GTX becomes RTX: Nvidia set a surprising and clear signal in autumn 2018 simply by naming the graphics cards based on the Turing architecture. The message at the time: Ray tracing is the future of gaming graphics, and that future begins with the RTX 2000 series.
Since then, the topic of ray tracing has always been controversial. Some fully agree with Nvidia. Others say the visual improvements aren’t worth the performance hit, despite upscaling techniques like Deep Learning Supersampling and Fidelity FX Super Resolution.
We therefore want to know from you specifically what role ray tracing plays in your everyday gaming life. We are therefore very pleased about active participation in the following survey!
What is ray tracing (is not the same as ray tracing)
We would like to add some important, general information. How exactly ray tracing is used and what FPS drops can vary greatly from game to game and depending on the hardware available. Currently, ray tracing is mostly used primarily for the following areas:
- Global Illumination
- the shade
There are other uses, such as ambient occlusion, but the ones mentioned above (or combinations thereof) are by far the most common. A list of all current games that offer ray tracing (and DLSS) can be found in the following article:
more on the subject
All games with ray tracing and DLSS at a glance
Basically, ray tracing places a lot of demands on the hardware. Exactly how strong depends not only on the intended use, but also on the respective implementation. Among other things, the amount of virtual rays that are traced back for the calculations can have a major impact on the optics and performance.
Speaking of ray tracing: We explained exactly what ray tracing is for the release of the RTX 2000 generation, both in writing and in the following video.
Geforce RTX 2080 and ray tracing – What does Nvidia’s new graphics card generation bring us gamers?
Which graphics cards support ray tracing?
Nvidia offers hardware acceleration for ray tracing with the RTX graphics cards of the 2000 and 3000 series. AMD only followed suit two years later with the RX 6000 series.
In the course of this, Nvidia often still has certain advantages in terms of performance (or the loss of performance). However, the differences tend to decrease with increasing experience of development.
Intel’s upcoming Arc graphics cards are also ready for ray tracing. How much the performance drops here remains to be seen until independent tests (and above all the fastest desktop graphics cards) appear. You can find out why there is good reason to be skeptical in this column:
I had high hopes for Intel’s GPUs, but now I fear a flop
Incidentally, both the PlayStation 5 and the Xbox Series X based on AMD hardware basically also support ray tracing. However, the appropriate calculations can be accelerated much more quickly with fast PC components.