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Topics - Stefan

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3D-Tech News Around The Web / What's up with D3DCompiler_xx.DLL?
« on: April 22, 2010, 11:37:10 PM »
For most of the early evolution of the HLSL language, the compiler was part of the D3DX utility library (aka D3DX9). This compiler supported Shader Models 1.x, 2.0, and 3.0 for Direct3D 9 vertex shaders and pixel shaders. For Direct3D 10, the graphics team started a new compiler to support the demands of the new Direct3D 10 API with Shader Model 4.0 versions of vertex, pixel, and geometry shaders. Direct3D 10.x added Shader Model 4.1 variants. Direct3D 11 adds Shader Model 5.0 and two new classes of shaders for tessellation (hull & domain) shaders.

There have been two main consequences to this new HLSL compiler development effort.

Full story at MSDN

3D-Tech News Around The Web / An intro to modern OpenGL
« on: April 22, 2010, 11:35:12 PM »
OpenGL has been around a long time, and from reading all the accumulated layers of documentation out there on the Internet, it's not always clear what parts are historic and what parts are still useful and supported on modern graphics hardware. It's about time for a new OpenGL introduction that walks through the parts that are still relevant today.

An intro to modern OpenGL. Table of Contents

    * Chapter 1: The Graphics Pipeline
    * Chapter 2: Hello World: The Slideshow
          o Chapter 2.1: Buffers and Textures
          o Chapter 2.2: Shaders
          o Chapter 2.3: Rendering
    * Chapter 3: 3D transformation and projection

Keen Software House ltd. releases a new benchmarking demo for their game called Miner Wars. The demo is a non-interactive version of the game and features 4 different ingame animation sequences. This demo is mainly released to show a bit of the technology that we are using for the game and also to stress test the HW of the players interested in acquiring Miner Wars. The demo comes with an auto-updating utility and will be further upgraded to the single-player beta state in the coming weeks. Currently the game is in its alpha stage. All the graphics and sound present in the demo are subject to change. Miner Wars will require an internet connection to be played.

Benchmarking demo download:

Benchmarking demo torrent download:

Keen Software House is also releasing a new Teaser Trailer showing some of the game features and possible playstyles. The trailer was made by by capturing the gameplay and videos of our current alpha build. All the graphics and sounds are subject to change until the full release.

Teaser Trailer Download:

Download mirror at Gamers Hell

Press F12 for internal debugger

Version 3.1 of the SDK includes the latest improvements to CryENGINE 3 Sandbox

Frankfurt a. M. (Germany), 22 April 2010 – Today, Crytek is releasing version 3.1 of its CryENGINE®3 SDK. This is the first major upgrade to the award-winning all-in-one game development solution and includes many revolutionary features and innovative tools. CryENGINE 3.1 enhances the CryENGINE® Sandbox® toolset with a new Shader Editor showcased at GDC 2010, improved profiling tools to maximize performance and quality, upgrades to animation tools and the introduction of new features such as Procedural Deformation, Irradiance Volumes and physics-driven animations. All these features can be created with the unique Crytek “What You See Is What You Play” real-time pipeline, simultaneously across all supported platforms.

CryENGINE 3.1’s Blend Shader eradicates tiling of identical materials throughout games, without the need for large texture sets. A new Visual Budget System lets developers maximize performance and quality in their games, in real-time. Upgrades to the incorporated CryENGINE 3 Asset Browser ensure increased development speed for all designers and artists using CryENGINE Sandbox. Work has also been done to give directors and animators more control over their creations. The cut-scene and cinematic tool, TrackView, has been given a major overhaul, while the introduction of AnimGraph 1.5 not only facilitates access to parameters and blending values, but also features new tools that smoothly integrate animations with audio, particles, game events and effects.

Aside from the tools improvements, new features such as Light Propagation Volumes further enhance the already-impressive graphics of CryENGINE 3, making stunning interior, exterior and cinematic lighting effects possible in real-time. The powerful CryENGINE 3 Physics System now gives an unprecedented level of interaction with the game world by adding support for secondary damage effects from procedural destruction: deformation of materials in real-time, physics-driven hit reactions for animated characters in games and customized destruction for any material.

