Sign in to follow this  
Truthan

FS9 Revisited...A TP Tour De Force

Recommended Posts

Sorry for the long post but...I've just been blown away... In the frenzied attempts to get FSX's stunning 1.1m/pixel resolution tiles to load from the web (without having to resort to painfully slow airspeeds), I'd been overlooking the incredible gemstone right at my feet: FS9 and TileProxy. I've just finished a flight from Winnemucca, Nevada to Missoula, Montana non-stop (350 nautical miles with no refreshes) in the FS9 Real Air C172. I averaged between 100 to 110 knots and (with the settings 60 to 80 FPS at 1600x1200x32 resolution. At an average of 4000 to 5000 feet AGL it was a captivating journey...perfectly displayed 4.75m/pixel textures...like an endless carpet of Megascenery, horizon after horizon. Three previous long distance FS9 flights have garnered similar results.http://forums.avsim.net/user_files/174384.jpgGranted, FSX's 1.1m/pixel tiles, when they kick in, are amazingly sharp and crisp, and the realism can be intoxicating, but after weeks of TP tweaks to increase texture loading speed, I've been somewhat dismayed that I can't really FLY anywhere but around the neighborhood unless I'm willing to crawl there at les than 70 knots... and pause to refresh frequently along the way. This probably isn't so much a limitation of TP (or Christian's brilliant programming), but simply the difficulty of asking TP to do what FSX requires it to, given the greater number of textures it wants to be fed on demand and architecture of the beast in general. Phil Taylor, the senior PM for graphics & terrain at Aces Studio, producers of Flight Simulator, after speaking with Adam Szofran (Software Engineer, Microsoft) mentioned in his web log at: http://blogs.msdn.com/ptaylor/archive/2007...f-the-week.aspxon 05/11/07: "He (Adam Szofran) also wanted me to mention that TileProxy is using a FS9 path, basically because it is the only path available for the style of source data involved. However, that path requires massive amounts of file I/O and because of the huge number of files involved it completely blows the texture cache used by the terrain texture compositor. So there is a limit to how efficient that will ever be until we rework the architecture to be more accommodating."Like everyone, I'm really excited about FSX/TP revolution, and I'm sure it will improve greatly as things progress, but the almost overlooked transcendence of our trusty old friend FS9 into a well oiled coast to coast "Instant Megascenery" streamer really shouldn't be underestimated or left unvisited. After so many fits and starts with trying to find the perfect settings and configuration for the FSX/TP marriage it was pure exhilaration to see how fast FS9 could load the 4.75m/pixel tiles ahead of my aircraft. Performance may vary depending on your system, but none the less, if you haven't already, try it for yourself and see if you get similar results. HERE ARE MY FS9/TP SETTINGS and SOME TIPS FOR FLYING:(Note: All my tests have been with the Y*****! Maps Sever, another server may vary from my results.)PROXYUSER.INI:1. Set the following LOD section of the .ini at "13" (for 4.75m/pixel resolution) like so:TP .ini section:# Resolution limiter: 15 = 1.1m/pixel, 14 = 2.3m/pixel, 13 = 4.75m/pixel# Lower resolutions load faster, but are visually less appealing.max_lod=132. Set your chosen online texture server settings for a Min/max of 9-15 like so:min_level=9max_level=15color_hack=Nocolor_level=0bulk_extend=50(if you use v******e****.net as your server, and get black an white textures in a particular area, set your clor hack entry at

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Help AVSIM continue to serve you!
Please donate today!

