What can we expect from directx 12 in MSFS?


I‘m not a computer expert, which is why I would like to know, what will change in MSFS or what is to be expected when directx 12 is introduced to the sim.

the only thing I’ve heard mentioned are particle effects like spray, dust, smoke etc.

Better and/or new graphics effects for the most part. DX12 isn’t a performance upgrade.

Massive increase in FPS in Xplane 11 using Vulkan. Also Aerofly FS2 is so very much faster too. DX12 should more or less be equivalent, depending on how ASOBO program it.

Good explanation is here, courtesy of MicroSoft:


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Great article. That’s what I was looking for. Thx!

DX12 gives you the tools to make the game more performant, but the benefit is not automatic - Asobo would have to implement it. The MS description literally says this:

“Direct3D 12 is unique in that it provides a lower level of hardware abstraction than previous versions do, which allows you to significantly improve the multi-core CPU scaling of your title”

So lower level hardware abstraction is cool if you actually spend the time switching your code to it, but that takes a lot of time. Also, this is useless unless Asobo intends to make the sim multi-core. Currently, as we know, it runs on a single core only which is why you get those sad frame rates even on 3090 etc.


As I said - exactly right! Let’s hope they’re up to it!

Hmm. I was hoping there would be an automatic sort of „next level“ in graphics. But if you have to reprogram large amounts of code, we shouldn’t expect too much, I guess.

I don’t think the simulation main thread involves any graphics APIs, so DirectX 12 would only affect the render thread. I would not expect any performance improvements, as generally the render thread’s CPU time is not a limiting factor.


In their Q&A they said that MSFS will not profit as much as older Sims performance wise as the code was allready “state of the art” to make use of performance optimization thst older codes got through porting to DX12.
There will be some improvement but will be consumed by the higher demand for new effects that can be implemented with DX12.

So expect better visuals but not better performance.


There are no automatic upgrade in DX12, mainly because DX11 is already very capable (also, current rendering is already multi-thread). DX12 provides a lot more APIs that allows changes on architectural level, but that would require Asobo to do major rewrite to take advantages of those.

As Asobo already stated directly, current DX12 work is more like a port: making sure everything is running as in DX11. They have also stated that the performance gain won’t be from DX upgrade but from parallel optimization work that will be released at the same time.

Vulcan would be better than DirectX12 i think?

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It wouldn’t be compatible with the XBox though, as far as I know, and that appears to be driving this whole thing.

better not expect Vulkan for any Microsoft title

That would be like an AMD Chipset for an Intel CPU :wink:


I keep seeing this posted. I also see as many posts saying it is multi core.

Can you direct us to something official that says MSFS is “Single Core”?

He’s just 100% wrong. (@SpruceTexas689 stop typing stuff like that if you’re clueless). There’s quite a lot of multithreading in the sim already.
It is however often ‘limited by main thread’. The ‘main thread’ is the thread that runs the job that keeps all the others synced up.

Saying the sim is single core only is categorically wrong (try running it on a single core, and enjoy your single digit FPS).


Simple answer more eye candy same performance but likely more stable.

DX12 will give potentially better multithreading which may help people with AMD .

The current situation is the limit is the one core that is running the main thread and there are not enough other processes to use more than half a dozen other cores effectively. The game uses about 6 cores, totally trashing one of them and partially (typically 25% to 50%) using the rest. Hence currently there is little benefit going past 6 to 8 cores and no real benefit to hyperthreading.

This is not unusual in gaming.

It will also mean RT and DLSS are possible though nothing has been said about Asobo working on either of them at present.

What @EdamllamaB said: multithreading

DX12, graphically, has nothing more than DX11 has. In fact you can alternately select DX11, DX10, and DX9 feature sets - but there is no “DX12 feature set”.

But multithreading in DX11 is more primitive and limited. DX12 essentially removes the top layer of the API, exposing a more direct hardware interface that is MUCH more complicated and detail-ridden, and quite frankly really unpleasant to program. But much more robust at handling multile threads.

So ray tracing or DLSS, VRS, Mesh Shaders,etc. ar no graphical features for you?