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Alec

Trying to achieve the Dream of Smooth Stutter Free Simming

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Hey!

 

So I bought a GTX960, a card that will run my Sims at least until 2016 and my possible all New PC with Nvidia Pascal and New Intel CPUs, etc.

 

I can run P3D pretty well at 30+ Fps, but I have yet to achieve the dream of a smooth stutter free simming. I just never achieved that with FSX and Prepar3d. It goies well for 3-5 seconds then stutter. I'm in need of techniques to study and fix these!

 

First of all, is there any tool or way to detect a stutter other than by eye alone? I read something about recording your screen and playing it back later, is it effective/

 

Also, Vsync, etc, I never got to understand the best way to use it in P3D

 

Thanks guys!

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I run an i5 3570 and a GTX 760, so a bit weaker than your setup. 

 

Turn off tessellation. That seems to be the biggest cause of stuttering and low framerate.

Leave your P3D.cfg ALONE! The only tweak you really need is OPTIMIZE_PARTS=1

I keep v-sync at half, so my framerate won't go higher than 30fps. It also seems to make it a bit smoother.

 

Other than that, my settings are pretty high with scenery complexity on dense and autogen on normal (I don't fly low and slow). It runs at a smooth 30fps in almost every scenario in the Majestic Dash 8 Q400, even with REX 4 2048x2048 clouds and ASN. In fact, I just did a flight in a huge rain and thunder storm, but stayed above 25fps at all times. The only scenery I have framerate issues in is Latin VFR San Juan. I have no clue why though. Everybody else seems to run it just fine.

 

Hope this helps!  :smile:

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For testing set texture resolution to 1m. Some patch or another introduced stutters for me with 7cm. I know 1m isn't ideal especially with addon scenery but it worked for me.

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I'd like to hear from somebody who didn't OC'd his rig to 4.7 (so 4.6 or less) and doesn't run one or even two GTX980's (so 970 or less) and is using TrackIR if they can achieve smooth P3D experience. It's just not happening on my machine even with FPS beyond 40 (when using payware scenery and aircrafts). It appears that only situations where I can get steady 60FPS results in smooth flight (I'm talking mainly when looking sideways, turning and using TrackIR). Locking the frames at 30 doesn't work very well for me because when using TrackIR it really makes movements much more choppy and less fluent and even without TrackIR I get constant microstutters when turning and looking sideways. The confusion on optimal settings for vsync and locking vs. unlimited frames doesn't help either (some say lock, some say it's better unlimited, vsync on, off, adaptive, 1/2,...). I'm running 4790k @ 4.5 and GTX970. I'd also like to enjoy P3D, people say it's possible (even though we already determined that what's "smooth" can be very subjective) but I'm jet to get there.

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Well I run a i7 2600 OC to 4.5 a gtx 970 and can never achieve smoothness other get or claim to get I have yet to see one video running smooth..

But are we asking to much? I cannot answer that, there are so many other games that run out there smooth as silk.

 

Difference FS in any disguise is an old programme..yes they are making improvements and these are good to see but performance will always be controversial.

 

I could always run FS at 30 very smooth with payware aircraft and airports weather etc.. But of late I now cannot do that just like the OP it now judders every 6 to 10 seconds for no apparent reason...never seen this in all the years I have had it, identical situation in P3d.

 

But run FSX in DX 10 no stutters....go figure.. And I have pulled the PC art and re install everything...

 

Like others I am hopeful one day we will see smooth flight sims but until that day we are where we are...and I am just not prepared to keep throwing money at it...

 

All,the best

 

Mark

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I'm just wondering if all those people who claim they get a smooth experience and that their P3D is in fact running better than FSX have those monster machines, OCd to 4.7 or more and rocking two GTX980ti? In this case I do believe it's smooth because they can maintain 60FPS in almost all situations and I think that's the performance you have to achieve to get smoothness which compares to that in FSX running 1/2 refresh rate vsync which P3D is not capable off because there is no true full screen in P3D. So, instead of 30FPS in FSX you have to maintain 60 which you can't with payware stuff if you're not rocking the configuration mentioned above. That's what I think but since I'm no expert I may be wrong and maybe just my settings are not optimal and that's why I ask those questions and try to find some answers.

