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Hardware accelerated physics?

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  • I doubt this would be a possibility for 1.0, but perhaps for the 2.0 rewrite? I was watching videos of hardware accelerated physics demos pushing like 50,000 or more objects around, which would be awesome for fluid simulations or such. Thoughts?

  • It would be really cool, but AFAIK it's PhysX powered which is only supported by the nVidia GeForce 8 series and up, which generally are high end, expensive gamer cards. That makes it a difficult thing to implement - simulating 50,000 objects on the CPU for a user without the right hardware would be slow as toffee.

  • I didn't even know this was possible. Is it on high end ATI cards too?

  • No, nVidia bought out PhysX: http://www.nvidia.com/object/physx_new.html "Only available for the PC on NVIDIA� GeForce� GPUs, NVIDIA� PhysX� technology delivers ..."

    ATI might come up with their own engine, which would only further complicate the problem. Personally I'd rather see a multi-core enabled Box2D, since soon enough everyone's gonna have a whole bunch of cores on their CPU.

  • Ive seen this when researching about SPH fluids.

  • Probably no use then sadly.. a multi core box2d would be better certainly.

  • I didn't even know this was possible. Is it on high end ATI cards too?

    I believe Nvidia will be releasing the specs, and allowing other card manufacturers to use it as well. Also, ATI's high-end cards have GPU accelerated Havoc physics- Valve's physics engine, which is used in alot of games

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  • PhysX seems to have a lot of stability problems in shipped games. I'm sure with time it'll get better, but ATI's response was really nice:

    they showed a prototype of Havok implemented in OpenCL.

    Now, the kicker is that OpenCL is an open specification, so NVidia and others can and probably will implement drivers for it, then you'd write OpenCL programs once and run them on either a GPU or a multicore CPU, whatever's best in a given configuration.

    But we're not there yet. So don't think about it too much

    Now, if someone implements Box2D in OpenCL...

  • Yeah I think ATI has better solution as it's free ^^ and it should come soon

  • But will any of this work on a large proportion of GPUs? My laptop's onboard GPU is competent for example but I wouldn't expect it to.

  • OpenCL should run anywhere where there's more than 1 processing core.

    Of course, for video cards this will be implemented in the driver. I expect adoption rate to be similar to modern OpenGL, as it's also a khronos thing.

  • It would be really cool, but AFAIK it's PhysX powered which is only supported by the nVidia GeForce 8 series and up, which generally are high end, expensive gamer cards.

    You can buy a GeForce 8 series card capable of PhysX for under $100... it's not that unrealistic to support PhysX in the future, seeing as most people will have support for it within 12 months if not now. And, if you don't have support for it, then don't create 50,000 objects on your screen, or go spend $50 (by then) and welcome to this decade of computing.

    There are already 2 series of cards beyond the GF8XXX series, including the 9xxx and 2xx cards. I think you can get a GF8400 for like $35 from MSY Computers :/

    ~Sol

  • You can buy a GeForce 8 series card ..(snip).. or go spend $50 (by then) and welcome to this decade of computing.

    If this decade means single vendor lock-in, then I'd rather stay out of it.

  • > You can buy a GeForce 8 series card ..(snip).. or go spend $50 (by then) and welcome to this decade of computing.

    >

    If this decade means single vendor lock-in, then I'd rather stay out of it.

    Well go buy an Ati card and find a second hand aegia physx card... only costs three times the amount and runs slower, but if you really don't like nvidia that much, it's an option?

    ~Sol

  • Well go buy an Ati card and find a second hand aegia physx card... only costs three times the amount and runs slower, but if you really don't like nvidia that much, it's an option?

    I don't think they make 'em anymore, support is probably non-existent.

    I have an ATI

    And I'd rather have OpenCL physics

    if Physx does an OpenCL implementation and goes head-to-head against Havok, all will be good. No monopolies, consumers win.

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