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PowerVR demo shows off performance boost of Vulkan

Posted on Tuesday, August 11 2015 @ 13:56:08 CEST by

Imagination Technologies uploaded a tech demo video that shows the performance of the new Vulkan API versus OpenGL ES in the Gnome Horde demo. The demo ran under Android on the Intel-based Nexus Player consumer device with the PowerVR G6430 GPU and the latest prototype Vulkan API driver for PowerVR GPUs.
On the left-hand side of the video, we are showing Vulkan and on the right we have OpenGL® ES 3.0. We have attempted to ensure both versions run equivalent code and both run without extensions. The demos are not using instancing either, each draw call could be a different piece of geometry with a different material or texture and the CPU performance would be very similar.

Before reading any further, please note that this is an exaggerated scenario that is intended to highlight and amplify Vulkan’s strengths. It is not intended to show OpenGL ES in a bad light – we are deliberately using OpenGL ES in a way that it was not designed for. We are also aiming to be GPU bound using the Vulkan API; this means the GPU and CPU are being used as effectively as possible, which is a great thing for developers and vendors alike.
As you can see in the clip below, the impact of Vulkan is quite impressive. The Vulkan versions runs more smoothly, has a higher framerate, has less difficulty with complex scenes, and spreads the load much better over multiple CPU cores. The only downside is that the implementation of Vulkan comes with added code complexity compared to OpenGL ES. The full details can be found in this blog post.



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