Ray tracing is a real-time algorithm available in the Windows 10 version of Minecraft that renders light effects more realistically in the 3D game world for optimal visual fidelity and performance. This FAQ covers questions about how it works and how you can implement it to augment your gaming experience.
Please be sure you are on a Windows 10 release version of Minecraft that is 1.16.200 or higher. Don't see the update? Visit How to Update Minecraft, and Update drivers in Windows 10 to learn how to check if your graphics drivers are up to date.
In this article
- What are the minimum requirements to experience physically based rendering (PBR) and ray tracing in Minecraft for Windows 10?
- Is Minecraft with ray tracing free?
- Are there plans to support the NVIDIA GeForce GTX series cards?
- Sounds awesome! How do I experience it?
- I had the ray tracing beta installed. What do I do to get the latest version?
- Is there a “ray tracing mode” or a way to play vanilla Minecraft with ray tracing?
- How do I turn ray tracing features on and off in the game?
- Can you use Minecraft with ray tracing in multiplayer games, like on Realms or servers?
- Why is render distance different when ray tracing is turned on?
- What is the “Upscaling” toggle?
- What are graphics drivers? Why am I being informed that mine may be out of date? How do I update my graphics drivers?
- Is Minecraft with ray tracing coming to next-generation consoles?
- Can I access my ray tracing enabled worlds to Minecraft on my other hardware devices?
- How can I create my own PBR resource pack and play with ray tracing?
- Why aren’t all light-emitting blocks glowing in ray tracing worlds?
- I have a new feature request!
- I think I found a bug!
What are the minimum requirements to experience physically based rendering (PBR) and ray tracing in Minecraft for Windows 10?
- OS (Operation Systems): Windows 10 64-bit
- GPU: DirectX hardware ray tracing capable GPU such as NVIDIA GeForce RTX 20 Series and higher, and AMD Radeon RX 6000 Series and higher
- Hardware: PC; virtual reality (VR) headsets and mixed reality (MR) headsets are not supported
- CPU: Intel Core i5 or equivalent
- RAM: >8 GB of RAM
- Minecraft version: 1.16.200 or higher
You may have to update your Windows operating system and graphics drivers to experience ray tracing. You can learn more at Update Windows 10. If your hardware does not support ray tracing, you will be unable to download ray tracing content from the Minecraft Marketplace:
Is Minecraft with ray tracing free?
Yes! Players who own Minecraft for Windows 10 can experience ray tracing for free as part of this game update. Please note that your system must meet the minimum technical requirements to experience some of these new features.
Are there plans to support the NVIDIA GeForce GTX series cards?
No. Minecraft with ray tracing uses hardware ray tracing support to achieve optimal visual fidelity and performance. This hardware support is available only on the NVIDIA GeForce® RTX 20 Series and higher, along with the AMD Radeon™ RX 6000 Series and higher.
Sounds awesome! How do I experience it?
If you meet the minimum requirements and you are on the Windows 10 version of the game, you can experience ray tracing in Minecraft in one of two ways.
- Download ray tracing enabled packs in the Minecraft Marketplace.
- Many free worlds featuring PBR and ray tracing are available in the Minecraft Marketplace, with more to come.
- You can find all the content supporting ray tracing in the Marketplace by selecting the blue icon.
- Create your own PBR textures and sideload them into the game.
Check out the NVIDIA Minecraft with RTX PBR Texturing Guide for more information.
After you are inside a ray-tracing enabled world, ray tracing lighting will be turned on by default.
If your hardware does not support ray tracing you will be unable to download ray tracing content from the Marketplace:
I had the ray tracing beta installed. What do I do to get the latest version?
If you had been playing and testing the beta for Minecraft with ray tracing for Windows 10, thank you! Your participation helped find bugs, optimize performance, and introduce new features that have made the experience even more enjoyable.
If you were enrolled in the RTX beta, you are now enrolled in the standard Minecraft beta and will continue to receive the latest beta version, including ray tracing features. If you no longer want to be in the Minecraft beta and want to get back onto the mainline branch of Minecraft, follow these steps:
- Back up your existing worlds, saves, and profiles, just in case.
- Open the Xbox Insider Hub application.
