News Posts matching #DirectX 12

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Matrox Now Shipping D-Series D1480 Graphics Card

Matrox is pleased to announce that the Matrox D-Series D1480 multi-display graphics card is now shipping. Purpose-built to power next-generation video walls, this new single-slot graphics card supports up to four 4Kp60 DisplayPort monitors and can be combined to drive a high-density-output video wall of up 16 synchronized 4K displays. Along with a rich assortment of video wall software and developer tools, the D1480 card enables OEMs, system integrators, and AV installers to deploy high-performance display walls for a broad range of commercial and critical 24/7 applications, including control rooms, enterprises, industries, government, military, digital signage, broadcast, and more.

Backed by innovative technology and deep industry expertise, D1480 delivers exceptional video and graphics performance on up to four 4K DisplayPort monitors from a single-slot card. OEMs, system integrators, and AV professionals can easily add—and synchronize—displays by framelocking up to four D-Series cards via board-to-board framelock cables. In addition, D1480 offers HDCP support to display copy-protected content, as well as Microsoft DirectX 12, OpenGL 4.5, and OpenCL 1.2 support to run the latest professional applications.

Nintendo Takes Legal Action Against Unofficial Super Mario 64 PC Port

An unofficial port of Super Mario 64 for PC was released on various online forums last week, this port was made possible through reverse engineering of the game's source code obtained by fans over the past few years. This PC port differed from existing options such as N64 emulation as it allows the game to run at far greater resolutions than its native resolution of 240p with resolutions such as 4K, 4K ultra-wide or even 8K now possible at uncapped frame rates. The DirectX 12 powered port came with other features such as controller support and the ability to add modern visual effects including ray tracing through third-party tools such as Reshade.

As expected Nintendo is not pleased with the port and has taken steps to get it removed from various sites, Nintendo has reportedly contracted US law firm Wildwood Law Group LLC who refer to the unofficial Super Mario 64 PC port as an "unauthorized derivative work based on Nintendo's copyrighted work." In addition to the download link takedowns, several YouTube videos featuring gameplay of the port have also been removed. Nintendo will want to get this port removed from the internet as soon as possible, especially given their plans to release new and remastered Mario games for the Nintendo Switch this year.

Intel iGPU+dGPU Multi-Adapter Tech Shows Promise Thanks to its Realistic Goals

Intel is revisiting the concept of asymmetric multi-GPU introduced with DirectX 12. The company posted an elaborate technical slide-deck it originally planned to present to game developers at the now-cancelled GDC 2020. The technology shows promise because the company isn't insulting developers' intelligence by proposing that the iGPU lying dormant be made to shoulder the game's entire rendering pipeline for a single-digit percentage performance boost. Rather, it has come up with innovating augments to the rendering path such that only certain lightweight compute aspects of the game's rendering be passed on to the iGPU's execution units, so it has a more meaningful contribution to overall performance. To that effect, Intel is on the path of coming up with SDK that can be integrated with existing game engines.

Microsoft DirectX 12 introduced the holy grail of multi-GPU technology, under its Explicit Multi-Adapter specification. This allows game engines to send rendering traffic to any combinations or makes of GPUs that support the API, to achieve a performance uplift over single GPU. This was met with lukewarm reception from AMD and NVIDIA, and far too few DirectX 12 games actually support it. Intel proposes a specialization of explicit multi-adapter approach, in which the iGPU's execution units are made to process various low-bandwidth elements both during the rendering and post-processing stages, such as Occlusion Culling, AI, game physics, etc. Intel's method leverages cross-adapter shared resources sitting in system memory (main memory), and D3D12 asynchronous compute, which creates separate processing queues for rendering and compute.

AMD RDNA 2 GPUs to Support the DirectX 12 Ultimate API

AMD today announced in the form of a blog post that its upcoming graphics cards based on RDNA 2 architecture will feature support for Microsoft's latest DirectX 12 Ultimate API. "With this architecture powering both the next generation of AMD Radeon graphics cards and the forthcoming Xbox Series X gaming console, we've been working very closely with Microsoft to help move gaming graphics to a new level of photorealism and smoothness thanks to the four key DirectX 12 Ultimate graphics features -- DirectX Raytracing (DXR), Variable Rate Shading (VRS), Mesh Shaders, and Sampler Feedback." - said AMD in the blog.

