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Vulkan tagged news

Android is enabling a host of useful new Vulkan extensions for mobile.These new extensions are set to improve the state of graphics APIs for modern applications, enabling new use cases and changing how developers can design graphics renderers going forward. VK_KHR_buffer_device_address is a monumental extension that adds a unique feature to Vulkan that none of the competing graphics API support. This blog describes the extension in detail and how it is used in mobile.

Android is enabling a host of useful new Vulkan extensions for mobile. These new extensions are set to improve the state of graphics APIs for modern applications, enabling new use cases and changing how developers can design graphics renderers going forward. VK_EXT_descriptor_indexing landed in Vulkan 1.2 as a core feature. This blog describes the extension in detail and how it is used in mobile.

Over the next couple of weeks, Arm will be releasing a series of blogs on Vulkan extensions for mobile and Android R. The new extensions improve the state of graphics APIs for modern applications. The first of the series highlights Maintenance Extensions.

The new Vulkan extensions include:

  • VK_KHR_uniform_buffer_standard_layout
  • VK_KHR_separate_depth_stencil_layouts
  • VK_KHR_spirv_1_4
  • VK_KHR_shader_subgroup_extended_types
  • VK_KHR_imageless_framebuffer

In the blog, Hans-Kristian Arntzen describes each extension and discusses their highlights.

For developers using Vulkan layered over the Metal graphics API, this tool enumerates all the hardware capabilities and limitations of the device it is run on. A report of the current device is uploaded to a central Vulkan Capabilities database at where other developers can use this information to ensure their games and 3D apps are ready for as wide a variety of iOS device generations as possible.

Mesa 21.1 has merged a common dispatch framework for use by Vulkan drivers to allow for better code sharing and the possibility of some Vulkan extensions to be more easily supported across all drivers.

Already at this stage the unifying to a common dispatch framework for Vulkan drivers has lightened the codebase by more than two thousand lines of code (+3.3k, -5.9k). Great seeing the unification take place now and hopefully allow for more code sharing moving forward. This should also help out in the bring-up of new Vulkan drivers in the future like if finally seeing a Nouveau Vulkan driver or for other embedded graphics processors.

The goal of the Vulkan-Hpp is to provide header only C++ bindings for the Vulkan C API to improve the developers Vulkan experience without introducing CPU runtime cost. It adds features like type safety for enums and bitfields, STL container support, exceptions and simple enumerations.

The maintainers of the Vulkan HPP library and The Khronos Group would like to understand more about Vulkan HPP usage amongst developers. Even if you do not currently use Vulkan HPP we would like to know why that is case.

  • This information will be used to inform potential improvements or features for the future.
  • This survey can take up to 15 mins depending on your responses and amount of input on open questions.
  • Thank you for taking the time and providing your insight on this subject.

Naivi have used the MoltenVK layered implementations of Vulkan functionality over Metal, a part of the Khronos Vulkan Portability Initiative, to port their NAP real-time performance engine from OpenGL to Vulkan to ship on Windows, Linux AND macOS. Naivi discovered that Vulkan apps run just as well on macOS as they do on Linux and Windows, avoiding the need for a dedicated Metal backend. Switching to Vulkan dramatically improved render-times for NAP’s Mac users, as well as providing a significant performance boost on Windows and Linux. The article concludes “Vulkan does feel like the future of graphics.”

LunarG’s Vulkan SDK and Ecosystem Survey for 2020 have been tabulated and are now available. LunarG conducts an annual survey of the Vulkan developer community to collect feedback on the health of the SDK and ecosystem. LunarG has summarized the results and created a report to share the key findings along with steps planned to improve the Vulkan SDK and ecosystem in 2021.

xVision has released an update to version 2.00, which brings full compatibility with version 11.51 of X-Plane and the Vulkan API.

The xVision utility enables the user to manipulate shaders and alter the way X-Plane’s visual enhancements appear. Users of xVision 1.X would have noticed that when using the Vulkan API to render visuals, many of the shaders had little to no effect on X-Plane and their experience. With 2.00, xVision now supports shader tweaks for both Vulkan and OpenGL.

Today, the functionality of the Vulkan SDK gets a major upgrade for Vulkan developers targeting Apple platforms. LunarG is now shipping Device Simulation (DevSim) and Validation layers for the Vulkan SDK on macOS in addition to Linux and Windows. DevSim layers enable Vulkan application development on a highly-capable development system by “simulating” a less-capable target Vulkan implementation through constraining the reported features and resources on the more-capable platform. Validation layers verify that applications are correctly using the reported Vulkan functionality. The validation layers and associated Vulkan loader on macOS also now support Apple Silicon via Universal Binaries.

Khronos has recently released the final versions of the ray tracing extension specifications. It is latest release, Diligent Engine enabled full support of these extensions to provide easy-to-use yet fully exhaustive cross-platform ray tracing API. The API is the same for Vulkan and Direct3D12 and allows authoring shaders in HLSL for both back-ends. GLSL and SPIRV bytecode are also supported by Vulkan back-end. The API lets developers concentrate on the algorithm essence and leave handling of the implementation-specific details to the engine.
A new tutorial demonstrates how ray tracing API in Diligent Engine can be used to simulate physics-based light transport in a scene to render soft shadows, multiple-bounce reflections and refractions, and dispersion.

The Khronos Group sessions from SIGGRAPH Asia are now available. Watch to hear:

  • Khronos President, Neil Trevett, give an Open Standards Update
  • glTF’s Ed Mackey shows off next-generation PBR materials for glTF
  • Nathaniel Hunter from DreamView discusses 3D Commerce’s Asset Creation Guidelines
  • OpenXR Chair, Brent Insko, gives us an informative OpenXR update
  • HTC’s, Tony Lin, demonstrates the Vive Cosmos OpenXR developer preview
  • WebGL Chair, Ken Russell gives an in-depth update on WebGL
  • Vulkan Chair, Tom Olson, updates us on Vulkan’s latest deliverables and future directions
  • Followed by Neil Trevett who gives us the latest from the ANARI Working Group’s work on an analytical rendering API for the scientific community

Come and hear the latest from The Khronos Group!