How well does MLAA looks in PC games

Thanks to the recent release of the implementation of MLAA in AMD HD Radeon 5XXX videocard series, you can now see how well does MLAA works in PC games, here you can see some comparison images of various games that don´t have AA versus the option of MLAA implementation, and the difference is MIND BLOWING!

And for those who have any AMD HD RADEON 5XXX videocard series, it is available the installation driver as well in the news.


New Images Comparison: Crysis, Gothic 4, Lead and Gold, Mass Effect, GTA IV, Age of Conan and Left 4 Dead 2.

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Aggesan2917d ago

I'll try this out with my new 6870 :)

JsonHenry2917d ago

Well, I won't use it because it is obviously an inferior form of AA. HOWEVER, for those with lesser rigs this could be a pretty sweet option since the performance hit is not as steep.

Bhai2917d ago

...consoles pioneered in a tech(gow3, lbp2, kz3-maybe) and now that's being brought to PCs. 2 years from now, PC fanboys will say that the amazing MLAA was brought first on PCs and only a PC hardware can handle it ;)

evrfighter2917d ago (Edited 2917d ago )

ouch MLAA barely makes a difference. Think i'll stick with the real deal and not that blurry mess.

but that's why I have a 5870. So I don't have to settle for a poor mans AA.

The only thing that's been confirmed is that MLAA is about 2xAA. which is laughable considering how the ps3 fanboys were like "ZOMG ITS LIKE 16xAA!!!!!!111!!!"

siyrobbo2917d ago

it first appeared on the saboteur on PS3

OpenGL2917d ago

MLAA was actually developed by Intel years before it was used in God of War 3.

Cool idea, but MLAA only makes sense on a console where real anti-aliasing creates a massive performance hit. I'd rather have 8x adaptive anti-aliasing any day of the week, but more anti-aliasing options are nice.

fossilfern2917d ago

I think this is aimed at people with less powerfull rigs who want to eliminate the Aliasing without any real performance hit. I personally dont think ill use it but it suits the console, PC im not so sure.

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aliveinboston2917d ago

Console implementations have shown far superior results.

meetajhu2917d ago

One of the worst techniques now available on PC.

ZombieAssassin2917d ago (Edited 2917d ago )

I think Temporal anti-aliasing is a worse technique, just my opinion though but any type of AA is a good thing.

Digital-_-Smoke2917d ago

Explain yourself this is freakin sweat tried it with SC2 and it looks marvelous

Sarcasm2917d ago (Edited 2917d ago )

Are you smoking crack?

It's all about performance. Those with high end cards that can afford 32x 60fps need not apply.

But those with modest GPUs will be able to enjoy double the frame rate with near 4x AA quality. Look at the performance hit from no AA to MLAA. And at 1920x1080 resolution to boot.

ct032917d ago

MLAA is crap, it's nothing more than a post process filter. Of course the performance hit is tiny.

raztad2917d ago (Edited 2917d ago )

Unexpected comment but I'm not surprised.

I was hanging at Neogaf and those guys over there are extremely excited with the results MLAA provides at very low cost performance wise. Not to mention this is a very early implementation and it is working unofficially on 5xxx. So things could improve.

Are you talking based off real experimentation meetahjhu?


Bro, I think you fvking nailed it. No all of them are so reactionary tho. As I said above PC dudes at GAF/Beyond3D have been testing several games with it.

Seems like GTA4 runs with MLAA. Also Dead Space and it is confirmed Mass Effect will get support.

Funny stuff MLAA didnt originate on PS3. MLAA was developed by intel (if I remember correctly), GoW3 just proved MLAA works and works extremely well.

nickjkl2917d ago

i think hes saying it because it originated on consoles and hes one of those pc elitist that thinks consoles are crap compared to every pc in existence

ProjectVulcan2917d ago (Edited 2917d ago )

Worst techniques? Dont be silly. Considering that MLAA should work with game engines that do not support MSAA or have trouble with it because of deferred render techniques, its just another weapon in the armory for PC gamers. Dead space looks massively better with it, and GTA4 does too.

The only way to get functioning AA on games like that involve Super Sampling, which is ridiculously costly only the very fastest cards and insanely expensive machines can afford to apply it. Whereas a mid range card can get as good as if not better results for little performance hit with MLAA.

MSAA, SSAA, CSAA. Mix them up, add in MLAA for the future. Picking the best method for each game and your own machine. Flexibility is the name of the game for PC.

meetajhu2917d ago

Technically your are very advanced as i can see from your reply. MLAA is a post processing effect and not a polygon edge sharping and only when a game makes use of the tech it knows where to morph edges as developers will script it and which is impossible for the gpu to determine where it should smooth the edge. Screenshots never justify quality of a game unless u see a game in action, jaggies are found only when u see something in motion as it applies to Dead Space.

