DirectX 10.1 Requires No New GPU

Microsoft has announced the details of its new DirectX version; to ensure full support one need not only to install Service Pack 1 for Windows Vista but may also need to replace a graphics card. Contemporary graphics accelerators from Nvidia GeForce 8800 and AMD/ATI Radeon 2900 may not support all the new features added to Direct3D 10.1. The features of DirectX 10.1 include incremental improvements to 3D rendering quality. As for the innovations, among them are 32-bit floating-point operations (instead of 16-bit ones, used today by default) and obligatory support of 4x FSAA.

Microsoft's Sam Glassenberg did however note that "DirectX 10.1 fully supports DirectX 10 hardware. No hardware support is being removed. It's strictly a superset. It's basically an update to DirectX 10 that extends the hardware functionality slightly." Glassenberg says DirectX 10.1 will be fully compatible with all graphics cards supporting DirectX 10. All the company wants to do now is to increase the API life cycle. Sam confirmed that existing graphics cards may still not be able to use all the new features of DirectX 10.1 but also stressed that applications designed specifically for DirectX 10.1 are very unlikely to appear, because overall, the updates aren't that critical.

News source: Xbit Laboratories

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My ATI x1650 on Vista has been humming along. Before I upgraded to Vista I used an Nvidia card for like 4 years. Screw DX10. Until nothing works on my pc until I am forced to upgrade my gpu i'm not gonna even sweat it.

Well knowen this all along, before vista was even released. But as always NO SOLID PROOF SO NO GO as neowinians do when it comes to this stuff. i think you guys will find that 10.1 will be a standard for a while as in a year or 2 or possibly more unless there's a major break through in either hardware of visual market in the mean-time that becomes a must have so build now or wait till end of year it's not going to change besides minor hardware in nvidias line-up for geforce 9.

Maybe I read it wrong, but does that mean if you own a 8800 series card you don't need to upgrade but if you own a 8x00 series card you do need to upgrade to get Dx10.1? that part I'm a little fuzzy on.

BTW I'm waiting for AMD K10 that's for sure that I will wait to see if they beat Intel's Core 2 but what about Geforce 9?? There are rumours that it will be launched in November/December?? Are they unrealistic? If thay are I will go for a 8800GTS (btw which one should I choose? 320MB or 640MB? From what I've heard 640MB is only better if you play 1600x1200 or higher. Since I play on 1280x1024 there's any advantage? But in the future with richer textures and effects will it not also be a must have for 1280x1024 to have 640Mb instead of just 320MB? That's my question!)

Thank god, just a few days after I built my new rig with a 8800GTS I was so annoyed by this news. But it seems like it aint that big of a deal.

I'm looking forward to Crysis and Gears of War PC which support directx 10.

bucko said,
Thank god, just a few days after I built my new rig with a 8800GTS I was so annoyed by this news. But it seems like it aint that big of a deal.

I'm looking forward to Crysis and Gears of War PC which support directx 10.

You built or you didn't built? Your speech is confusing LoL

Well I still have a 6600GT and it plays nicely my favourite games (with 2 years or older, and a few newer ones)! I'm starting to need a new one but I will surely build a new computer by December/January just to see AMD K10 and Geforce 9 cards (probably to see Geforce 8800GTX or Ultra get a nice price drop and get a DirectX 10.0 card instead of a hugely overrated and overpriced 9800 Series card)! That's what I think of Graphics Card world today. And no it's not waiting 15 years is just balancing the components of your new system... It's like some people I know in some Forums that bought a Core 2 Duo one week before 22 July just because they couldn't wait a few days and buy it almost half the price in some cases ... that's just plain stupid!

This is a good thing, a natural progression of technology. All technology is not long superseded by a superior technology, so unless you are willing to shell out hard cash for the latest and greatest every few months, then you're going to have to settle for something you can live with. A 8800GTS with DX10 offers me all the power and features I'll be needing for at least the next three years.

If you are afraid of buying tech. simply because you fear it may be soon replaced by a newer technology, then save your money and wait fifteen years before buying your next system. But be aware that even that system, though 100x faster than today's computers, will still be superceded by yet newer technology only six months later.

If anything, this can only force 8800 prices down, which I'm more than happy with.

The title is a bit confusing.

"DirectX 10.1 Requires No New GPU" -- only as in "... if not using certain DirectX 10.1 features".

I understand the title refers to its backwards compatibility, but it sounds like you still need a new GPU if you wish to take advantage of some DX10.1 features.

Jugalator said,
The title is a bit confusing.

"DirectX 10.1 Requires No New GPU" -- only as in "... if not using certain DirectX 10.1 features".

I understand the title refers to its backwards compatibility, but it sounds like you still need a new GPU if you wish to take advantage of some DX10.1 features.

You're right, but the key changes in DX10.1 over 10.0 are actually in Sound and not in video. No one sems to bring that fact up though. DX10.1 fully replaces DirectSound and now uses XAudio, the API used by the Xbox360 for true hardware surround sound support. It also takes full advantage of Vistas new audio stack. No more emulation of 5.1 in games, etc. Now devs can fully control the sound in their games, per speaker, per volume level and so on.

