Performance Leap: NVIDIA GeForce 6800 Ultra

Possible Applications And Other Peculiarities

Now that we've gone through all the number theory, we can get back to more tangible, practical aspects. What can all these great new features be used for and what other peculiarities lurk in the NV40 design?

Ultra Shadow II

This technology was first implemented in the NV35 / 38 generation of cards (read more here ) and allows for faster shadow calculations. With the new and improved version Ultra Shadow II, the NV40 is a good four times faster than the previous generation. As a result, it seems safe to say that the chip will be ready for upcoming games such as Doom III, which will make extensive use of stencil shadows.

A game does not need to be optimized in any special way for Ultra Shadow II to accelerate shadow calculations. However, adapting the game's code will yield additional speed increases as well. For example, certain areas can be defined through the game's engine in which the shadows will be visible. This reduces unnecessary calculations, as only those shadows will be calculated that are supposed to be visible.

NVIDIA uses DOOM III as an example:

The rendered scene as displayed on screen.

The geometry necessary for the shadow calculations without...

...and with Ultra Shadow II.

Ultra Shadow II will also run smooth in conjunction with FSAA, so shadow edges will appear antialiased.