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shermank

Geoffa...glad to hear you were on beta team. Question?

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Geoffa,Really happy to hear you were testing FS2004. They couldn't have had a more thorough person on the team. I keep reading these "horror stories" on frame rates and sluggishness with the new version. I read comments that warn that only the computers of the future will enjoy true "fluid flight". The OTHER forum dedicated to FS2004 is ripe with this stuff.Question: How will a new Dell 2.8 gig, ATI Radeon 9700, and 512 MB Ram work with FS2004 (in your opinion, of course). I can't wait to fly your Deb on the new platform, but I really hope that the dreaded stutters stay away with all the great clouds, weather, and detailed airports. Thanks for all your contributions. Stan

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Well thanks for all the praise-even though I don't deserve any of it.Performance?-I've got everything pretty much maxed out-and I am getting similar to fs2002. So I would use that as a general benchmark. I am running on a lesser machine-an athlon 2100.Would I could I have more-always!You will have to make lots of choices of what you want turned up etc.I have autogen maxed, clouds at default levels (they look super at that so why mess with it) and almost everything else maxed out at 1280/1024.I am really stunned-I don't know how MS did it-but with all the increase in features and live weather download with superior weather generator it still performs about as good as fs2002!Are you salivating? You should be! :Dhttp://mywebpages.comcast.net/geofa/pages/Geofdog2.jpg

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I'd seriously disagree that performance is the same Geoff.Im also a beta tester. If you have a lower end PC (older PC nowadays)under about 2 Ghz and a GF4 video card, my experience is that you'll have problems with FS2004. I have a network in my house that includes a handbuilt older AMD 1.3Ghz CPU GF3, 748 MHZ SDRAM thats my PC (once a rocket ship.) as well as 3 Dell PC's recently acquired that are later models (P4 GF4MX etc that my kids use.) What I find is that FS2002 works great on all of these machines. FS2004 works well only on the higher end machines. The reason is the weather. Clouds are now handled as individual objects with their own lives and shapes. This seriously complicates rendering. For this reason, my own PC, which was a cadillac months ago...is now a dog!! I have FS2004 now...but cant fly it because it drags on my PC. Upgrades here I come.Best,Eric

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Well I can only speak on the basis of my machine-and Stan's is better so he should expect ok-to great.There are always the sliders. We of course are tempted always to turn everything to the max to see what it can do-then once seeing the "good life" are reluctant to turn it back to what our machines can actually do.And the cycle goes on and on.....http://mywebpages.comcast.net/geofa/pages/Geofdog2.jpg

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With the multitude of settings available within FS2004, you can easily tone down the clouds to perhaps "cirrus" while around high density airports, and get back into heavy cumulous when at higher altitudes, or over open country. I'm having better success with FS2004 & high density auto-gen trees in places like Jackson Hole, than with FS2002. And it looks much better too!I've taken many cross country flights in FS2004 with terrain settings high, mesh scenery added, and other sliders varying. But at least the fps hit the upper 20's to low 30's in these conditions. A very detailed airport with sliders maxxed can get into the low teens, and perhap's slower. And I'll just remove some clouds. This is where I figure a faster machine will have the edge. But for many flight's, including lot's of clouds at higher altitudes, my machine is still nothing to get upset about.L.Adamson Athlon1900XP/Geforce3Ti500/512Ram

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I feel much better now. Going to San Diego next week....business and pleasure, and then to Vegas for a few days. That'll take a week off my wait, since I won't be on the computer for that week. When I return, it will be a very short wait for my trip to Electronics Boutique where they usually reserve the very first copy for me. I AM SALIVATING! It's time for a change. Talk to you soon. Stan

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I totaly agree with you Geof. I have been flight simming since FS2, and this certainly is the biggest advancement yet. With the great ATC, weather and scenery, the performance is wonderful. It is superb at any settings level.

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There has been a lot of talk of the MIPMAP sliders in FS2004, and how maxing them kill performance (especially in clouds)Any comments on this, and what do you run this slider at?

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Strangly -on my setup moving the sliders back and forth don't make a huge difference-if I take the install defaults it is much faster-but then a lot of the drool features are not there.So I run with all the sliders to the right-except for the cloud settings which at defaults look spectacular-so why tax the machine?The mip mapping settings and autogen seem to make a huge difference.I get in general using the default cessna with the above pretty maxed out settings 18-20fps-and pretty smooth flight except on the ground at a huge, busy airport when it might get a little choppy.http://mywebpages.comcast.net/geofa/pages/Geofdog2.jpg

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Hi Stan,I have pretty much exactly the same Dell PC that you have. Do you have DDR or RDRam? That would probably be the only differnce.. I have the RDram. As for performance, I have nearly all my sliders to the right on Fs2004.. most on dense which delivers to me an extremely good fps and general performance for Fs2004. There are some areas were you see the fps drop, but i have yet to experience it where it is very noticable for any duration.I did have to upgrade my drivers to the latest Catalyst for Fs2004 to work correctly, but as soon as those were in place it was fine.I think you will have a great deal of enjoyment once you get FS2004 on the pc config you are currently running.Hope this helps a littleRgdsAidanhttp://www.avsim.com/vfr_center/avsim_sig.jpg

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Eric,That's an interesting situation Eric, as my experience has been quite different that what you've apparently ran into. I have two systems sitting side-by-side, one with FS2002 and the other with FS2004 (Gold)and my experience has been that FS2004 is slightly better than FS2002 on similar systems. The exception being that if I add any clouds to FS2002, then the difference between the sims is very dramatic in favor of FS2004! So far, FS2004 has proven to me to be superior in fps and in its glassy & fluid feel as compared to FS2002. The biggest difference being that adding or taking away clouds or weather in FS2004 has no affect whatsoever on performance with my system.System specs:FS2002Compaq 7110AMD 1.3Ghz64mb GeForce2 MMX video Card256Mb ramFS2004AMD 1.2Ghz128mb ATI 9700 Pro512Mb ramBear!

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One things for sure in about a year from now I will be able to up grade to a computer that will be mid range and low cost and yet will be able to run 2004 quit nicely like. Right now I have a p4 2 gig with rd512ram and going to upgrade my video card to the nVidia5900ultra which should work fine except on cloudy days at busy airports. However a year from now I will not feel so bad about getting a 3gig HT with a serial hard drive and faster ram for the sim knowing that with every release Ms is doing its best to keep it frame rate happy.Kil~

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Just to add to the conversation, I am running a Dell 8200 P4, 1024 RDRAM and an ATI 9700 Pro. After running the beta's and the Gold - going back to FS2002 - I definitely notice a rise in overall FPS in FS2004. FS2004 runs incredibly well with my sliders almost fully maxed - meaning my weather is pretty much to the right and same with the scenery settings. Turns are smooth and there does not seem to be a huge fluctuation in frames like we saw in FS2002.If you have a good video card, this will definitely assist in taking some of the load of the CPU.

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would the 533 bus speed make a signifcant difference instead of the 800 bus speed on a 2.4gig system? I'm looking at a Dell to replace and upgrade my trusty old 1 gig based system. Thanks!Sherm

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Right now for FS2002 I have all the sliders maxed out, and the performance is pretty good (slows down abit at high density airport, and when there is alot of puff thunderstorm type clouds) so maybe with FS2004 I will be getting better performance with everything maxed out. I am planning on upgrading my graphics card (GeForce2 MX 400) I was planning other upgrades, but maybe I will not have to now.

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