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Shading method enlightened

Geforce 185.65 Beta: Ambient Occlusion in comparison

The Geforce 185.65 Beta introduces a new feature: Ambient Occlusion, abbreviated AO. PC Games Hardware shows how Ambient Occlusion affects looks and performance.
Geforce 185.65: Ambient Occlusion (6)
 
Geforce 185.65: Ambient Occlusion (6) [Source: view picture gallery]
Since yesterday the Geforce 185.65 Beta has been available for download. The graphics card driver considerably accelerates several games (among others Far Cry 2, Crysis, Fallout 3 and Race Driver: Grid) as the test of the Geforce 185.63 Beta shows the performance of which is identical to the Geforce 185.65 Beta.

Additionally to the performance plus the Geforce 185.65 Beta provides Ambient Occlusion. Ambient Occlusion is a very complex lighting technology which calculates light refractions or occlusions at objects and creates shadows at the affected spots additionally to the actual lighting renderer. The so-called Screen Space Ambient Occlusion (SSAO), a variation of AO, is used in current games such as Tom Clany's H.A.W.X., Burnout Paradise, Crysis, Empire Total War or Stalker Clear Sky - all these titles draw attention due to their low frame rates.

In order to use Ambient Occlusion in the Geforce 185.65 Beta you have to install the Vista or Windows 7 version of the graphics card driver. Afterwards you select on or off in the driver panel - the latter is the default setting. Below you see three on-click-comparisons, in the picture gallery you will find 720p screenshots with frame rates done with a GTX 285 - you will immediately see the drastic FPS drop due to Ambient Occlusion.

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Picture gallery  (enlarge to view source)

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Author: Marc Sauter (Apr 03, 2009)






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Comments (3)

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lagathy Re: Geforce 185.65 Beta: Ambient Occlusion in comparison
Senior Member
08.04.2009 15:14
i absolutely love dynamic lighting in games( the first time i whacked up anti stopic to 16x, in FEAR i seem to remember,i was in absolute heaven!)..but like yapa says,the system hit these new(ish) technologies incur is just too much really...oh well,perhaps direct x 11 will address the problem..i hope.
Yapa Re: Geforce 185.65 Beta: Ambient Occlusion in comparison
Senior Member
05.04.2009 12:41
Overall it makes the games look more "real" and dirty... real world buildings/areas are never totally clean like in most games with basic textures, so this is a good thing.

However, I think most new games already create a very nice environment, this adds to it but the performance hit is TOO much with current gen cards. I dont think many people will be using this, even with GTX285/295.

For older games such as Counter Strike, HL2 engine games it does add a lot... because these games are not as advanced as current games (crysis, stalker etc...) and they also run fast with it on.

Yapa

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