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AMD Recommends Using Nvidia's FXAA in Battlefield 3
Old 27 October 2011, 09:33   #1
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Yesterday AMD sent us a benchmarking guide for Battlefield 3 written by Antal Tungler, AMD's PR Manager. In the guide, Antal recommends using Nvidia's FXAA instead of MSAA.

"You'll notice that we recommend the 'Ultra' preset in lot of our scenarios, without the use of MSAA (Multi-Sample Anti-Aliasing). This is a traditional technique to remove aliasing from objects in the visible scene. It provides significant image quality improvements, at least in most cases. But because of its nature, working only on actual geometry, some objects will not benefit at all from this process, like foliage or fences, that are just textures, sprites etc. Luckily DICE implemented a new technique as well called FXAA (Fast Approximate Anti-Aliasing), which is a process that works pretty much on all objects. Another significant difference between the two is that while FXAA has a very small impact on performance, however using MSAA can essentially cut your framerate in half."

"If we view the same data in another way we can also see that once we add 4xMSAA we are lowering our frame rate so much that we are moving from a playable to non-playable gaming scenario on some high end graphics solutions if we use the standard 30fps average for playable. Many of the extremely competitive Battlefield 3 players will want as many frames as they can get making MSAA a questionable option! We can also see from both charts provided that FXAA has a relatively low performance cost for the great level of Image Quality it provides."

"The idea behind the following pages comparisons is not to discredit MSAA or the implementation of MSAA in Battlefield 3. MSAA is a wonderful technique that can be used to improve the image quality of your gaming. Users should be wary however that MSAA will not improve all objects in the game and comes at a high performance cost to the user that may not be necessary for someone looking to maximize their performance and gaming experience. It is highly recommended that users take time to toggle settings themselves and determine if the Image Quality improvement that MSAA provides is worth the performance hit their frames per second will take while gaming."

FXAA was developed by Nvidia's Timothy Lottes in-order to compete with AMD's MLAA.

Last edited by Regeneration; 27 October 2011 at 10:31..
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Old 27 October 2011, 11:17   #2
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Of course they recommends FXAA. They get lower impact (compared to GeForce) with this technology. I tested BF3, and with FXAA (without Deferred MSAA) the HD6970 is as fast as GTX 580, or faster in some case. With MSAA 4x the GTX 580 is faster. Well of course both card got a much slower results compared to FXAA.
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Old 27 October 2011, 12:54   #3
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Can MLAA not be forced through the control panel for this game? If FXAA is superior, kinda hope it becomes the standard. Maybe us AMD 4000 series owners will be able to use it?
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Old 27 October 2011, 14:04   #4
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As far as I know DICE using a special FXAA. They control it via SRAA. In this case they have subpixel information, so the quality much better than any driver based post process AA approach. Of course you can force MLAA from Catalyst, but it doesn't make sense, when you have in-game option for post process AA.
Technically AMD can write an MLAA algorithm for any DirectX 10/10.1 GPU, but it will very-very slow. It's hard to do quality post process AA via drivers, because you have the final image, and nothing more.
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Old 28 October 2011, 00:33   #5
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Sorry but I don't see FXAA in the game graphics options. How to active this?
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Old 28 October 2011, 09:35   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
Sorry but I don't see FXAA in the game graphics options. How to active this?

FXAA = AApost

as opposed to

MSAA = AA defered
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Old 28 October 2011, 10:04   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by technogiant View Post
FXAA = AApost

as opposed to

MSAA = AA defered
I figured this out after reading the AMD PDF document but actually FXAA doesn't look not really good. I noticed that on windows and other semi transparent textures you don't have any AA. I have a mid-range system AMD Phenom II 920@3,1 GHz, 4GB 1066 RAM, HD 6870 1GB running 1280x1024 on ultra (wtih MSAA) and the performance is totally fine (Catalyst 11.10 V3 Preview). I don't see any reason for switching to the worse looking FXAA.
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Old 28 October 2011, 15:14   #8
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Now that's strange, because MSAA only filters polygon edges, whilst FXAA filters everything it considers edges.

And FXAA should be about as good as 4x MSAA, except that it also eliminates the need for alpha texture antialiasing.
Due to it's "whatever it considers an edge" approach, and not actual edge data. (Like MSAA.)
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Old 28 October 2011, 15:38   #9
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I saw a presentation by a guy from Dice, he said that FXAA and MSAA improve the image in slightly different ways and it is best to use both.....FXAA has very little performance hit unlike 4xMSAA which knocks performance by 40 -50% or thereabouts.
I'm going to try it with 2X MSAA and High FXAA.
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Old 28 October 2011, 22:43   #10
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gotta respect an honest company.

intel or nvidia would never publish anything discrediting any aspects of their technologies, they would just lie and pay others to hyper-exaggerate the information.

... enter the sheep.
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