DX9 vs DX11 - Why the massive perdormance difference?

#1 Posted by Rhaknar (5939 posts) -

hey guys. Something Ive noticed lately, more and more, is that using DX11 in most games means a huge performance loss for me, for what seems like little graphical difference. I have a modest rig by todays standards, the CPU is only a i5 (really wish I went with a i7 back then, but hindsight is 20/20 etc) but I later got a GTX580 which pretty much picks up the slack for most games, unless the ones whicha re CPU intensive. But anyway, I can run pretty much any game maxed, as long as I use DX9, as soon as I try to use DX11 is most (all?) cases, I take a huge performace dip, especially frame rate wise.

And here's the kicker, I honestly dont notice any difference graphically, except the worse framerate of course. Maybe its the years of console gaming that have lowered my standards, or the fact that my monitor only does 1920X1080, I dont know, but the fact is, I cant tell a difference in most cases. Latest example is Crysis 2, the game actually defaults to Ultra with DX11, but the framerate drops were really annoying me, and after playing around with the various settings and not getting any results, I tried running it in DX9 and behold, butter smooth 60FPS, even with all the settings on ultra.

Ive seen many people complain on several forums about DX11 in general, so what gives? Is it just poorly optimized? Does it give bells and whistles that only the real hardcore notice? And what do you usually go with if given the choice?

EDIT: also, would getting more RAM help? its the cheapest / fastest upgrade I can get, I dont want to get a new CPU because it involves getting a new Motherboard, and im really happy with my gtx580. At the moment Im using 4gig of ram

#2 Posted by Rhaknar (5939 posts) -

perDormance...for fucks sake :(

#3 Posted by SomeJerk (3143 posts) -

DX11 used properly will perform better than DX9 while also looking better. It's sort of the reason it was made.
 
And Crysis 2 is a very questionable (on the programming level) console port with a scandalously bad tessellation implementation that should be turned off no matter your rig.

#4 Posted by Christoffer (1758 posts) -

I have a rig comparable to yours but a gtx 570 and 12 gig of ram. I can't say I have experienced the same issues as you. Dx11 will usually boost both derpormance and image quality, if just slightly in some cases.

Wasn't Dx11 in Crysis 2 just an afterthought? I don't know if that game is a good example.

#5 Edited by Rhaknar (5939 posts) -

@SomeJerk said:

DX11 used properly will perform better than DX9 while also looking better. It's sort of the reason it was made. And Crysis 2 is a very questionable (on the programming level) console port with a scandalously bad tessellation implementation that should be turned off no matter your rig.

i dont see any tesselation option in the graphics tab, is it under some other name?

@Christoffer said:

I have a rig comparable to yours but a gtx 570 and 12 gig of ram. I can't say I have experienced the same issues as you. Dx11 will usually boost both derpormance and image quality, if just slightly in some cases.

Wasn't Dx11 in Crysis 2 just an afterthought? I don't know if that game is a good example.

well to be fair Crysis 2 is just the latest example, Ive noticed it with some other games :/

#6 Posted by FritzDude (2253 posts) -

Every New DirectX should improve perfomance since it will future utilize & improve upon multi threading & video memory within the WDDM. Poor optimizations - on both drivers & games - are usually the cause of issues With DX11. Obviously by enabling more features on a card that's not powerful enough will cause performance issues too. Try lowering the game's resolution to 1280x720 With DX11 & see if this helps. Native 1080p resolutions are quite demanding I would say.

#7 Posted by JoeyRavn (4948 posts) -

@Rhaknar said:

the CPU is only a i5 (really wish I went with a i7 back then, but hindsight is 20/20 etc)

Since the vast majority of games don't take advantage of HyperThreading, the difference in performance between an i5 and an i7 is neglegible (if they have the same architecture, of course). You're not missing anything by not having an i7.

Crysis 2 is a terrible example of how Direct X11 can be implemented. Crytek literally filled each map with polygons upon polygons. Even the areas you can't see (e.g. under the floor or the sea) have tesselations. A huge waste of resources.

Many games enable some sort of ambient occlusion (like SSAO or HDAO) by default when you switch to DX11. Ambient occlusion can be a huge resource hog, while providing a not so noticeable improvement in visual quality (then again, it depends on the game, really). If I were you, I'd play on DX9 if it's not giving you any problems, but with that rig you should be able to play everything on DX11 without having to suffer from framerate dips. Try to turn off some graphic options to see which one is the one that is bringing your performance down.

#8 Edited by believer258 (11634 posts) -

@Rhaknar said:

I have a modest rig by todays standards, the CPU is only a i5 (really wish I went with a i7 back then, but hindsight is 20/20 etc)

A GTX 580 and an i5 is not a modest rig. That's actually a pretty high-end rig. EDIT: But more RAM would not go amiss, I'd say that 8GB is pretty standard, but it still isn't really necessary. /EDIT.