Reportedly, Microsoft and AMD have worked closely to enable this feature set and provide the best possible support for RDNA 2 based hardware, meaning that future GPUs and consoles are getting the best possible integration of the new API standard.
AMD RDNA 2 supports DirectX12 Ultimate AMD RDNA 2 supports DirectX12 Ultimate AMD RDNA 2 supports DirectX12 Ultimate AMD RDNA 2 supports DirectX12 Ultimate

Microsoft DirectX 12 Ultimate: Why it Helps Gamers Pick Future Proof Graphics Cards

Microsoft Thursday released the DirectX 12 Ultimate logo. This is not a new API with any new features, but rather a differentiator for graphics cards and game consoles that support four key modern features of DirectX 12. This helps consumers recognize the newer and upcoming GPUs, and tell them apart from some older DirectX 12 capable GPUs that were released in the mid-2010s. For a GPU to be eligible for the DirectX 12 Ultimate logo, it must feature hardware acceleration for ray-tracing with the DXR API; must support Mesh Shaders, Variable Rate Shading (VRS), and Sampler Feedback (all of the four). The upcoming Xbox Series X console features this logo by default. Microsoft made it absolutely clear that the DirectX 12 Ultimate logo isn't meant as a compatibility barrier, and that these games will work on older hardware, too.

As it stands, the "Navi"-based Radeon RX 5000 series are "obsolete", just like some Turing cards from the GeForce GTX 16-series. At this time, the only shipping product which features the logo is NVIDIA's GeForce RTX 20-series and the TITAN RTX, as they support all the above features.

NVIDIA GeForce RTX GPUs to Support the DirectX 12 Ultimate API

NVIDIA graphics cards, starting from the current generation GeForce RTX "Turing" lineup, will support the upcoming DirectX 12 Ultimate API. Thanks to a slide obtained by our friends over at VideoCardz, we have some information about the upcoming iteration of the DirectX 12 API made by Microsoft. In the new API revision, called "DirectX 12 Ultimate", it looks like there are some enhancements made to the standard DirectX 12 API. From the leaked slide we can see the improvements coming in the form of a few additions.

The GeForce RTX lineup will support the updated version of API with features such as ray tracing, variable-rate shading, mesh shader, and sampler feedback. While we do not know why Microsoft decided to call this the "Ultimate" version, it is possibly used to convey clearer information about which features are supported by the hardware. In the leaked slide there is a mention of consoles as well, so it is coming to that platform as well.

TechPowerUp GPU-Z 2.30.0 Released

TechPowerUp today released the latest version of GPU-Z, the popular graphics subsystem information and diagnostic utility. Version 2.30.0 introduces several new feature- and stability updates, and adds support for new GPUs. To begin with, support is added for AMD Radeon RX 590 GME, Radeon Pro W5500, Pro V7350x2, FirePro 2260, and Instinct MI25 MxGPU; Intel UHD (Core i5-10210Y), and a rare GeForce GTS 450 Rev 2. TechPowerUp GPU-Z 2.30.0 introduces support for reporting hardware-accelerated GPU scheduling in Windows 10 20H1 in the Advanced tab. The tab now also has the ability to show WDDM 2.7, Shader Model 6.6, DirectX Mesh Shaders, and DXR tier 1.1. A workaround for the DirectML detection on Windows 10 19041 built has been added. Graphics driver registry path is now displayed in the General section of the Advanced tab.

In the Sensors tab, the NVIDIA VDDC sensor has been renamed to "GPU voltage," and AMD's "GPU only power draw" sensor to "GPU chip-only power draw" to clarify that the sensor only measures the power draw of the GPU package and not the whole graphics card. AMD "Renoir" based processors and their iGPUs now show up as 7 nm. Windows Basic Display driver now no longer reports its status as WHQL or Beta. A crash during DirectX 12 detection has been fixed.
TechPowerUp GPU-Z 2.23.0 main window
DOWNLOAD: TechPowerUp GPU-Z 2.30.0

The change-log follows.

