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Doom patch adds support for Vulkan API

By Shawn Knight
Jul 11, 2016
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  1. id Software on Monday released a patch for Doom that enables support for the Vulkan API on the PC.

    As you may know, Vulkan is the low-overhead, cross-platform successor to OpenGL, a dated API created by Silicon Graphics way back in 1992. The Khronos Group obtained the standard in 2006 and has been working on its successor ever since, unveiling its new API at GDC 2015.

    Vulkan gives developers direct access to the GPU and offers more efficient multi-threading capabilities. For the end-user, this translates to better overall performance and in the case of Doom, it will allow those with older video cards to run the game at acceptable framerates.

    The Talos Principle was the first game to support Vulkan followed by Dota 2 in May. That said, id Software considers Doom to be the first AAA title to use Vulkan with the developer saying it has worked with both AMD and Nvidia on a daily basis since late March to bring full Doom and Vulkan driver support to the community.

    To enable Vulkan in Doom, navigate to the advanced settings menu and switch the Graphics API from OpenGL to Vulkan. You’ll be kicked back to the desktop briefly as the changes are being made. id Software CTO Robert Duffy does warn, however, that there may be a few bumps but added that their testing is showing really great performance and stability.

    Note that you’ll need to pick up the latest drivers from AMD and Nvidia for the best results. You can also check out the Vulkan API FAQ for more information.

    Permalink to story.

     
  2. IAMTHESTIG

    IAMTHESTIG TS Evangelist Posts: 954   +273

    Cool.... I hope the API gets a lot of good press, maybe some game developers will start considering developing their games for Linux as well.
     
  3. Darth Shiv

    Darth Shiv TS Evangelist Posts: 1,620   +376

    Yep should just be the start of things!
     
  4. mcborge

    mcborge TS Maniac Posts: 202   +118

    With vulkan enabled the game runs slower on my gtx970 and still randomly crashes to desktop.
     
  5. CaptainTom

    CaptainTom TS Booster Posts: 157   +61

    Welcome to the future of Maxwell/Pascal
     
    HardReset and veLa like this.
  6. CaptainTom

    CaptainTom TS Booster Posts: 157   +61

    Amen. I mean I am glad that DX12 will make things better, but devs should have all switched to OpenGL a long, long time ago. 1 API for all platforms (And it is more efficient!!!).
     
  7. Darth Shiv

    Darth Shiv TS Evangelist Posts: 1,620   +376

    OpenGL development and innovation stalled for a long time basically gifting a large portion of the PC market to DirectX. Carmack admitted DirectX was better and they only stuck with OpenGL for so long because of "inertia".
    http://www.bit-tech.net/news/gaming/2011/03/11/carmack-directx-better-opengl/1

    The OpenGL crowd seems to dodge that point that it was their failing and try to blame shift onto Vista which I find pretty funny considering how well received Vista was. Another of Microsoft's shining moments when they tried to introduce a perf hit on OpenGL to make DirectX look better, which they ultimately backed down on anyway. But the OpenGL community's innovation stagnation was the real reason it fell away so rapidly.

    Articles like this: http://www.extremetech.com/gaming/133824-valve-opengl-is-faster-than-directx-even-on-windows
    Look at the correction down the bottom. Pretty f'ing important correction which pretty much completely undermines everything they were saying... The story originally stated that the OpenGL spec is usually ahead of DirectX — but that hasn’t been true for a few years now.
     
  8. Steve

    Steve TechSpot Editor Posts: 2,214   +1,240

    This shouldn't be the case, I have just finished testing the GTX 960 and GTX 980, both were faster under Vulkan. I will test the GTX 970 soon but I expect to find similar margins.

    I am seeing great performance gains on the Radeon graphics cards as well as the new Pascal 1060, 1070 and 1080 cards.

    Edit: Try a clean driver install, that seemed to solve any crashing issues I was having with Vulkan.
     
  9. Bao Nguyen

    Bao Nguyen TS Enthusiast Posts: 32   +23

    I can't agree with 1 API for all platforms, it won't be good in the long run. There're always needs for competitions. OpenGL with Vulcan now have a very good shot against DX12, let's keep it at that.
     
  10. davislane1

    davislane1 TS Evangelist Posts: 3,536   +2,333

    What's the increase on the 1070?
     