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This is an interesting topic and one that I have spent an enormous amount of hours trying to conquer. I think it was SP1 in FSX when the dreaded micro stutters started for me. Anything other than 60FPS at 60Hz refresh rate and I have the micro stutters. To me it is one of the most immersion breaking, irritating aspects of the simulation. I know everyone is different but for me I find it hard to live with.

 

Through many iterations of processors, motherboards, graphics cards, you name it and the result was always the same. Anything other that 60FPS at 60Hz and the micro stutters reared their ugly head. So I kept at the simulation but at the same time never became totally involved.

 

Then I was reading a thread about NI and 1/2 refresh rate. Ok so I tried this as people were commenting on the smoothness and removal of the micro stutters. This was flight simulator heaven for me, what a smooth experience. I became more involved, purchased more scenery and aircraft and it was awesome.

 

Then along came P3D V2 and I tried that. Anything other than 60FPS at 60Hz and the micro stutters were back. I tried every possible combination of settings but nothing made a difference. Problem was I was hooked on the look of P3D V2 but couldn't accept the micro stutters. Went back to FSX and felt I had given up a level of realism. Damn you LM for putting me in this dilemma.

 

Then I read a post on the LM forums where a person had set their monitor refresh rate to 30Hz and locked the frame rate to 30FPS and solve their micro stutters. I also tried this and found that I can have 2 micro stutter free zones. Locked 60FPS at 60Hz or locked 30FPS at 30Hz. Obviously I chose locked 30FPS at 30Hz as it is unrealistic for me to achieve a constant 60FPS with NGX and AS 319/320.

 

I have a 3930K @ 4.7GHz with a GTX980. Actually I lock the frames at 33FPS, turn Vsync on and triple buffering. This give me exactly the same result as what the NI 1/2 refresh rate did in FSX. No better and no worse just the identical experience. Of course settings still have to be balanced just like they would in FSX.

 

If micro stutters are bothering you I would recommend you try this if your monitor can safely support a 30Hz refresh rate  (check first) and you were happy with the NI 1/2 refresh rate experience in FSX. 

 

I have recently upgraded to a Dell U3415W from a 24" Dell and have set it to 33FPS @ 30Hz. On this monitor I still achieve an equivalent result to what I had previously. Overall a smooth stutter free experience.

 

Regards

Michael M

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This is an interesting topic and one that I have spent an enormous amount of hours trying to conquer. I think it was SP1 in FSX when the dreaded micro stutters started for me. Anything other than 60FPS at 60Hz refresh rate and I have the micro stutters. To me it is one of the most immersion breaking, irritating aspects of the simulation. I know everyone is different but for me I find it hard to live with.

 

Through many iterations of processors, motherboards, graphics cards, you name it and the result was always the same. Anything other that 60FPS at 60Hz and the micro stutters reared their ugly head. So I kept at the simulation but at the same time never became totally involved.

 

Then I was reading a thread about NI and 1/2 refresh rate. Ok so I tried this as people were commenting on the smoothness and removal of the micro stutters. This was flight simulator heaven for me, what a smooth experience. I became more involved, purchased more scenery and aircraft and it was awesome.

 

Then along came P3D V2 and I tried that. Anything other than 60FPS at 60Hz and the micro stutters were back. I tried every possible combination of settings but nothing made a difference. Problem was I was hooked on the look of P3D V2 but couldn't accept the micro stutters. Went back to FSX and felt I had given up a level of realism. Damn you LM for putting me in this dilemma.

 

Then I read a post on the LM forums where a person had set their monitor refresh rate to 30Hz and locked the frame rate to 30FPS and solve their micro stutters. I also tried this and found that I can have 2 micro stutter free zones. Locked 60FPS at 60Hz or locked 30FPS at 30Hz. Obviously I chose locked 30FPS at 30Hz as it is unrealistic for me to achieve a constant 60FPS with NGX and AS 319/320.

