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DX11 BackBuffer format

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Hi, I was wondering, must the display format for the screen buffer be a fixed point target? Or can it be a floating point target?

for e.g in DX11 when creating the swap chain, it is possible to set the renderbuffer to be of type floating point (e.g DXGI_FORMAT_R16G16B16A16_FLOAT)?

(p.s I am not referring to off-screen rendering target which can be of floating point - e.g those used in HDR lighting, but I am referring to the one that is created by the swap chain for the backbuffer)

I was thinking that it probably would not make any sense to have a backbuffer that is of floating point format. Since I assume the screen/monitor front buffer is always in a fixed point format?


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If you open up the caps viewer and go to DXGI 1.1 Devices->(your GPU)->Outputs->Display Modes you can browse all of the backbuffer formats available. As far as I know most recent GPU's support 1010102 and fp16 modes. But you're quite correct in that it won't matter unless your display can actually make use of the higher precision. There's actually a sample somewhere in the SDK that lets you switch backbuffer modes and see the difference, and I don't recall it ever making a difference for any of my monitors.

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