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Graphics IP cores enable interactive cinematic realism

07 May 2014

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Through the advanced architecture of PowerVR Wizard, multiple ray tracing engines and shaders operate concurrently to ensure real world sustained performance for both ray tracing and shading.

Further cores will follow that offer smaller power and area footprints for more constrained environments, along with scaled up cores to deliver fully ray traced content for the ultimate in cinema quality graphics. All Wizard cores are designed to provide leading support for a range of APIs such as OpenGL ES 3.x, OpenGL 3.x, Direct3D 11 Level 10_0, OpenCL 1.x, and OpenRL 1.x.

PowerVR ray tracing: creating new opportunities for developers

In addition to the clear benefits for traditional game engines through the easy addition of many high quality and dynamic shadows, reflections, transparencies, global-lighting, ambient occlusion and more, PowerVR Wizard GPUs can enable a broad range of other capabilities that would either be impossible, low quality, or too inefficient using standard techniques. Examples include lens distortion correction, lenticular display rendering, multi-perspective rendering, targeted rendering to points of interest, line-of-sight calculations, collision detection, and more.

The combination of efficient shading clusters and low-bandwidth ray tracing will enable a giant step forward for developers, who can bring a new level of quality and enhanced realism to their apps and games. For example, ray tracing can add a superior shadowing or lighting solution to existing games while allowing game developers to preserve the vast majority of the investment that they have already made in their game engines and tools. In addition, dynamic generation of assets in-game will streamline the content creation workflow and save distribution costs by reducing the size of the game files.

James McCombe, director of research for PowerVR Ray Tracing at Imagination, says, "While PowerVR Wizard ray tracing GPUs are a disruptive technology, they remain as familiar and easy to use as the PowerVR GPUs that developers are already using. With PowerVR Wizard IP, the ray tracing capabilities are exposed directly through the existing programmable shading hardware, so that software developers can take advantage of the ultra-fast ray tracing for some effects, while continuing to leverage the substantial investment in software designed to run on GPUs already available in the market today."

While power-efficient enough for mobile applications, the PowerVR Wizard architecture is able to scale up to configurations capable of rendering interactive cinema for high-end gaming machines and consumer devices.

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