MLAA = smoothing of edge, which is actually Ati's response to Nvidia's 32x CSAA.
MSAA,CSAA,SSAA- Are sharping of edges.

ProjectVulcan2917d ago (Edited 2917d ago )

All the methods i mentioned are Anti aliasing, their goal being to reduce stair stepped edges or aliasing in games by sampling the pixels around them. Then altering the colour of a pixel or pixels between boundaries of polygon edges, although MLAA is a full scene effect which means its NOT restricted to just polygon edges. It'll anti alias the whole scene.....

Its not impossible for it to distinguish where smoothing should be applied as it isnt added earlier in the render pipeline, being a post process filter.

The screens seen quite clearly show the quality of the AA applied, this isnt temporal AA. You dont need to see the game moving to realise how good it can be. What is even better news is that MLAA can be used in conjuction with other anti aliasing techniques. It isnt exclusive. You could use 4 X MSAA and then throw MLAA on top to clean up what is left. The results have the potential to be spectacular.

ct032917d ago (Edited 2917d ago )

I know of another great method to do anti-aliasing on an entire frame. It's called gaussian blur. Works really well at killing all types of aliasing.

Of course MLAA is a slight bit smarter than that, but it still removes detail because it has to guess which sections need smoothing. And then the smoothing itself is nothing but a localized blur (averaging the surrounding pixels).

Disagree all you want, even AMD's own comparison shows clearly how blurry things become (6th post down):

Here's an actual ingame shot from Half-Life 2. MSAA looks crisp where MLAA looks very blurry (just look at the hotel sign or the trees):

nickjkl2917d ago (Edited 2917d ago )

isnt the curren implementation of mlaa on atis graphics cards forced into it

also cto3

that one post from the first link is an image being zoomed in on an image rather than what you would see if it was zoomed out

either way it doesnt change the fact that ati is just now using an early experimentation of mlaa on graphics cards compared to the kind of mlaa that santa monica used with gow3

Ju2915d ago

Of course it is a compromise. And of course all AA methods interpolate colors. And of course the best method would be using the highest super sampling possible and use it on edge detection only (which still does not solve the problem of overdrawing using a lot of transparency).

But what you can achieve with MLAA for the performance cost is outstanding. No doubt about that.

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raztad2917d ago

8X is the number you are looking for.

I wish this MLAA thing matures. I'm thinking to buy a 5770 card (fits my budget) so to run games with no performance hit and MLAA sounds like a dream.

ct032917d ago

Uh-huh, and the noise reduction in cheap point & shoot digital cameras is like a 16 megapixel DSLR. No really. I swear.

Nihilism2917d ago (Edited 2917d ago )

"comparison images of various games that don´t have AA versus the option of MLAA"

What a pointless comparison, why not try it with games that do support MSAA for comparison so we can show the console gamers just how much they are overhyping yet another post processing effect that blurs the image....just like in SC2.

Look how blurry the ground textures in HL2 become with MLAA on, I wouldn't let that $#!+ touch my games. The colours and textures in SC2 with MLAA on look duller, the backback thing on FFXIV lack the definition of the no AA shots with MLAA on, and that says something. It's just like quincux, the smoothing is not worth the blurring.

32CSAA does the trick better than MLAA ever could, and without the blurring.


Did I say it takes a hit?, I didn't mention performance, I said MSAA looks better ( better smoothing, and no blurring ), what is there to not get? most modern games can be run with 8aa at 1080p on a mid range card or above (5850, ot gtx460 ) so I really don't see why anyone would use MLAA...

They have a picture of Dragon Age with MLAA...again with the blurring, when I run 32CSAA and 8xsupersampling and still get 60frames...the MSAA hit is not as much as people think.

Here are some of my 'inferior' MSAA screneshots...

Digital-_-Smoke2917d ago

MLAA doesn't take a hit on performance

Letros2917d ago

Very little performance drop even with 8xAA, where everything is CRISP and not a jagged edge in sight.

SuperM2917d ago (Edited 2917d ago )

Benchmark tests from games clearly show that turning on AA takes a big hit on performance in alot of games. MLAA is the most efficient use of AA there is, almost having no impact on performance at all. If you got good enough hardware to run all games at 60fps with full MSAA or CSAA or whatever then good for you. But eventually, games will come out where you can no longer keep a good framerate using those kinds of AA methods. Then you are either gonna want to use MLAA or buy yourself a new computer.

LostDjinn2917d ago

@ Nihilism: Looks about right. Still, don't you know where you are? You're in the place where people make crap up to defend the product they own. ;)

OT: This just goes to show how ATI cards lack the performance to match it with N'vidia cards when it comes to process heavy applications.

