Codeplay is Building Support for the Vulkan API

03 March 2015

Vulkan logo

Following today's announcement of the new Vulkan™ standard for graphics and compute, Codeplay is pleased to announce that it is working on building support for Vulkan™ and SPIR-V™ into its products for heterogeneous computing on a multitude of platforms, from the most powerful HPC hardware to low-power mobile SoCs. Codeplay will continue to make major contributions to the standard as it develops toward a full specification, and looks forward to sharing more details about its support for Vulkan in its products over the coming months. To find out more about Vulkan, see the section on the Khronos website. The following text is taken from the official press release:

The Khronos™ Group, an open consortium of leading hardware and software companies, today announced the availability of technical previews of the new Vulkan open standard API for high-efficiency access to graphics and compute on modern GPUs used in a wide variety of devices. This ground-up design, previously referred to as the Next Generation OpenGL® Initiative, provides applications direct control over GPU acceleration for maximized performance and predictability, and uses Khronos’ new SPIR-V specification for shading language flexibility. Vulkan initial specifications and implementations are expected later this year.

Vulkan is a unified specification that minimizes driver overhead and enables multi-threaded GPU command preparation for optimal graphics and compute performance on diverse mobile, desktop, console and embedded platforms. Vulkan also provides the direct GPU control demanded by sophisticated game engines, middleware and applications with the cross vendor performance and functional portability resulting from simpler, more predictable drivers. The layered design of Vulkan enables multiple IHVs to plug into a common, extensible architecture for code validation, debugging and profiling during development without impacting production performance; this layering flexibility is expected to catalyze strong innovation in cross-vendor GPU tools.

“Codeplay is excited that Vulkan's SPIR-V feature will enable new languages and tools to be used in graphics. By standardizing the way new languages can be added to graphics, a whole new tools ecosystem is being opened up,” said Andrew Richards, CEO of Codeplay.

“Vulkan is a significant Khronos initiative to provide developers the choice of a state-of-the-art GPU API that is open and portable across multiple platforms, at a time where platform diversity is increasing,” said Neil Trevett, president of the Khronos Group and vice president at NVIDIA. “Khronos will be driving the Vulkan ecosystem with open source conformance test components and sample front-end compiler implementations that use SPIR-V to leverage the hardware community’s investment in optimized back-end drivers. Vulkan expands the family of Khronos 3D APIs, and complements OpenGL and OpenGL ES that between them, provide access to billions of GPUs today, and will continue to be evolved and maintained to meet industry needs.”

“Industry standard APIs like Vulkan are a critical part of enabling developers to bring the best possible experience to customers on multiple platforms,” said Valve's Gabe Newell. “Valve and the other Khronos members are working hard to ensure that this high-performance graphics interface is made available as widely as possible and we view it as a critical component of SteamOS and future Valve games.”

Khronos, SPIR-V, and Vulkan are trademarks of the Khronos Group Inc.
OpenGL® and the oval logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of Silicon Graphics, Inc. in the United States and/or other countries worldwide.
All other product names, trademarks, and/or company names are used solely for identification and belong to their respective owners.

Codeplay Software Ltd has published this article only as an opinion piece. Although every effort has been made to ensure the information contained in this post is accurate and reliable, Codeplay cannot and does not guarantee the accuracy, validity or completeness of this information. The information contained within this blog is provided "as is" without any representations or warranties, expressed or implied. Codeplay Sofware Ltd makes no representations or warranties in relation to the information in this post.
Alistair Low's Avatar

Alistair Low

Senior Principal Software Engineer