AMD RDNA2 Graphics Architecture Detailed, Offers +50% Perf-per-Watt over RDNA

With its 7 nm RDNA architecture that debuted in July 2019, AMD achieved a nearly 50% gain in performance/Watt over the previous "Vega" architecture. At its 2020 Financial Analyst Day event, AMD made a big disclosure: that its upcoming RDNA2 architecture will offer a similar 50% performance/Watt jump over RDNA. The new RDNA2 graphics architecture is expected to leverage 7 nm+ (7 nm EUV), which offers up to 18% transistor-density increase over 7 nm DUV, among other process-level improvements. AMD could tap into this to increase price-performance by serving up more compute units at existing price-points, running at higher clock speeds.

AMD has two key design goals with RDNA2 that helps it close the feature-set gap with NVIDIA: real-time ray-tracing, and variable-rate shading, both of which have been standardized by Microsoft under DirectX 12 DXR and VRS APIs. AMD announced that RDNA2 will feature dedicated ray-tracing hardware on die. On the software side, the hardware will leverage industry-standard DXR 1.1 API. The company is supplying RDNA2 to next-generation game console manufacturers such as Sony and Microsoft, so it's highly likely that AMD's approach to standardized ray-tracing will have more takers than NVIDIA's RTX ecosystem that tops up DXR feature-sets with its own RTX feature-set.
AMD GPU Architecture Roadmap RDNA2 RDNA3 AMD RDNA2 Efficiency Roadmap AMD RDNA2 Performance per Watt AMD RDNA2 Raytracing

AMD Releases Radeon Software Adrenalin 20.2.1 Beta

AMD today released the latest version of Radeon Software Adrenalin 2020 Edition. Version 20.2.1 beta adds optimization for "Zombie Army 4: Dead War." A handful issues have also been fixed. To begin with, unusually high memory usage with ReLive has been fixed. HDR content becoming excessively dark or bright with DirectX 12 games on RX 5000-series graphics cards, has been fixed. Camera element experiencing stutter with ReLive has been fixed. A missing scroll bar in the "compatibility" tab of Radeon Software application has been fixed. Also addressed is Radeon Software failing to detect VR games when SteamVR is running. Radeon Anti-Lag toggle audible alerts falsely sounding has been fixed. Grab the software from the link below.

DOWNLOAD: AMD Radeon Software Adrenalin 20.2.1 beta

Matrox Introduces D-Series Graphics Cards for High-Density-Output Video Walls

Matrox is pleased to announce Matrox D-Series, a new family of next-generation, multi-display graphics cards designed to power video walls in commercial and critical 24/7 environments. These new single-slot graphics cards drive up to four 4Kp60 displays and can be easily combined to output up to 16 x 4K monitors for high-density video walls in control rooms, enterprises, industries, government, military, pro A/V, digital signage, security, and more. Matrox D-Series graphics cards will be in action at ISE 2020 (booth 11-D120).

Leveraging a custom-built NVIDIA Quadro embedded GPU, D-Series delivers smooth video playback and graphics performance on up to four high-resolution HDMI or DisplayPort displays. OEMs, system integrators, and AV installers can also combine up to four D-Series cards via board-to-board framelock cables, to drive up to sixteen synchronized 4K displays. In addition, D-Series offers HDCP support for playback of protected audio and video content, as well as Microsoft DirectX 12, OpenGL 4.5, and OpenCL 1.2 support to run the latest professional applications.

Ray Tracing and Variable-Rate Shading Design Goals for AMD RDNA2

Hardware-accelerated ray tracing and variable-rate shading will be the design focal points for AMD's next-generation RDNA2 graphics architecture. Microsoft's reveal of its Xbox Series X console attributed both features to AMD's "next generation RDNA" architecture (which logically happens to be RDNA2). The Xbox Series X uses a semi-custom SoC that features CPU cores based on the "Zen 2" microarchitecture and a GPU based on RDNA2. It's highly likely that the SoC could be fabricated on TSMC's 7 nm EUV node, as the RDNA2 graphics architecture is optimized for that. This would mean an optical shrink of "Zen 2" to 7 nm EUV. Besides the SoC that powers Xbox Series X, AMD is expected to leverage 7 nm EUV for its RDNA2 discrete GPUs and CPU chiplets based on its "Zen 3" microarchitecture in 2020.

