In the context of render targets or textures, what does "resolve" mean? For example: To resolve a color texture.

From my understanding, it seems to mean, "copy but process/convert at the same time", but I can't seem to find a good definition for it anywhere.


2 Answers 2


I don't know about other contexts, but for DirectX resolving a texture means blending multi-sampled texture into a non-multisampled one. For simple scenarios this is usually done automatically by the output merger, but is often needed to be done explicitly (e.g. ResolveSubresource) when using multi-sampled render target as an input for a next render pass (e.g. post-processing). Reasons being both performance and lower complexity of the following pass shaders.


Perhaps some example usage from graphics papers might be helpful - it basically refers to computing a 'pixel' value potentially from multiple fragments...

RealityEngine Graphics (Akeley. 1993)

Thus the image is complete as soon as the last primitive has been rendered; there is no need for a final framebuffer operation to resolve the multiple color samples at each pixel location to a single displayable color.

Hardware Accelerated Rendering Of Antialiasing Using A Modified A-buffer Algorithm. (Winner et al, 1997)

Pixels which are completely covered by opaque objects are resolved in a single pass.


Otherwise multiple passes are required to resolve the final color for each pixel in the scene.

A Directionally Adaptive Edge Anti-Aliasing Filter. (Iourcha et al, 2009)

Downsampling is performed by a resolve, which is the aggregation of the samples with filtering.


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