Though Vista Service Pack 1 comes with a lot of important updates; for gamers it’s the new DirectX 10.1. However, they will need to buy new hardware to have DirectX 10.1 to be supported; and don’t even try buying NVIDIA, according to APC Magazing, as they are left out on the cold.
Vista brought to the gaming world the latest version of DirectX 10. The newest version saw improvements to 3D gaming on a more resource-hungry operating system. Hardcore gamers only waited unti ATI and NVIDIA provided DirectX 10-supported GPUs before taking the plunge into Vista.
However, early adopters may be left on the curb as well; with Microsoft will release it’s update to Version 10, version 10.1. This includes some of the features that were dumped on the original release.
Image from APC Magazine
The new version offers greater application control of the GPU’s shading and filtering resources, especially multi-sampled and super-sampled antialiasing. The shader model has been updated from 4.0 to 4.1 and also the floating point technology has been beefed up from 16-bit to full 32-bit, which could see a direct improvement in quality for HDR (High Dynamic Range) lighting effects. In addition, all 10.1-capable hardware should be able to run 4xAA (antialiasing) as a mandatory setting.
Early adopters will now have to buy new GPUs as DirectX 10-supported cards cannot support 10.1; unlike 10.1 is fully backwards-compatible. Neither NVIDIA’s GeForce 8 series nor ATI’s Radeon HD 2x series of GPUs can support version 10.1, according to APC Magazine.
NVIDIA currently has no plans for a 10.1-capable GPU, but their next product range – codenamed GT200, will support DirectX 11. According to APC, ATI is set to release 10.1-capable GPUs but no information has been disclosed.