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It would be really nice to see support for different anti-aliasing types

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    It would be really nice to see support for different anti-aliasing types

    So, I've been playing with UE4 for quite some time and the one thing which bothers me is that the only type of supported anti-aliasing is FXAA. I don't say that it's bad but for some reason in UE4 it adds too much blur to the image, imho. I know there is a limited support for MSAA in editor but is there any plans for full MSAA support?
    Last edited by Alexsey; 03-21-2014, 03:15 PM.

    #2
    Unfortunately the documentation in this area is out of date. Sorry about that. I will be improving it shortly.

    Our main AA technique is a proprietary temporal anti-aliasing algorithm we simply call Temporal AA. It is vastly higher quality than FXAA and other spatial filters (MLAA, SMAA, etc) for subpixel aliasing, shading aliasing, and consistency under motion. It is much cheaper than MSAA when combined with any sophisticated rendering features (deferred shading, shadows, reflections, etc). It also solves shading aliasing which is very prevalent with physically based shading where MSAA only solves geometric aliasing. This is the technique we are invested in internally and will be using on our future projects because of it's high quality. Our Temporal AA is actually something we are quite proud of as we feel it is an area we have pushed ahead of the industry on.

    Check out the UE4 features video for a comparison of how effective our temporal AA is:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PD5cRnrMqWw

    Temporal AA development isn't done. There are a number of improvements, sharpness included, that we plan to pursue.

    We also support FXAA as a cheap but lower quality alternative. We aren't pursuing MSAA at the moment as it adds a great deal of complication into the rendering code and we don't feel it will be performant on most systems.

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      #3
      Oh, alright. It's nice that you know about this problem and have plans to fix it, I hope it's not in "this is something we can work on if we don't have anything else to do" category.

      Thanks for your answer.
      Last edited by Alexsey; 03-21-2014, 04:52 PM.

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        #4
        Hi, SuperSampling AA appears to now work: https://forums.unrealengine.com/show...E-4-%28Yay!%29

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          #5
          I've to agree here. Temporal AA is essentially the best thing out there which was ever done with pixels. Saying that I'm just *loving* it, would greatly underestimate the amount of joy seeing absolut rock-solid pictures in motion with amost no pixel crawling left. Yes, it's that great. Oh, and it's fast as well.

          It may be a little blurry when used in a VR headset compared to FXAA,but the horrible flickering still left over from FXAA is no alternative for me. Currently, there is simply nothing which can compete with that, even TXAA doesn't give you that kind of image quality without crushing your GPU with massive supersampling.

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            #6
            The only real problem for me with TXAA is blurriness on 3D Widgets. Sometimes 3D widgets are the only way because you want to overlay particles on your widgets which isn't supported in UMG, so you have to go 3D with it. Other times, 3D widgets are a design choice. Objects can't have AA turned off for them, so you either have to live with the blurriness (which just doesn't work for some applications), use FXAA (which is vastly inferior), turn it off entirely (not ideal below 4k) or write your own AA solution (out of the realm of possibility for some people).

            I really hope we get more AA options, like selective AA, though I'm not sure how feasible something like that would actually be. Failing that, more AA methods would be great, even if I have to buy it separately in the marketplace. Now there's a marketplace suggestion!
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              #7
              Originally posted by spyro View Post
              I've to agree here. Temporal AA is essentially the best thing out there which was ever done with pixels. Saying that I'm just *loving* it, would greatly underestimate the amount of joy seeing absolut rock-solid pictures in motion with amost no pixel crawling left. Yes, it's that great. Oh, and it's fast as well.

              It may be a little blurry when used in a VR headset compared to FXAA,but the horrible flickering still left over from FXAA is no alternative for me. Currently, there is simply nothing which can compete with that, even TXAA doesn't give you that kind of image quality without crushing your GPU with massive supersampling.
              Originally posted by Jared Therriault View Post
              The only real problem for me with TXAA is blurriness on 3D Widgets. Sometimes 3D widgets are the only way because you want to overlay particles on your widgets which isn't supported in UMG, so you have to go 3D with it. Other times, 3D widgets are a design choice. Objects can't have AA turned off for them, so you either have to live with the blurriness (which just doesn't work for some applications), use FXAA (which is vastly inferior), turn it off entirely (not ideal below 4k) or write your own AA solution (out of the realm of possibility for some people).