ChronoJoe2917d ago

I'm not really into this discussion but man, the DAO shot in the article looks better than any of your 4.

This is just an observation. I could care less about your MLAA vs MSAA argument.

OpenGL2917d ago

You really should have uploaded those image in a format like .png instead, as the compression makes it difficult to see how good or bad the anti-aliasing really is.

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Letros2917d ago (Edited 2917d ago )

Ugh, Makes everything look blurry, f terms of quality SSAA>MSAA>MLAA>NO AA

I want actual polygon anti-aliasing, not this post processed crap.

thehitman2917d ago (Edited 2917d ago )

MLAA doesnt make things look blurry if it does it just wasnt implemented correctly.

If som1 can show me a better quality AA than that right there Id like to see it. BTW amd said MLAA is better than SSAA already they admit it on their own site.

STONEY42917d ago (Edited 2917d ago )

Pictures are an awful way to show how jaggy or sharp a game is, because it's still depending on the resolution. Of course when you're only playing at 720p, you're not gonna notice how blurry MLAA actually makes things at the higher resolutions, where MSAA will look godly in comparison. And MSAA isn't even near the best, there is still Q and SSAA. And downsampling... O.O

"MLAA doesnt make things look blurry if it does it just wasnt implemented correctly."

Implemented? IT'S AA. There is no "implementation". MLAA even doesn't have variable settings like 4X or 16X, because it's a post processing effect. It's not like 4XMSAA will look better than 4XMSAA in another, it's the same exact AA system.

"If som1 can show me a better quality AA than that right there Id like to see it. BTW amd said MLAA is better than SSAA already they admit it on their own site."

And Appliance Direct still says they have the lowest prices. -_- Of course they'll want people to try their stuff, but seriously, in-game tests prove otherwise. MLAA is NOT better than SSAA, not by a looong shot. Not even MSAA.

And best kind of AA? Downsampling. While not actual AA, it works extremely well, and probably looks better than any AA system.

Letros2917d ago

Yea blow that image up some(which is how you'd see it on a TV) You can see it is blurred. MLAA is just a post processed effect, a blend filter, I don't know if there is a wrong way to implement it, possibly intensity of the blend...?

SSAA is the best AA possible for quality, it renders the game at a higher resolution and then downsamples the output resolution. However it is often never used because performance is bad.

I'm currently installing the 5XXX modded drivers to enable MLAA, will get some comparison images up as my GoW 3 disk won't work on my rig =)

thehitman2917d ago (Edited 2917d ago )

what your talking about lol. There isnt a 4xMLAA or w/e but there is a lvl of quality that MLAA is being used I know because there was an interview about the GoW team developing MLAA for their game and how they said when they first started with MLAA it was as bad as 4xMSAA then it developed to 16xMSAA they have multiple interviews stating this I think 1 is even on GT. Also pictures become blurry when their texture quality are horrible like what that Nihilsm posted crap looking game will look crap no matter what the AA is lol.

Also i have the GoW lol and there is ABSOLUTELY no jaggies in the game whatsoever period or blurriness.

@TABSF yes but every other source says its better too if AMD is slipping or not doesnt make it less false of a statement. All direct comparisons come out with MLAA being better still waiting for som1 to link me to a comparison where something looks better than MLAA (besides something running in like x32).

-Side note i have a i7 930/HD5850/6gig ram system and will get some direct comparisons to show off when i get time.

Also I would like to say just because you throw on a higher AA for example x8-16 AA doesnt mean you will get a better running/looking game. AA affects performance and MLAA allows you to reach x16 MSAA without it recking havoc on your performance which means running at higher frames with much higher settings. Even if the images are slightly more blurred the difference between performance is so great you wont notice any of that while your actually PLAYING the game which cant be said the other way around.

Letros2917d ago (Edited 2917d ago )

Ok I just tested it but screenshots won't work, I think it's because MLAA is a post-processed effect.

My impressions?

Annoying that everything is just blurred, even the Steam UI is blurred, you can still see the physical jaggies, but they are blurry...not really reduced.

It currently does not work in anything but DX9 as I guess right now for me it's only good for UE3 titles and games which don't support AA natively, and Crysis DX9 mode...which performs good anyway

Also MLAA disables triple

MSAA is just so much better overall IMO, however, nice of AMD to include MLAA for specific situations. And it is great for PS3 which has a very weak GPU compared to its CPU.

BTW Hitman SSAA is's the first AA method known to man.

thehitman2917d ago (Edited 2917d ago )

Im not at my comp so I cant test but i have DX11 and will test it with SC2 and maybe pushing more than you might have, ill PM you when I get chance with some comparisons hopefully I wont have same problem with screenshots. Also these games were not designed for MLAA in mind which is also something to take into account.

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