When using FXAA or SuperSampling, is there a point to choosing MSAA modes?

Discussion in 'Videocards - NVIDIA GeForce Drivers Section' started by Baleur, Jul 7, 2012.

  1. Baleur

    Baleur Master Guru

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    Essentially, when you choose forced FXAA or SuperSampling 4x for example, does it make any difference to also select a forced MSAA mode like 4x or 8x?

    As far as i know, SuperSampling is used instead of MSAA if it is selected, but then why can we select both at once? Which is used? Does a higher MSAA value impact the SuperSampling?

    This is something i've always wondered, but never bothered to ask. Thanks!
    On a sidenote, does anyone have any good AA settings for Roma Surrectum 2, to provide smooth grass and trees? FXAA seems to have the best preformance, but does not smooth out the grass. SuperSampling is spectacular, but trees at a distance still have white flickering pixels of missed transparency at night, and is very demanding.
    Perhaps there's a compatability code i'm missing?
     
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2012
  2. The General

    The General Ancient Guru

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  3. Baleur

    Baleur Master Guru

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    That has nothing to do with my question though, does it?
    If the MSAA setting has any effect while having SuperSampling selected.
     
  4. rewt

    rewt Maha Guru

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    Because they serve different purposes. Transparency antialiasing modes in the control panel only affect alpha/transparent textures.
     

  5. PowerK

    PowerK Master Guru

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    MSAA only works on polygon edges. It fails to antialias things like alpha textures or reduce specular/shader aliasing. This is where transparency AA comes in. Transparency antialiasing only works on alpha textures and reduce specular/shader aliasing. So both are needed. (Neither MSAA nor TrSSAA are full scene antialiasing).

    Now, SGSSAA is different as although SGSSAA is listed under Transparency AA mode, it apples to full scene. My understanding is that if you have 4xMSAA + 4xSGSSAA enabled, it's effectively 8xMSAA for polygon edges and 4xSSAA to the rest of the scene.
    More info here.
    http://naturalviolence.webs.com/sgssaa.htm
     
  6. rewt

    rewt Maha Guru

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    I think the OP is already confused enough without us having to mention modes that aren't officially listed in the control panel.
     
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2012
  7. Turdhat

    Turdhat Master Guru

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    I would not bother with MSAA when you have super sampling going. It does so much of a better job that I doubt one could tell when MSAA was on or off. Blur can be an issue though with supersampling. Now if you want to zoom in on pixels you might see a difference but I doubt it.
     
  8. The General

    The General Ancient Guru

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    What i am saying just enable everything and leave it be :)
     
  9. TheDeeGee

    TheDeeGee Ancient Guru

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    SuperSampling does not work without MSAA, so you have to enable MSAA.
     
  10. TheDeeGee

    TheDeeGee Ancient Guru

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  11. rewt

    rewt Maha Guru

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    Transparency AA is hardly taxing with most titles, especially the way he has it configured with "enhance the app setting"...
     
  12. TheDeeGee

    TheDeeGee Ancient Guru

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    Enable 8x SuperSampling in Skyrim and go compare. Then come back commenting.
     
  13. mypc

    mypc Guest

    out of the question guys........i just want to know if gts 250 is powerful to run SGSSAA/supersampling in games....
     
  14. rewt

    rewt Maha Guru

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    The control panel doesn't even allow forcing AA in Skyrim, so my point still stands. He can set 8x transparency supersampling in the control panel all he wants, the performance hit of TrAA still depends entirely on the level of FSAA applied by the in-game settings or drivers. And with that is the answer to another of the OP's questions.

    SSAA normally requires high-end hardware, but ultimately it depends on which games you play and at what resolution.
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2012
  15. Baleur

    Baleur Master Guru

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    Thanks, i didn't know that SSAA only affected transparent edges, i thought it affected the entire scene :)
     

  16. rewt

    rewt Maha Guru

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    It would if we were talking about full scene supersampling AA, but the only supersampling modes currently exposed by the nvidia control panel are transparency AA modes. You can use something like Nvidia Inspector to activate the hidden ones, such as those PowerK mentioned earlier.
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2012
  17. TheDeeGee

    TheDeeGee Ancient Guru

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    Yesterday i started using 2x MSAA + 2x SuperSampling + FXAA in Skyrim with really great results.
     
  18. Grahf

    Grahf Ancient Guru

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    I'd do that, but not compatible with ENB. You might want to give SMAA a try for essentially free AA.
     
  19. SirPauly

    SirPauly Member

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    The key is to understand the strengths and weaknesses of the settings because usually many GPU aspects have trade-offs. With nVinspector, there are even many more.

    With flexibility and choice one can try to find the right balance of image quality for an individuals subjective taste and tolerance level.
     
  20. SirPauly

    SirPauly Member

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    I do agree with this partly. However, when a scene has heavy alphas, the frame-rate may drop noticeably.

    You think a gaming title like World of Warcraft wouldn't need a powerful GPU but if one desired quality on ALphas -- one actually did! That title had so many ALpha Test Textures -- great alpha investigation title.
     

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