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Guest SteveJ

MegaScenery report

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I installed MegaScenery this weekend. Because my system was "upgraded" to Windows XP I still had the FAT32 file system. Sure enought I hit the failure that has already been mentioned in this news group. So I used the CONVERT command and changed the file system to NTFS. NO PROBLEMS.Now MegaScenery installed without problems. The install tweaked some FS2004 settings dealing with performance.Now, my system is only 1.4 GHZ AMD but I do have 800 MBs memory which helps. I was afraid that MegaScenery would produce a slide show on my system. BUT, instead it is running with at LEAST a 5 FPS increase! And the level of scenery detail is just great. I give two thumbs up to MegaScenery. It runs and looks real good.

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Just curious ... what settings does MegaScenery "tweak". I was thinking about buying this, but don't want some program mucking about with my fine-tuned settings.

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You know... that is so interesting.. because I noticed the same exact thing.I get better FPS with mega scenery than anywhere else.I usually get about 12- 20 fps at default airports.I get at least 24 with megascenery... and what is even more interesting is that I discovered that by slewing to 100K feet (discovered when I wanted to look at an overall view of the scenery), and then return to the runway... for the rest of my session, I have framerates from 35-60 FPS.Luhiss

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Jimmy.. all it does is lower your slider for terrain mesh complexity, and a couple of easily re-adjustable sliders. It is no biggy at all. Just slide em back if you so desire.Luhiss

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My improvements comes with the "sliders" set up just as hight as before installing MegaScenery. I did observer one thing, most likely related to my video card. In trying different settings, I enabled "extendred terrain". Then I noticed some burry look in the textures near me. So I turned off "extended Terrain". Now the near terrain was very clear with great detail. The effect on the distant terrain was not too bad, so for me not using extended terrain is the correct setting. My guess is that with extended terrain selected, it hit a limit on my video cards capabilities. Not sure, but this may be the reason. My video card is a GF3 with 64MB memeoy.Try a flight fron the John Wayne airport to Big Bear airport. I used an IFR flight plan. The scenery is outstanding!Jim

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Megascenery does more than change a couple of slider settings, it also changes the following values which I'm pretty sure can only be accessed directly by editing your fs9.cfg file....TERRAIN_ERROR_FACTOR=30.000000......TERRAIN_DEFAULT_RADIUS=9.000000TERRAIN_EXTENDED_RADIUS=9.000000TERRAIN_EXTENDED_LEVELS=1(other settings may be changed but can be easily adjusted with your sliders)Although Megascenery fully documents these changes in the startup tips and manual, I was initially upset that any fs9 add-on program would automatically change my fs9.cfg settings. I found, however, that the Megascenery tweaks actually seemed to work better than my own changes....not only in the Megascenery SoCal but in other fs9 default scenery locations.....so I have decided to leave the above tweaks in my cfg file.In fact, using the above values, I have been able to increase other slider values above that recommended (TERRAIN MESH COMPLEXITY from 20 to 80, AUTOGEN from off to dense....). FS9 has never run better or smoother on my XP1800+/512/Ti4200(30.82)/winXPHome system.Still, I believe that an add-on program should not automatically tweak your fs9.cfg file, but only recommend changes that may improve performance. Steve J.

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I don't have Megascenery, but I have seen it demonstrated. My guess is that you're getting better FPS because it works without Autogen-it only displays textures, not 3D buildings and trees apart from 'landmarks'.Martijn

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Martijn -Not true. Megascenery works fine with autogen....Although Megascenery recommends that you may need to turn autogen off on slower systems, I am running it fine on my XP1800+/Ti4200 with Scenery Complexity maxed and Autogen at Dense. The 3-D buildings, trees, etc, work just the same as they do with the default scenery.I have great performance usually 20-30 fps (they recommend setting fps lock to unlimited). The only shortcoming is a very long time to load the flight, expecially if you have extended terrain textures or fly during dawn/dusk (double the textures loaded).HTH, Steve Jones.

