NVIDIA GeForce Gamescom 2018 Keynote Live Blogby Nate Oh & Ryan Smith on August 20, 2018 9:00 AM EST
11:48AM EDT - Alright, we're getting set for what should be NVIDIA's biggest gaming-related announcement of the year
11:48AM EDT - The press is still getting seated, so NVIDIA is probably not going to start right at 6pm local time
11:49AM EDT - For the event itself, NVIDIA CEO Jensen "The more you buy, the more you save" Huang will once again be taking the stage at this GeForce-branded event
11:49AM EDT - Formally, NVIDIA is promising "hands-on demos of the hottest upcoming games, stage presentations from the world’s biggest game developers, and some spectacular surprises" for this event
11:50AM EDT - However last week's Quadro RTX & Turing GPU announcement makes it pretty clear what we should be expecting here: a Turing-related GeForce announcement
11:51AM EDT - Adding fuel to the fire, the moment NVIDIA informed board partners and retailers about the upcoming products, they all started leaking like sieves
11:51AM EDT - So either this will turn out to be a masterful play at subterfuge, or everything you've heard over the last 72 hours is true
11:53AM EDT - Either way, it's clear that we should be expecting a more gaming-focused take on the new Turing hardware, including some (but not a ton) of architectural information about what makes Turing faster for gaming, and information on Turing-powered GeForce cards
11:54AM EDT - And until the presentation kicks off, you can read our first Turing article here: https://www.anandtech.com/show/13214/nvidia-reveals-next-gen-turing-gpu-architecture
11:55AM EDT - The one Turing chip we've seen so far, which is powering the first Quadro RTX cards, is absolutely massivee. 754mm2
11:55AM EDT - Gamers will need something a bit smaller - and therefore more affordable - so I'm expecting to see at least one more Turing GPU announced today
11:57AM EDT - The follow-up question to that being just how many Tensor and RT cores make it into the smaller GPUs
11:58AM EDT - They don't directly contribute to tranditional rendering, however NVIDIA is trying to push an entire paradigm change here with ray tracing and neural networks
11:59AM EDT - So it becomes a question of whether NVIDIA is willing to eat larger die sizes to include them in numbers large enough what they're useful on this generation of hardware, or play it safe and include only small numbers of cores, essentially as a hardware compatibility mechanism for developers, with eyes on actual use in the next generation of products
12:01PM EDT - Meanwhile, the 12nm process NVIDIA has used for at least the largest Turing GPU is not a full node's improvement over the 16nm process used on Pascal
12:01PM EDT - So NVIDIA doesn't get a full generation's density improvements
12:03PM EDT - Of course, the last time NVIDIA was in this situation, we got Maxwell, which was an absolutely amazing GPU architecture
12:04PM EDT - So I'm not going to underestimate NVIDIA here
12:04PM EDT - We're now past 6pm local, and the event still hasn't kicked off yet
12:04PM EDT - Nate has just taken a seat (Nate, please give it back when you're done)
12:06PM EDT - NVIDIA, being the masters of hype, have been heavily promoting this event for the past week as well
12:08PM EDT - So if the flashy venue hasn't already made it clear: at the end of the day, NVIDIA is in the business of selling gamers GPUs
12:10PM EDT - Speaking off the cuff here, it really feels like NVIDIA is pulling from Microsoft's Xbox playbook this year. I'm not sure if this is a good thing or not
12:11PM EDT - After an hour or so of milling around outside, we're in! We've not been given wifi credentials, but thanks to our Tom's Hardware colleague Igor we're up and running
12:12PM EDT - Not much going on at the moment, just the music pumping
12:17PM EDT - The event is about to begin
12:19PM EDT - Starting with a remix of "Hold On, I'm Coming"
12:19PM EDT - Ryan: And continuing with that Xbox analogy, I expect we'll need to apply the usual E3 rules. Dev presentations, some scripted "events", and enthusiastic crowd managers sitting in the front rows to look good for the cameras and to try to rev up the crowd
12:21PM EDT - Lights out time
12:21PM EDT - An intro video on computer graphics
12:21PM EDT - And by that I mean ray tracing
12:22PM EDT - A montage of influential games and developments
12:23PM EDT - And NVIDIA's tech achievements alongside it
12:24PM EDT - Ryan: Quick note, there are 161K people watching the live stream, according to Twitch stats
12:24PM EDT - Hey, Jensen! JHH is on the stage
12:24PM EDT - 'We
12:24PM EDT - "Welcome to the launch of the GeForce GTX 1180" he says
12:25PM EDT - 'I have never seen anything that leaked this much'
12:25PM EDT - 'The good news is, you're gonna be surprised. ... Everything on the web, every spec is wrong. You're gonna be surprised'
12:25PM EDT - Ray tracing is the holy grail of computer graphics
12:29PM EDT - There's all these hardware-intensive techniques to model how lighting bounces and refracts off things
12:29PM EDT - (Looks like the livestream doesn't have a direct feed of the projector, this time?)