Thanks for the summary. This is sure going to help a lot of people.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here are a few more helpful TP/FS9 settings I've discovered as well:1. FS9 DISPLAY SETTINGS: Turn of all water effects and detail. "Water Effects: None" "Terrain detail: Land only"This increses FPS on my system by 10-20! WHY? I have no idea. I have noticed however that when I have incorrectly set my ProxyUser.ini Min/Max values so that the area below my aircraft is without textures, there's WATER there. Perhaps the water effects remain active UNDER the TP textures, I don't know, but it sure gives my FPS a boost.2. FS9 DISPLAY SETTINGS: "Mip mapping quality: 8" Turn it up! Doesn't seem to hurt FPS or anything else and renders sharp crisp textures.3. FS9 DISPLAY SETTINGS: "Render to texture: Uncheck"Turning off "Render to texture" seemed to crispen up my level 15 textures a hair and I think they may even load a bit faster. It's a minimal impact and difficult to notice much change, but after several comparisons I do believe there's a difference. BEWARE IF YOU'RE USING DXT CLOUDS! DXT compressed cloud textures require "Render to texture" to be checked or you will get a CTD at FS load if there are clouds present. Reload either default or non-DXT clouds and there's no problem. 4. PROXYUSER.INI: Experiment with changing the default ProxyUser.ini "lod_distance=1000" setting. This is a fantastic new addition to the ProxyUser.ini file, but only works with FS9 and FSX RTM (i.e. non-SP1). Changing this parameter from the TP default of "lod_distance=1000" to "lod_distance=1200" changes the radius of level 15 textures (the highest level in FS9) from 1000 meters around your aircraft to 1200 meters around your aircraft (see screenshot below). This may seem small, but as is mentioed in the TP Manual, this distance factor then DOUBLES with each decreasing level. For example, the next lowest level (i.e. level 14) which is normally TWICE the default width (or 2000 meters) is increased to 2400 meters, and your level 13 radius inceases from 4000 meters to 4800 meters....level 12 textures fom 8000 meters to 9600 meters etc.Because of this "doubling" effect, you should be careful not to tweak this number too high, as you will be exponetially increasing the number of higher level texures FS9 must request from TP, thus increasing your load times. I have found "lod_distance=1200" to expand the level 15 textures out just enough that when the textures load ahead of my aircraft they're well enough ahead of me not break the foreground immersion, and that the expanding radius of lower resolution textures around the aircraft are expanded just enough to keep the general area around the aircraft consistently detailed. Play with the number on your own system and find the "balance" between load times and "foreground to distance" clarity. Here's an overhead example from Wendover, Utah (where the Level 15 textures are darker): http://forums.avsim.net/user_files/174801.jpgGood luck and happy landings!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You kind of get a similar effect with the new level mapping feature in Beta 5.You can remap specific zoom levels to another. For example you could replace all zoom level 14 tiles with tiles generated from zoom level 15 (this does not have a physical impact on tile resolution, it just determines which zoom level of the online service the data is taken from )Also note that neither the lod_distance nor the level_mapping will force FS9 to actually *use* higher resolutions for rendering. So they get written to disk possibly as bigger files, but not necessarily loaded at their fullest resolution by FS9.Getting higher resolution into FS9 (and into your graphics card) can only be achieved through a combination of "mip mapping quality" and a higher detail radius in the graphics settings. Then FS9 itself will load higher mip levels in a larger radius around the craft.Thanks for all your input. We could start building up an encyclopedia with that. ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow! That did it - this thread was the final motivation for me to purchase FS2004 (although I recently bought FSX)... Well, this and the fact that the best freeware aircraft I'd like most to fly were made for FS9! I'm looking forward to enjoy TileProxy even more now and will give FSX another chance at a later time...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi,I have Vista Ult. x32 and FSX. I haven't installed FS2004 for many years.1. Can I install FS2004 without affecting FSX?2. Can I point the FS2004 scenery library manager to share the FSX tileproxy world folder? Or do I have to run a completely separate folder and installation?Thanks

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

1) yes I think so2) If both FSX and FS9 are in their default location, all you need to do is reinstall TP Beta 5 with the checkbox for FS9 support set. Then both can share the photoreal world folder.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks Christian. At the moment I can get 100+ knots at 5m resolution at 3840x1024 with a C2D@3GHz. I want to see if FS9 is any better :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well this is my experience with FS2004...3840x1024 Triplehead2Go, 8800GTS 320MB 600/1000 (16xAA 16xAniso), C2D@3GHz, 4GB 667DDR2, VistaUlt x32.In a pre-cached area (I have flown over many times) I could fly the Lear @300knots@4000' with TPBeta5 keeping up well (using Truthan's settings). I did not need to refresh the scenery as Truthan suggested with the top down view.So I can conclude that FS2004 & TPBeta5 are a A TP Tour De Force :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi,I changed the LOD distance from 1000 to 2000 and it was a much better experience with tiles being loaded around 2-3 miles out before I flew over them. With the setting at 1000 sometimes the tiles would be swapped just as they appeared through the Bell foot window. My framerate has dropped from 100FPS to around 50 :) but that is with maxing out the nvidia controls on the 8800.I would like to try remap specific zoom levels to another level. How can I do that Christian?I just gets better and better doesn't it ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just a quick update...The x16AA setting on the 8800GTS wasn't actually doing anything! It didn't matter what I set it to there wasn't any AA in FS9 at all when using Nvidia control panel or Rivatuner (Forceware 158.24). So I installed nHancer and after playing around a bit got x16AA to work and my frame rate dropped to 12FPS :) So I have reduced AA to Supersampling 4xS and accepted 50-60FPS as the best compromise.I would like to know how to remap levels 13 to 14 though ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ed,THANKS!! I had all but conceded that TileProxy was not going to work on my system using FSX. I totally forgot that FS2004/FS9 was an alternative. Indeed, the FPS must be high to cause the textures to load at the best resolution. I also, reduced my MipMap setting from 8 to 6. There is little distance loss and the shimmering that FS9 is famous for is reduced. I am going to upgrade to a cheap Core2Duo (e4400) over-clock it and hop I can gain a low cost platform capable of using TileProxy on FSX.While you can't fly low in the canyons the Grand Canyon/Yahoo is quite amazing in FS9. At an appropriate altitude it is the same a being there in an expensive tourist flight, minus the heat. Using an AMD 2ghz, 1gb memory, ATI9800SE-128mb Getting 60fps which is needed since around 30fps the textures become blurred. However, if you can regain the 60fps level they recover contrary to FSX.Regards,Dick BoleyA PC, an LCD, speakers, CH yoke

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this