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Ideas -From FAQ #1 (first locked topic on the forum):Q) Where is the configuration file now located?A) It will be located in your personal Application Data folder. On Windows 2000/XP systems, this is located in Documents and SettingsApplication DataMicrosoftFS9FS9.cfg (for Windows 9x users the path is WindowsApplication DataMicrosoftFS9fs9.cfg). The Application Data folder is hidden, so you will need to enable viewing of hidden files/folders under the Folder Options in your Explorer.HTH, Steve J.

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Well, Steve, I did say it was a guess...I was informed that, although you could turn on Autogen, the Autogen would not line up correctly with the Megascenery, and that it was turned off because of that for the store demonstration I saw. Also, none of the screenshots I've seen so far had Autogen in them-I'd be VERY interested to know if autogen does indeed work well (lined up correctly with streets etc.) since that's what's been holding me back. I'd love to see some screenies with Megascenery + Autogen!Best,Martijn

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Hi Martijn,I'm afraid I'm not well-practiced in getting screenshots online, but what I might suggest is going to www.megascenery.com and checking out the forum there. It is just getting started, but there are a few screenshots and some technical issues being discussed. I think that there has been a few problems with autogen buildings being slightly off (one I believe was reported in a runway!), but also the developed indicated that a patch would be issued soon to correct these autogen locating problems. I, myself, have not noticed any problems with the autogen at all. HTH, Steve J.

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I wonder why the MegaScenery guys recommend setting the fps slider to unlimited? In my experience (and based on what I've learned from the community), that is just wasting fps cycles that is better used to maintain smooth gauge movement and texture displays. Also, it reduces the sense of smoothness because your frame rate might be jumping around between a really low number and a really high number, which adds a stutter effect.Anyway ... I'm just not clear on why the MegaScenery folks see this adjustment as helping the performance of their product.

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Jimmy -I wondered about this also....I usually set my fps lock at 24 or 20, depending on the scenery complexity. Besides the great sectional/terminal charts and book of approach plates, Megascenery comes with a fairly comprehensive manual (63 pp) which discusses the tweaks and has some tutorials on VFR flying.In the manual tweaks section, the developer says that "ground textures will load faster during flight if the target frame rate is set to 'unlimited'". They state that if you do get any jumps or stutters then set the frame rate 10% lower than the fps at the time of that occurence...and keep reducing in 10% increments until the display is smooth.I am using the average fps counter, and occasionally I'll get a slight "jump" which shows up as a 1 or 2 fps on the minimum display, but this doesn't happen very often. In the past when I lock the fps to 20 fps, it seemed like the fps count was seldom maxed, and often lower. Now with the fps unlimited, I get down into the teens on approach to a big airport, but most of the time it is very refreshing to see the fps hovering aroung 30 fps. Perhaps when the novelty wears off, I'll forget about the fps counter once again and just started enjoying the smooth ride.Steve J.P.S. FYI, besides the fs9.cfg changes discussed above and the fps lock at unlimited, these are the other recommendations Megascenery recommends for use with their scenery (which I've found works good for default scenery as well):Terrain Mesh Complexity: 20 (I have mine at 80)Terrain Texture Size: HighTerrain: Land OnlyWater Effects: NoneDusk/Dawn Texture: OffExtended Terrain Textures: Off (if on takes twice as long to initially load textures....also dusk, dawn has twice the amount of textures to load if dusk/dawn texture blending on)Scenery Complexity: Normal (I have mine maxed)Autogen Density: None (I have mine at Dense)No Ground Scenery ShadowsNo Render to Texture (I have mine on)No AntiAliasingMIP Mapping Quality: 8Video Card: Image Quality on Performance (I have mine on Quality)Anisotropic Filitering: 4x (this allows me on my Ti 4200 to turn up MIP Mapping without too much shimmering)Weather: Max Visibility: 40 miles (I have 3-D clouds at 100% but with radius minimized)My system: AMD XP1800+/512/64-Ti4200(30.82)/WinXPHome

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