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P buffer

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I''ve certainly looked into it, but my view was that the pros didn''t outweigh the cons...

pros:

you can render to a texture in exactly the same way you render to the colour buffer.
render to a texture without rendering to the colour buffer... (if you are rendering a sky box, for example, then this is pretty worthless as it will overwrite it anyway)
larger textures than screen size. (I see little need for this)

cons:
very limited hardware support (ie, if you use it, you will still have to code a generic version using the colour buffer)...
managing states (ie, are we rendering to what now?) seemed to me to be needlessly complex...

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the pros are much bigger depending on what you want to do. but the cons are stressing.
its hard, its complicated, its unintuitive and it is not standartised (its a WGL_ARB, and XGL_ARB, not a GL_ARB). hm no, hw support is ok. all nvidia cards and ati cards do have it, all new cards will have it.

drawing to bigger sizes than screen is very useful depending on app. say you have a 1024x1024 shadow buffer texture (and that is for example in the exterior even a small buffer for the sunshadows), you see that its very unlikely that you can ensure that your screen is big enough (not everyone can play at 1280x1024 ..)

you say 1024^2 is too big? okay, one step back. 512x512 is today a standartsize for a detailed texture. 640x480 or 800x400 are too small.. and i use those for nearly all new games (gf2mx is not that pixelintensive).

but i have to admit i dropped support for all the fancy stuff i could do with it just because its so unhandy and resulted in unsolveable bugs.. (the bug was not on my gpu but on other nvidia gpu''s, and that made it nearly impossible to solve, mostly because its a bug not by me but by the drivers, and i used the same driver as the ones with bug used)

can''t wait for dx9, where you can draw to 4 buffers at once, and bind them as texture like every other texture.. yai, thats the interface design i really wanted for GL_ARB_render_texture.. what they have done, is crap. the whole pixelformat interface and design is crap anyways..

"take a look around" - limp bizkit
www.google.com

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I added Pbuffer to my ShadowMap demo. It went from 26fps to 56 fps.
A very worth while thing to have.
I''m gonna to look for updates to it for the newer cards.
http://ice.prohosting.com/~bgcjr/shadowmap.ace

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