AMD’s DLSS counterpart FidelityFX Super Resolution will be available June 22

AMD will make FidelityFX Super Resolution available via a driver update on June 22. The feature is intended to increase frame rates in games by rendering and upscaling them at a lower resolution. It is a counterpart to Nvidia’s DLSS.

FidelityFX Super Resolution, abbreviated as FSR, has four settings: Ultra Quality, Quality, Balanced and Performance. Users can therefore opt for more focus on image quality or a higher frame rate. AMD has not yet given details about the technique and which internal render resolutions are used for the various settings.

AMD demonstrated FSR in combination with an RX 6800 XT video card and the game Godfall in a 4k resolution with the Epic preset for graphics settings and ray tracing enabled. Without the use of FSR, those settings are good for an average frame rate of 49fps. With FSR at the highest quality, it is 78fps and in the fastest Performance mode it increases to 150fps.

As with Nvidia’s DLSS technology, games need to be adapted to use AMD’s FSR. AMD has not yet shown any games other than Godfall, but in a presentation the company claims that the Performance mode in ‘selected games’ is on average twice as fast as native 4k.

Godfall (4k resolution, Epic preset, ray tracing on)
FidelityFX Super Resolution setting Frame rate
from 49fps
Ultra Quality 78fps
Quality 99fps
Balanced 124fps
Performance 150fps

FidelityFX Super Resolution benchmark results from AMD

Also works with Nvidia GPUs

The technology works in combination with video cards from the Radeon RX 6000, RX 5000 and RX 500 series, all Vega video cards and all Ryzen APUs. The technique also works with other video cards, including Nvidia video cards, but AMD does not provide official support for that.

AMD does demonstrate the operation of FSR with an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 video card. In Godfall in a 1440p resolution with the Epic preset, that game achieves an average of 27fps without the technology and with Super Resolution on the Quality setting, that is 38fps according to AMD, or a performance gain of 41 percent.

Nvidia’s DLSS, which stands for deep learning super sampling, only works on GeForce RTX video cards, as the Tensor cores are used for that. AMD does not use any special hardware for its alternative. The manufacturer has not yet clarified exactly how AMD’s technology works. As a result, it is not yet clear to what extent the technology is comparable to DLSS. The manufacturer does speak of spatial upscaling technology.

Wishlist for FSR support

AMD comes with a wish list where users can indicate which games they want to see FSR support. AMD will then approach developers of popular games with a request to add support for the technology.

According to AMD, there are ‘more than ten game studios and engines’ this year that will support FSR, but the video card maker does not yet provide concrete details about this. On June 22, when the technology is available, AMD will make it more clear.

AMD maintains a page that lists which games support FidelityFX. However, FidelityFX is the umbrella name for several AMD techniques, and games don’t have to support all of them. Per game it will be indicated whether there is FSR support.

Potential for consoles

AMD’s FidelityFX toolkit was already partially made available for the Xbox Series X and S earlier this year. It is expected that FSR will also be available via this route and can then be used for console games. Sony’s PlayStation 5 also has an RDNA 2 GPU from AMD, which can support the technology.

There is no concrete information yet about the use of FSR in console games, but the technology has the potential to be used in this category. Consoles already use dynamic resolutions or upscale techniques such as checkerboarding to prioritize frame rate. For example, in console games, FSR could be used to provide games with more ray tracing effects.