 

I have a 3930K @ 4.7GHz with a GTX980. Actually I lock the frames at 33FPS, turn Vsync on and triple buffering. This give me exactly the same result as what the NI 1/2 refresh rate did in FSX. No better and no worse just the identical experience. Of course settings still have to be balanced just like they would in FSX.

 

If micro stutters are bothering you I would recommend you try this if your monitor can safely support a 30Hz refresh rate  (check first) and you were happy with the NI 1/2 refresh rate experience in FSX. 

 

I have recently upgraded to a Dell U3415W from a 24" Dell and have set it to 33FPS @ 30Hz. On this monitor I still achieve an equivalent result to what I had previously. Overall a smooth stutter free experience.

 

Regards

Michael M

That's exactly my experience, to the letter! I just checked and my current monitor doesn't support anything else than 60Hz, I think (well, at least in NVIDIA control panel under Change resolution there is only 60Hz option under Refresh rate, that's where 30Hz should be?) but I'm willing to buy a new one if it produces the same result as 1/2 refresh rate with which I was extremely satisfied in FSX and made my simming so much more enjoyable and my wallet so much more open :)

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That's exactly my experience, to the letter! I just checked and my current monitor doesn't support anything else than 60Hz, I think (well, at least in NVIDIA control panel under Change resolution there is only 60Hz option under Refresh rate, that's where 30Hz should be?) but I'm willing to buy a new one if it produces the same result as 1/2 refresh rate with which I was extremely satisfied in FSX and made my simming so much more enjoyable and my wallet so much more open :)

Hi Tomaz

 

You can create a custom resolution with NVC. Officially my monitor does not support 30Hz either so I just created a custom resolution for it. So people say it may damage your monitor, I do not know enough about this aspect to comment.

 

I ran my Dell 24" for years at 30Hz and no problem. My new monitor uses an LG panel and the actual LG 34" supports a 30Hz preset. So I set mine to 30Hz and all is good. But this is still something each individual has to consider.

 

If you do want to give it a try just google "create custom resolution with nvidia control panel". Good luck and if you do try it please let us know how you go.

 

Regards

Michael M

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The only question is are there many monitors that support 30Hz? Trying to find them on Google is giving me some troubles. I'm looking for "normal" LCD 21-24 inch monitors. Any suggestions?



If you do want to give it a try just google "create custom resolution with nvidia control panel". Good luck and if you do try it please let us know how you go.

 

Thanks! I'll do that and report back. If this all works out... happy days!

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The only question is are there many monitors that support 30Hz? Trying to find them on Google is giving me some troubles. I'm looking for "normal" LCD 21-24 inch monitors. Any suggestions?

 

Officially I don't believe there are many. I guess not many people really want to or have to need to run at 30Hz. It appears that some of the 4k and high res displays have this option. 

 

Maybe ask this question over on the Monitor forum and you could probably also get more technical insight about running your monitor at 30Hz.

 

Michael M

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Hey!

 

So I bought a GTX960, a card that will run my Sims at least until 2016 and my possible all New PC with Nvidia Pascal and New Intel CPUs, etc.

 

I can run P3D pretty well at 30+ Fps, but I have yet to achieve the dream of a smooth stutter free simming. I just never achieved that with FSX and Prepar3d. It goies well for 3-5 seconds then stutter. I'm in need of techniques to study and fix these!

 

First of all, is there any tool or way to detect a stutter other than by eye alone? I read something about recording your screen and playing it back later, is it effective/

 

Also, Vsync, etc, I never got to understand the best way to use it in P3D

 

Thanks guys!

Alexis,

 

What are you running for add-ons, such as custom scenery, airports, aircraft?  I too have experienced a great deal of stutters, even after going through the gambit of changing the settings in the sim, changing the settings in nvidia inspector.  I have found that one of the best tests, call it "stress testing" is to fly around Seattle.  I use ORBX scenery exclusively, which is another good test for stutters.  i can achieve a framerate level that creates a smooth flight in a straight line, but once I make a turn, the stutters appear.

 

I am sure running P3D barebones will create the best experience, as I have tested that over the weekend, but someone once said that when you introduce any third party add-ons to the basic sim, you will start to see framerate drops, stutters and everything else in between.

