UPDATE: UL Benchmarks has announced its first raytracing benchmark tool will be arriving in January 2019. Dubbed 3DMark Port Royal, the software will be the first dedicated benchmarking tool for testing ray-tracing performance of any graphics card that supports Microsoft's DirectX Raytracing (DXR).

Real-time ray tracing is currently one of the most demanding graphical capabilities in existence, introducing a level of visual to in-game lighting, reflections, shadows and other effects that is unparalleled.

The 3DMark Port Royal raytracing benchmark runs in real-time at 2560 x 1440 screen resolution. It's been developed in conjunction with Nvidia, Intel and AMD and will run on any graphics support that supports DirectX Raytracing. For now, that's limited to the GeForce RTX 20 Series, but we could have a few more surprises coming in 2019.

Original Story: 28-Aug-2018 - UL Benchmarks Confirms It's Working on a 3DMark Ray Tracing Performance Benchmark

Futuremark parent company UL Benchmarks has confirmed that it’s currently working on a new performance benchmark designed to test the ray tracing performance of graphics cards.

The new ray tracing benchmark will be rolling out to 3DMark, with Futuremark aiming to launch it alongside the next major Windows 10 update. Known as Redstone 5, the update is expected to roll out sometime within September or October 2018.

“We are designing a new test from the ground up to use Microsoft DirectX Raytracing, which will be added to 3DMark app as an update,” said UL Benchmarks in a statement.

“Please note that our upcoming benchmark is not a Time Spy test. Changing Time Spy in such a significant way would invalidate comparisons with previous scores, which isn’t something we want to do. The new test will produce its own benchmarking scores that will not be comparable with other tests like Time Spy and Fire Strike benchmark tests.”

Of course, we have already heard about Futuremark’s intentions to provide benchmarking tools to compare ray-tracing performance. There was a DirectX ray tracing tech demo trailer released earlier this year, although it sounds as if the new benchmark may end up differing significantly. At the time it appears as if there was some confusion as to whether it was a new version of the Time spy test, which UL Benchmarks has now confirmed isn’t the case.

“Unfortunately, some media misunderstood that the upcoming test is not a Time Spy test. We requested to update the story, but unfortunately, they have not done it.”

The good news is the new UL Raytracing benchmark should be ready for roughly around the same time as the GeForce RTX 20 Series GPUs begin to make their way into gamers’ hands. The GeForce RTX 2080 Ti and GeForce RTX 2080 are both expected to begin shipping on September 20th for those who pre-ordered. Gaming support for ray tracing is likely to be thin on the ground at launch, particularly until developers can finetune any performance hiccups, so benchmarks like this might be the best we have in the short term.