What is anti-aliasing? TAA, FXAA, DLAA, and more explained

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AMD,Anti Aliasing,Computing

You'll find anti-aliasing in just about every PC game available today. We're here to tell you what anti-aliasing is, from TAA to FXAA, and explain how it works.

Anti-aliasing is one of the most important graphics settings you’ll find in a PC game. It’s been around for decades in various different forms, and even today, you’ll still find multiple different options for anti-aliasing on your gaming PC. We’re here to help answer what anti-aliasing is, from TAA to FXAA, and explain how to turn it on.

The idea of anti-aliasing is to remove or smooth those jagged edges. There’s a wide range of techniques to accomplish that. You likely interact with some form of anti-aliasing on a daily basis, even if you don’t play games or edit photos. Your browser, for example, uses anti-aliasing for text. Supersample Anti-Aliasing Supersample Anti-Aliasing, or SSAA, is the most basic form of anti-aliasing. It works by taking a higher resolution image and downsampling the pixels to fit native resolution. The final result avoids jagged edges by averaging colors near the edges.

Fast Approximate Anti-Aliasing Fast Approximate Anti-Aliasing, or FXAA, is a post-process form of anti-aliasing. That means instead of messing with the rendering, it’s an algorithm that comes in after the fact to clean up jagged edges. That makes it much less demanding than MSAA and SSAA, though at the cost of image quality.

TAA is the backbone of Nvidia’s Deep Learning Super Sampling , and it’s a big reason why Temporal Super Resolution and AMD’s FidelityFX Super Resolution 2.0 are able to produce such high-quality results. The anti-aliasing you’ll find in DLSS and FSR is TAA, but it’s really good TAA. In most cases, it’s less prone to artifacts like ghosting and usually comes with a sharpening filter attached. The only thing that’s different is the render resolution. You can run DLSS and FSR with a lower resolution to get upscaling and anti-aliasing, but you can also run the tools at native resolution for just the anti-aliasing bit.

 

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