New Nvidia update suggests DLSS 4.0 is closer than we thought

A hand holding the RTX 4090 GPU.
Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

Nvidia might be gearing up for DLSS 4.0. A new update for Nvidia’s Streamline pipeline includes updated files for DLSS Super Resolution and Frame Generation that bring the version to 3.7.

This is a fairly small update aimed at developers. I haven’t had a chance to try out DLSS 3.7, but like previous updates, I assume this includes some small tweaks to performance and image quality. Nvidia commits these updates pretty frequently, usually centered around reducing visual artifacts in games.

Emoose spotted the update and shared the GitHub link on Reddit. It came through an update to Nvidia Streamline, which is a tool designed the help developers integrate multiple upscaling features into their games. It’s similar to Microsoft’s upcoming DirectSR, and despite that tool arriving shortly for game developers, Nvidia is still posting updates for Streamline.

The poster is also the developer of the DLSSTweaks tool, which is a third-party app that allows users to switch between DLSS’ hidden presets in games. Emoose notes that the Streamline update adds a new fifth preset for developers, which will serve as the default preset for Super Resolution for DLSS through Streamline.

It’s interesting stuff, but what really intrigues me is how close we’re getting to DLSS 4.0. At this point, DLSS comprises three features: Super Resolution, Frame Generation, and Ray Reconstruction. That last feature was added as part of the DLSS 3.5 update, which was released alongside Cyberpunk 2077: Phantom Liberty and Alan Wake 2 late last year.

Setting the stage for DLSS 4.0?

Nvidia's DLSS 3 in Cyberpunk 2077.

Nvidia went silent on DLSS for a few months following the release of DLSS 3.5, but development is picking back up now — potentially setting the stage for a DLSS 4.0 release later in the year.

Rumor has it that Nvidia plans to announce its RTX 50-series GPUs by the end of the year, with a possible release sometime in early 2025. There’s a good chance that DLSS 4.0 will release alongside the new graphics cards, a strategy we saw Nvidia employ with the release of its RTX 40-series GPUs and DLSS 3.

One thing is certain: Nvidia isn’t slowing down on DLSS. Bryan Catanzaro, who heads up deep learning research at Nvidia, talked about a theoretical DLSS 10 late last year. And, now more than ever, Nvidia uses DLSS as a key selling point for its graphics cards. Based on how Nvidia treats DLSS now, it’s a matter of when, not if, we see DLSS 4.0.

The big question is what it will look like. Catanzaro pondered fully neural rendering for future versions of DLSS, where AI would take over to render a frame. It’s possible Nvidia could apply AI elsewhere, too. Nvidia has focused a lot of attention on AI-driven game characters with its ACE platform in recent months, which could be accelerated on RTX GPUs as part of DLSS.

For now, all we can do is wait until Nvidia has more to share on what the future of DLSS looks like. There’s a good chance we’ll see it alongside next-gen Nvidia GPUs, so all eyes are on later this year.