NVIDIA RTX 2060 SUPER Vulkan Performance Examined!

Here is a quick look at the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 SUPER‘s performance with the Vulkan API! Find out whether you should use Vulkan or DirectX in your games!

 

Vulkan API Primer

Build upon the AMD Mantle API, Vulkan is a cross-platform 3D graphics API. Designed to offer low driver overhead, it promises to offer these benefits :

  • reduced CPU overhead, with better management of CPU workloads
  • support for multi-threaded processing, allowing for better scaling on multi-core CPUs
  • close-to-metal control, for better performance and image quality
  • cross-platform support across Windows, Linux, macOS

NVIDIA supports Vulkan in their Game Ready drivers, for their graphics cards based on the Tesla, Fermi, Kepler, Maxwell, Pascal, Volta and Turing microarchitectures.

NVIDIA RTX 2060 SUPER Vulkan Performance Examined!

 

NVIDIA RTX 2060 SUPER Vulkan Performance

In our NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 SUPER review, we used the Vulkan API where possible. But what’s the performance impact? Let’s take a look…

World War Z

Based on the 2013 movie, World War Z is a relatively new third-person shooter game, released in April 2019.

We tested it on three resolutions using the Vulkan and DirectX 11 APIs at the Ultra High settings :

RTX 2060 Super Vulkan - World War Z

The performance gap is HUGE! The NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 SUPER running on Vulkan was much, MUCH faster than DirectX 11 :

  • 1080p : Vulkan was 42% faster than DirectX 11
  • 1440p : Vulkan was 60% faster than DirectX 11
  • 2160p : Vulkan was 66% faster than DirectX 11

Notably, Vulkan enabled the RTX 2060 SUPER to deliver an average frame rate in excess of 80 fps at the 4K resolution.

Strange Brigade

Strange Brigade is a third-person shooter game, released in August 2018. We tested it on three resolutions using the Vulkan and DirectX 12 APIs at the Ultra High settings :

RTX 2060 Super Vulkan - Strange Brigade

DirectX 12 is closer-to-the-metal than DirectX 11, reducing driver overhead. So the performance impact of using the Vulkan API for the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 SUPER was much less pronounced.

  • 1080p : Vulkan was 7.5% faster than DirectX 12
  • 1440p : Vulkan was 6.5% faster than DirectX 12
  • 2160p : Vulkan was 6.6% faster than DirectX 12

Strange Brigade Frame Time Analysis

Strange Brigade also gives us the minimum, maximum and average frame times, allowing us to compare the frame times for both Vulkan and DirectX 12.

Strange Brigade frame time

Generally, using Vulkan reduced frame times. The only exception was at 1080p, where its maximum frame time was higher than DirectX 12 :

  • 1080p : Vulkan had 7.4% lower average frame time than DirectX 12
  • 1440p : Vulkan had 6.5% lower average frame time than DirectX 12
  • 2160p : Vulkan had 5.8% lower average frame time than DirectX 12

 

RTX 2060 SUPER Vulkan Performance Summarised

The NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 SUPER is a great 1440p gaming platform, but with some help from the Vulkan API, it can make 4K gaming possible.

You will see a much greater performance boost switching from DirectX 11 to Vulkan, as we saw in the case of World War Z.

There is a much smaller, but still significant, performance boost going from DirectX 12 to Vulkan.

 

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