As far as Crysis 2's implementation of DX 11 - it's not great. I can actually run Saints Row the Third and Red Faction Guerilla (both Volition games!) better on DX11 than I can with DX9, and in the case of SR3 there are a lot of graphics problems for me with DX9.

Online
#9 Posted by Parsnip (1077 posts) -

DX11 tesselation eats rigs for breakfast.

#10 Posted by AlisterCat (5482 posts) -

What DX11 means for most games is enabling a bunch of features that are performance intensive, and so will reduce overall performance. I don't know of many games that just offer a DX11 renderer for exactly the same stuff.

#11 Posted by granderojo (1778 posts) -

Hitman Absolution is an example of a game that really takes advantage of DX11 features. Some sweet ass bokeh DOF stuff going on with that game.

#12 Edited by Superfriend (1526 posts) -

It really depends on your graphics hardware. I have a Radeon HD7950 and DX9 has some problems on that card. As soon as something has DX11 support, it runs a hell of a lot better/ has less issues for me.

Had a GTX 460 before and it was pretty much the other may around, since that card wasn´t good enough for most DX11 features. Tessellation can be a real performance hog, but so can SSAO and HDAO and MSAA type stuff on higher resolutions.

Edit: some games will run like crap regardless. Even on a higher end machine.. GTAIV has some ISSUES on PC, man!

#13 Edited by mnzy (2911 posts) -

"Only an i5"...they are still really good to play games with, i7 often isn't worth the money.

#14 Posted by Rhaknar (5939 posts) -

@thabigred said:

Hitman Absolution is an example of a game that really takes advantage of DX11 features. Some sweet ass bokeh DOF stuff going on with that game.

I ran hitman absolution maxed fine, then again its a stealth game so youre not exactly running around shooting or turning the camera real fast so any framerate dips might have just been disguised

#15 Posted by Sooty (8082 posts) -

Nothing wrong with an i5, i7s give no benefit for gaming.

#16 Posted by MordeaniisChaos (5730 posts) -

Tesselation is pretty much always the culprit. Its not only rendering much more complex geometry, but its generating The extra polygons effectively on the fly. advanced ambient occlusion that is possible with DX11 cab also be a real resource hog. Crysis 2 has a number of DX11 hotspots, tesselation being the primary. It also enables more accurate reflections in reflective materials, which can be pretty costly too depending on how they implemented themgem.

When used to do the thing thibg, DX11 is going to be more efficient generally. But you can also do a lit of more intensive things with DX11. Some are small, but some make a huge difference. Just look at the difference txaa and bokeh depth of field and ambient occlusion made in how much better Black Ops 2 looks than previous entries in the series.

Sorry for the typos, the parchment is awwwwwwwful on phones..

#17 Posted by granderojo (1778 posts) -

@Sooty said:

Nothing wrong with an i5, i7s give no benefit for gaming.

I hate it when people say this. Multitasking is the backbone of all computing, gaming or otherwise IMO.

#18 Posted by ShockD (2393 posts) -
@thabigred said:

@Sooty said:

Nothing wrong with an i5, i7s give no benefit for gaming.

I hate it when people say this. Multitasking is the backbone of all computing, gaming or otherwise IMO.

Perhaps we should replace "no" with "little". And I agree. Unless you have a lot of money to spend or are an enthusiast, there's no point of getting an i7 for gaming.
#19 Posted by granderojo (1778 posts) -

@ShockD said:

@thabigred said:

@Sooty said:

Nothing wrong with an i5, i7s give no benefit for gaming.

I hate it when people say this. Multitasking is the backbone of all computing, gaming or otherwise IMO.

Perhaps we should replace "no" with "little". And I agree. Unless you have a lot of money to spend or are an enthusiast, there's no point of getting an i7 for gaming.

You're both charlatans.

#20 Posted by JoeyRavn (4948 posts) -

@thabigred said:

@ShockD said:

@thabigred said:

@Sooty said:

Nothing wrong with an i5, i7s give no benefit for gaming.

I hate it when people say this. Multitasking is the backbone of all computing, gaming or otherwise IMO.

Perhaps we should replace "no" with "little". And I agree. Unless you have a lot of money to spend or are an enthusiast, there's no point of getting an i7 for gaming.

You're both charlatans.

http://www.anandtech.com/show/4083/the-sandy-bridge-review-intel-core-i7-2600k-i5-2500k-core-i3-2100-tested/20

http://www.overclock.net/t/1233022/core-i7-i5-3770k-3570k-2600k-2500k-benchmark

Yeah, those negligible 3 FPS more on average are well worth the $100 difference.

#21 Posted by Hunkulese (2642 posts) -
@thabigred

@Sooty said:

Nothing wrong with an i5, i7s give no benefit for gaming.

