The first PowerVR SDK of 2014 (PowerVR Graphics SDK v3.3) is here, and brings with it a variety of improvements for our utilities. Key features include support for OpenGL® ES 3.1 in PVRVFrame emulation libraries, PVRTrace recording for Android 4.4 KitKat, the implementation of a new Monitor window in PVRTune, and a complete review and update of all our documentation.
We’re also launching our developer support portal to further streamline our support process.
With the recent ratification of OpenGL ES 3.1, our first priority was providing full support for it in our desktop emulation libraries. The result is our latest edition of PVRVFrame. Please note that this support is only intended for early development, as the OpenGL ES 3.1 conformance test suite has not yet been released.
To use it, you can download the header files from the Khronos website. We will shortly release an update to the PowerVR Graphics SDK v3.3 containing examples for OpenGL ES 3.1, highlighting the most important features of this new API. In addition to supporting this brand new API, we have refined the utility and squashed numerous known bugs.
PowerVR Graphics SDK v3.3 features a greatly reworked PVRTune, making it much more user-friendly. This includes refined graph view selection, enhanced search functionality for improved navigation and new software counters, such as per-CPU core loads, system memory consumption and additional per-PID stats. We’ve also further optimized OpenGL ES data capture to reduce CPU overhead.
As well as this, PVRTune now features a new Monitor window which provides a simplified and high-level overview of CPU, memory and graphics loading. This helps developers to quickly isolate application bottlenecks.
The newest edition of PVRTrace features a vastly overhauled GUI with a simplified Remote Controller interface, the ability to add highlights from the call summary widget, and the possibility to search calls within a specific frame range and/or by thread. The Recorder has also been updated, now featuring support for recording on Android 4.4 KitKat, capturing of EGLlmage surfaces created from EGL_NATIVE_BUFFER_ANDROID client buffers and a JSON formatted configuration file for improved clarity. We are also pleased to announce that PVRTrace now features full support for OpenGL ES 3.0.
Version 4.1.3 of PVRTexTool, which comes with our newest SDK, includes a number of GUI and codec improvements. PVRTC compression produces higher quality images and thread management has been optimized. Furthermore, a number of known bugs in BC1, ETC and ETC2 compression have been corrected, improving stability.
We’ve revised and improved several examples used in our SDK, such as the revamped Water demo.
PowerVR Developer Support portal
Last but not least, we’re announcing our Developer Support portal. Through this system, you can confidentially discuss issues with the PowerVR Developer Technology team via tickets or download packages that aren’t included in our public release (such as our NDA-only Series5/Seres5XT disassembly compilers).
Developers can submit feedback (such as filing bug reports or requesting new features) publicly so other developers can up vote and comment on their ideas.
The portal can be found at https://pvrsupport.imgtec.com
What are you waiting for?!
The PowerVR Graphics v3.3 SDK installers (Windows, OS X and Linux) can be downloaded from here. For a complete overview of the latest features and fixes, please check out our comprehensive release notes page.