" as the default, presumably because I have a reasonably fast machine.

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