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kannwar

TridentX RAM (NickN please read =D)

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Hi All,

 

Haven't posted here much yet but am wondering if I can get some expert advice on this so I don't blow a heap of money for no reason (kind of hoping NickN will chime in here). Here are my specs:

 

Intel Core i7 3930K @ 4.6 GHz

16GB Corsair Vengeance Quad Channel @ 1600 MHz, 9-9-9-24-1T 1.5V

Windows 7 Professional 64bit

EVGA GTX 580 with Forceware 301.24 Beta (have to use this driver for Word Not Allowed's brilliant vSync setting)

ASUS P9X79 Mobo

 

I am from New Zealand and hence am inclined to fly around NZ. I had finally managed to get to a point where I had performance in FSX I was satisfied with. I had a few local scenery addons and the VLC package which made flying in NZ so much more realistic...until I tried the OrbX NZSI scenery. I have been amazed at how real this addon makes NZ in FSX feel. For once I can actually fly around and see houses that look like actual houses and not 3rd world slums, accurately placed autogen and beautifully dense forests and cities. Wonderful! Except for one thing - stuttering. As soon as I installed this addon my relatively wonderful FSX performance went out the window. Sure I still nail 30 fps most of the time except for the tiny little fluctuations, where the fps meter briefly dips to 27 or 28 causing a stutter. When this happens every few seconds or so it becomes very noticeable and annoying. I have noticed higher autogen settings exacerbate it but I am unwilling to lower it past a certain point.

 

With the above hardware providing a fairly powerful platform I didn't really believe there was anything I could improve until I came across some of the other posts on memory speeds and latencies on these forums. Today I read the part of NickN's new tuning guide that he has released early (here it is if you are interested, it is a very interesting and informative read: http://www.simforums.com/Forums/memeory-timings-vs-speed_topic41484.html) and I subsequently download AIDA64 to test the latencies on my RAM. Low and behold I found it to be 51ns at the speeds I posted above. This doesn't come close to entering the "good" performance envelope as specified by Nick (42 - 47ns). Unfortunately my attempts to tighten timings at this speed (even when pushing voltage to 1.64 - I daren't go higher) have failed (Can't even get to 8-8-8 in a stable fashion at 1600) and whilst I can get to 7-7-7 when underclocking to 1333, my latency then decreases to 55ns! Crikey!

 

I believe that the memory in my system currently is just generally slow RAM with little meaningful overclocking capability in the context of FSX. Unfortunately, being in NZ I don't have anything like the choice in RAM products that you guys in the US of A do. I don't want to import anything due to the wait and potential headache with faulty items (I've had very bad luck with DOA hardware in the past). So I kind of have to take an all or nothing approach here to have a shot at getting the best performance possible.

 

Here is the package I am looking at:

 

http://www.playtech.co.nz/afawcs0139235/CATID=700/ID=17551/SID=923767928/productdetails.html

 

I know the stock timings aren't great but I am looking to underclock to perhaps 2133 or even 1866 so I can tighten the timings to something more acceptable. My question is, will this help to smoothen out my fps somewhat (these fluctuations actually occur no matter where I set the fps slider - setting to 20 will give periodic and brief drops to 17-18). And if so, is this a good kit to go for? Another option would be to get a dual channel kit rather than a quad (I assume my Mobo can run dual with two sticks of RAM) such as this:

 

http://www.playtech.co.nz/afawcs0139235/CATID=254/ID=17083/SID=669062950/productdetails.html

 

Huge difference in price but slower speed and slightly tighter timings. I can probably achieve better by underclocking the more expensive set?

 

Honestly, I am quite happy to throw the money at this to get FSX running more smoothly at 30fps with OrbX scenery maxxed out and complex aircraft i.e. Carenado P46T (not brave enough to try a PMDG plane despite their incredible quality and beauty). Obviously however I want to know it will be money spent in the right direction. Would really appreciate some advice from those who have played around with RAM in FSX a bit.

 

Please note I have done as much "tweaking" as I can possibly do (most of which has either made things either worse or changed diddly-squat) and have been unable to get it any better than it currently is so I am just considering obvious hardware improvement options at this stage.

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Sorry I cannot help with your questions, however, I can tell you that NickN does not hang out here any longer....hopefully others will chime in.

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Thanks for the info Mark, I might post this over at SimForums as well.

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If you want to try for lower memory latency, you'll likely need new RAM, which will either be lower density (less RAM) or higher voltage. Pick your poison. If FSX performance is all you care about, 16GB of RAM is a waste. Even 8GB is overkill, but that's what I went with for my Ivy Bridge build. Sandy Bridge doesn't appear to care as much about memory performance as Ivy Bridge does, so I think you'll find your returns to be less than satisfying. A PCI-e 3 graphics card may make the difference for you though, as I've found in my testing of said Ivy Bridge build, which you can read about in this thread: http://forum.avsim.net/topic/372542-ivy-bridge-hits-the-streets-post-your-results-here/

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I have 2x4GB of similar ram and was getting 51ns latency using 1600 8-8-8-24 with 1T.

Then I tried 2T and bumped the speed up a notch 1866 9-9-9-24 2t and suddenly it was 41ns !

 

Try 1866 9-9-9-24 2t and check your AIDA latency.

If it will not work, try 2T with your current settings 1600 settings.

 

Be interested to hear your results....

 

Could be a bug with AIDA or is it possible running at 1T can actualy slow latency

if it results in numerous error corrections?

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Kannwar

One thing to remember a SB cpu has a fixed FSB so RAM timings and latency will be less important than they were on an i7 9xx series where you could change the FSB. If you try to tweak the RAM timings on a SB rig you may experience all kinds of performance/crash issues. Just a thought.

Regards

PeterH

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I went from 1600 9-9-9-24 to 1866 8-8-8-24 2t helped eliminate any micro stutters I had. Now FSX runs incredibly fluid. It's not a huge jump but it works for me...and yes ORBX NZSI scenery is jaw dropping.

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And once again there is another person having stuttering with the SB-E systems. People can say that I'm wrong, but every time when someone is reporting these stuttering, it's someone with a SB-E system. Yes, SB also has some microstuttering, but certainly not as bad. I simply think the cause is the SB-E platform. FSX wasn't coded for CPU's that are as big a cookie, nor where the CPU's made for old programmes like FSX. I think faster RAM will help a little, but don't expect it to solve your problem. Also, proper AffnityMask settings might help. I am not 100% sure, but I think with HT off, put it on 64, with HT on, on 1344. But I might be wrong. This should help a little. Also, try Word Not Allowed's NVIDIA Inspector VSync tweak, which will make your FSX ultra-smooth, but only when 30 FPS is maintained. http://forum.avsim.net/topic/369500-adaptive-vsync-30fps-new-levels-of-smoothness-in-fs9x/

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