Technologies

Multi-Frame Sampled Anti-Aliasing Technology
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MFAA Technology

With the launch of the Maxwell GPU architecture, we are introducing the world to Multi-Frame Sampled Anti-Aliasing (MFAA). This new, Maxwell-exclusive anti-aliasing technique improves upon the quality of MSAA, whilst simultaneously reducing the performance impact, enabling PC gamers to crank up rendering resolutions and game detail, and to activate DSR.

Previous-generation GPUs include fixed sample patterns for anti-aliasing (AA) that are stored in Read Only Memory (ROM). When gamers selected 2x or 4x MSAA for example, the pre-stored sample patterns were used. With Maxwell, we have introduced programmable sample positions for rasterisation that are stored on Random Access Memory (RAM), creating opportunities for new, more flexible, more inventive AA techniques that uniquely address the challenges of modern game engines, such as the increased performance cost of high-quality anti-aliasing.

 

Multi-pixel Programmable Sampling

 

Maxwell's new RAM-based sample position technology can still be programmed with standard MSAA and TXAA patterns, but now the driver or application may also load the RAM with custom positions that are free to vary from frame to frame, or even within a frame. And it is with this technology that we have developed Multi-Frame Sampled Anti-Aliasing (MFAA).

 

Multi-frame sampled AA

 

By alternating AA sample patterns both temporally and spatially, 4xMFAA has the performance cost of 2xMSAA, with anti-aliasing properties equivalent to 4xMSAA.

MFAA is still in development, but once finished it will improve frame rates and image quality in traditional games, as well in Virtual Reality titles, giving Maxwell owners a superior experience that cannot be found elsewhere.