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Future of Mantle (Discussions Here)

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Future of Mantle (Discussions Here)

 

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The next version of Mantle will take the same prolonged development time and will be released Q3 2015 to coincide with DirectX 12. Huddy says that they have 'bindless resources' which further improves GPU efficiency in the bare-metal approach needed to unjam the bottlenecks from say APUs or low performance CPUs, less bureaucracy in the process to render scenes. I know about bindless resources from OGL (this PDF from Nvidia explains the bottleneck issues) and could mean the next version of Mantle with extensions to improve in OGL applications/games as AMD prowess in OCL is well know and supported, more recently by Adobe line of products. Whether OGL was referred to running in Linux or Windows I'm not sure as AMD is woeful.

 

Huddy: "DirectX is a generic API. It covers Intel hardware, it covers Nvidia hardware and it covers ours. Being generic means that it will never be perfectly optimized for a particular piece of hardware, where with Mantle we think we can do a better job."

DirectX 12 goes hand in hand with the general approach of Mantle to have ideally no more than 30% of CPU time dedicated to processing request, this is to avoid delays in rendering your billions of pixel-busting polygons and help lower frametimes in combination with XDMA from GCN 1.1 that already helped significantly (CF interconnect speed of 0.9GB/s versus XDMA of 16GB/s PCI-E 3.0). However, Mantle will require addition VRAM. Why it uses more VRAM is because streaming textures are stored in faster GDDR5 VRAM than your slower local DDR3 RAM or even cached to SSD/HDD. This why in some titles you may notice pop-in textures/objects even though there's always been an issue with draw distance (LOD) in PC titles. The effect on all APIs is minimised with subtle fade-ins or fog, even tiled resources in DX11.2 sub features but mainly to reduce stitching issues.

 

Enough babbling, you can read about the future of Mantle here.

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I think someone missing from this is that AMD can update Mantle anytime (Given people download it).

If AMD puts out a card with a new feature, they can have support for it in an API at launch.

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Sure Rock that's an important point, I did say that before I edited it out. Talking about possibilities this early morning ....

 

What I'm not sure about is if when Mantle is updated to Mantle 2, and beyond, would games already have the Mantle library to call on to not require another game update and use the new drivers extra instructions. AMD could use their own Raptr software to detect game Mantle libraries upon launch and push out a small patch from their database to those not using digital game services like Steam/Origin/uPlay.

 

How much backward compatibility will there be for current Mantle titles - we know that older titles will each need patching to support a new API.

 

Would future Mantle versions be locked to one or the other of GCN 1.1 or GNC 2.0. Right now as said by Huddy games as things stand now work back to GCN 1.1. Would the frequency of updates calm down as the API matures, what percent of the Mantle updates are bug fixes / added game support currently, and what can't be added in Mantle 1 but has been postponed to Mantle 2+.

 

How long until from the starting point of 2012's Cape Verde/Pitcairn/Tahiti will support for extra instructions be limited by those architectures. A statement from AMD to reassure gamers that they'll support those GPUs for say 5 years is surely needed. AMD have the upper hand here compared to DX, Microsoft limits support to the next API in with a new OS and not a popular choice, Mantle is independent of this. Microsoft though could have easily changed the API (as they did with Vista/W7 as sound hardware acceleration was disabled for DirectSound and requires troublesome workarounds), this could be why AMD shared Mantle resources to ensure the viability of an API that can only run on GCN 1.1+. It gains additional support and would make it easier porting from console to PC with DX12 and Mantle being similar.

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