I hate it when people say this. Multitasking is the backbone of all computing, gaming or otherwise IMO.

You hate it when people try to inform others with the correct information?

Go read up on what an i7 does over an i5 and you'll see it does nothing for gaming. Maybe you'll occasionally see a 2-3 FPS boost due to other things but unless you're actually using your computer for demanding stuff like video editing you'll never notice a difference.
#22 Posted by granderojo (1778 posts) -

@Hunkulese: @JoeyRavn: I like to multitask while I play video games. If you don't like to multitask an i5 is perfectly fine. 100 dollars is worth it. Being able to watch a 1080p movie on one monitor and run a game on the other. Or live streaming. Or having photoshop running in the background while I play a game. Or have Microsoft visual studio 2010 running in the background while I have a game running. Or any other number of programs running in the background while a game is going. Gaming is rarely a solitary experience for me.

#23 Posted by Jams (2959 posts) -

@thabigred said:

@Hunkulese: @JoeyRavn: I like to multitask while I play video games. If you don't like to multitask an i5 is perfectly fine. 100 dollars is worth it. Being able to watch a 1080p movie on one monitor and run a game on the other. Or live streaming. Or having photoshop running in the background while I play a game. Or have Microsoft visual studio 2010 running in the background while I have a game running. Or any other number of programs running in the background while a game is going. Gaming is rarely a solitary experience for me.

You hit it on the head there. The real difference between the processors is the ability to multitask. The lowest one will start bogging while doing 2 things while the highest end will allow you to do a ton of things without breaking a sweat on each process. I'd say that's pretty important if you know you like multitasking.

#24 Posted by CornBREDX (4806 posts) -

It's kind of been hammered already, but basically DX11 adds a lot of small tweaks (such as tessellation [I think] and ambient occlusion) that DX9 doesn't. 
Adding these makes the card have to work harder. 
 
There is a tiny difference, but really unless you are doing close ups and looking at every characters face all the time, it's not a big deal if you use DX11. It can make a game look amazing (I want to say Arkham City here, but that one is buggy with DX11- or at least it was, may have been improved since I last played it) though, as it seems to add more depth to stuff. 
 
I dont know, I just turn DX11 off if its getting in the way but otherwise I leave it on. It makes stuff a little prettier but its not a big deal I guess, and does use up more resources because it's adding more layers.

#25 Posted by Klei (1768 posts) -

@Rhaknar said:

perDormance...for fucks sake :(

I read pedomance. God.

#26 Posted by SlashDance (1804 posts) -

@SomeJerk said:

DX11 used properly will perform better than DX9 while also looking better. It's sort of the reason it was made. And Crysis 2 is a very questionable (on the programming level) console port with a scandalously bad tessellation implementation that should be turned off no matter your rig.

I don't know what you're talking about !

#27 Posted by Jrinswand (1695 posts) -
@SlashDance: LOL.
 
I just turn DX11 off as often and as soon as I can. Tessellation and other little visual flourishes are never worth the performance hit, IMO. Seeing as how I never buy more than mid-high end hardware (i5 3570k, 7850 HD, and 8GB RAM), I can never really turn on all the bells and whistles while getting the FPS that I crave.
#28 Posted by JoeyRavn (4948 posts) -

@Jams said:

@thabigred said:

@Hunkulese: @JoeyRavn: I like to multitask while I play video games. If you don't like to multitask an i5 is perfectly fine. 100 dollars is worth it. Being able to watch a 1080p movie on one monitor and run a game on the other. Or live streaming. Or having photoshop running in the background while I play a game. Or have Microsoft visual studio 2010 running in the background while I have a game running. Or any other number of programs running in the background while a game is going. Gaming is rarely a solitary experience for me.

You hit it on the head there. The real difference between the processors is the ability to multitask. The lowest one will start bogging while doing 2 things while the highest end will allow you to do a ton of things without breaking a sweat on each process. I'd say that's pretty important if you know you like multitasking.

That'd be fine and dandy if we were talking about non-gaming performance, but we're not. We're talking about performance in games: the difference between the two processors is almost non-existent when it comes to games. Those benchmarks by two reputable PC websites prove my point. That doesn't make us "charlatans", you know. It's you who came up with the straw man of multitasking, not us.

Well, sure, the i7 has HyperThreading and it helps with multitasking, but that's your particular case and, honestly, I don't think it applies to many people. Still not many people have a second monitor, very few gamers livestream, and even fewer will have Vistual Studio or Photoshop running while they are playing games. And even if that was the case, we would need to take into account the amount of RAM the system has, the read/write speed of the HDD (which would be an SSD, probably), etc. The CPU alone would not make or brake the deal. I wonder who would ever play Crysis 2 while Photoshop is rendering on the background, though.

And I can assure you, , the i5 doesn't "bog" at all when doing "2 things".

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