NVIDIA will allow Ray Tracing without DLSS on its GTX, including the 10 and 16 series.

Good news for all Pascal or Turing graphics card users out there, as NVIDIA is (finally) opening up ray tracing support to GTX 10 and 16 series graphics cards. This means the following models will be supported: GTX 1060 (6 GB), GTX 1070, GTX 1070 Ti, GTX 1080, GTX 1080 Ti, Titan X and Titan Xp, as well as any laptop and Max-Q, plus of course the GTX 1660 and GTX 1660 Ti.

Bad sales? planned move? or AMD pressure?

We are in full GDC and GTC, where the news is flying about various brands and technical aspects.

NVIDIA will allow Ray Tracing without DLSS on its GTX, including the 10 and 16 series

On this occasion NVIDIA has come to the fore with a big announcement: it will enable Ray Tracing support via drivers for the 10 and 16 series on selected models under DXR.

This in itself is not an exclusive, since Microsoft announced more than a year ago that its plan to introduce DXR would start in two different phases that are being fulfilled perfectly and that it is in line with said announcement by Huang’s people.

NVIDIA will allow Ray Tracing without DLSS on its GTX, including the 10 and 16 series

In the first one, it would allow manufacturers to introduce hardware functions for Ray Tracing (RT Cores) in the long term, while the second one would allow software-based solutions that would be worked by compute shaders in the short term.

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Ray Tracing: everything you need to know about this new revolution in video games Javier López 30 September, 2018 • 19:09

NVIDIA will allow Ray Tracing without DLSS on its GTX, including the 10 and 16 series

This is possible because DXR doesn’t tell the game or driver how to implement ray tracing, leaving it up to AMD and NVIDIA to develop their technologies to support Microsoft’s API.

The fact is that NVIDIA was ahead of AMD launching hardware support before software, while AMD followed Microsoft’s plan, as we have already discussed in other articles on this topic.

NVIDIA will allow Ray Tracing without DLSS on its GTX, including the 10 and 16 series

Will the GTX perform like the RTX in DXR?

The most logical question is about performance, what will a GTX of the 10 and 16 series be able to do against an RTX?

At this point NVIDIA has been clear: these cards will be around 2 or 3 times slower than their RTX, although these figures will logically depend on the workload and implementation of Ray Tracing in each game.

For example, Battlefield V will perform better than Metro Exodus, since the former only reflects some surfaces, while the latter is more demanding when generating global illumination effects.

NVIDIA will allow Ray Tracing without DLSS on its GTX, including the 10 and 16 series

In the case of GTX cards, everything will be left to the Compute Shaders, where in this case the 16-series Turing cards will have an advantage.

Mainly because they are capable of executing FP32 and INT32 at the same time, where they also have the inclusion of VRR thanks to the Turing architecture.

As we already know, the Turing architecture can execute integer and float instructions at the same time, this doesn’t make up for the lack of RT Cores and Tensor Cores, but it does help improve performance against Pascal.

NVIDIA will allow Ray Tracing without DLSS on its GTX, including the 10 and 16 series

Developers will not need to implement updates to support

Being a completely transparent layer, developers won’t have to do anything to support DXR in their games on GTX 10 and 16 series cards, although they may want to make improvements to improve performance.

Everything will arrive via a driver next month, which will add full support for the indicated cards, so we can enjoy real-time ray tracing, although it remains to be seen what performance we will obtain.

In any case, the debate is served, and if the GTX series can finally move fairly well with DXR, it is more than likely that Huang’s people will be criticized for not having enabled it before, facilitating the sale of their RTX, which on the other hand they don’t seem to be doing well.