Noise

Posted: April 29, 2010 in Real-Time Rendering

Noise generation on the GPU. (Marble, Turbulence, Fractal, Perlin Noise, QuickFractal, QuickNoise) .

You can get some really neat  and natural looking effects by applying lots of layers of noise of varying attributes. When applied in a procedural way, the possibilities are endless. It’s main use is to break up repetitive sequences, such as when textures are tiled which looks horrible, especially when viewed in high frequency. Unfortunately its really not used today as much as it should, as to get nice looking noise you usually need a lot of layers blended and this is still expensive even on modern GPUS. Most games I see still use a few blended pre-made noise patterns. However there have been a number of optimizations such as this one, which lowers the instruction count and texture fetch count significantly. Maybe one day there will be Noise functions implemented in hardware.

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