Interview about 3D Mark 11:
ATi-Forum.de: Thank you so much for the chance to do that interview.
Could you please introduce yourself and your work on 3DMark 11?
Futuremark: My name is Ilkka Koho.I am the product manager for benchmarks at Futuremark.
I've been working at Futuremark since 1999 and have been involved in the planning and development of most of the benchmarks we have released since.
ATi-Forum.de: So let us come to 3DMark 11th
What is the main difference between 3DMark 11 and 3DMark Vantage?
Futuremark: 3DMark 11 and 3DMark Vantage are completely separate benchmarks.
3DMark Vantage is designed to assess the performance of gaming PCs using DirectX 10, while 3DMark 11 aims to measure the performance of DirectX 11 gaming PCs.
3DMark Vantage is designed to assess the performance of gaming PCs using DirectX 10, while 3DMark 11 aims to measure the performance of DirectX 11 gaming PCs. In terms of technology there is very little in common between the two benchmarks.
When we started creating 3DMark 11 we had a blank sheet so to speak.
3DMark 11 uses a native DirectX 11 engine which we have built from the ground up to make extensive use of all the new features in DirectX 11 including tessellation, compute shaders and multi-threading.
ATi-Forum.de: You say that you have created a new engine.
Could you give us some more information about it beside the DirectX 11 support and all its options?
How long Futuremark is working on the new engine?
Futuremark: Work on the 3DMark 11 engine began even before DirectX 11 was announced to the public.
The work continues today and the engine used to create the Deep Sea trailer is still very much a work in progress.
ATi-Forum.de: Many people have critizied the long time which takes to finish a the 3DMark Vantage.
How it will look like in 3DMark11?
Futuremark: We are not talking about the tests in 3DMark 11 yet, but providing a great user experience is an important design goal for the benchmark.
ATi-Forum.de: So we know that it is using DirectX 11.
Will it be possible to run it without DirectX 11 hardware?
Will there be a non-DirectX 11 mode?
Futuremark: No, 3DMark 11 is designed solely to measure the performance of gaming PCs equipped with DirectX 11 hardware.
While some parts of DirectX 11 such as multi-threading are supported with DirectX 10 or even DirectX 9 hardware, the most important new features such as tessellation and Shader Model 5.0 require DirectX 11 hardware.
ATi-Forum.de: How we know now 3DMark 11 is a only DirectX11 benchmark without exclusion.
How do you will react to these people, which will say that Futuremark is excluding people with older hardware without DirectX11?
Futuremark: People with older hardware are served by our other benchmarks, 3DMark Vantage for DirectX 10 and 3DMark06 for DirectX 9.
ATi-Forum.de: We saw in the new teaser trailer the deep sea benchmark.
Which benchmark scenes we will see also in 3DMark 11?
Futuremark: The “Deep Sea” trailer we released recently is a demonstration of DirectX 11 technologies created using an early development build of the 3DMark 11 engine.
Deep Sea is not a benchmark and it does not produce a score.
In the 10 years I have been at Futuremark this is the first time we have shown content from a new benchmark so far before the launch so we have been pretty excited to see the reactions from gamers around the Internet.
As for the actual 3DMark 11 tests, I am afraid that it is too early for us to be talking about those just yet.
ATi-Forum.de: How it comes that we saw in the last part of 3DMark the Sapphire logo.
How it comes that we see this time MSI?
Futuremark: The MSI logo placement within the Deep Sea tech demo is a special sponsorship arrangement between MSI and Futuremark.
Thanks to advertising placements like this there will be a free edition of 3DMark 11 available at launch that will offer unlimited runs.
ATi-Forum.de: Will it use again the performance boost of NVIDIAs PhysX?
Futuremark: We are not talking about specific tests in 3DMark 11 just yet.
However, for game developers one of the very interesting features of DirectX 11 is DirectCompute.
This is a feature that allows developers to create compute shaders to use the processing power of the graphics card to run non-graphical tasks.
Physics simulation is very suitable for parallel processing and using DirectX 11 compute shaders will allow these tasks to be taken off the CPU and given to the graphics card making better use of the PC's total processing power.
ATi-Forum.de: Please finish the following sentences...
Futuremark: 3DMark 11 is ... the latest version of the world's most popular benchmark that measures the performance of DirectX 11 gaming PCs. 3DMark 11 will be ... available later this year.
ATi-Forum.de: Could you guve us a some more specific release date for 3DMark 11?
A little more specific than "later this year".
Futuremark: No, sorry.
ATi-Forum.de: So thank you for the interview and for your time.
We will have lots more information, screenshots and trailers to share as we get closer to the release of 3DMark 11 later this year.
Please visit the official website for the latest news: 3DMark11