SDKs & Libraries

Vulkan logoVulkan™ is an open standard and cross-platform Application Programming Interface (API) developed by the Khronos™ Group. Derived from AMD’s revolutionary Mantle API, Vulkan™ is a powerful low-overhead graphics API designed for developers who want or need deeper hardware control over GPU acceleration for maximized performance and predictability. Vulkan™ gives software developers control over the performance, efficiency, and capabilities of Radeon™ GPUs and multi-core CPUs.


As a complement to OpenGL, descended from AMD’s Mantle, and forged by the industry, Vulkan exposes features that were not accessible, delivering benefits that include:

  • Close-to-metal control of the GPU demanded by sophisticated game engines and interactive media.
  • Reduced driver overhead reduces CPU bottlenecks, enabling faster performance and better image quality.
  • Superior utilization of multi-core CPUs.
  • Vulkan is the only high-performance graphics API that works across multiple operating systems, including Windows and Linux systems

On February 16, 2016, the Khronos™ Group, an open consortium of leading hardware and software companies, made Vulkan™ 1.0 available and authorized the initial public release of applications and drivers based on the Vulkan™ graphics API. To mark the occasion, AMD has posted Radeon™ Software Beta for Vulkan™ ¹. This driver is primarily intended to enable a wide audience of game developers to work with Vulkan on Radeon™ graphics.

¹ Please note that this initial Windows driver is not packaged with DirectX® driver components, so it is not a suitable replacement for your everyday graphics driver. This driver package was updated on 2/17/2016 to address certain compatibility issues. See KB link for full guidelines. This product is based on a published Khronos specification but has not yet passed the Khronos Conformance Test Process. A fully conformant implementation of the Vulkan API will be included in a forthcoming Radeon Software release. Current conformance status can be found at

Vulkan and the Vulkan logo are trademarks of the Khronos Group Inc.