Vulkan jerk

#1

I am trying to use Vulkan on Mac. It seems to me that the first time the engine creates a pipeline, for example when I see this in the log

Created new VK Pipeline with hash 2877132007314255908

then the game has a short jerk (a couple of frames at least). With openGL this does not happen. Is it “normal”? Could be somehow avoided?

EDIT: Let me add that I am running the game from the editor CMD + B.

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#2

Jhonny would know.

@jhonny.goransson

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#3

This is hopefully something that can be fixed. Could you please report it on GitHub?

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#4

Done! https://github.com/defold/defold/issues/5582

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#5

Yes, so what’s happening is that in order to issue draw calls you need to create and bind these “render pipelines”, which basically contains a description of all the render state of the graphics pipeline. E.g what shaders you are using, what the vertex layout looks like, if you are using alpha blending etc. Typically in a pure vulkan based application, these pipeline objects are known and created before you render anything so you avoid costly state changes like in OpenGL where dynamic state changes can happen at any point in time. If the jerks happen mostly on iOS/OSX device it’s likely it has something to do with the vulkan -> metal wrapper (MoltenVK), and I’d have to run some profiling in order to spot that.

But solution wise, what you could do right now before we can look at the issue, is to “pre-warm” your pipelines by issuing draw calls with the materials and render state you want to use. You don’t have to render anything for real, just that the renderer has to “see” the pipeline once so it can create it and keep it for the rest of the app lifetime. There is one thing that also could help that I’ve yet to look at, which is to add support for “pipeline caching”, which is vulkan API functionality that saves your prebuilt pipelines to persistent data storage and reuses those instead of building them. It should be an “easy” fix but I can’t promise when this would be available, plus it would only help successive runs of the app but probably not the first time.

edit: @roccosaienz ^

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#6

@jhonny.goransson Perhaps the last sentence should read “not known”? Or am I misunderstanding something?

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#7

Half of my post dissapeared it seems :frowning: Hold on, I’ll fill it in again…

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#8

@jhonny.goransson Thanks for the hint, I will try to pre-warm the pipelines which create the most visible jerks.

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#9

Awesome, let me know if you need any help! :slight_smile:

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