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neilintheus2

Is it possible yet to max out the sliders on FSX or P3D

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Hi all,

 

Just looking for some help with my future purchasing roadmap, so that I can start with a platform that can be upgraded in the future to something that will run FSX/P3D a lot more quickly than I can today.

 

So things I know:

 

1. FSX is processor intensive and cannot take advantage of multicore systems effectively. Therefore clock-speed is the primary concern.

2. GPUs do help in post-processing, so if you like bloom and anti-aliasing etc, they have a purpose

3. Clouds are a problem, but depend quite a lot on the GPU as well as the CPU

 

So what I do not know is:

 

1. Have the guys re-factoring the code for FSX or P3D done enough yet to move the processing across to the GPU from the CPU.

2. If so, how extensive is this?

3. Is there now a GPU/CPU combination on the market that could handle heavy storms in a PMDG 737 at 30fps?

 

This is theoretical, so cost doesn't real have to be a factor...

 

Btw I looked for answers to this, but nothing that really stood out as definitive.

 

(Just so you know, I run a i7 running at 4GHz, a ASUS GTX 750 Ti, 8Gig of RAM with a 240GB SSD)

 

All the best,

 

Neil

 

 

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In a word to the thread title, 'no'.

 

Long answer to the thread title is 'yes' but you have to turn down sliders and settings.

 

Every single sim subforum has dozens(hundreds) of threads discussing or complaining about performance/running issues. I feel this will continue until a 12Ghz cpu is invented or someone makes a new sim from the ground up. (DCS comes closest, for example)

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Thanks,

 

I was pretty sure that was the case, but after been away from the hobby for a couple of years (long story) I was hoping that the guys at Dovetail or Lockheed-Martin might have managed to tweak things a little more than baking in the Highmem fix and AffinityMask settings.

 

Ah well, we continue to struggle on... At least my favourite planes are steam gauged bush props.

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In a word to the thread title, 'no'.

 

Long answer to the thread title is 'yes' but you have to turn down sliders and settings.

 

Every single sim subforum has dozens(hundreds) of threads discussing or complaining about performance/running issues. I feel this will continue until a 12Ghz cpu is invented or someone makes a new sim from the ground up. (DCS comes closest, for example)

You know, this begs the question as to whom did testing of FSX before it was released to the public and WHAT was used for testing, a supercomputer?  The OP asked a loaded question, as I have to agree with Very on this one.  It's still not possible to have the sliders up to max AND have a smooth and stable flight UNLESS perhaps you have ZERO add-ons running. lol

 

It's almost a laugh that Microsoft included an SDK with FSX, many moons ago, with the intention of having outside developers carry on with add-on content, but how does someone run their sim and all of their add-ons (which are quite a few) and still maintain a stable sim?  It's a tease to allow someone the ability to put their sliders to max, and then experience an OOM, ultimately causing the user to freak out and complain...then the blame game starts, with one dev arguing with another that their product isn't broken and works fine.

Thanks,

 

I was pretty sure that was the case, but after been away from the hobby for a couple of years (long story) I was hoping that the guys at Dovetail or Lockheed-Martin might have managed to tweak things a little more than baking in the Highmem fix and AffinityMask settings.

 

Ah well, we continue to struggle on... At least my favourite planes are steam gauged bush props.

Greater strides have been made over the years and not to place too fine a point on the subject, DTG did well with FSX, producing a much more stable version of FSX and LM has done wonders with their P3D which performs very well now and even without those necessary tweaks we used to use.  I can't say much of anything about v3.3 in P3D, since I have temporarily ceased upgrading P3D from v3.2...it works great the way it is.

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You know, this begs the question as to whom did testing of FSX before it was released to the public and WHAT was used for testing, a supercomputer?

 

I'm guessing that the designers understood that they want a simulation which gives you options and capabilities to run at detail levels outside the reach of the most current computers. They knew that the best performers of the day couldn't run the sim at it's max capabilities, and this was by design. This helps to give the product more longevity as newer technologies come out. FSX didn't fail entirely in this respect, as users are running the sim very smoothly with very high (*but not 100% max) settings on modern computers. But FSX fell victim to a changing hardware development market which ended up being outside its control...

 

Hardware and processor development seemed to veer off to multicore improvements instead of the rapid increases in raw MhZ processing speed, so their vision of having FSX be in full bloom as technology improved hit a rather unfortunate speed bump... not to mention Microsoft's decision to abandon the product after SP2/Acceleration and leave features like a fully realized DX10 engine and deeper code and memory optimizations on the cutting room floor.

 

Why do I feel like it's the fall of 2006 again? :)

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You know, this begs the question as to whom did testing of FSX before it was released to the public and WHAT was used for testing, a supercomputer? 

