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Getting the best out of FS2002

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I've just updated my computer to an Athlon 2100XP with 512MB of 2700DDR333 memory with my existing GF3 Ti 500 graphics card.I've now put basically all the sliders on max. and i'm getting a steady FPS of about 25FPS on the ground with scenery such as EGKK UK2000.I'm wondering how should I perfect this system for use with FS2002?Any Tweaking (default setup @ the mo), and any recommended graphics tweaker tools?CheersWill

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Have you overclocked your video card yet? It's the easiest tweak, and the best. A good overclock with your system should give you about 10 extra frames per second.

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Boy--I'm butting heads with Caveman Pilot alot today. IMHO, overclocking is not worth the headaches it can introduce, especially when at best you can pull a 10-15 pct improvement (10fps Caveman? - perhaps in the middle of the desert, but not at LAX). Some swear by it, but I deal with it on the support end, and often I've gone out to a client's home (I offer support services for staff at my office) and I find they've introduced stability problems by overclocking CPU's and graphics peripherals.I think your performance is pretty good if everything is maxed--my best advice would be to get Rivatuner, adjust your LOD to -.5 to -1 (whatever setting that looks the best) and enable anisotropic filtering. The difference is like night and day, and it makes a good card better.-John

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ThanksGetting Rivatuner now. I'm considering overclocking my graphics card maybe alittle, but its not really going to improve much. The FPS are adequate and FS is now really smooooooooooooooth. All that i need now is some rudder pedals to sort out this dodgy Saitek X36.

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Ten fps? And how do you do that? Simply double core and ram speed?Geez.Alex

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To the overclockers (and opponents)... if the overclocking is done with care and a cooling solution is right, you can wield some impressive results. My system:P4 Northwood 2.26Ghz OVERCLOCKED at a STABLE 2.71Ghz with 6 case fansiWill Par4 Mobo (Intel I850E setup)512Mb Corsair memory w/ heatsink OC'ed about 10% core speed (no more, I agree with the 10% rule)nVid G3 Ti500 (NOT G4...just yet, waiting for the NV30)Creative Live! 5.1 X-gamer (not Audigy...I know, LOL)TDK 40x burnerMatrox 80Gb Ultra ATA 133 HdI run just about everything maxed out, but my crappy monitor only allows 1280x1024x32... I have terrain mesh at 95%. It's as smmmooooottthhhh as butter. And yes, even around LAX it's easy to fly, stutters when changing views for the first time. Once the view is loaded into memory it's as smooth as the rest of it. So my results are pretty good, and I'm sure it'd be great at 1600x1200 unless I'm at the largest and busiest airport available.

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I really have to support what John is saying here. I would never bother to overclock any component in any system. Negligible gain, possible performance loss due to overheating, probable compromise of component life, probable inducement of instability. You really need to know exactly what you are doing on the hardware side of things and most people unfortunately don't. If you want more speed go out and buy compoments rated to run at the speeds you wish to achieve. If manufacturers thought a CPU, GPU or memory stick would run correctly and with complete stability and reliability at a higher clock speed whilst at default current and voltage, I can assure you they would have put the chip in the next speed bin at the factory.

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Sounds like my planned upgrade. Did you get the CL2 memory? Only thing different in my setup will be a Ti200 card I have now.I guess the big question is: IS 25 FPS enough? I really wouldn't know, as I only get 25 FPS at FL30 right now. Even if all the overclocking did get you another 10FPS, would the percieved difference be worth risking all that fine hardware you just bought?IS there anyone out there who turns their sliders down because 25 fps is just too choppy?BTW: my planned upgrade is a Gigabyte GA-7vrx, 512 of corsair PC2700 with CL2 latency, and since I don't plan to overclock, a retail XP 2100+ box with factory heatsink and fan. I'm selling vacation time to get this, so if anyone has any horror stories about the above combination speak up.

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JonPO1, I'd have to disagree to a point. I agree that overclocking if you are unsure about anything is a bad idea. Although I've gotten some very big perfomance gains by overclocking. I'm not just taking FS2002 into account. I run Autocad 2002 and I can really get my rendering times down when I'm in my "fast" configuration. My mobo supports a dual boot config and I can easily switch between the two. I had a 750Mhz AMD Duron OC'ed at 900Mhz... tell me that isn't a jump. It was stable for 2 years and it's still pumping out the works for my dad and mom and all I had was the default fan, and it sat in a dehumidified basement (about 10*F cooler than the upstairs).

