New Vulkan patch makes Doom even more gore-some


So you want to run Doom with a much faster frame rate? Well the good news is the game now supports Vulkan, a low-overhead graphics API which will put the FPS (frames per second, that is) pedal to the metal.

Vulkan (which was built on AMD's Mantle graphics tech) offers a similar sort of performance boost to Direct X12, but with the added benefit that it's not exclusive to Windows 10, so those on Windows 7/8 can enjoy accelerated frame rates.

You will, of course, need to update Doom with the latest patch, and also download the latest drivers for your AMD or Nvidia graphics card (note that any card which meets Doom's minimum system requirements should be fine running Vulkan – but those owning Nvidia cards with 2GB of video RAM on Windows 7 are out of luck).

Benchmark corner

AMD's own testing with Doom (running on the 'ultra' preset) and a Radeon RX 480 showed that at 1080p resolution, the Vulkan version of the game benefited from a 27% performance boost, and a 23% boost at 1440p.

To be precise, on the test system which used an Intel i7 5960X CPU and 16GB of system memory along with the RX 480, Doom hit 135 frames per second with Vulkan at 1080p, and 84 frames per second at 1440p. Not too shabby indeed…

Doom makes use of Vulkan's asynchronous shaders and frame flip optimizations, among other goodies, to boost performance levels. Hopefully we'll see more games employing this sort of tech going forward.

Vulkan isn't just about Windows gaming either, as it's platform agnostic so Linux gamers, consoles, and indeed mobile devices can benefit as well.

Darren is a freelancer writing news and features for TechRadar (and occasionally T3) across a broad range of computing topics including CPUs, GPUs, various other hardware, VPNs, antivirus and more. He has written about tech for the best part of three decades, and writes books in his spare time (his debut novel - 'I Know What You Did Last Supper' - was published by Hachette UK in 2013).