12:29PM EDT - Ray tracing dates back to 1979
12:30PM EDT - And ti took 1.5h to render 60 pixels per second
12:31PM EDT - 'Because of the demand and scale of video games, it has propelled one of the most fast advancing computer science technologies'
12:32PM EDT - Basically laughing at Moore's Law. '1000x every ten years' as opposed to the Moore's 10X
12:32PM EDT - 'Look at the GeForce 256, it's so cute'
12:32PM EDT - GTX 8800 is the first CUDA GPU. And the GTX 1080 is the most powerful GPU today
12:34PM EDT - So we invented the NVIDIA RTX
12:35PM EDT - We have two main rendering technologies
12:35PM EDT - Rasterization vs Ray Tracing
12:35PM EDT - Ray tracing is much more parallelizable than rasterization
12:36PM EDT - With rasterization, you have to project lighting from each light, meaning for big scenes, you have to model everything
12:37PM EDT - For ray-tracing, it only looks at the number of pixels that reach your eyes
12:37PM EDT - Rasterization: 3D world into 2D data. Ray-tracing: sends out a beam of light, looking for affected triangles
12:38PM EDT - We worked with Microsoft to create DXR and RTX
12:38PM EDT - And worked with Epic to implement it into Unreal
12:39PM EDT - And here's NVIDIA's raytracing demo from GTC
12:39PM EDT - Real-time ray tracing*
12:40PM EDT - Using area lights makes it hard to render shadows
12:41PM EDT - You could either fake the shadows or reflection probes/cube maps for every single scene
12:41PM EDT - Not practical for a scene of that level of fidelity
12:41PM EDT - Which took 4x V100s in a $68,000 DGX, 20 ish fps for real time ray tracing
12:42PM EDT - 'Where do we buy the DGX? How do we turn it into a games console?' JHH on constomer requests
12:42PM EDT - So DGX for 3000 payments of 19.95, of course
12:43PM EDT - 'Good luck with that'
12:43PM EDT - But it was running on Turing, which we've been working on for almost 10 years
12:43PM EDT - 'The most advanced GPU we've ever done, the greatest leap since we created CUDA'
12:44PM EDT - This chip is the second largest chip that the world has ever made
12:44PM EDT - SM is completely brand new
12:44PM EDT - Concurrent FP and INT execution: FP for colors, INT for addresses, for example
12:45PM EDT - variable rate shading for things like foveated rendering
12:45PM EDT - And the RT Core, 10 gigarays per second
12:46PM EDT - 1080 Ti does 1.21 gigarays/s, Turing does 10 gigarays/s
12:46PM EDT - All of this, of course, that we've covered eariler, by the way
12:47PM EDT - For performance, the DGX with 4 Voltas on the Star Wars demo, it is 55ms (~20 fps)
12:47PM EDT - 1x Turing is 45ms
12:47PM EDT - 'This has simply never happened before, a supercomputer replaced by 1 GPU in 1 generation'
12:48PM EDT - Pascal is all the way up there at 308ms. Not sure if they mean just one, though
12:48PM EDT - 'Back in the good old days, all the computation was done in shading. In the future, we're going to be doing lighting, image procssing'
12:49PM EDT - So the pipeline has to be different, the way of measurement has to be different
12:49PM EDT - Now showing the workload inside Turing
12:49PM EDT - 'We're ray tracing all the time. That's the fraction of the time the RT core is doing it'
12:50PM EDT - Without it, the RT step would be 10X larger
12:50PM EDT - When everything is done, we can use AI to generate resolution that we otherwise couldn't have
12:51PM EDT - Generating new info that looks right, generate missing pixels
12:51PM EDT - The shader and RT are concurrently running in the first part
12:51PM EDT - FP and INT in the second. Then Tensor Cores in the last
12:52PM EDT - For the first part, 14 FP32 TFLOPS, 110 TFLOPS (10 TFLOPS per Giga Ray)
12:52PM EDT - '78 Tera RTX OPS'
12:53PM EDT - Highest end Titan X does 12T RTX OPS
12:53PM EDT - Talking about BVH now
12:54PM EDT - 'Binning' for ray tracing, as opposed to calculating every single affected triangle per ray
12:54PM EDT - Once a beam intersects with a bounding box, you can get rid of the other bounding boxes
