AMD reveals new details of next-gen FSR 3, and it could be game-changing

A PC gamer in a racing-style gaming chair
(Image credit: Shutterstock / Gorodenkoff)

AMD is working on its next generation of graphics upscaling technology, and if it's as good as AMD is claiming, it will be fantastic news for gamers.

The new details on the FidelityFX Super Resolution (FSR) graphics upscaler comes from GDC 2023, where AMD presented game developers gathered there with info on how the new tech was shaping up. According to KitGuru, AMD's Stephan Hodes, from Team Red's Core Technology Group, explained how FSR has evolved from its initial 1.0 version to where it is currently (FSR 2.2), and how FSR 3 improves the tech even further.

A slide from an AMD presentation on FSR 3

(Image credit: AMD/KitGuru)

According to AMD, the number of pixels that FSR 2 comuptes is greater than the number of samples available, but the number of pixels rendered could be increased further still by inserting interpolated frames into the pipeline.

This allows for a significant increase in frame rates, sometimes as much as 2X the number of frames. AMD didn't specify the use cases where you could double the frame rate, but on some lower-demand games like e-sports, it could definitely be possible.

There are a lot of technical hurdles to clear still, such as difficulty with some motion interpolation, so the tech is best utilized when the input frame rate is greater than 60 fps. Further, interpolated frames introduce latency that needs to be managed.

AMD FSR 3 has me giddy for AMD's graphics card lineup

While AMD makes some of the best graphics cards around, a major draw for Nvidia's GPUs has been DLSS, Team Green's upscaling technology that is substantially ahead of AMD's competing tech.

Deep Learning Super Sampling (DLSS) relies on hardware acceleration to power its AI-driven upscaler, something that AMD's FSR lacks. That's not to say that FSR is a slouch, since you can still see some significant improvements in frame rates using FSR, and FSR isn't tied to hardware so any graphics card can take advantage of it, so long as the game you're playing supports it.

But DLSS is absolutely astounding, and DLSS 3 is a revolution in gaming technology. If you're lucky enough to own an Nvidia Lovelace RTX 4000-series graphics card, you are going to achieve fantastic performance, no question.

But that's, like, five of you out there. For the rest of us, we want to play games with buttery smooth fps at an accessible price, and here's where AMD FSR 3 can really shine.

Will it ever be as good as DLSS? Not without hardware acceleration, it won't. Will it be good enough to run north of 60 fps at 4K and higher? Well, the best AMD graphics card, the AMD Radeon RX 7900 XTX, can already do that with FSR 2.1 and the Radeon RX 7900 XT isn't that far behind.

Assuming that the RX 7800 XT and even the RX 7700 XT have enough VRAM to run at 4K, it's entirely possible that FSR 3 could get you playable frames at that resolution on a number of the best PC games (though maybe not Cyberpunk 2077 or similar).

This would be a huge deal for midrange gamers out there who haven't really been able to enjoy all the best that the latest generation of gaming PC hardware has made possible, so the sooner tech like FSR 3 hit the scene the better.

John Loeffler
Components Editor

John (He/Him) is the Components Editor here at TechRadar and he is also a programmer, gamer, activist, and Brooklyn College alum currently living in Brooklyn, NY. 

Named by the CTA as a CES 2020 Media Trailblazer for his science and technology reporting, John specializes in all areas of computer science, including industry news, hardware reviews, PC gaming, as well as general science writing and the social impact of the tech industry.

You can find him online on Threads @johnloeffler.

Currently playing: Baldur's Gate 3 (just like everyone else).