Variable-rate shading (VRS) is an API-level feature that lets GPUs conserve resources by shading certain areas of a scene at a lower rate than the other, without perceptible difference to the viewer. Microsoft developed two tiers of VRS for its DirectX 12 API, tier-1 is currently supported by NVIDIA "Turing" and Intel Gen11 architectures, while tier-2 is supported by "Turing." The current RDNA architecture doesn't support either tiers. Hardware-accelerated ray-tracing is the cornerstone of NVIDIA's "Turing" RTX 20-series graphics cards, and AMD is catching up to it. Microsoft already standardized it on the software-side with the DXR (DirectX Raytracing) API. A combination of VRS and dynamic render-resolution will be crucial for next-gen consoles to achieve playability at 4K, and to even boast of being 8K-capable.

UL Benchmarks Outs 3DMark Feature Test for Variable-Rate Shading Tier-2

UL Benchmarks today announced an update to 3DMark, with the expansion of the Variable-Rate Shading (VRS) feature-test with support for VRS Tier-2. A component of DirectX 12, VRS Tier 1 is supported by NVIDIA "Turing" and Intel Gen11 graphics architectures (Ice Lake's iGPU). VRS Tier-2 is currently supported only by NVIDIA "Turing" GPUs. VRS Tier-2 adds a few performance enhancements such as lower levels of shading for areas of the scene with low contrast to their surroundings (think areas under shadow), yielding performance gains. The 3DMark VRS test runs in two passes, pass-1 runs with VRS-off to provide a point of reference; and pass-2 with VRS-on, to test performance gained. The 3DMark update with VRS Tier-2 test will apply for the Advanced and Professional editions.

DOWNLOAD: 3DMark v2.11.6846

NVIDIA Develops Tile-based Multi-GPU Rendering Technique Called CFR

NVIDIA is invested in the development of multi-GPU, specifically SLI over NVLink, and has developed a new multi-GPU rendering technique that appears to be inspired by tile-based rendering. Implemented at a single-GPU level, tile-based rendering has been one of NVIDIA's many secret sauces that improved performance since its "Maxwell" family of GPUs. 3DCenter.org discovered that NVIDIA is working on its multi-GPU avatar, called CFR, which could be short for "checkerboard frame rendering," or "checkered frame rendering." The method is already secretly deployed on current NVIDIA drivers, although not documented for developers to implement.

In CFR, the frame is divided into tiny square tiles, like a checkerboard. Odd-numbered tiles are rendered by one GPU, and even-numbered ones by the other. Unlike AFR (alternate frame rendering), in which each GPU's dedicated memory has a copy of all of the resources needed to render the frame, methods like CFR and SFR (split frame rendering) optimize resource allocation. CFR also purportedly offers lesser micro-stutter than AFR. 3DCenter also detailed the features and requirements of CFR. To begin with, the method is only compatible with DirectX (including DirectX 12, 11, and 10), and not OpenGL or Vulkan. For now it's "Turing" exclusive, since NVLink is required (probably its bandwidth is needed to virtualize the tile buffer). Tools like NVIDIA Profile Inspector allow you to force CFR on provided the other hardware and API requirements are met. It still has many compatibility problems, and remains practically undocumented by NVIDIA.

NVIDIA Releases GeForce Hotfix Driver Version 441.34

NVIDIA late Tuesday pushed out a Hotfix to its GeForce Software against glaring bugs that can't wait for the next driver release to be fixed. Hotfix 441.34 fixes a bug with "Red Dead Redemption 2" stalling on machines with 4-core and 6-core CPUs, when the Vulkan API is used. The drivers also fix a game crash with "Shadow of the Tomb Raider" launching in DirectX 12 mode. The rest of the driver's change-log is identical to that of the recent 441.20 WHQL drivers. Grab the hotfix from the link below.