Further enhancements within CryENGINE 3.1 include optimizations in lighting and HDR, support for more artist-content creation tools, and improvements to CryENGINE® LiveCreate®, which allows real-time and simultaneous development of multiplatform games. Many of these are in response to the needs of the CryENGINE user community.

 “With the rendering power of CryENGINE 3 and the beautiful graphics and realism we showcase on PC, PS3 and Xbox 360, it can be easy to forget that the CryENGINE Sandbox tools are also state-of-the-art and the only 100% real-time toolset available today. We’ve always had a vast array of intelligent and efficient tools integrated with our all-in-one game engine and we continually improve these tools for the benefit of our licensees. The latest version of CryENGINE 3 includes some of the excellent work our tools team have produced since October, to make the creation of AAA games easier, more efficient and more enjoyable. At Crytek, we’re confident our tools match our engine power – and are the best in the business. Developers can easily evaluate the new version of CryENGINE 3 through our portal. Our dedicated support team is ready to help them discover how much fun they can have making amazing games in CryENGINE 3,” says Carl Jones, Director of Global Business Development CryENGINE.

3D-Tech News Around The Web / ATI Catalyst 10.4 Preview redux
« on: April 22, 2010, 05:21:40 PM »
Second revision of CAT 10.4 preview available.

This revision works for all contemporary GPUs

Edit: list of optimised applications added

hl2.exe EFLC.exe Napoleon.exe HasteGame*.exe DeadIslandGame*.exe Demigod.exe OFDR.exe empires2.exe Heaven.exe MassEffect2.exe Conviction*.exe RUSE.exe AVP3.exe daorigins.exe LEGOIndy2.exe RocketKnight.exe Bioshock2.exe dairydash.exe BFBC*Game.exe BF1943Game.exe dirt2*.exe SamHD.exe Sanctuary.exe WinDVD.exe iw4?p*.exe Avatar.exe S8Game-F.exe rfg*.exe Borderlands.exe ShippingPC-SkyGame.exe BattlefieldHeroes.exe Ceville.exe gpl.exe ShippingPC-BmGame.exe \ZenoClash\hl2.exe APGame.exe GHWT.exe Gothic III Forsaken Gods.exe ??5DX9.exe Saboteur.exe CrimeCraft.exe BurningWheels*.exe Republic Heroes.exe SupremeCommander2.exe AA3Game.exe StreetFighterIV.exe Guitar Hero Aerosmith.exe KillingFloor.exe RiseOfTheArgonauts.exe DamnGame.exe DS.exe kb.exe SC2*.exe CoJBiBGame_x86.exe Overlord*.exe GameClient.exe ghost_w32.exe Wolverine.exe bsp.exe Fuel.exe bionic_commando.exe ElvenLegacy*.exe grimmgame.exe flashpoint*.exe Shift.exe theHunter*.exe TLR*.exe Wolf2.exe TerminatorSalvation.exe prototype?.exe eXperience112.exe Battleforge.exe EndWar.exe SilentHill.exe cabalmain.exe Client.exe WheelmanGame*.exe CompatAFR-1x1.exe Unigine.exe wanted.exe DragonAge.exe TS3*.exe DLords.exe FreeRunning.exe DOW2.exe godfather2.exe arma2.exe Empire.exe *.scr.EE3.exe MirrorsEdge.exe cstrike.exe Tropics.exe Legendary.exe fear2*.exe BurnoutParadise.exe Prince of Persia.exe Dead Space.exe biahh.exe war3.exe Mercenaries2.exe Merc2-Demo.exe left4dead*.exe Yeti_Final_Win32.exe FallOut3.exe CoDWaW*.exe tru.exe FF2client.exe RCT3.exe trgame.exe PT2Start.exe Transformers*.exe GTAIV.exe acad.exe aJewelQuestSolitaire.exe SeriousSam.exe FarCry2*.exe ProjectG.exe Jewel Quest Solitaire.exe Flip Words*.exe ExeFile.exe blacksite.exe MOHA.exe TurokGame.exe crossfire.exe kaneandlynch.exe Buildalot2.exe Legend.exe thief.exe GunBound.gme.SEGA Rally*.exe HAWX.exe SpaceSiege.exe SporeApp.exe AgeOfConan.exe tra.exe Jericho.exe MEM_7.exe Stranger.exe DevilMayCry*.exe MassEffect.exe GRID.exe witcher.exe mahjongg_artifacts.exe Studio.exe Diner_Dash_Flo_On_The_Go.exe Big Kahuna Reef.