Valve's Gamescope Compositor Merges NVIDIA Image Scaling Support

Written by Michael Larabel in Valve on 18 May 2022 at 05:35 AM EDT. 14 Comments
Valve's Vulkan-powered Gamescope Wayland compositor has merged support for NVIDIA Image Scaling.

Gamescope is the Valve-led micro-compositor born out of the former SteamCompMgr that is focused on optimized game presentation with efficient Wayland usage and various optimizations there to reduce frame latency and can handle nested use-cases. GameScope with time has also added extra features like integer scaling and AMD FidelityFX Super Resolution upscaling. Now the latest is directly supporting NVIDIA Image Scaling.

This comes with NVIDIA having been working on support for Gamescope within their proprietary driver stack and on that front the R515 driver beta puts the pieces together.

NVIDIA Image Scaling is a driver-based spatial upscaler and sharpener. This merge request by NVIDIA adds NVIDIA Image Scaling (NIS) integration and can be activated via the -Y option or --nis-upscaling option when launching Gamescope. Overnight that NVIDIA NIS code was merged.

The NIS support pulls in the NVIDIA Image Scaling SDK 1.0 release into the tree. NIS has been built into the NVIDIA proprietary driver or is also available as a compute shader implementation as open-source (MIT) for usage elsewhere.
The NVIDIA Image Scaling SDK provides a single spatial scaling and sharpening algorithm for cross-platform support. The scaling algorithm uses a 6-tap scaling filter combined with 4 directional scaling and adaptive sharpening filters, which creates nice smooth images and sharp edges. In addition, the SDK provides a state-of-the-art adaptive directional sharpening algorithm for use in applications where no scaling is required. The directional scaling and sharpening algorithm is named NVScaler while the adaptive-directional-sharpening-only algorithm is named NVSharpen. Both algorithms are provided as compute shaders and developers are free to integrate them in their applications.

Those wanting to try out Gamescope can do so via GitHub.
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