DOWNLOAD: NVIDIA GeForce Hotfix 441.34

AMD Releases Radeon Software Adrenalin 19.11.3

AMD late Monday posted Radeon Software Adrenalin 19.11.3 beta graphics drivers. The drivers add optimization for "Fortnite" in DirectX 12 mode introduced through patch v11.20, which is the only item in the change-log. Besides this, the company has acknowledged just like in the 19.11.2 changelog, that it's firefighting the issue of intermittent display signal loss when gaming with Radeon RX 5700-series graphics cards. Grab the driver from the link below.

DOWNLOAD: AMD Radeon Software Adrenalin 19.11.3

Microsoft Details DirectX Raytracing Tier 1.1, New DirectX 12 Features

Microsoft detailed feature additions to the DirectX 12 3D graphics API, and an expansion of its DirectX Ray-tracing (DXR) API to Tier 1.1. The updated APIs will be included with the Windows 10 major update that's scheduled for the first half of 2020 — the features are accessible already for developers in Windows Insider preview builds. DXR 1.1 is the first major update to the API since its Q4-2018 launch, and adds three major features. To begin with, it brings support for extra shaders to an existing ray-tracing PSO (pipeline-state object), increasing the efficiency of dynamic PSO additions. Next up, is ExecuteIndirect for Raytracing support, described by Microsoft as "enabling adaptive algorithms where the number of rays is decided on the GPU execution timeline." This could be a hint what to expect from NVIDIA's next-generation GPUs that are expected for next year. Lastly, the API introduces support for Inline Raytracing, which gives developers more control over ray traversal and scheduling.

Over in the main DirectX 12 API, Microsoft is introducing support for Mesh Shaders, which brings about systemic changes to the graphics pipeline. "Mesh shaders and amplification shaders are the next generation of GPU geometry processing capability, replacing the current input assembler, vertex shader, hull shader, tessellator, domain shader, and geometry shader stages," writes Microsoft in its blog post. DirectX Sampler Feedback contributes toward memory management by allowing games to better understand which texture assets are more frequently accessed and need to remain resident.

NVIDIA Releases GeForce 440.97 WHQL Game Ready Drivers

NVIDIA today released the latest version of its GeForce Software suite. Version 440.97 WHQL comes game-ready for "Call of Duty: Modern Warfare," and "The Outer Worlds," including SLI support for the latter on "Turing" GPUs. SLI support is also added for "The Darwin Project." The drivers also introduce G-SYNC support for OpenGL and Vulkan games and applications.

Among the bugs fixed are crash-to-desktop (CTD) on FIFA 19 and FIFA 20; random flickering in "Apex Legends," CTD on "Star Wars: Battlefront II," an application crash with "Growtopia," missing objects in "Tradesmen," flickering in the character-selection screen in "World of Warcraft," a ghosting effect when moving the brush tool in Cinema 4D; a game crash with "Shadow of the Tomb Raider" in DirectX 12 mode, color corruption in "Forza 4," and problems with boosting GeForce GTX 970M. Grab the drivers from the link below.

DOWNLOAD: NVIDIA GeForce 440.97 WHQL
The change-log follows.

System Requirements for Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Released

The official system requirements for the Call of Duty: modern Warfare Beta have been outed, and these should remain pretty close to the final release version requirements. If you want to enjoy the game's implemented NVIDIA RTX features, you know you'll have to have an NVIDIA RTX graphics card - that part is pretty straightforward.

Luckily, the system requirements for non-RTX gameplay aren't too steep; this is a Call of Duty game we're talking about, after all. Even though these games usually offer more than adequate graphics, this is a twitch shooter; the better frame rates players can have, the better and more fluid the action is; and hence, an optimized game engine is key. For the minimum system requirements, a Core i5 2500K "or AMD equivalent" is required, paired with an NVIDIA GeForce 670 2 GB (jeez, they really went into their dust bin for this one) or, puzzlingly, a GTX 1650 4 GB; for the AMD camp, a Radeon HD 7950 is all that's necessary. The recommended specs call for an Intel Core i7 4770K "or AMD equivalent" paired with an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970 4 GB / GTX 1660 6 GB or an AMD Radeon R9 390 / RX 580. The games' beta will be available for all players tomorrow, September 21st.

