Nvidia showcases new DX11 technology at GDC 2010

Nvidia reps showed TG Daily a next-gen DX11 simulation at GDC 2010 that featured photorealistic waves, gently waving grass and beautifully rendered, flowing human hair.

“The demos are powered by the new DirectX 11 API running on Nvidia’s next-generation GeForce GTX 480 graphics card. All of the demos use tessellation to deliver a dynamic level of detail – greater detail for objects up close and less detail at a distance,” an Nvidia spokesperson told TG Daily.

“For example, in the DirectX 11 hair demonstration, long flowing hair is realistically simulated, created and rendered on the GeForce GTX 480 using its unique parallel tessellation engines. By moving the model and applying a simulated breeze, the hair billows and cascades naturally with accurate physical properties. The demo shows how realistic hair will soon be possible in computer games.”

Meanwhile, the “Island” depicts a large scene that includes terrain and water with realistic, physically simulated waves. The terrain uses DirectX 11 tessellation and supports both static and dynamic tessellation. 

Finally, the grass demonstration renders up to 3.5 million blades that  billow and wave in the wind.

According to Nvidia, very little data is actually sent to the GPU—with default settings the card creates 11 million primitives out of 20,000 that it receives from the application. 

Indeed, the simulation is capable of drawing nearly 1.6 billion triangles per second at maximum tessellation settings, with the demo running at over 40 frames per second on the GeForce GTX 480 GPU.

“Simulations like this put Nvidia’s next-generation GPU to the test as it renders up to 48 million triangles in a single frame. This simulation also uses DirectX 11 tessellation to deliver more detail when viewing the grass up close,” said the spokesperson.

“These simulations illustrate the kind of scenes that can be depicted using the highly scalable tessellation engines in GeForce GTX 480. With Nvidia’s newest GPU, developers can incorporate an extraordinary level of geometric detail in their upcoming games.”