*.Chuzzle.exe Backspin.exe AcesOfTheGalaxy.exe \half-life 2 Demo\hl2.exe \portal\hl2.exe \team fortress 2\hl2.exe \half-life 2 deathmatch\hl2.exe \half-life 2 episode two\hl2.exe \half-life 2 episode one\hl2.exe \half-life 2 lostcoast\hl2.exe \half-life 2\hl2.exe \counter-strike source\hl2.exe \day of defeat source\hl2.exe \half-life deathmatch source\hl2.exe \half-life source\hl2.exe R6Vegas2_Game.exe AssassinsCreed*.exe Validator.exe GH3.exe xrEngine.exe FFOW.exe Settlers6*.exe MonsterGame.exe nfs.exe BA2.exe DiRT.exe ForceSingleGPU.exe TW2008.exe TW2006.exe game.exe SupremeCommander.exe hl.exe SpiderSolitaire.exe Solitaire.exe PurblePlace.exe Minesweeper.exe Mahjong.exe InkBall.exe Hearts.exe FreeCell.exe chess.exe R6Vegas_Game.exe 3dsmax*.exe Crysis*.exe UT3*.exe Wargame-g4wlive.exe hellgate*.exe SinEpisodes.exe iw3mp.exe iw3sp.exe Matrix.exe *Stranglehold.exe Bioshock.exe wic*.exe LostPlanet*.exe sims.icd.nhl2007.exe GodFather.exe pc_matador.exe AcroRd32.exe XR_3DA.exe Scarface.exe TestDriveUnlimited.exe mm.exe Gothic3.exe HitmanBloodMoney.exe NWN2*.exe TW2007.exe ARX.exe SplinterCell4.exe NFSC_demo.exe NFSC.exe RelicCOH.exe starwars_pc.exe LegoStarWarsII.exe fifa07*.exe fsx.exe primarysurf.exe CoJ.exe FEARXP.exe BF2142*.exe JustCause*.exe nhl06.exe battleofthegods.exe cccprev.exe RomeTW*.exe H5_Game.exe Condemned.exe trl.exe Inventor.exe Dwm.exe legends.exe gt.exe graw*.exe sweaw.exe game.dat.Timeshift*.exe nbalive06.exe oblivion.exe x3*.exe gwdev.exe pop3.exe USM.exe BattlefrontII.exe speedDemo.exe speed.exe narnia.exe white.exe KingKong*.exe 3DMark06*.exe RD3.exe Age3.exe Suffering2*.exe Sam2.exe KingKongDemo*.exe BOS.exe CoD2?P_s.exe Fable.exe EiB.exe Sims2EP2.exe DungeonSiege2.exe fs9.exe AFR-FriendlyD3D.exe FEARspdemo.exe FEAR.exe ACTOFWAR*.exe Ehshell.exe X2-Demo.exe X2.exe tribesv_?pdemo_en.exe Swat4SPDemo.exe PandoraMultiPlayerDemo.exe Sims2EP1.exe PCMark05.exe PCMark04.exe PainGame.exe Speed2demo.exe MaxPayne2Demo.exe FFXiWinBench.exe FFXiBench.exe Biademo.exe Tiger 2004.exe Snowblind-Demo.exe Snowblind.exe BreedSPD.exe Breed.exe XPANDRALLY.exe TV_CD_DVD.exe TRAOD*.exe Battlefront.exe Sims2.exe ShadowVault.exe patriots.exe thrones.exe Pariah.exe nba2005.exe mohpa.exe GW.exe pol.exe Driv3r.exe DFX.exe Bia.exe TechDemo.exe aquamark.exe w40k.exe pop2.exe FarCry.exe WoW.exe EverQuest2.exe Speed2.exe Lithtech.exe Swat4.exe SwgClient_r.exe SplinterCell3.exe Painkiller.exe MaxPayne2.exe FlatOutdemo.exe CMR5.exe BfVietnam.exe LockOn.exe 3DMark05.exe 3DMark03.exe 3DMark2001SE.exe 3DMark2001.exe BF2.exe Morrowind.exe TW2005.exe TW2004.exe halo.exe UT2004.exe UT2003.exe RD2D.exe RD2.exe CT3.exe pop.exe RaceDriver.exe SplinterCell2.exe SplinterCell.exe

