Morphological Antialiasing (MLAA)

Published:08/16/2012   Last Updated:08/15/2012

Morphological Antialiasing (MLAA)

Intel Corporation

Features / Description

MLAA is an image-based, post-process filtering technique which identifies discontinuity patterns and blends colors in the neighborhood of these patterns to perform effective anti-aliasing. It is the precursor of a new generation of real-time antialiasing techniques that rival MSAA. This sample is based on the original, CPU-based MLAA implementation provided by Reshetov in 2009, with improvements to greatly increase performance. The improvements are:

  • Integration of a new, efficient, easy-to-use tasking system implemented on top of Intel® Threading Building Blocks (Intel® TBB).
  • Integration of a new, efficient, easy to use pipelining system for CPU onloading of graphics tasks.
  • Improvement of data access patterns through a new transposing pass.
  • Increased use of Intel® SSE instructions to optimize discontinuities detection and color blending.


This sample also contains MLAA implementation for Intel HD graphics, called separable antialiasing (SAA). It runs 2.5x faster than previous state-of-the-art GPU implementations of MLAA, achieving about 1000 fps for a 1 Mpixel image resolution on Intel’s latest graphics hardware.

Viewing the found edges can be helpful when debugging MLAA. The MLAA sample contains a zoom box to compare different anti-aliasing techniques.

System Requirements


  • CPU: Dual core or better (Intel® Core™ i5 or better suggested)
  • GFX: Microsoft DirectX* 9c capable graphics card
  • OS: Microsoft Windows Vista* (x64 editions) or Microsoft Windows* 7 (x64 editions)
  • MEM: 2 GB of RAM or better


Toolkits Supported:
  • Microsoft DirectX* SDK (June 2010 release or later)
  • Microsoft Windows* SDK May 2010

Compilers Supported:
Libraries Required:

Morphological Antialiasing (MLAA)


    This software is subject to the U.S. Export Administration Regulations and other U.S. law, and may not be exported or re-exported to certain countries (Burma, Cuba, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Sudan, and Syria) or to persons or entities prohibited from receiving U.S. exports (including Denied Parties, Specially Designated Nationals, and entities on the Bureau of Export Administration Entity List or involved with missile technology or nuclear, chemical or biological weapons).


    Product and Performance Information


    Intel's compilers may or may not optimize to the same degree for non-Intel microprocessors for optimizations that are not unique to Intel microprocessors. These optimizations include SSE2, SSE3, and SSSE3 instruction sets and other optimizations. Intel does not guarantee the availability, functionality, or effectiveness of any optimization on microprocessors not manufactured by Intel. Microprocessor-dependent optimizations in this product are intended for use with Intel microprocessors. Certain optimizations not specific to Intel microarchitecture are reserved for Intel microprocessors. Please refer to the applicable product User and Reference Guides for more information regarding the specific instruction sets covered by this notice.

    Notice revision #20110804