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Skyboxer, you should have no problems with that setup. I'm not sure how often you upgrade (me...every year or so, I'm a sucker), but if you're not planning on keeping it forever, I'd wait on the memory another month or so. The DDR 400Mhz memory is due out soon for the Athlon chips. Right now, the PC2700 (333) seems to have an odd way of reacting to sudden memory dumps. Although it may just be the system I know (my brother's computer). Anyways, have fun with your system. With prices being so cheap anymore, a new computer isn't that HUGE of a cash withdrawl. Check out www.cyberpowerpc.com or www.ibuypower.com. Both make great gaming systems and they are dirt cheap. You just have to know how to do a lot on the systems as the companies are a bit tough to get ahold of on the customer support end...can we say waiting on the phone???

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I certainly wouldn't actively want to discourage overclocking amongst enthusiast hardware hobbyists. Apart from it being a fundamental discipline of their hobby, this particular group is far more likely to have the required technical knowledge and skill to overcome the pitfalls. They are also far more likely to spend the required money, time (or both) on acquiring, researching, producing or modifying the hardware required to ensure adequate protection during any overclock. If an average user is able to overclock their machine without increasing either voltage or heat dissipation (and is then able to prove stability, for example being able to run 3D Mark 2001 for 48 hours minimum in a continuous loop), then I would consider this to be a successful overclock that is neither likely to induce future problems nor significantly effect the life of the components. As soon as it becomes neccessary to increase voltage then this is almost certainly going to reduce the service life of some of the components within the PC, regardless of whether or not heat dissipation is successfully managed via the employment of one or more of the various active cooling technologies available.Given that many enthusiasts tend to upgrade their equipment on a regular basis, the shortcomings and possible pitfalls of overclocking often do not come into the equation. It is also difficult to prove that vigourous overclocking shortens component life, because no two machines are precisely the same ever, even if they use exactly the same components. There is always some variability in a given component's specific service life, even when they are literally cast from the same die.One thing is for certain. You are always going to read about people's overclocking success stories. Much less so, however, will you read about people's overclocking disasters. It is rare indeed for an individual who has experienced a failure to be so forthcoming and publically candid about such a disaster, particularly in the face of all the boastful success stories that continually fly around. I also tend to think that overclocking is the reason for a substantial proportion of reported application failures and general instability when running applications. But as John points out and I agree. The results of many overclocks ensure an ongoing source of income to PC support personnel, so maybe my way of thinking should simply be taken with a grain of salt ;)

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Well my system is the following:Athlon 2100XP+ (retail boxed with fan and heatsink inc.)Asus A7V333 motherboardSamsung 2700DDR333 memory (2 strips of 256MB)431W PSUThey all seem to work ok, but i'm getting some annoying driver problems with my X36 (like always) and i'm going to resort back to the Saitek drivers from other ones which i found off the net. NOTE: I was getting this same problem with my previous system and is nothing to do with the upgrade.Hope it works well for you too.Will

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Hi,My system is Athlon XP2000, 512ram 62 Nvidia card- with all sliders to max - frames vary sometimes 15 somtimes less. I am happy with 25 if i can get it.But with installed extras such as World Airports the frames can be as low as 2 FPS.Truth is you need a really beefy, really powerful pc to run this sim at max.Keith

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Well said XGH23! FINALLY we simmers have a game that has exceeded our current computing powers! I run Unreal Tournament at highest settings and not a stutter with 16 people in the room. I run Quake 3 about the same...both dated gfx engines. I can remember thinking why in the world would I upgrade to a new vid card b/c all my stupid games require VGA or SVGA graphics in 256 colors...LOL. Now they run with 32 bit, 1600x1200 or more and now we are hoping that technology will catch back up. Aren't these great times...!!

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Hi Will. Just for what it's worth, you might want to consider using the Saitek 1.7 driver rather than their programming software if you are using WinXP. You can then use the intergral stick programmer in FS2002 and it will work fairly well. I have had no luck with their (Saitek's) programming software since Win98SE; lots of mouse and keyboard conflicts. Supposedly they are going to fix this but the definitive fix is already late.Best RegardsEd Green, KCLTegreen1@carolina.rr.com

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Hi Ed.I've just formatted again, and this time everything is working better, other than the rudder axis.I'm using Win98SE, so as your aware there are a few conflicts. I've also installed Saitek's V3 drivers which i've been using for a while and work ok (with always the dodgy rudder axis).Changing to XP might sort out the rudder problem, or maybe even the new drivers from Saitek (when ever they are due to be available), but i've decided buying a set of rudder pedals would prove a wiser move with less fuss than converting to XP.CheersWill

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