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MrPickle

Confused, DirectX 9 or 10?

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I wanted to start learning DirectX but I am confused, I'm not sure where I should be learning v9 or v10. At first I thought I should learn v10 but then I read that it only works with vista. I'm on vista so that wouldn't be a problem, but I'd still want whatever I make to be able to run on XP or earlier. But still, wouldn't video cards get new drivers to support v10 so it works on XP and earlier? So what should I be learning, DirectX 9 or 10?

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But still, wouldn't video cards get new drivers to support v10 so it works on XP and earlier?

No. It has to do with the drivers that run on Vista being different from the drivers that run on XP.
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So what should I be learning, DirectX 9 or 10?

I would start with DirectX 9. DirectX 10 has some very worthwhile improvements over DirectX 9 but they are new and therefore less likely to have good tutorials. DirectX 9 has been around for a while and has had a chance to get good tutorials. When you feel you have a good grasp on DirectX 9 go ahead to DirectX 10. That way you will only have to focus on learning the new advanced features and slightly changed API. Although, that situation is rapidly changing with new tutorials being released often and the excellent ones provided by Microsoft.
The argument could also be made that you shouldn't start with DirectX at all, but I know nothing about what game programming experience you have to give you help on that.
The important thing to remember though is that many of the things you learn in DirectX 9 can readily be applied to DirectX 10, OpenGL, or whatever 3D graphics API you use. They all work very similarly. DirectX is just an API. The things you should be learning are the "why" behind the things you do. APIs change and new ones are always coming out but the "why" is forever.
Hope that helps,
zach297

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It's not so easy.
Thanks to the redesigned API D3D10 is, at least to me, consistently easier to learn. It took me a few weeks to read and understand the whole D3D9 SDK and some examples.
It took about 3 days for D3D10.

For hobby programming, I don't see any reason to not jump start from D3D10, it'll just be a more enjoyable experience. By the time you start distributing something, D3D10 will be commonplace.

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DirectX10 has allot of really nice features which will improve your productivity and it is easier to learn but there is a lack of reference material on the web.

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Original post by Krohm
It's not so easy.
Thanks to the redesigned API D3D10 is, at least to me, consistently easier to learn. It took me a few weeks to read and understand the whole D3D9 SDK and some examples.
It took about 3 days for D3D10.

For hobby programming, I don't see any reason to not jump start from D3D10, it'll just be a more enjoyable experience. By the time you start distributing something, D3D10 will be commonplace.


Was it easier to learn D3D10 because you had already learned many of the concepts from D3D9 or did you learn D3D10 first? The point I was trying to make was that you could learn basic concepts easier in D3D9 than you could D3D10 purely because there is more documentation available.

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I would go with D3D9. It's compatible with XP and you can leave learning about shaders for just a little bit later.

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You are not alone in being confused; in fact I think everyone is.

XP is still outselling Vista...Vista may never actually take over the market..although I'm sure DX 10 or 11 will eventually become standard, not for a year or more...I think I'd go with DirectX 9. I have a dx10 card but i dont want to bother getting vista so I stick with dX9.

However, learning either one ought to allow you easily learn the other. The important thing is the basic methods of the API, not certain specifics..I think once you are experienced you will understand what is different and what needs to be changed to support the other version.

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No, this is a common misconception.
Sure, you can have a wrapper which creates the D3D10 object instead of the D3D9 one, wrap everything in exactly the same way AND pretend you're D3D10 but no, you won't.

Or, you can just have the guts around in your code, blindly change to D3D10 without understanding the deep conseguences and maybe carring over some horrible design choices to fit D3D9 limitations AND pretend to be D3D10-optimal. No, you won't.

Take for example how you manage stream ports: in D3D9 you need a vertex layout and you need to set each stream using SetStreamSource. In D3D10 all of this is significantly simplified by having an input layout resource which is directly used to set the input layout. Basically, a step has been removed.

D3D10 is full of those simplifications. I wish I could have started in D3D10 era: instead I had to work with messy drivers, undocumented bugs, terrible semantics.
Why do you beginners want to trash this luck? I wonder if you like pain?

Unless you pretend to become expert in D3D9 in less than two months there's simply no point in start learning D3D9. It's full of fixed function crap (so much extracting the useful subset actually takes to read the whole documentation). It uses some really old notations. It takes at least 10x as much effort to learn.

And I cannot believe you're saying people should keep XP. We all know this isn't going to give you anything. You will have to start using vista or post-vista OS sooner or later. I don't see why you should run away from the problem.

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Quote:
Original post by Krohm
And I cannot believe you're saying people should keep XP. We all know this isn't going to give you anything. You will have to start using vista or post-vista OS sooner or later. I don't see why you should run away from the problem.
I'm not planning on using Windows Millennium Edition Vista, I'll wait for post-vista thanks ;)

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