Intel will support “ray tracing hardware acceleration” in their Xe series GPUs

Intel will support

Intel will support “ray tracing hardware acceleration” in their Xe series GPUs

At the time of writing relatively little is known about Intel’s Xe graphics architecture, aside from the company’s plans for it to scale from consumer/gaming offerings to the high-end datacenter market. 

Today, Intel has confirmed that their Xe architecture will support “ray tracing hardware acceleration”, with the company hoping to combine the powers of their CPU and graphics hardware to push the world of raytraced graphics forward, though today’s announcement focuses on the datacentre and on filmic rendering. 

Rather than talk about gaming, Intel has instead talked about rendering How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World”, which was rendered on Intel processors. Support for DXR, Microsoft’s DirectX 12 Ray Tracing Extention, is not mentioned in Intel’s announcement, with the company instead discussing their “Intel Rendering Framework family of API’s and Libraries”.

Intel’s Jim Jeffers confirmed that the company would support ray tracing hardware acceleration with this comment;     

  

    I’m pleased to share today that the Intel® Xe architecture roadmap for data center optimized rendering includes ray tracing hardware acceleration support for the Intel® Rendering Framework family of API’s and libraries.

 Intel will support

While this announcement doesn’t confirm DXR support for Intel’s consumer-grade or gaming graphics cards, it showcases that ray tracing has been on Intel’s mind for quite some time. With Nvidia pushing into the filmic rendering scene with their Quadro RTX series graphics cards, Intel knows that they need to work harder to maintain their position in the rendering market. Relying on CPUs alone will eventually not be an option, so graphics hardware with dedicated ray tracing features is a must. 

More information about Intel’s Rendering Framework and Xe Architecture is available to read here. 

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