Epic Games, Inc. has released the April 2010 Unreal Development Kit (UDK) Beta. Epic is committed to providing the UDK community with regular software releases at no charge, and the latest beta is available now at

Many notable additions and improvements are included with this month’s release:

    * Unreal Engine 3’s new procedural building system enables users to very quickly create and edit good looking city buildings.
    * UTGame, the example game content included with UDK, has fully transitioned to UDKGame. All content included with UDK (except for skeletal meshes) can now be used by commercial UDK games and applications.
    * Cascaded shadow maps, dynamically shadowed translucency, and improved unbuilt lighting previews have been added to the lighting system.
    * A new map, GDC_FeaturesDemo, is now included with UDK.
    * The perspective viewport now supports depth dependent halos, making wireframe views much easier to read.
    * The new asset consolidation tool provides a simple way within the editor to consolidate multiple assets into one asset.
    * Also included are dozens of upgrades to the Unreal Editor, Unreal Matinee, Unreal Content Browser, and other Unreal Engine systems and tools.

3D-Tech News Around The Web / Article: Crash Course in HLSL
« on: April 21, 2010, 04:55:49 PM »
What does HLSL stand for? Why was it created? How does an HLSL effect file look like? What can you do with HLSL? What do float4x4, TEXCOORD0 or compile ps_3_0 mean? The answer to the first question is simple: HLSL means High Level Shader Language. This answer by itself might raise a few questions. The answers for these and a few other questions will be found in this article.

You will first learn about the history of HLSL and why it came to existence. After that, you will see the basic structure of an HLSL effect file, and learn about the different elements of the language. Finally, after looking over the language’s basics, you will see the template effect file that XNA gives to us.

Full article at Sgt. Conker

3D-Tech News Around The Web / CULA tools - Initial Fermi Performance
« on: April 21, 2010, 04:48:19 PM »
Hot off the heels of a 1.3a service release, we've got some brand new information on the future directions of CULA.  Today we'll be talking about Fermi, NVIDIA's next-generation GPU architecture that was announced in September at the GPU Technology Conference.  At that time, we shared our thoughts on the new and exciting performance we hoped Fermi would bring.  After 6 months of anticipation, we're very proud today to debut the first performance results for CULA running on Fermi.  To our knowledge, these results are the first published double-precision performance results for Fermi running real-world code.

Full story at CULA tools

3D-Tech News Around The Web / PC Wizard 2010 v1.94 available
« on: April 21, 2010, 04:34:53 PM »
PC Wizard - Release Notes
Copyright (C) 1996-2010 Laurent KUTIL & Franck DELATTRE

Date format : dd/mm/yyyy

- Sun VirtualBox virtual machine detection support
- Intel Celeron 3400 processor support
- Intel Pentium E6600, E5400, E5300 processors support

- Fintek F75334DG sensor preliminary support

- ATI Video Card Frequencies Min/Max support
- AMD Sempron M1, Turion II M5/M6 and Ahtlon II M3 processors preliminary support
- Intel Core i3 Mobile processors support
- AMD Hudson-2 Southbridge preliminary support

- ATI GPU activity monitoring support
- Intel IMC Memory Rank Temperature support
- nVIDIA GT305, GT310, GT335, GT350 and GT360 video cards support
- Nuvoton W83627DHG-P, W83667HG-B and W83677HG-I
- USB 3.0 detection support

