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What is DLSS 3.5? Nvidia’s latest supersampling update explained

Super sampling technology is quite wondrous and can help boost frame rates across graphics chips, with some compromises. Nvidia’s latest iteration of its take on the tech is DLSS 3.5. Here’s just what it is.

Now, having surpassed its third fully-fledged iteration, Nvidia is onto DLSS 3.5. Nvidia’s deep learning super sampling (DLSS) hit the scene in 2019, adding a new and impressive feature to its graphics chips.

Competitors all have their take on the supersampling technique, with AMD sporting FidelityFX SuperResolution (FSR) and Intel offering up XeSS. But, it’s Nvidia that’s taking centre stage at Gamescom, showcasing a brand spanking new feature in DLSS 3.5. This is the lowdown.

What is DLSS 3.5?

DLSS 3.5 is the latest iteration of Nvidia’s supersampling technology. The new DLSS update continues to use Nvidia’s AI expertise to expand it’s features, touting “AI-enhanced Real-Time Ray Tracing” as the highlight.

The main new addition is Ray Reconstruction. Ray Reconstruction aims to enhance the ray tracted image quality across all GeForce RTX GPUs. This new AI-powered process replaces something called “hand-tuned denoisers”, which is the process of removing visual artefacts from reflections. With DLSS 3.5, this process – Ray Reconstruction – is now handled by AI rather than being “hand-tuned”. The result should be higher-quality pixels between the sampled rays. Put simply, Nvidia RTX GPUs should now offer improved ray tracing when using DLSS 3.5.

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Nvidia has announced that Alan Wake 2 on October 27th, Cyberpunk 2077 (and Cyberpunk 2077: Phantom Liberty) from September and Portal with RTX from this Autumn will all support the technology. Along with improving image quality, DLSS 3.5 should boost image quality in real-time 3D creator applications. Supported applications include Nvidia Omniverse, D5 Render and Chaos Vantage.

Jakub Knapik, VP of Art and Global Art Direct at CD Projekt Red, described the impact of the update, “Thanks to DLSS 3.5’s smart technology, fuelled by AI rendering power, you can experience Cyberpunk 2077: Phantom Liberty’s newest location Dogtown at its very best — with sharper images, more accurate lighting, and the highest frame rates possible.”

Nvidia’s DLSS 3.5 was announced part of the company’s Gamescom 2023 reveals, which also included announcements of support for DLSS 3 and Reflex across Call of Duty: Modern Warfare III and Payday 3. Half-Life 2 RTX: An RTX Remix Project was revealed, a new community project in collaboation with Nvidia to add ray tracing, DLSS 3, Reflex and more to the classic game.

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