 

Oh yeah, just a heads up, if anyone decides to switch out their graphics drivers, don't use DDU...it contains a trojan virus (do a search for DDU here at the forums as I cannot recall the exact name of this utility, which many touted as being a thorough graphics driver remover for nvidia cards).  I had to reinstall my system over the weekend, which brings me back to reinstalling P3D, referencing the above statement of a barebones flight.  My framerate counter was off the charts. lol

 

I have not started the laborious task of reinstalling my scenery yet as I am trying to figure out the best way possible to do it without getting errors, but that's for another thread).

 

-Jim

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With the newer Nvidia drivers, there is no need for DDU - selecting a clean install does EXACTLY the same as using DDU or similar programs.

 

If it makes you feel better, go for it but it is really redundant.

 

 

Vic

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With the newer Nvidia drivers, there is no need for DDU - selecting a clean install does EXACTLY the same as using DDU or similar programs.

 

If it makes you feel better, go for it but it is really redundant.

 

 

Vic

Oh I know it isn't needed NOW, lol!  I just thought that perhaps there were some latent files left behind that would have caused an issue and as I said, someone at AVSIM stated that it was a good utility to use, not realizing that it had a virus.  Lesson learned and I shouldn't be such a worrywart.

 

-Jim

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Take a 30Hz refresh monitor and give it Unlimited fps showing between 40 and 60 fps. We only see 30 of those frames on the monitor. Meanwhile the sim is making 10 to 30 more frames than it needs to. When we use unlimited each frame is shown after it is built, so the frame rate depends on the complexity of scene. If we spin around with the outside view the rate of turning speeds up if the complexity of the view decreases. So using unlimited flying a turn can make a mockery of the flight model if the scene changes during the turn. The sim is designed from the ground up to use look ahead frames with the locked fps setting. The unlimited setting is basically a test mode for performance comparison. When we set locked fps in the sim this instructs the sim to use look ahead frames. It is not the same as capping the frame rate with the monitor refresh or GPU limiter. The problem with locked fps is that it takes time to build a look ahead buffer. When we have a look ahead buffer there are pre rendered frames that fill in when the scene complexity increases too much for the rendering to keep up. I get generally 40+ fps all the time so I usually use 20fps fixed, since I've got a 60 Hz refresh monitor. Sweet spots are 12, 15, 20, 30 and 60.

...So what's the implications if I want to use 30fps fixed on my PC instead of 20? First I need 60+ fps showing most of the time in unlimited, requiring a PC with 3/2 the current available throughput. Next I would need a larger look ahead buffer since it will be diminished in 2/3 the time. So it would appear 30fps fixed is too much for my rig.

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...So what's the implications if I want to use 30fps fixed on my PC instead of 20? First I need 60+ fps showing most of the time in unlimited, requiring a PC with 3/2 the current available throughpu

 

Steve, your answer makes a lot of sense to me and clarifies a lot of doubts. Does it work the same way with P3D2 as well? Because in that case the best solution for me appears to set it limited @20 until I have the hardware to step up to 30 and so on ....

 

Andrea

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The sim is designed from the ground up to use look ahead frames with the locked fps setting. The unlimited setting is basically a test mode for performance comparison. When we set locked fps in the sim this instructs the sim to use look ahead frames. It is not the same as capping the frame rate with the monitor refresh or GPU limiter. The problem with locked fps is that it takes time to build a look ahead buffer. When we have a look ahead buffer there are pre rendered frames that fill in when the scene complexity increases too much for the rendering to keep up.

 

and therein lies the whole core of the problem. Trying to make look ahead frames for something flying through 3D space - where at any moment things can change. Yeah it's great when you fly straight and level and don't pan your view, but the second you plug in a TrackIR the virtual accelerations and decelerations  associated with head movement will also dramatically impact the  calculations required to render that image on screen. When you start looking around and maneuvering the aircraft the look ahead buffer is all but useless.

 

edit: Nvidia driver defaults to 3 I believe

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Not sure if you've tried it, by I use TrackIR with perfect results.

