Microsoft Reveals DirectX 11.3 With DX 12 Rendering Features

Written by Jon Sutton on Mon, Sep 22, 2014 2:00 PM

This one cruised under our radar during the glitz and glamour of Nvidia’s Game24 event and the GeForce 900 series reveal but, during this year’s Intel Developer Conference and Nvidia’s Maxwell Editor’s Day, Nvidia revealed that DirectX 12’s new rendering features will be coming to Microsoft DirectX 11.3.

Next-generation graphics features including voxel global illumination, advanced sampling, and multi projection will all be coming to DX 11.3, minus the CPU overhead reduction that’s become such a selling point for DX12. The DirectX 11.3 API will be arriving alongside DirectX 12 late next year, prompting fears that DX12 may well be exclusive to Windows 9.

The last time Microsoft attempted something like this was with the arrival of Windows Vista, making DirectX 10 exclusive to its new operating system and leaving Windows XP pressured into an OS upgrade they didn't necessarily want. Microsoft has previously confirmed that all DirectX 11 graphics cards will support DirectX 12, there’s just the question of whether Microsoft intends to tie it into a Windows 9 upgrade. There’s no confirmation of it either way just yet, so for now we’ll just have to make do with the new features and keep our fingers crossed.

When it comes to new rendering features DirectX 11.3 and 12 will feature Rasterizer Ordered Views, Typed UAV Load, Volume Tiled Resources, and Conservative Raster. These technologies allow everything from complex transparent objects to smoke effects and ray-traced lighting. The overall result should be much more realistic lighting effects, and this is just scratching the surface of what the new DX tech will be capable of.

All of these additional effects will be available to anyone with a DirectX 11-capable card; the caveat is that DirectX 11.3 won't be providing any of the CPU performance benefits. DX12 is a low-level API which lowers CPU overheads and increases GPU performance, so to get the most out of DX 11.3 you’re going to need a fairly powerful rig without the necessary optimisations. What do you think of Microsoft’s decision to release DirectX 11.3? Do you think it signifies potential DirectX 12 exclusivity for Windows 9 users? Let us know!

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07:32 Sep-23-2014

No need to fret my brothers, someone, somewhere, some time will make DX12 run on windows 7&8, just a matter of time =P

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17:40 Sep-22-2014

can someone explain what "voxel" global illumination" is?
i use some CAD programs that use global illumination & they take few hours to render a single image so i wonder how they are gonna bring that into gaming.

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16:50 Sep-22-2014

This is primarily meant to be a back up plan if some DX12 features don't work with you're GPU. This is the solution to compatibility.

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16:41 Sep-22-2014

I remember in 2008 Microsoft said that all dx10 cards will be compatible with dx11. So were they compatible?? NO. So I'm not sure if the confirmation that dx11 cards will be compatible with dx12 is true.

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17:19 Sep-22-2014

I hear Dx11 cards will play Dx12 games, but it will just scale back to Dx11.3. The only cards that fully has hardware support of Dx12 so far is the recently released GTX 970/980 (maxwell GPUs). AMD will probably have an answer to that soon.

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20:35 Sep-22-2014

DX11 cards will use DX12. However, they will not be %100 compatible. There will be occasions where it will fall back on DX11.3 in order to solve compatibility issues. So if a card is %80 compatible, it will fall back on DX11.3 to solve the last %20.

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09:17 Sep-23-2014

it is comfirmed that gpu's with the GCN, Fermi, Kepler and Maxwell architectures will be fully compatible with Dx12

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16:26 Sep-23-2014

Don't forget 4th-5th gen Intel.

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09:09 Sep-23-2014

Rumours and rumours.

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15:37 Sep-22-2014

It will be not in win 7 - not interested

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19:57 Sep-22-2014

Same here mate :/ pure business to sale Win 9.

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09:09 Sep-23-2014

It's been that way for awhile. Nothing new.

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15:21 Sep-22-2014

I dont understand on which platform is directx 11.3 releasing as it is not supported by many Gfx Cards(Or should I say any) Plus who wouldnt wanna upgrade to Win 9 I mean now there is no reason ?

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09:10 Sep-23-2014

I guess it's a halfway job for cards that don't fully support 12.

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15:10 Sep-22-2014

Ooooh. Sounds fancy. Does anyone know if Windows 8.1 users will be able to upgrade to W9 for free, or for a discounted price.

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16:13 Sep-22-2014

I've heard it would be like 15 or 20$ but I'm not sure.

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14:28 Sep-23-2014

Why the hell is everyone downvoting me. It was a valid question.

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14:55 Sep-22-2014

at least make it support windows 9 AND 8. 7 not being support i can understand. time goes by :/

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15:12 Sep-22-2014

You do realize that even if "time goes by", there is no reason that Windows 7 can't fully support DX11.1-12 other than Microsoft's pure marketing.

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15:22 Sep-22-2014

well microsoft is corpration which survives mainly by selling windows... i wouldnt find it greedy to only support windows 8 and 9 is all i said. it would make sense to me. thats only my opinion ofc.

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09:11 Sep-23-2014

Yeah, 8.1 may support 11.3 but I doubt it. Do any games use 11.2? I wouldn't worry about it.

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16:05 Sep-22-2014

Yea, I hope Windows 9 will be as good as Windows 7.

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19:56 Sep-22-2014

Its more or less same as Win 8.2 :/

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20:43 Sep-22-2014

Well ...maybe we can stay on win 7 forever thanks to mantle, but what if I buy nvidia ... I really hate if microsoft will force me to win 9 only becasue of dx 12

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11:32 Sep-23-2014

I don't think so, Zilin. Windows 7 is great and all, but it's getting old.

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12:19 Sep-23-2014

What exactly is getting old on win 7? And mostly what is getting better on win 8/8,1/9?
They are all same inside only outside have different ui and crap like fast boot which is just sleep mode in win 7



  • 50% people use win 7, almost 30% XP, so every game/driver dev will be still focusing on them

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12:27 Sep-23-2014

It's better then Win8, but I think MS will end support for will end support in 2015.

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12:44 Sep-23-2014

Thats reality, they need to sell more of their OS but because there is no innovation, they are selling really badly, so great minds in microsoft come with plan that they just end support for old os and force people to buy new one.

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09:11 Sep-23-2014

How many games use Mantle. 3, or 4? I hope more will be supported.

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11:22 Sep-23-2014

I dont think games with dx12 will come any soon, maybe they will start in 2017, if mantle survive we can have lots of them until then

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17:49 Sep-22-2014

I hope it's as good as Windows 7, but I WANT Windows8's speed. Just for the speed I have 8.1.

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04:01 Sep-23-2014

Yeah, have you seen the videos of it?

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14:24 Sep-22-2014

hmm.. well ill have to get windows 9 then and my 280x supports direct x 11 so i dont mind getting a new windows :)

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14:17 Sep-22-2014

Guys help, is there difference between dx11 and dx12? I can't see it :D

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14:33 Sep-22-2014

There's not really any big visual improvement made by dx12, it just has new optimisations like mantle which help games to run better

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