- Navigate to Insider Content and select Minecraft.
- Select Manage, then Unenroll, and then Done.
- Wait a few minutes, then check for Minecraft updates in the Windows Store app.
- If you haven’t been updated, uninstall Minecraft completely, and install a fresh copy from the Windows Store.
And if you’re still having issues, uninstall Minecraft, log out from the Insider Hub, Xbox Companion App, and Windows Store. Restart your PC, and then log back into the Windows Store and download a fresh version of Minecraft.
Is there a “ray tracing mode” or a way to play vanilla Minecraft with ray tracing?
No, there is no vanilla ray tracing “mode” in Minecraft. Think of ray tracing and PBR as tools for the Minecraft community to express its creativity and develop its own creations.
The Ray Tracing toggle is disabled unless you are in a ray-tracing enabled world:
How do I turn ray tracing features on and off in the game?
You can experience ray tracing features by either downloading a ray-tracing enabled world from the Minecraft Marketplace or by creating and sideloading your own PBR texture pack. After you open your ray tracing enabled world, ray tracing is turned on by default.
To toggle ray tracing on and off you can press the “;” key on your keyboard or go to Settings > Video > Ray Tracing and turn on the toggle.
The Ray Tracing toggle will be turned on only when you are in a ray-tracing capable world. This toggle will not be selectable in vanilla worlds:
Can you use Minecraft with ray tracing in multiplayer games, such as on Realms or servers?
Yes, you can upload your ray tracing enabled resource packs and worlds to multiplayer environments. Players with compatible hardware will be able to experience ray tracing and PBR features in that multiplayer environment. Users who do not have supported hardware will not experience PBR textures or ray tracing features.
Why is render distance different when ray tracing is turned on?
In Minecraft, view distance is measured by chunks that are 256 blocks tall—16×16 segments of world generation. The path tracing technique used in Minecraft requires a significant amount of graphical computing power, so we reduce the default number of viewable chunks to make sure that our players have a stable, high frame-rate experience.
What is the Upscaling toggle?
The Upscaling toggle is a performance-enhancing toggle that enables NVIDIA DLSS 2.0 to boost frame rates on GeForce RTX graphics cards and support higher than 1080 resolutions. For players on other hardware, an alternative TXAA variant upscaler is available.
What are graphics drivers? Why am I being informed that mine may be out of date? How do I update my graphics drivers?
You may have received a pop-up message in your Minecraft for Windows 10 game informing you that your drivers may be out of date:
Graphics drivers are software updates provided by graphics hardware manufacturers that make sure your operating system and programs, including Minecraft for Windows 10, work well together. To check if your drivers are up to date, visit Update drivers in Windows 10. Please make sure your Windows 10 operating system is up to date whenever playing Minecraft for Windows 10.
You can also visit the following websites to learn if your graphics card has a potential driver update:
Is Minecraft with ray tracing coming to next-generation consoles?
We do not have any news to share at this time. For future updates, follow the news on www.minecraft.net.
Can I access my ray tracing enabled worlds to Minecraft on my other hardware devices?
Yes, if you purchase a ray-tracing enabled world from the Minecraft Marketplace on Windows 10 and sign in to your free Xbox Live account, you can download that content on your other Minecraft Bedrock devices. However, you will not experience ray tracing features or PBR on non-supported devices.
Make sure you are signed in to the same Xbox Live account on both devices and visit your Inventory in the Minecraft Marketplace to find your content.
How can I create my own PBR resource pack and play with ray tracing?
Check out the NVIDIA Minecraft with RTX PBR Texturing Guide for more information on how to author texture packs for Minecraft with PBR and enable your texture packs for ray tracing features
Why aren’t all light-emitting blocks glowing in ray tracing worlds?
Only torches, redstone torches, end rods, and lanterns are coded as point lights. All other blocks require emissive textures, made by creators.
I have a new feature request!
Have a suggestion for how to improve a feature in Minecraft? Head over to Minecraft Feedback and let us know!
I think I found a bug!
Please make sure that your graphics drivers are updated before playing Minecraft with ray tracing. If you find a bug that is not listed among our known issues, please report it on the Mojang Studios Issue Tracker page (include screenshots/videos please!).