New Vulkan® Extensions in our latest Radeon™ Software Adrenalin driver 20.9.2

We’ve just released our latest Radeon™ Software Adrenalin Edition driver (20.9.2), and it includes three notable extensions:

  • VK_KHR_buffer_device_address
    • This extension allows applications to use pointers to buffer memory in their shader code, allowing the construction of complex data structures.
    • In addition, unlike traditional resources, there are no limits to the number of pointers available to a shader, and no need for descriptor bindings – pointers can even be patched into shaders as specialization constants.
    • Some tools can additionally make use of this extension as a “free” debugging channel rather than allocating descriptors.

  • VK_EXT_robustness2
    • This extension enables out of bounds access guarantees for buffers and images that match the behavior of DirectX® APIs.
    • This is another useful feature for applications porting from DirectX® APIs, or for layered API implementations.
    • We recommend using this extension only for compatibility or porting efforts, as there can be a performance cost, and it can hide rendering errors.

  • VK_EXT_shader_image_atomic_int64
    • This extension adds 64-bit storage image support to Vulkan®, enabling read, write, and atomic access from shaders.
    • Applications currently using buffers for 64-bit atomics with 2D access patterns will be able to realise a notable performance uplift by switching to images.

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