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DirectX, or DX, is a top of the line software developed by Microsoft and first released in 1995 with Windows ‘95 Operating System. There are many reasons why DX 12 is great, but what does DirectX do for you? DX, is a suite of API's created by Microsoft to help increase performance in PC's such as rendering graphics, sound and video. But DX is more than just a suite of API's.

In 1992, The Khronos Group developed OpenGL, the first graphics suite made for all Personal Computer gamers. OpenGL was supposed to help developers and gamers alike by giving a standard suite of API's to use across multi platform PC's. Unfortunately, the amount of PC's today has increased substantially since 1992 and therefore, there are thousands of different combinations of PC components to choose between. Because of this, developers have a hard time creating games and optimizing their performance for said hardware. This changed when Windows '95 released, however.

At first, Microsoft’s DX suite was based upon the DOS platform and allowed for PC game developers to communicate directly with the PC hardware components, like the mouse or video card. These were games like, Command & Conquer and Dune II, to name a few. Basically, these games were made upon 2D sprites graphics and normally used less than 640K of ram.

CommandConquer

Nowadays, Microsoft decided it would be best to create their own platform of API's so that game developers could optimize performance through the operating system and not just through the hardware. Basically, by creating DX, Microsoft allowed for games to "communicate" with graphics, audio and visual rendering, by passing through the operating system to communicate with the hardware installed.

Unlike yesterday's games and their low end performance requirements, today’s gaming world is filled with, not only new stories, but better graphics, sound and performance. This has led to a whole new generation of gaming. Games now require much more memory, resolution, speed and performance and developers have to take this into account.

Microsoft is now on DirectX 12 and has been able to update the suite of API’s to be more compatible and stronger than ever before. In fact, much of the workload for the main processor is now being completed by the graphics chip. Because of this, the main processor has less work to do and games are less likely to slow down or lag during gameplay. DirectX 12 can boost performance by as much as 50 percent while halving the power draw. Unfortunately, if you want to have the boosted performance of DirectX 12, you will have to upgrade to Windows 10 OS because at this time, DirectX 12 is native to Windows 10 and in order to play the best games at their best quality, you will have no choice but to upgrade.

Quantum-Break

Thanks to Microsoft, there is a great collection of new games too, but you will have to make sure you have the recommended specifications for running DirectX 12 on your PC. Now, we have the ability to play games like never before. With less downtime and more playtime, DirectX 12 is opening possibilities better gaming, by giving us better performance and better graphics. This upgrade will not only benefit gamers with better performance, but developers as well. Developers will now be able to create a better experience such as games like, Rise of the Tomb Raider, Deus EX: Mankind Divided, and Quantum Break. These games have all been recently updated to include the DX 12 Patches and are more than likely going to exceed your performance expectations. Thanks to DX 12, the future of gaming will be bright with helping to advance gaming into VIrtual Reality and perform like a hot knife, cutting through butter.

To take advantage of DirectX 12's graphical and power upgrades, you're required to have Windows 10 installed on your machine. At present, there's still a free upgrade option for Windows 7 and Windows 8 users, so take advantage while you still can. Specific minimum system requirements vary for each of these games, but if you aim for VR-Ready system requirements you'll need:

  • Processor: Intel Core i5-4590 equivalent or greater
  • Memory: 8GB recommended minimum
  • Graphics card: Strix GTX 970 / Strix R9 390 or greater