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I have recently started playing round with AI traffic in FSX but noticed that this gave a big hit on VAS usage. I use WOAI traffic and this was designed for use with FS2004 and so uses BMP textures, however I have read that DDS textures are smaller and work better with FSX. Has anybody tried converting the textures and has it made any difference.

 

I have also checked my FSX folder and noticed that there are a lot of BMP files in FSX, including most the FSX scenery files. Has anybody tried changing these to DDS textures.

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There is a file that will convert the BMP files to DDS. Apparently DDS files dont have to be flipped so load faster. I have converted all my WOAI planes to DDS and all my Cloud textures. works fine.

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My cloud textures are already DDS. I am in the middle of changing me AI textures. Do you know about the land textures?

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DDS every single day of the week and twice on Sunday.. 

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I don't believe using DDS for terrain textures will make a difference, as in FSX the textures must be decompressed in memory and combined to create a "synthetic" texture (neighboring landclass textures overlap and are blended, then vector feature textures are overlaid and "baked" into the landclass).  The synthetic textures are then sent to the graphics card.

 

scott s.

.

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OK so I converted my AI to DXT5 with mipmaps and it made no difference to the VAS. Oh well there goes that idea. Back to the drawing board.

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Be careful what you change; if you look at FSX shoreline textures with the SDK ImageTool, you will see that they are DXT5 format (with alpha and mips) but saved with the BMP extension. Even 3rd party shoreline textures adhere to this setup although they usually are 512x512 instead of the default 256x256 pixel size.

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OK so I converted my AI to DXT5 with mipmaps and it made no difference to the VAS.

Unless you resize the textures, this is to be expected.

 

VAS would only be affected by the file size of the textures, not the format.

 

As already stated, the difference between BMP and DDS is the DDS are already flipped vertically. The BMP files have to be flipped before they are rendered by the video card.

 

This will not change your VAS usage, it may speed up texture loading a bit, I doubt it would make much of a noticeable difference.

 

If you want to lower your VAS by editing your AI textures, look at their Alpha channel.

 

Most of the AI diffuse textures will have an all white Alpha channel. Those that do can be converted to DXT1/no Alpha.

 

This will reduce the file size and should lower the VAS.

 

The lightmaps for AI will have an Alpha channel that needs to be preserved. So will prop textures. For these textures DXT1/no Alpha is not an option.

 

Because of this you pretty much have to go through the AI texture folders one at a time and not use a mass converter.

 

regards,

Joe

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Thanks for the advice. I figured out that the only real problem with the VAS is when the PMDG 777 is somewhere like KJFK, where it is a large airport with lots of AI. The closer you get to the airport then the greater the VAS.

 

I tried making the textures for the airport smaller, but for some reason when I did this they all disappeared. Luckily I had a back up.

 

I then set to work on the 777. I halved the VC textures in size but although not bad was noticeable. In the end I made the exterior paint size as 1024x1024. This you can notice the difference but only in the way that you can see the difference between the PMDG and most other aircraft and as I spend most my time in the cockpit then it should not matter. This reduced my VAS by about 0.6Gb. This should be enough to land and park up. I have not tested on a full flight yet. 

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