 

For TIR to work, and panning, and flying turns, we need a consistent time between frames. The pre rendered frames are there to ensure the next frame is delivered in a consistent time. So at 20fps 0.15s is adequate for that purpose. Running TIR with unlimited or a locked frame rate that cannot be maintained, pass me the sick bag.

 

and therein lies the whole core of the problem. Trying to make look ahead frames for something flying through 3D space - where at any moment things can change. Yeah it's great when you fly straight and level and don't pan your view, but the second you plug in a TrackIR the virtual accelerations and decelerations  associated with head movement will also dramatically impact the  calculations required to render that image on screen. When you start looking around and maneuvering the aircraft the look ahead buffer is all but useless.

 

edit: Nvidia driver defaults to 3 I believe

If you think pre rendered frames is going to help the sim keep going during an almost hung I/O transfer loading a one million facet overcount airport, forget it. But when the sim calculates where your plane is going to be in the next frame, you're better off with the time between frames being consistent and predictable, believe me.

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Which is one of the reasons I keep P3D locked at 20 and don't bother with the FPS counter. As long as it is SMOOTH, I really don't care what the fps is nor can I tell if it's changing. the only time I can notice fps fluctuations is when I look at the fps counter.

 

 

Vic

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I know my thinking on this one is probably not smart but with almost 2000$ rig in 2015 I'm kinda reluctant in running anything at 20FPS.


Officially I don't believe there are many. I guess not many people really want to or have to need to run at 30Hz. It appears that some of the 4k and high res displays have this option. 

 

Maybe ask this question over on the Monitor forum and you could probably also get more technical insight about running your monitor at 30Hz.

 

Michael M

 

I guess I'll have to wait for those happy days a little longer. When I change the refresh rate and press Test button the monitor goes black and a box with a message appears:" Not Optimum Mode". I have a Samsung 23", a couple of years old. Apparently there is no way to override that, at least Google didn't present me with any usable advice :sad: I'll ask the question on the monitor forum.

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I know my thinking on this one is probably not smart but with almost 2000$ rig in 2015 I'm kinda reluctant in running anything at 20FPS

Why? Is FPS a badge of honor of some kind? It would appear that you don't want VISUAL performance in your sim but would rather just get good "numbers".

 

I would take MY smooth 20fps over anyone's choppy 60 any day.

 

I really laugh because I see so many people posting " I can easily get 60fps - but sometimes I get blurries or micro stutters".

 

What is the point in high FPS if you get stutters and/or blurries??  It really makes no sense. I believe the problem really stems from the fact that most people equate high fps with smooth operation. That is absolutely NOT true.

 

You need to find that point on your system where you get the smoothest performance overall REGARDLESS of fps.

 

Frankly, if most users would disable the fps counter they would probably enjoy their sim a lot more.

 

Tune it to be SMOOTH and forget the FPS - there is NO difference between smooth at 20fps and smooth at 60 fps - PERIOD.

 

If you say you can tell the difference - then one of them is not smooth.

 

Get your head out of the FPS trap and enjoy your sim.

 

:)

 

Vic

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Why? Is FPS a badge of honor of some kind? It would appear that you don't want VISUAL performance in your sim but would rather just get good "numbers".

 

I would take MY smooth 20fps over anyone's choppy 60 any day.

 

I really laugh because I see so many people posting " I can easily get 60fps - but sometimes I get blurries or micro stutters".

 

What is the point in high FPS if you get stutters and/or blurries??  It really makes no sense. I believe the problem really stems from the fact that most people equate high fps with smooth operation. That is absolutely NOT true.

 

You need to find that point on your system where you get the smoothest performance overall REGARDLESS of fps.

 

Frankly, if most users would disable the fps counter they would probably enjoy their sim a lot more.

 

Tune it to be SMOOTH and forget the FPS - there is NO difference between smooth at 20fps and smooth at 60 fps - PERIOD.

 

If you say you can tell the difference - then one of them is not smooth.

 

Get your head out of the FPS trap and enjoy your sim.