12:55PM EDT - It took 10 years to develop this
12:55PM EDT - To create a parallel acceleration structure
12:56PM EDT - Now citing raytracing research and development efforts
12:57PM EDT - Showing off some of the efforts by SEED, a group within EA
12:57PM EDT - Enabling al sorts of accelerated graphics rendering techniques
12:57PM EDT - Before-and-after with RTX
12:57PM EDT - Dull and flat vs bright and shiny
12:58PM EDT - 'This is just the beginning, I'm just warming you up. An olive for the appetizer'
12:59PM EDT - Now looking at another scene
12:59PM EDT - Note the new Quadro design in the corner
12:59PM EDT - (Stream viewer count is up to just shy of 210K thus far)
01:00PM EDT - The first scene is 'the limits of todays computer graphics'
01:00PM EDT - And with RTX on, the refractions, lighting, caustics are much better, clear
01:01PM EDT - Basically, all the tricks used to hide inaccuracies, RTX allows you to do it right
01:02PM EDT - Now showing movement within the scene
01:02PM EDT - 'The benefit of RTX is just: turn it on'
01:03PM EDT - A new recent demo to highlight the power of mixed mode rendering, rasterization, ray-tracing, compute, AI, all in real-time
01:03PM EDT - Beautiful everything, he says
01:03PM EDT - 'Things are things that look like things'
01:03PM EDT - Running on 1 Turing GPU
01:04PM EDT - Demo is called 'Sol'. Like the Sun
01:05PM EDT - Putting on powered armor onto an astronaut, suit glistening from the lighting and all that
01:06PM EDT - It's a humorous little showcase with dancing
01:06PM EDT - Didn't seem like a steady framerate at times, though
01:07PM EDT - And now for deep learning
01:07PM EDT - (Kind of a big deal)
01:08PM EDT - But applicable to graphics/images, as we know. Colorization, super resolution, as some examples
01:09PM EDT - Or getting high resolution from a low res image
01:09PM EDT - Taking advantage of the correction steps in DL (backpropagation, SGD)
01:09PM EDT - And here's an example with teaching the GPU
01:11PM EDT - Basically teaching real-time rendering techniques on GPUs. Taking neural networks and training it with the desired output
01:12PM EDT - Of course, all of this comes back to the Tensor Cores
01:12PM EDT - Again citing 10x 1080 Tis for the tensor cores' 110 TFLOPS
01:12PM EDT - Now talking about NVIDIA DLSS. Deep learning super sampling
01:13PM EDT - Creating 100,000s of super HQ images to train a NN
01:14PM EDT - Using a convolutional autoencoder to make it like RNN (aka neural network with memory)
01:14PM EDT - (NVIDIA is leaking)
01:14PM EDT - Training it to create beautiful 4K images from other inputs. Temporally stable, for real-time use
01:15PM EDT - New NVIDIA platform: NGX
01:15PM EDT - Neural Graphics Framework, basically uniting graphics and deep learning/AI
01:16PM EDT - Takes a perfect image (ground truth) and trains to get other images as accurate as possible
01:17PM EDT - This would be pre-generated on supercomputers (DGX) and then used. So it sounds like a new image quality oriented inferencing featureset
01:17PM EDT - All part of the RTX platform
01:18PM EDT - Now bringing out a DGX 'tray' of GPUs
01:18PM EDT - 2 PFLOPS in the whole thing
01:19PM EDT - (DGX-2 is not new, of course)
01:19PM EDT - But this is what will be training DLSS
01:19PM EDT - Comparing the improvement vs TAA at 4K
01:20PM EDT - (The hunt against jaggies continues even at 4K)
01:20PM EDT - 'Because we can take a lower res image and train a neural network to upscale it, in real-time enhance pixels via tensor cores'
01:21PM EDT - A new demo now, with 4K demonstrating DLSS
01:21PM EDT - Unreal Infiltrator
01:22PM EDT - One could imagine the lighting benefits in addition to HDR
01:23PM EDT - The 1080 Ti can only manage 30 ish fps. The Turing GPU is 'twice the performance'
01:23PM EDT - Now: Turing for games
01:24PM EDT - (What we've all been waiting for)
01:24PM EDT - Praising dev. JHH says every devtech in the company will get a new Turing
01:25PM EDT - How lucky!
