GeForce 425.31 driver enables RTX on GTX 10 and 16 series graphics cards

It is been said earlier that Nvidia will be releasing the newer driver which will allow non-RTX graphics cards to use DirectX RayTracing. The GeForce 425.31 WHQL driver enables Microsoft DirectX Ray-tracing (DXR) on these GTX GPUs. These include the newer GTX 16 Turing and the GTX 10 Pascal graphics cards.

Nvidia did not list its upcoming GTX 1650 graphics card for DXR support. But that’s unlikely to happen based on its expected performance bracket. The minimum support starts from GTX 1060 6GB GDDR5.

DirectX Ray-Tracing with Pascal GTX 10 and Turing GTX 16 GPUs

The main benefit GTX 16 series over GTX 10 series Pascal graphics cards are its updated CUDA cores which use both INT32 and FP32 cores. Nvidia says it was able to implement real-time Ray Tracing rendering on these graphics cards without the need of RT and Tensor cores. This is using via CUDA cores by using its rendering paths through the shaders. The specific DXR effects provide Bounding Volume Hierarchy (BVR), Intersection, reflection and refraction. On the Pascal cards, these calculations are done only through its FP32 cores.

Nvidia’s switcheroo with ‘DXR’ and ‘RTX’ abbreviations

As said before, Nvidia RTX graphics cards were initially assumed to be the only series which can use Microsoft DXR from Windows 10’s October 2018 1803 update. Nvidia relabels its support of the DXR function as RTX for its RTX graphics cards. But with the GTX 10 and 16 series graphics card, it uses the ‘DXR’ abbreviation in its blog post.

Realistic expectations with RTX functions on GTX graphics cards

However, it does need to differentiate its Ray-Tracing abilities between GTX and RTX graphics cards.  The performance depends on the resolution and the in-game preset. But you trade ita usable FPS performance for RTX when enabled. RTX series has an advantage due to its RT cores providing dedicated hardware acceleration for the in-game Ray-Tracing functions. They have explained this further in their blog post. But it is better to see this is tested and evaluated by an independent source.

News that hardly would care…

This driver also will be the first to no longer support its Nvidia 3D Vision. But for some reason, it lists ANNO 1800’s 3D profile- and also states its support as not recommended. This feature is Nvidia’s 3D glasses support for its 3D Vision enabled games. But it never really any light of success. This driver also axes support for Kepler series mobile GPUs. Nvidia will only be providing critical security updates up to April 2020.

Meanwhile on the other side of the grass…

AMD Radeon’s 7nm NAVI graphic card lineups will most likely support DXR features. They are expected to reveal its 7nm based AMD Ryzen 3000 & EPYC datacenter CPUs, NAVI GPUs and the X570 chipset during Computex 2019.

The new GeForce WHQL drivers can be downloaded from here.

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