  11. Steve

    Steve TechSpot Editor Posts: 2,214   +1,240

    A little over 10% at 1080p, less at 1440p and 4K.
     
    davislane1 likes this.
  12. mcborge

    mcborge TS Maniac Posts: 202   +118

    Some other 970 users have reported similar problems on the steam: DOOM > General Discussions page. I have the current 368.69 driver but I will take your advice and reinstall the driver, see if that helps. Thanks.
     
  13. theBest11778

    theBest11778 TS Addict Posts: 233   +67

    Yeah my testing of the GTX 970 saw a decrease from 110 FPS average down to 90 FPS average.
     
  14. Steve

    Steve TechSpot Editor Posts: 2,214   +1,240

    Edit: The GTX 970 does okay at 1080p but only a few extra frames at 1440p and less at 4K.
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2016
  15. theBest11778

    theBest11778 TS Addict Posts: 233   +67

    I was running 1080p high preset 8x TXMSAA (or whatever it's called) I was also testing on an older platform. I just posted a video on YouTube comparing the 875K with a GTX 670, 970, and 1070. I figured the lower CPU overhead from Vulkan could help improve performance. Unfortunately due to DRM my game is now locked and I could only get the 1 benchmark in.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 12, 2016
  16. mosu

    mosu TS Guru Posts: 422   +48

  17. Steve

    Steve TechSpot Editor Posts: 2,214   +1,240

    Yeah I don't know about that, I am seeing gains on all GeForce cards. I will check over the results tonight. I would like to see what others are finding.

    I wonder what setting they are using and the test system specs?
    Using OpenGL I get 149fps and with Vulkan 169fps at 1080p with the GTX 1070 running on a Core i7-6700K at 4.5GHz.
     
  18. mosu

    mosu TS Guru Posts: 422   +48

    OK, make a review.
     
  19. Steve

    Steve TechSpot Editor Posts: 2,214   +1,240

    Gamers Nexus beat me to it and they are setting similar gains to me. It's a mixed bag for Nvidia but one thing is for sure, this is amazing for AMD and their RX 480. Hopefully we will see a lot more of this in the next 12 months!
     
  20. Puiu

    Puiu TS Evangelist Posts: 1,902   +528

    For those who don't know, you have to use TSSAA or no AA if you want to enable async support. other AA solutions don't take advantage of this feature (yet).
    I've read that people are getting 40-50% FPS increase when using Vulkan+TSSAA with the RX 480. (20-30% when using MSAA)
    PS: no async support yet for Nvidia. they are still working on it. (although I think only Pascal might be able to use the async driver nvidia is working on)
     
  21. Puiu

    Puiu TS Evangelist Posts: 1,902   +528

    it seems that at 1080p the Pascal cards are getting good boosts too in other benchmarks I've seen. it just doesn't scale well at all into 1440p and 4K. Maxwell cards have conflicting reports everywhere.
     
  22. Steve

    Steve TechSpot Editor Posts: 2,214   +1,240

    I can confirm the AMD gains are insane. At 1440p using the Ultra settings with no AA the R9 380 wen't from 39fps with OpenGL to 63fps with Vulkan!!! Thats 62% more performance, I have been having a hard time believing the results.

    Yep, I am finding that as well now. Doom has quickly become and AMD favorite with Vulkan.
     
    madboyv1 and Puiu like this.
  23. Puiu

    Puiu TS Evangelist Posts: 1,902   +528

    really? that's huge. can't wait to see the graphs and analysis.
     
  24. Steve

    Steve TechSpot Editor Posts: 2,214   +1,240

    I still have a lot of testing to do and I want to triple check all the results. I am working to include Doom with OpenGL and Vulkan testing for the GTX 1060 review. I am also adding a few other games such as Mirror's Edge Catalyst, Total War: Warhammer (DX11 and DX12) and Rise of the Tomb Raider (new DX12 patch).
     
  25. Puiu

    Puiu TS Evangelist Posts: 1,902   +528

    that's hours of work! what about my ADHD? :((
    as a quick request, I would love to see some pictures showing how the game looks using MSAA vs TSSAA and if there is any performance difference between the 2 when using OpenGL (so we can get a better picture on how much async is improving FPS when switching to Vulkan)
    would also love to see a detailed analysis of async, an entire article dedicated to just this.
     

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