- Microsoft Browser Choice detection support
- nVidia MCP89 and GeForce 320M chipset support
- Sis 672 Chipset support
- Intel Core2 Specification 'S' support
- ATI HD5450, HD5570 and HD5830 video cards preliminary support

- Intel Core i7 930 processor support
- nVidia ION 2 Platform detection support
- AMD Tigris Platform detection support
- ACPI HPET detection support
- Intel QST 2.0 (HECI 2) monitoring support
- Intel VT-d information support

- SATA 6Gb detection support
- ATI HD5145, HD5165 and HD5470 video card support
- Intel Chipset RAM Row Refresh Cycle Time support
- Intel Atom N470 processor support

- ATI HD4290 video card support
- AMD 890GX chipset support
- AMD SB800 southbridge support
- nVidia CUDA improvments
- New nVidia CUDA Benchmark module
- Dell PowerEdge 1600sc support

- nVidia I2C GPU NV3x (Rankine), NV4x (Curie), NV5x (Telsa) and NV6x (Fermi)

- ATI I2C GPU Series R6xx, R7xx and R8xx

- Microsoft Windows SEHOP security feature detection support
- AMD 785G, 880G Chipset support
- DVD Dual-RW and Dual-R features detecttion support
- DVD-BD ver.1 and ver.2 reading/writing features detection support

- Intel E6500K processor detection support
- Intel Core i7 "Gulftown" processor support
- nVidia GTX470, GTX480 video cards preliminary support

- Intel Xeon "Westmere-EP" codename processors support
- Intel Xeon L3406 processor support
- Intel NM10 Chipset Timings support
- VIA VX855 Chipset

- Winbond W83L771W/G sensor support
- ITE8721F/DX sensor support
- AMD Processors socket G34 support
- AMD Phenom II X6 "Thuban" preliminary support
- Finte F81865 sensor preliminary support

- Intel Xeon Series 6500 / 7500 processors support
- Intel Core ix Series K detection support
- UPS detection improved
- CD/DVD Buffer Size detection support
- S-ATA HotPlug Capabilities detection support

- 05/04/2010
- SMSC EMC2700P sensor preliminary support
- ATI FirePro V8800 video card support
- Bios AMD AGESA version detection support

- ipV6 support
- Teredo support
- Boot Configuration Data (BCD) information support
- Fintek F71889ED sensor support

- Windows Search 4.0 information support
- Intel Core i7 680 processor support
- Intel Pentium E5500 processor support
- updated to 2010.1.94 

Fixed Issues–Windows XP 32-bit
* Solid Edge–ACE not working properly with Solid Edge. 
* Quadro FX 4700 X2: When four displays are enabled, one of the displays connected to 
the second GPU flashes. 

Fixed Issues–Windows XP 64-bit
* QuadroPlex D2: Opticore Studio 2010–lighting surface sometime blinks. 

Windows Vista/Windows 7 32-bit Issues
* AutoCAD 2011–vertical line corruption appears across the top of the viewport. 

No OpenGL 3.3/4.0 support  :(

3D-Tech News Around The Web / NVIDIA Forceware 197.55 WHQL available
« on: April 20, 2010, 09:30:46 PM »
Download 64 bit driver
Download 32 bit driver

Original nv_disp.inf for GTX470/480 only
no changelog available
no OpenGL 3.3/4.0 support
no new application profiles compared to 197.45

In the world of multi-threaded software development, there's always a new tip or trick for maximizing performance.
We're bringing you 10 in the Guide for Developing Multi-threaded Applications: Part 2.

Part 2 of this technical guide focuses on memory management and programming tools. Learn new methods on avoiding heap contention, detecting memory bandwidth saturation, and more. You'll also get details on the latest tools you can use to streamline parallel programming. Here's a look at what's inside:    
•       Detecting Memory Bandwidth Saturation in Threaded Applications—Discover techniques to preserve the scalability and performance of your apps.
•       Avoiding and Identifying False Sharing Among Threads—Explore methods to detect and correct performance issues that occur when threads on different processors modify variables residing on the same cache line.
•       Getting Code Ready for Parallel Execution—Get an overview on methods for introducing parallelism into your code—and how you can do so faster and more reliably.

