DirectX 11

Killer driver that helps PC gamers have a blast

5.9

567 Votes

  • Category Various Utilities
  • Program license Free
  • Version 11.3
  • Size 292.18 kB
  • Works under: Windows 8.1 / Windows 7 / Windows 8 / Windows 10
  • Program available in English
  • Program by Microsoft

DirectX 11 is an API collection that helps game and multimedia developers deliver better experiences through better rendering options and a wide array of optimized tools.

DirectX is a set of application programming interfaces or APIs. These APIs handle a wide range of tasks related to game programming, video and other multimedia. DirectX 11 is an integration of this API package that was released alongside Windows 7. If you have a game or other multimedia application that was built using DirectX 11, then you need DirectX 11 installed in order for it to run. DirectX is also backward compatible, so after installing 11, your PC can still support games and applications that rely on older versions.

DirectX 11 is intended for both developers and end-users. However, this particular version is streamlined and includes only what is necessary for programs that need DirectX 11 to run. The DirectX software development kit or SDK includes everything. The average user doesn’t have to worry about these. He or she can install this package with confidence. The installation is very hands-off. Microsoft DirectX 11 configures itself behind the scenes and runs as needed without user interaction.

In order to appreciate DirectX 11, one must consider what new features this version provides. At the hardware level, it now supports DirectCompute and tessellation. Tessellation lets developers manipulate aspects of polygons rather than entire structures, which allows for much greater detail than previous methods. DirectCompute, on the other hand, gives developers additional processing power and even allows them to perform operations that aren’t well suited to the CPU or standard GPU pipeline. On the software side, DirectX 11 improves rendering performance, enhances support for gamer controllers and other input devices and added support for other devices, such as mobile and the Xbox One.

As a rule of thumb, if your Windows PC supports DirectX 11, then you should upgrade. There’s no performance penalty. Some programs will require it, and those that don’t will be fully backward compatible. Not all computers support DirectX 11, however. If you have a video card, then that GPU must support it, and if you’re using an onboard solution, such as Intel integrated graphics, then that iGPU must support it. If your GPU doesn’t support it, then you should put off installing DirectX 11 until you’re able to upgrade your hardware.

Pros

  • User-friendly installation
  • Configures and runs behind the scenes
  • Noticeable performance improvement

Cons

  • Not all GPUs support it
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