Intel Larabee
Soumit par Administrateur le lundi, 01/06/2008
 Q&ADaniel Pohl
june 2008


"The performance increase using ray tracing for rendering the image is almost linear to the number of cores."

< Intel RealTime RayTracing technology in action (image TG Daily)

Q1Raytracing produce very realistic images. Is the use of a raytracing algorithm for realtime 3D purposes (i.e. video games, 3D visualization) synonym of poor performance?

First, I want to make clear here that real-time ray tracing for games is still in the research phase. If you would build a game only for ray tracing then it could be less work than building a game only for rasterization. There are many advantages that ease the development process like automatic culling techniques, simpler development of interaction between special effects and also simpler development of special effects. What you need for that is of course a ray tracer with some kind of API. Intel is developing this currently for its own research. Companies would provide some kind of ray tracing library then can be used as comfortable (or more comfortable) like DirectX. Therefore the game developers would NOT need to hassle with any threading work for ray tracing. These things are all well hidden in a well implemented ray tracer. Btw, the performance increase using ray tracing for rendering the image is almost linear to the number of cores. Therefore you can expect a good speed benefit with future many-core systems.

Q2Shoud 3D Artists change their workflow in order to take advantage of Intel Realtime Raytracing ?
A2Professional software like 3DSMax, Maya, XSI and so on also use ray tracing for certain special effects like reflections that cannot be created in the same visual quality with other graphics algorithms. These are usual offline-rendering solutions that could take up many hours for one image and produce almost photorealistic images. On the real-time ray tracing area we are talking with game developers and got from some good feedback and interest in experimenting with ray tracing.
Q3Today realtime 3D rely on API such as DirectX and OpenGL. Do you plan to introduce new API and tools for devloppers?
A3Larrabee will be compatible with both DirectX and OpenGL ; there should be no changes for game developpers if they want to. However Intel will help them to bring « Larrabee nativ » games.
Q4Game studio have spend a lot of energy to develop customs pixel/vertex "shaders", do they have to reconsider those dev. with Larabee?
A4No, Larrabee will support DirectX HLSL shaders.
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