In this Blender 2.5 Video Tutorial, I go further with the particle hair system and cover the creation of fur in multiple layers.

Keep watching at the end, as I added some lighting tips to get a better-looking render.

During the Visual Studio 2010 launch event this week NVIDIA announced that it has released a new open beta of the Parallel Nsight plugin with new features for Microsoft Visual Studio

Full story at InsideHPC

ComputeMark is freeware. This app benchmarks your DirectX 11 graphic card Compute Shader performance.

Download: ComputeMark (version: 1.2)

Made by Robert Varga (c) 2010 .. robinvarga [at] ..


ComputeMark is first 100% DirectX 11 Compute Shader benchmark. With Windows 7 and DirectX 11, we can use huge performance of our graphic cards for more (real life, daily used) applications. With ComputeMark we are able to measure this power of our graphic cards and tell which one is better.

ComputeMark typically utilizes 99% of GPU (it's ultimate GPUs ass kicker, great for after-overclocking stability tests) and 0-1% of CPU. Windows 7, DirectX 11 and DX11 graphic card are required.

ComputeMark (Robert Varga (c) 2010) is build on Jan Vlietinck Fluid3D demo and can be run only on DirectX 11 hardware.

Unfortunately SpeedTree stopped providing executable demos, so check out this video

The next release of the DirectX SDK is scheduled to ship to developers in early June 2010. This release will be the first update to the Windows Graphics components since the August 2009 release and will also introduce support for Visual Studio 2010.

Visual Studio 2010 Support

The June 2010 DirectX SDK includes support for Visual Studio 2010. The DirectX SDK will continue to support Visual Studio 2008 as well. However, Visual Studio 2005 will no longer be supported.

PIX: Object Naming Support

The June 2010 version of PIX supports naming for most resource objects in Direct3D (D3D). Direct3D enables developers to attach arbitrary data to objects in D3D code using the SetPrivateData API for application-specific usage. PIX will now display specific string data for objects in the Object Table and other user interface elements where a human-readable object name will provide a much more effective experience for the user.

PIX: Usability Improvements

The June 2010 version of PIX includes improvements to the PIX user interface:

    * The Object Table shows the size and shader model for each shader.
    * In the Shader Debugger, there is a new toolbar button that enables the display of all constant registers/variables immediately, rather than the first time they are read.
    * In the Shader Debugger, it is possible to copy register and variable data to the clipboard.
    * The Summary pane has a new "Direct3D Information" section, that shows details about what Direct3D capabilities are present on the computer.

XNAMath C++ SIMD Math Library

The June 2010 release updates XNAMath to version 2.03, which includes the following changes:

    * Addition of XMVectorDivide() to optimize SSE2 vector division operations
    * Unified handling of floating-point specials between the Windows SSE2 and no-intrinsics implementations
    * Use of Visual Studio style SAL annotations
    * Modifications to the C++ declarations for XMFLOAT2A/3A/4A/4X3A/4X4A to better support these types in C++ templates

Version-less Naming of Cross-Runtime Data Types

The June 2010 DirectX SDK removes versioning from several Direct3D data types that cross runtime versions. This change makes legacy data-type names equivalent to the new version-less data-type names. Therefore, you can use either legacy or version-less names. However, your code will be cleaner and easier to maintain if you use the version-less names.

New D3DCreateBlob Function

The June 2010 DirectX SDK includes a D3dcompiler_43.dll that exports the new D3DCreateBlob function. Therefore, you are no longer required to use D3d10.dll to create and use an arbitrary length data object.

New ID3D11ShaderReflection Method

The June 2010 DirectX SDK adds the following new method to the ID3D11ShaderReflection interface:

    * GetThreadGroupSize

New HLSL Language fixes and features

HLSL has been updated with the following fixes and features:

    * The frexp intrinsic function has been updated to return a mantissa in the range of [0.5,1.0].
    * New intrinsic functions have been added for better debugging support.
          o printf -- submits custom shader messages to the information queue.
          o errorf -- submits custom shader error messages to the information queue.
          o abort -- submits custom shader error messages to the information queue and terminates the current draw or dispatch call being executed.
    * Left-Hand-Side typecasting is now illegal and will cause a compile error.
          o Expressions such as "(int)myFloat = myInt;" are no longer valid. Use "myFloat = (float)myInt;" type syntax instead.

