The 1.7 patch, which adds DX10 support to CoH was released today.
You’ll need a confluence of hardware, OS, and drivers to use it. Of course, Vista is required, a DX10 card, and if you run Nvidia you’ll need these new drivers. The patch is available here, and the changelog is here.
Now, surely, DX10 will improve performance!? Not quite. It puts a hurtin’ on my rig.
I’ve run the CoH in-game benchmark a few times, and here are some results from my rig (C2D E6700, 3GB DDR2-800, 8800GTX)
1st of all, you now have a shader dropdown with options of Low, High, and DX10. There’s also a new Ultra setting for textures, where I believe High used to be the max. CoH pops up a warning of impending system instability if you attempt to run Ultra textures without DX10 shaders. Sure enough, Shaders on High (DX9), and textures on Ultra crashed the game.
A few results:
1920x1200 Shaders on High (DX9), Textures on High, AA on 2x, and everything else, including Model Detail on max settings:
Avg: 75.8, Highest: 170.8, Low: 21.9.
1920x1200 Shaders on DX10, Textures on High, AA on 2x, all else max:
Avg: 34.3, High: 80, Low: 10.9
1920x1200 Shaders on DX10, Textures on Ultra, AA on 2x, all else at max:
Avg: 34.1, High: 72, Low: 5.7
Now, there are some nice DX10 lighting effects, and the Ultra textures are starkly sharper, but it’s difficult to choose DX10, when the game is so much more fluid at high frame rates under the DX9 path.
Edit: Scores updated w/ vsync disabled. Thanks Jason Cross.