Fast approximate anti-aliasing
The main advantage of this technique over conventional anti-aliasing is that it does not require large amounts of computing power. It achieves this by smoothing jagged edges ("jaggies") according to how they appear on screen as pixels, rather than analyzing the 3D model itself as in conventional anti-aliasing. Since it is not based on the actual geometry, it will smooth not only edges between triangles, but also edges inside alpha-blended textures or resulting from pixel shader effects, which are immune to the effects of multisample anti-aliasing (MSAA).
The downsides are that textures may not appear as sharp if they are included in the edge detection, and it must be applied before rendering the HUD elements of a game, lest it affect them too.
The processes of FXAA are listed as follows:
Find all edges contained in the image
Finding edges is typically a depth-aware search, so that pixels which are close in depth are not affected. This helps to reduce blurring in textures, since edges in a texture have similar depths.
Smooth the edges
Smoothing is applied as a per-pixel effect. That is, there is no explicit representation of the edges. Rather, the first step is a depth-aware edge filter, which marks pixels as belonging to edges, and the second step filters the color image values based on the degree to which a pixel is marked as an edge.
- Lottes, Timothy (February 2009). "FXAA" (PDF). NVIDIA. Retrieved 29 September 2012.
- Wang, James (March 19, 2012). "FXAA: Anti-Aliasing at Warp Speed". NVIDIA. Retrieved January 3, 2013.
- Atwood, Jeff (December 7, 2011). "Fast Approximate Anti-Aliasing (FXAA)". Coding Horror. Retrieved September 30, 2012.
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