AMD Releases Radeon Software Adrenalin 19.9.2 Drivers

AMD late Thursday released the Radeon Software Adrenalin 19.9.2 beta drivers. These drivers add optimization for "Borderlands 3," with up to 16 percent improvement in frame-rates compared to the older 19.9.1 drivers, as tested with a Radeon RX 5700. The drivers also introduce support for Radeon Image Sharpening on graphics cards based on the "Polaris" architecture (such as RX 580, RX 480, etc), for DirectX 12 and Vulkan games. Among the issues fixed with 19.9.2 are frame-rates getting locked to 30 with V-sync enabled on some displays with 75 Hz refresh-rate set; system instability when watching videos in a web-browser on some machines with RX 5700 series graphics cards; audio in ReLive desktop capture being corrupted; and problems with Enhanced Sync. Grab the driver from the link below.

DOWNLOAD: AMD Radeon Software Adrenalin 19.9.2
The change-log follows.

Control Can Use Up to 18.5GB of Video Memory

"Control" by Remedy is the season's hottest AAA release, not just because it's an above-average story-driven action RPG, but also because it's an eye candy-shop. With the ability to use NVIDIA RTX real-time raytracing across a multitude of features, the game is particularly heavy on graphics hardware. Tweaktown tested the game's stability at extremely high display resolutions, including 8K, and found that the game can use up to 18.5 GB of video memory, when running in DirectX 12 with RTX enabled. There's only one client-segment graphics card capable of that much memory, the $2,499 NVIDIA TITAN RTX, which ships with 24 GB of GDDR6 memory. Its nearest client-segment neighbor is the AMD Radeon VII, but it only packs 16 GB of HBM2.

When a game needs more video memory than your graphics card has, Windows has an elaborate memory management system that sheds some of that memory onto your system's main memory, and the swap file progressively (at reduced performance, of course). Video memory usage drops like a rock between 8K and 4K UHD (which is 1/4th the pixels as 8K). With all RTX features enabled and other settings maxed out, "Control" only uses 8.1 GB of video memory. What this also means is that video cards with just 8 GB of memory are beginning fall short of what it takes to game at 4K. The $699 GeForce RTX 2080 Super only has 8 GB. The RTX 2080 Ti, with its 11 GB of memory has plenty of headroom and muscle. Find other interesting observations in the source link below.

3DMark Introduces Variable Rate Shading Benchmark

3DMark today announced they've introduced a new benchmarking feature. Specifically developed to test Variable Rate Shading (VRS) performance and image quality differences, the new feature allows users to actually visualize the performance and image quality differences associated with more aggressive (or less aggressive) VRS settings. The algorithm is a smart one - it aims to reduce the number of pixel shader operations on surfaces where detail isn't as important (such as frame edges, fast-moving objects, darkened areas, etc) so as to improve performance and shave some precious milliseconds in the deployment of each frame.

To run this test, you will need Windows 10 version 1903 or later and a DirectX 12 GPU that supports Tier 1 VRS and the "AdditionalShadingRatesSupported" capability, such as an NVIDIA Turing-based GPU or an Intel Ice Lake CPU. The VRS feature test is available now as a free update for 3DMark Advanced Edition, or from now until September 2, 3DMark is 75% off when you buy it from Steam or the UL benchmarks website.

Minecraft to Get NVIDIA RTX Ray-tracing Support

Minecraft is the perfect gaming paradox. It's a stupidly-popular title, but with simple graphics that can run on practically any Windows machine, but supports the latest 3D graphics APIs such as DirectX 12. The title now adds another feather to its technical feature-set cap, with support for NVIDIA RTX real-time raytracing. RTX will now be used to render realistic light shafts using path-tracing, global illumination, shadows, ambient occlusion, and simple reflections. "Ray tracing sits at the center of what we think is next for Minecraft," said Saxs Persson, Franchise Creative Director of Minecraft at Microsoft. "RTX gives the Minecraft world a brand-new feel to it. In normal Minecraft, a block of gold just appears yellow, but with ray tracing turned on, you really get to see the specular highlight, you get to see the reflection, you can even see a mob reflected in it."