01:25PM EDT - But now, a Shadow of the Tomb Raider demo
01:26PM EDT - Showing what it looks like with RTX on, and how it improves shadows
01:26PM EDT - Namely, allowing more realistic soft shadows
01:27PM EDT - Working with Eidos Montreal to bring real time ray tracing to Tomb Raider
01:28PM EDT - 'The beautiful thing about ray tracing is you turn it on, like a light'
01:29PM EDT - The difference in lighting and shadows is very noticable. 'This is state-of-the-art for non-RTX realtime shadows'
01:30PM EDT - Sharp unrealistic shadows vs realistic soft shadows
01:31PM EDT - 'Contact hardening just works, penumbra works, everything just works;
01:31PM EDT - And now, an exclusive trailer for Shadow of the Tomb Raider
01:32PM EDT - (The trailer is rendered in GeForce RTX y the way)
01:33PM EDT - Next is: Metro Exodus
01:34PM EDT - This time, highlighting global illumination with RTX
01:34PM EDT - Basically modelling non-direct lighting effects. For this window scene, all the bits not under direct sunlight
01:35PM EDT - Another 10 year pursuit to make this possible
01:36PM EDT - With GI on, the rest of the room is lit in accordance with how the sunlight bounces off, refracts, and affects ambient indoor lighting
01:36PM EDT - Modelling this is very computationally expensive. Otherwise, you could use fake lights, but it wouldn't be convincing
01:37PM EDT - With a fake 'global illumination', there's constant intensity even in areas of the room that should be darker
01:38PM EDT - With RTX on, the dynamic lighting is much more true-to-life. I can't help but think again about HDR because of the touted improvements in shadow/brightness contrasts
01:38PM EDT - Another exclusive trailer for Metro Exodus, now
01:40PM EDT - One of the points brought up with global illumination is keeping realistic tension in games where a creepy crawlie might be hiding in the corner. Which works well with games like Metro
01:40PM EDT - Now is a racing simulation
01:41PM EDT - 'Everything is gonna be complete dynamic'
01:41PM EDT - 'Ray traced reflections and inter-reflections'
01:42PM EDT - It's a game in development, by the way
01:42PM EDT - 'Everything just works'
01:42PM EDT - That's the mantra of today, really. 'Raytracing just works'
01:43PM EDT - A little robot called Belyash? But showing off curved mirror reflections
01:43PM EDT - And now for Battlefield V
01:43PM EDT - Bringing up Jonas and Christian from DICE
01:44PM EDT - 'You guys know how to blow it up'
01:45PM EDT - Speaking of mayhem and chaos rendered in BF
01:45PM EDT - About to show an RTX alpha demo for BF V
01:46PM EDT - Working with NVIDIA for the past year, and with RTX allowing reflections in the irises, of offscene fire
01:47PM EDT - Basically doing what screen-space reflection can't
01:48PM EDT - Another shot of off-screen explosions being visible on a car
01:48PM EDT - With RTX on, looking at puddles on the ground will reflect the flamethrower spitting out overhead
01:49PM EDT - Or in the windows of the buildings on the side, or on the wood finish of a gun
01:50PM EDT - Ray tracing works with far away objects, too. Like a burning plane on the hood of a car
01:52PM EDT - The old school cube maps are also static. But with ray tracing on, you can see destruction in the reflections.
01:52PM EDT - A whoop rings through the venue as the V1 missile explosion gets reflected on the crumbling building windows
01:53PM EDT - 'You guys do destruction great! There's a lot of pent up frustration there;
01:53PM EDT - Now a trailer
01:54PM EDT - Another surpise? BF V open beta on September 6
01:54PM EDT - 'There are so many other RTX games coming your way'
01:55PM EDT - 'I guess your question is this: what are you gonna run it on?'
01:55PM EDT - Answer: a new GeForce
01:56PM EDT - Dual-fan design for reference/Founders Edition
01:57PM EDT - 'Designed for crazy amounts of overclocking'
01:57PM EDT - 'And it's just so quiet' ... 1/5 audio levels of 1080 Ti at max overclock
01:57PM EDT - Three models: RTX 2070, 2080, and 2080 Ti
01:58PM EDT - For the RTX 2070, 6 gigarays/s, 8 GB RAM, and totalling 45 tera RTX OPS
01:58PM EDT - The RTX 2070 at $499
01:59PM EDT - Oh, sorry, they mean the 2080 Ti
01:59PM EDT - On shelves everywhere September 20
01:59PM EDT - Preorders available now
02:00PM EDT - Correctiong on the pricing. Starting at $999 for 2080 Ti
02:00PM EDT - Starting at $699 for the 2080
02:00PM EDT - And starting at $499 for the 2070
02:00PM EDT - However*, on their website, the Founders Editions are $100 more
02:01PM EDT - 'The RTX 2070 has higher performance than the Titan Xp'
02:01PM EDT - A graph for RTX OPS. Not a great graph, though, because those OPS are very specfic
02:02PM EDT - 2080 Ti is $1199 on the NVIDIA website, as well.
02:03PM EDT - Summarizing the announcements, now
02:03PM EDT - Advancements in the RTX platform, their measurement metric with RTX OPS, and the 20-series that is launching a month from now
02:04PM EDT - And one more surprise. A real-time demo, sounds like
02:04PM EDT - 'Everything you see here in completely in real-time'
02:05PM EDT - Oh, they're showing the astronaut demo again
02:06PM EDT - And a little demo combining the dancing astronaut with the Quadro room scene
02:06PM EDT - And that's the end of that!
02:07PM EDT - But we still have no idea how it specifically performs in numbers...
02:08PM EDT - That's a wrap. Thanks for joining us, everyone!