Finally, some more good done by MS. Sadly Vista is still not suitable enough for any current games since f'ing game makers won't release patches. This is good to know and to toadeter, where did you find info regarding the 9 series?

What I'm a bit puzzled about is how they say that it's highly unlikely that anyone will develop specifically for DirectX 10.1...what was the point then? "Here, we've updated DirectX with some new functionality but we don't expect anyone will use it". Huh? Sounds more like PR disaster control to me.

TRC said,
What I'm a bit puzzled about is how they say that it's highly unlikely that anyone will develop specifically for DirectX 10.1...what was the point then? "Here, we've updated DirectX with some new functionality but we don't expect anyone will use it". Huh? Sounds more like PR disaster control to me.

That's not what was said.

The point was that that they won't design specifically for 10.1 ... that doesn't mean the new stuff won't be utilised if possible.

Exactly, MS screwed up and you know nVidia and ATI are on their ass because now nobody is buying DX10 hardware and they are nowhere near ready to release their next products. Microsoft should have concentrated on fixing DX10 to not be about 2x slower than the same exact game under DX9 (when they promised 6x faster).

stgeorge said,
Exactly, MS screwed up and you know nVidia and ATI are on their ass because now nobody is buying DX10 hardware and they are nowhere near ready to release their next products. Microsoft should have concentrated on fixing DX10 to not be about 2x slower than the same exact game under DX9 (when they promised 6x faster).

You do kindoff realize that the nvidia/ati drivers for vista are far from the quality of the ones on xp right?

stgeorge said,
Exactly, MS screwed up and you know nVidia and ATI are on their ass because now nobody is buying DX10 hardware and they are nowhere near ready to release their next products. Microsoft should have concentrated on fixing DX10 to not be about 2x slower than the same exact game under DX9 (when they promised 6x faster).

I don't know what you are using but the perf hit of Vista and DX10 is so small it's not worth worrying about on my PC.

Nvidia and ATI now have DX10 cards from low to high spec so you're not right their either.

And by the time we reach the DX10 2x slower for the same game you've lost any credibility that you ever had...

bobbba said,

I don't know what you are using but the perf hit of Vista and DX10 is so small it's not worth worrying about on my PC.

Nvidia and ATI now have DX10 cards from low to high spec so you're not right their either.

And by the time we reach the DX10 2x slower for the same game you've lost any credibility that you ever had...

Exactly, where do they come with the 2x slower number from? The games that have DX10 patches out don't use the DX10 API fully, they only use part of it to make graphics look a bit better. Also any DX10 scores for a game vs DX9 are purlly driver limited. If the video card drivers aren't up to the job, then you get ****ty scores. Simple fact.

Why are people complaining about pricing when the article blatantly states that you wont need a new graphics card and it's highly unlikely that anyone will develop specifically for a DX10.1 audience?

IntelliMoo said,
Since dirx10 is only on vista and vista is, well, a "failure"... no math to worry about, current cards are great. :nuts:

vista is beyond fail

It's hardly a failure when it comes on virtually all new PCs sold and a large number of people have upgraded from XP. Sure it has its problems, and the performance isn't great at the moment, but it's certainly no failure.

It's driver problems are no different from the ones Win2k and WinXP also faced in their first year when it comes to video cards. That's the main area that people have problems, performence in games. MS can't do more than release a generic video card driver. You have to wait for nVidia or AMD to do the rest.

This gives the video crad industry a new reason to sell super-priced video cards.

"Get your DX10.1 card NOW, nothing uses it yet, but it sure costs money."

goatsniffer said,
This gives the video crad industry a new reason to sell super-priced video cards.

You mean the Geforce 9800 series that's due out in November? It's already the end of the 8x00 series, whether anyone develops for DX10.1 or not.

I think there is a disconnect between what the hardware companies want (selling new hardware), what Microsoft wants (selling Vista), and what the public wants (a card that performs better than the previous generation at the same price and lasts more than 6 months! ).

toadeater said,

You mean the Geforce 9800 series that's due out in November? It's already the end of the 8x00 series, whether anyone develops for DX10.1 or not.

I think there is a disconnect between what the hardware companies want (selling new hardware), what Microsoft wants (selling Vista), and what the public wants (a card that performs better than the previous generation at the same price and lasts more than 6 months! ).

The cards last more than 6 months, people just think they need to keep upgrading each time a new one comes out. Unless some new game pushes your shiny new Geforce 8800 or ATi HD2900 to the point that you can't play the new game in question, THEN you upgrade.

Staying ahead of the curve is what hardcore gamers do, but not what everyone does. I know lots of people on 2-3, even more, year old gfx cards.

That aside, DX10.1 makes minor changes when it comes to graphics. Many things that are optional in 10.0 are now manditory in 10.1. The biggest change would have to be the updated shader model, that's where new hardware is needed, but the update to that is minor and many devs won't rush to move to 10.1. The really key area where 10.1 differs from 10.0 is in sound. They've finally replaced DirectSound fully and will use Xaudio, the same API used by the Xbox 360 and so on. True 5.1 and up sound, and no emulation like with EAX and so on.

But that shouldn't stop people from updating to 10.1 on their systems and then using the new audio API even if the game itself is still using only DX10 for gfx.