NVIDIA and Microsoft are yet to put out a release date on this feature update. It remains to be seen how hardcore crafters take this feature. Looking at images 1 and 2 (below), we can see that the added global illumination / bloom blurs out objects in the distance. This gives crafters the impression that the draw-distance is somehow affected. Crafters demand the highest possible draw-distance, with nothing blurring their view. We can't wait to try this out ourselves to see how RTX affects very-large crafting.
A video presentation by NVIDIA follows.

Windows 10 May 2019 Update 1903 Gaming Performance Tested in 21 Titles, with RTX 2080 Ti and Radeon VII

Microsoft earlier today released to market its latest version of Windows 10, the May 2019 Update (version 1903). There was quite some talk about Microsoft tweaking the kernel to improve CPU performance. Other gamer-relevant changes include updates to WDDM (display driver model), and an updated DirectX 12, which now supports variable-rate shading. A similar technology is available on Vulkan, and has already been implemented in games such as "Wolfenstein: The New Colossus." With much talk about the latest Windows being better for games than the previous Windows 10 Fall 2018 Update (1809), we decided to take it for a spin.

After backing-up our 1809 installation onto a disk image, we updated to 1903 using Windows Update, with the same driver- and game versions as our recently-updated setup (details here). We then put the machine through our entire selection of 21 games, and two high-end graphics cards, the AMD Radeon VII and the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Ti. We used driver versions 19.5.1 for AMD, and 430.64 for NVIDIA, both of which support Windows 1903. Our tests span 1920x1080 (Full HD), 2560x1440 (1440p), and 3840x2160 pixels (4K) resolutions. We present our data as percentage gain/loss over Windows 1809, with three data-points per game, each representing the three resolutions in the order "Full HD", "1440p", and "4K". The first graph below covers the RTX 2080 Ti, and the second one Radeon VII.

Crytek Updates CryEngine Roadmap: Version 5.7 to Support DirectX 12, Vulkan and Ray Tracing

Crytek have updated their development roadmap for CryEngine, adding in some of the features we discussed yesterday on our piece regarding their Neon Noir ray tracing tech demo performance. The new roadmap now places Spring 2020 as the time where both DirectX 12 and Vulkan, lower level APIs than the currently-supported DX11, will be fully integrated into the engine. Ray Tracing will be added at the same time, no doubt taking advantage of the higher performance that can be extracted from hardware through the lower level APIs.

It will be interesting to see the level of performance on CryEngine's hardware agnostic ray tracing, and whether their Spring 2020 implementation will take advantage of specialized RTX hardware - or focus on a software solution ran at varying degrees of rendering resolution according to the scene. Though with AMD's Navi being expected to incorporate some sort of hardware-based ray tracing acceleration, it's very likely software calculations will only be a fallback of the coding.

Hitman 2 to Get DirectX 12 Renderer Through a Patch Later Today

IO Interactive announced that "Hitman 2" will receive a new DirectX 12 renderer through a patch scheduled for later today. The game launched with only DirectX 11 support unlike the 2016 reboot of the franchise that was one of the posterboys of DirectX 12, and let you choose between the two APIs. The DirectX 12 renderer is expected to be better optimized for multi-core CPUs. Hitman 2 is published by WB Games, which likely emphasized on getting all of the base game out instead of the piecemeal episodic approach of the 2016 "Hitman," making IOI focus on content over technical advancements. The DirectX 12 renderer is now being retrofitted through a 1.8-gigabyte patch. Besides DirectX 12, the March 2019 update (v2.20) includes a new location, Hantu Port (Singapore), which will unlock as a DLC, with Sniper Assassin missions. The DirectX 12 renderer can be enabled through the Advanced Settings in the game's launcher.
The change-log follows.
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