Skip to main content

AMD SVP Talks Radeon's Ray Tracing Response

David Wang, Senior Vice President of Engineering at AMD's Radeon Technologies Group (RTG), recently expressed in an interview with Japanese media 4Gamer that AMD has its own solution to Microsoft's DirectX Raytracing (DXR).

Contrary to popular misconception, ray tracing is far from being a novelty. The rendering technique has existed for several decades, with industries like film, animation, architecture, and engineering all exploiting it for some time now. However, one of ray tracing's greatest obstacles is the steep computational firepower required to pull it off. With its new Turing architecture, Nvidia brought real-time ray tracing to consumer GeForce graphics cards for the first time.  

AMD's David Wang said that, in his personal opinion, AMD definitely has a response for DirectX Raytracing (DXR). But the meantime, AMD is focusing on improving and promoting offline CG production environments centered around the graphics card maker's Radeon ProRender rendering engine. From a personal perspective, Wang believes that ray tracing won't become a mainstream feature unless the technology is supported from the lowest tier to the highest tier of graphics cards.

It's unknown how and when AMD plans to implement hardware-based real-time ray tracing support into its Radeon gaming graphics cards. David Wang didn't delve into the specifics. The bigger question for AMD aficionados is whether the company's next-generation Navi graphics cards will come with ray tracing features. Unfortunately, there is no answer for that either. 

Although some (including Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang) consider real-time ray tracing the "holy grail" of rendering techniques, the feature will probably take years to become common, just like any other breakthrough technology. Therefore, it's understandable why AMD isn't in a hurry to push ray tracing to consumer cards just yet. It wouldn't be far-fetched to assume that the chip maker is concentrating its time and resources on tuning Navi's traditional gaming performance for now, and perhaps leaving ray tracing for its next round of graphics cards. But of course, only time will tell.

  • Dantte
    HAHA... this is a no news article:

    AMD: "we have a response to ray tracking, but were not going to tell you what that response is, how were going to provide it, or when it will be available." "However we are going to poopoo all over the idea of ray tracking to cover up the fact that we admittedly have nothing..."

    Watch those stock prices fall.
    Reply
  • Iridar51
    I hope hardware ray tracing doesn't actually make it into AMD gaming cards. It is an entirely useless gimmick that's just gonna cost extra and remain unused by most games.
    Reply
  • Dyseman
    That's pretty much what I read
    Reply
  • SockPuppet
    Ray tracing in real time is a game changer. Hopefully the new DirectX ray tracing (should have named it XRays) is easy to program into titles.
    Reply
  • Dantte
    Gotta love the down votes, but guess what, I TOLD YOU SO... AMD's stock 19.3 point drop since this mornings announcement, 8.25%!

    Hey AMD, not having an answer to ray tracing and covering up with a bunch of "we dont think the future is important poopoo" is bad news!
    Reply
  • venym
    Dantee you should really look at the stock market trend today, perhaps you'd not come off as an NVidia apologist. While in time it will be in cards, they jumped the gun on it. Basically saying here it is and if you want one of our high end cards you have to pay for this feature, regardless if you have any games that will ever use it. They should have made a separate branch off, like a 2080 RT, or 2070 RT. Then those that wanted to jump into that tech could have while the rest get the standard performance increase without the ridiculous increase in cost.
    Reply
  • btmedic04
    Dantte, I hope you enjoy your RTX card.... until it fails on you. Sincerely, a GTX 1080 owner who still thinks ray tracing is absolutely useless at this stage of development
    Reply
  • azone123465
    Ray tracing is not "Break though," it's old tech. The reason it is not used is in mainstream real time rendering is because of hardware overhead. And guess what? Today's $1000 Nvidia GPU's are still not fast enough practically implement it, unlike when tessellation went mainstream. There is no reason for AMD to pursue ray tracing for at least 1-2 more architecture generations. Nvidia made a critical mathematical error thinking this generation of their hardware was truly capable using ray tracing practically. I don't really blame them, they were trying to be cutting edge in mainstream rendering but failed. Next gen should be better for sure though.
    Reply
  • silverblue
    NVDA currently down 7.84%... just FYI.
    Reply
  • uglyduckling81
    21480536 said:
    Dantee you should really look at the stock market trend today, perhaps you'd not come off as an NVidia apologist. While in time it will be in cards, they jumped the gun on it. Basically saying here it is and if you want one of our high end cards you have to pay for this feature, regardless if you have any games that will ever use it. They should have made a separate branch off, like a 2080 RT, or 2070 RT. Then those that wanted to jump into that tech could have while the rest get the standard performance increase without the ridiculous increase in cost.

    Perhaps instead of calling it the 2080 RT they could call it the Titan V as an example. Price it in a range so they can gouge developers that actually can use RT but don't necessarily need it in real time. They would love the product if it increased their productivity.

    For some reason whilst coming up with this unique idea I'm feeling deja vu.....
    Reply