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Benchmarked: Rise of the Tomb Raider DirectX 12 vs DirectX 11

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Shawn Baker
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The talk of the moment when it comes to gaming is DirectX 12 and the added performance benefits it brings. With companies promising added performance, we take the time to find out if it’s true. Not only that, with AMD and NVIDIA both trying to get your money, it’s important to know who comes out ahead in the war that is DX12.

Today we’ll be taking the time to find out just how DirectX 12 compares to DirectX 11 with the help of our graphics card test system. Sitting on a ASUS P9X97 Deluxe, our Intel Core i7-3960X runs at 3.9 GHz with the help of a Corsair h110i GT AiO Water Cooling system. Rounding out our system we’ve got 16 GB of DDR3 RAM, OCZ Arc 100 240 GB SSD and Seasonic Platinum Series 1,000 W PSU inside a Fractal Design Define R5. The operating system of choice is Windows 10 64-Bit.

Today we’ll be making use of two graphics cards. The GeForce GTX 980 Ti from NVIDIA using the GeForce 364.61 driver. On the AMD side we’re using the Radeon R9 Fury X with Crimson Edition 16.3 drivers.

To start with we’ll be checking out VXAO or Voxel Accelerated Ambient Occlusion. NVIDIA itself describes it as follows: "In contrast to previous environment concealment technologies VXAO calculates the shading of the entire geometric game scene, including areas that are not visible to the camera (such as the areas behind objects). Thus all areas of a game scene. where shading is visible, are represented more realistically."

Aimed at just NVIDIA cards, let’s take a look at how VXAO affects performance alongside a number of other technologies.

Rise of the Tomb Raider

2.560 x 1.440 Sehr hoch

Frames per second
the more the better

In terms of performance VXAO lies behind HBAO+. However, at first glance we couldn’t notice any major difference in overall quality. With no clear visual difference, it’s probably not worth implementing. At least at the moment.

Let’s take a closer look at what’s going on with DirectX 12 performance:

Rise of the Tomb Raider

1.920 x 1.080 Sehr hoch, 4xSSAA

Frames per second
the more the better

Rise of the Tomb Raider

2.560 x 1.440 Sehr hoch, 2xSSAA

Frames per second
the more the better

Rise of the Tomb Raider

3.840 x 2.160 Sehr hoch, SMAA

Frames per second
the more the better

Neither graphics cards from NVIDIA or AMD benefit from any kind of performance increase. Instead, the opposite is seen from both. Both models across the board see a drop in performance. With that in mind it’s not recommended to make the move to DirectX 12. Of course we’ll keep an eye out for any major patches in the coming months.