View Full Version : What's the difference between OpenGL and DirectX?

08-06-04, 11:31 AM
I don't know much about the topic. I believe, i always use DirectX (i have a GeForce4 Ti4600 - DirectX 9.0b). I play games such as Doom3, FarCry, Call of Duty, etc. and they look great.

I guess i'm wondering is ONE superior to the other. (OpenGL or DirectX)
OR do i even have a choice of which to use?
Just curious. Thanks

08-06-04, 12:20 PM
They are different APIs (Application programming interface) that make it easier for developers to write code that will interface with graphics hardware. They both provide the same exact service but do it in different ways, that is that they allow developers a common access point and a series of libraries to access a bunch of different types of hardware. If it wasn't for the graphics APIs such as OpenGL and DirectX (and Glide way back when), programmers would have to write separate code for each and every type of graphics chipset they want to support. Instead, the graphics chipsets follow the API standard, and the programmers use those standards, so everyone benefits.

As for which one is better. Most games utilize one or the other but not both. A few games here and there support both, and let you the player choose, but those are pretty few. Il2-sturmovik is one such game. But for the most part you are going to use what the developers programmed with. And they decide which one to use based on which one they like better and feel more comfortable with. If they learned on OpenGL, they will probably decide to write games using that API. And the same with DirectX The point is that in most cases, it doesn't and shouldn't matter to you, the end user because both have the power to look equally good as an end result.

PS - Far Cry uses DirectX, Doom3 uses OpenGL.