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DOOM 3 & DX9

With all the discussion lately about how Half-Life 2 will run on ATI hardware compared with NVIDIA accelerators, shot off an email to id Software's John Carmack to ask how DOOM 3 and other games are likely to be impacted by the difference between the two graphics platforms running DirectX 9. Here's how he responded:

Unfortunately, it will probably be representative of most DX9 games. Doom has a custom back end that uses the lower precisions on the GF-FX, but when you run it with standard fragment programs just like ATI, it is a lot slower. The precision doesn't really matter to Doom, but that won't be a reasonable option in future games designed around DX9 level hardware as a minimum spec.

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81. Re: No subject Sep 18, 2003, 05:37 Belly Flop
Great post there HBringer. Very informative. I give you a Score:5 Insightful and a bonus point for not being an "anonymous coward"

I quote:
"In a nutshell, Carmack is basically saying that to get equal performance out of the cards, he's had to go out of his way to create a special set of code for the nVidia hardware"

This is exactly the reason why Valve(Gabe) is pissed at Nvidia. He is sick of writing special (non-standard) code so that Nvidia's latest dx8 card, I mean "dx9" (ahem) can run his engine properly. ATI does not require this.

However, whether the D3 engine is "optimised" in favor of Nvidia (OpenGL) or not, we still have to consider this engine will be used in many games in the future. The same goes for the HL2 engine.

Most probably:
ATI will run HL2 faster/quality than Nvidia.
but Nvidia will run D3 faster/quality than ATI.

This is an assumption and the reason I'm waiting to see with my very own eyes.

Looking at what API (DirectX/OpenGL) and more importantly what engines (HL2 or Doom3 - don't forget Unreal) the games of the next 3 years will be using would probably be a more accurate measure to decide which card to buy if money is not an issue.

Strength is irrelevant, resistance is futile. I am being assimulated by the ATI BORG... MEEP MEEP.
This comment was edited on Sep 18, 06:05.
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