 

:)

 

Vic

I'd really like to agree with you but I can't. Maybe the smoothness when looking sideways or turning is better at 20 FPS (in P3D) because no microstutters but when I use TrackIR I can absolutely see the difference between 20 and 60 FPS. I big difference when looking around. You don't notice how much more fluid it is at higher FPS or maybe you don't use TIR? Well, I'll try to enjoy what I have, I'll even give your 20FPS a try for a few days to see how it works. Maybe some of those problems will be solved in the v3 :) But that's something for another thread in the forums :)

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You don't notice how much more fluid it is at higher FPS or maybe you don't use TIR?

I always fly with TIR - I use the trackclip pro version. I have heard others with the same complaint as you but I don't have this issue. Perhaps there's extraneous light or something like that? I DID have some trouble with TIR a while back where if I turned my head a little too far, it would hang and speed up etc. Tracked it down finally - at certain times of the day, the sun reflected off a bookcase in just the right place to confuse TIR.

 

The trick will be getting it smooth. Once you think you have it, start lowering the FPS and work down to whatever is the lowest setting you can get on your system. If you find the optimum lowest setting, that frees up your system to process other things with less interference.

 

There should be no fluctuations in the FPS, other than the small 19.9 - 20 or 29.9 - 30 that you see. If it is going 14 - 20 or 25 - 30 - it is NOT smooth. I have never seen either FSX or P3D stay constant 20 or 30 or 60 without moving at least .1.

 

Just for kicks - have someone else set the fps limit so you don't know what it is. Turn OFF the fps counter and fly. See if you can tell which setting you have.

 

 

 

Good luck -

 

Vic

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+1 Vic. That's it Vic.. That's only reason I look at the FPS to see if how much the numbers are moving. Once I found that I know p3d is smooth. Any micro stutters or pauses I know it coming from something else. Then I do what you said " Turn OFF the counter and fly." I have no problem with TIR either. Good flightsim wisdom Vic.

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Tune it to be SMOOTH and forget the FPS - there is NO difference between smooth at 20fps and smooth at 60 fps - PERIOD.

 

Absolutely false, for me, but I'm sure there are a lot of other people who would agree with me.

 

Just for kicks - have someone else set the fps limit so you don't know what it is. Turn OFF the fps counter and fly. See if you can tell which setting you have.

 

Good luck -

 

And that's exactly what I did just now. :smile: I did a blind test: I made 3 identical fsx.cfg with the only difference being the FPS limit (20, 30 or 60 FPS). Then I made 30 copies of them. Then I randomly renamed each of them, pressing random letters on the keyboard. Then I picked at random 10 of them, and ran FSX with each one of them in sequence, one by one. After each test, I noted on each filename my perceived frame rate (either 20, 30 or 60).

 

Here's the results I obtained:

 

picked a total of 5 fsx.cfg set at 20 FPS - correctly guessed all of them;

 

picked a total of 2 fsx.cfg set at 30 FPS - correctly guessed all of them;

 

picked a total of 3 fsx.cfg set at 60 FPS - correctly guessed 2 out of 3 of them. On the last one I was undecided if it was 30 or 60, I made a guess of 30.

 

So, I can say without a doubt that the difference between 20 FPS and, say, 40 FPS is for me night and day. The difference between 30 and 60 FPS is less discernible, but it's there, especially if the game is very smooth. Infact, for me stutters tend to level out the difference between frame rate.

 

Honestly, 20 FPS were immediately discernible. Not only that, but it gave me a very displeasant sensation just at the moment of takeoff rotation. Turns and any kind of maneuver were unpleasant as well.

 

Personally I consider 20 FPS an immersion killer. Unfortunately, having a low rig, sometimes I'm forced to fly at such low FPS, but I consider that just a big compromise to enjoy nicer eye candy. I know for a fact that my FPS threshold is somewehere around 35-40 FPS, above those FPS I feel the movement is really smooth. 20 FPS is horrible for me! :smile:

 

I urge any of you to do the same test (shortened): just make 2 copies of your fsx.cfg, set one at 20 FPS and the other at 60 FPS. Of course, you must use a situation where you can get 60 FPS (e.g. with low display settings and a default aircraft). Then, rename at random each of the two, use them in sequence to do a test flight, and now tell me you can't discern between the two!

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