              I really hope we get more AA options, like selective AA, though I'm not sure how feasible something like that would actually be. Failing that, more AA methods would be great, even if I have to buy it separately in the marketplace. Now there's a marketplace suggestion!
              FWIW TXAA with SSAA (Super Sampling AA eg. Screen Percentage 200%) gives a nice blend of softness and and crispness. I'm coming around on TXAA, it's definitely valuable. But let's say a 1920x1080p screen, run that with TXAA and SSAA2x (Screen Percentage 200%) and everything looks "sweet".

              I know that for gamers, SSAA (eg. MFAA in Nvidia Maxwell) is what many like, from my anecdotal knowledge. SSAA not only helps antialiasing but definitely increases image quality (in a "brute force" but nonetheless impressive way).

              The fact that UE4 can deliver SSAA 1.5X or SSAA 2X with TXAA regardless of video cards... I believe it is something very, very valuable for gamers.
              Last edited by srmojuze; 08-26-2015, 11:26 PM.

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                #8
                Srmojuze, downsampling is nothing special, and setting the ScreenPercentage (you call it SSAA) is nothing different than downsampling as far as I know. Any game can do this, you can just force it in the driver. So you can be happy about downsampling support directly in UE4 (and I am too!) so the players of your game can just set it in the settings instead of through the driver, but the performance cost is so extremely high that no one will use it. I actually use a Screen Percentage of 75% as default setting in my game since the differences to 100% are not too high but performance is so much better than 100%.

                So I also really hope for alternative methods of AA or improvements to Temporal AA, it's really blurry. Try to disable all AA, then use the level editor of your game for 1 hour and then turn Temporal AA back on, then you will notice how blurry everything suddenly is. I did this yesterday because I has to disable AA for some stuff
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                  #9
                  Thanks srmojuze, with TXAA and a screen percentage of 150%, we can achieve something both smooth and minimally blurry to the point it's barely even noticeable and only if you're looking for it. 200% just about eliminates the blur and other artifacting entirely. I know it's a resource hog, I'm just glad we have something in the box to offer to players as an option. Before it was essentially either blurry and smooth or clear and aliased.
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                    #10
                    I really like Epic's temporal AA but we need a solution to make high res shot use it correctly. I don't know if it's possible but it's a major bummer for my architectural renderings. Also, when you export a matinee frame by frame, TXAA is still not applied to each frames afaik... is there a solution?

                    Now I have 2 solutions, render with HRS 7-8 and downscale to 720-1080p (looks good but it's too small for quality prints)
                    or...
                    Render at 4k + higher screen percentage and hit print screen (on my 1440p monitor looks good but it's still too small for good prints)

                    And these solutions suck for matinee export...I have to rely on nvidia shadowplay.


                    I Wonder if we can force a type of AA that isn't temporal on ue4 via the nvidia control panel...that would probably still not work with HRS tho... :-(

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                      #11
                      Originally posted by John Alcatraz View Post
                      So I also really hope for alternative methods of AA or improvements to Temporal AA, it's really blurry. Try to disable all AA, then use the level editor of your game for 1 hour and then turn Temporal AA back on, then you will notice how blurry everything suddenly is. I did this yesterday because I has to disable AA for some stuff
                      I second this.
                      Temporal AA is really good for static scenes (archvis for instance). but anything with fast motions on objects or the camera causes horrible glitches.
                      we need a proper solution for games that are still meant to be enjoyable without going to 4K resolution or 200% screenscaling
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                        #12
                        The main problem for me is 3d UMG Widgets in Screen space. They are so blurry when moving that you can't see their text values.
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                          #13
                          Originally posted by intoxicat3 View Post
                          The main problem for me is 3d UMG Widgets in Screen space. They are so blurry when moving that you can't see their text values.
                          Going to assume you meant world space, screen space widgets have no post processing applied to them. In 4.11, Widget Components set to Masked blending, will no longer be blurry. Transparent widgets will continue to be, for as long as you use TxAA.

                          Masked


                          Transparent

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                            #14
                            Awesome fix, Nick!
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                              #15
                              yes word space, for VR.
                              Will check how masked will work in 4.11, but I think it will be big limitation for UI and creating cross platform UI without branching for VR.

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