New HLSL Compiler fixes and features

The HLSL Effects compiler (fxc.exe) has been updated with the following fixes and features:

    * No-optimization (/Od) compiles will produce less-optimized code than before in order to provide improved debugging.
    * No-optimization (/Od) now implies (/Gfp).
    * New compression (/compress) and decompression (/decompress) options have been added to enable the bundling and unbundling of shader files.
    * A new numbering instructions (/Ni) flag has been added to turn on numbering of instructions in shader disassembly.
    * Fxc.exe has a new @command.option.file feature for specifying command options in a file. This enables the /compress and /decompress options to be used on many files at once.

Documentation Enhancements

The June 2010 DirectX SDK includes the following documentation enhancements:

    * Added links to descriptions of data types for parameters and return values to help developers locate related types.
    * Added additional header and lib information to reference pages for APIs implemented in DirectX samples.

Source: MSDN

Using DxVA2 on Windows Vista and 7 and VAAPI  on Linux, the decoding stage of VLC framework can now be done by the GPU.

If you have a compatible GPU, especially an nVidia, it should go way faster. VLC should consume less than 10% of your CPU and your CPU shouldn’t be at full speed anymore.

It even works on Ion/Atom machines! This is cool for HTPC.

Full story here

With vReveal, you can stabilize, brighten, and sharpen your videos with just one click, for free. Plus much more.

 Minimum System Recommendations:

    * Operating System: Windows XP, Vista, 7
    * Processor: Dual-core CPU or better
    * Memory: 2GB RAM
    * Hard Drive: At least 60MB of free space

Minimum System Requirements for Optional GPU Acceleration:

    * GPU: NVIDIA GeForce with CUDA: 8-series, 9-series, 200-series, 400-series
    * GPU Memory: 256MB or higher for processing up to 720p video, 512MB or higher for 1080p video
    * Driver: 197.13 or newer

 Version 2.0.6349 - April 13, 2010

    * Now accepts input of HD video (up to 1080p)
    * Replaced 30-day trial with a free version of vReveal
    * Made super-resolution enhancement available for videos with an input resolution up to 576p
    * Added new video fix: Auto White Balance
    * Added special effects to a new "Add Effects" tab under "Enhance," including Black & White, Sepia, Vivid, Glow, Grain, Vintage, and Colorize
    * Optimized CPU performance, including addition of support for SSE4 and improved multi-threading
    * Faster launch time and Gallery scrolling
    * Introduced support for Windows 7 and better support for 64-bit systems
    * Fixed various bugs
    * Implemented new, more-user-friendly e-commerce and product activation systems

I wonder why nobody used SSE4 for video encoding before   ::)

Quick test with Blender's "Bick Buck Bunny": 7-8 fps with CUDA enabled (8800GTX)

If you're coding for multicore, you shoot for maximum performance but hit barriers along the way. Arm yourself with the latest development and optimization tips from the experts: Download the Guide for Developing Multithreaded Applications: Part 1.
   Part 1 of this technical guide focuses on application threading and synchronization techniques. A compilation of 11 top articles, it features examples and how to's on measuring performance, removing artificial dependencies, using tasks instead of threads, mitigating synchronization impacts, and more. Here's just a sampling of the articles inside:

•       Loop Modifications to Enhance Data-Parallel Performance—Tackle loop challenges with techniques that minimize synchronization and make parallelization easier—such as loop fusion, loop interchange, and loop unrolling.
•       Load Balance and Parallel Performance—Avoid common memory and I/O pitfalls to achieve the perfect load balance by sharing workloads equally across all threads.
•       Managing Lock Contention: Large and Small Critical Sections— Efficient parallel code balances thread performance in critical sections and manages idle time of other threads. Learn the concept of critical section size and see when it is best to use large or small critical sections.

Watch for Part 2 of this Guide next week for 10 additional articles on varied memory management approaches for multicore and the latest programming tools to streamline parallel programming.

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