 

I recall when the Aces team got their hands on a Q6600 chip and reported that this processor really "kicked a_s_s" !

 

As the previous poster said, they knew full well that future hardware would allow better performance.. and it sure has  :smile:

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No, and hopefully it never will be.

 

In order to optimize either to the point that you could, DTG and Lockheed would have to take so much out and/or take so many graphics options away from us that our simulators would end up looking and flying like a mobile flight sim.

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Would love to see FSX run on a 6 GHz CPU. Maybe this finally allows use of building shadows and maximum water.

 

 

 

I recall when the Aces team got their hands on a Q6600 chip and reported that this processor really "kicked a_s_s" !

 

Quads sure were a revelation for MSFS.

 

 

In order to optimize either to the point that you could, DTG and Lockheed would have to take so much out and/or take so many graphics options away from us that our simulators would end up looking and flying like a mobile flight sim.

 

Aerofly 2 is a simulator without any signifcant amount of autogen whatsoever, no AI and no ATC and more than one simmer treats it like the next revelation in flight simulation because it's smooth with high framerates.

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Aerofly2 also doesn't have the flight or weather model that FSX/P3D/ESP has, does it? Nor does it have the mesh and texture resolution of even default FSX/P3D/ESP. Nor does it have the AI system, airports or autogen outside of a small area.

 

Comparing FSX/P3D to Aerofly2 in it's current state is disingenuous at best.

 

I hope Aerofly2 is a smashing success, but it's not anywhere near a simulator as FSX/P3D is.

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Aerofly2 also doesn't have the flight or weather model that FSX/P3D/ESP has, does it? Nor does it have the mesh and texture resolution of even default FSX/P3D/ESP. Nor does it have the AI system, airports or autogen outside of a small area.

 

Comparing FSX/P3D to Aerofly2 in it's current state is disingenuous at best.

 

I hope Aerofly2 is a smashing success, but it's not anywhere near a simulator as FSX/P3D is.

 

Well, that's what I've been saying the entire time.

 

To be fair, it's still a beta but it'll take more than a few updates to get it up to FSX/P3D spec.

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You know, this begs the question as to whom did testing of FSX before it was released to the public and WHAT was used for testing, a supercomputer?  The OP asked a loaded question, as I have to agree with Very on this one.  It's still not possible to have the sliders up to max AND have a smooth and stable flight UNLESS perhaps you have ZERO add-ons running. 

 

FSX was written at a time when there was a major change under way in CPU architectures.  For years, single-threaded CPU performance had increased at a staggering rate of 50-60 percent per year, year over year.  However, for various reasons, right around that time we began hitting certain practical limits on single core speed, and more engineering effort went in to multi-core systems.   We did continue to see increased single-thread performance, but at a reduced rate of something more on the order of 20% per year.    I wish this chart went a little more forward, but it will give you the idea.

 

 

float-point-perf.png

 

Pretend you index 2006 CPU performance at 100.   If you had continued on a 60% per year performance increase for 10 years, here in 2016 you would have a CPU performance of 11000.   However, if you reduce that to a year over year increase of 20 percent, which is closer to what we've seen, you'd have a performance index of only 620.

 

To restate that:  if we'd kept at the rate of performance increase that people were used in in the mid 2000s, our processors would in theory be almost 18 times faster than they are now.  In 2006 this change was already under way, but most people didn't anticipate the rate of change slowing as much as it has for as long as it has.   It has taken a long time for software development to learn how to make use of the parallelism we have now.

 

And, unfortunately, some things in computer science are just very hard to parallelise.    At the risk of grossly over-simplifying a complex subject, certain parts of physics simulation fall right into that area and it will take a lot of work to adapt them to intensely parallel processing.  That is why, in P3D, LM focused more on offloading "secondary" tasks such as rendering scenery to other cores, or to graphics hardware.   This at least gives more time to the main simulation thread -- but it's still a huge bottleneck.

 

There are ways of working around this, but it's the sort of thing that requires a total engine rewrite, not an incremental improvement as LM (and to a lesser degree,DTG) have made.

 

Anyway...  this is all a long winded way of defending the design decisions of a decade ago.  They weren't as idiotic as you make it seem. :)

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This thread may have some answers. It's kind of old though. Read the thread from the bottom of the page up. 

 

Would love to see FSX run on a 6 GHz CPU. Maybe this finally allows use of building shadows and maximum water.

 

Lucky for you, you don't need one as shadows and water are drawn on the GPU using shaders. Same for any texture or physical model in FSX. It's all done using vertex shaders (models), and pixel shaders (textures).  

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Please don't get angry at me. I was surprised as heck too!

I installed a fresh copy of Win 10 on my Sandisk 490 GB. I then thought I would try installing FSX Steam alone ( no box). I let it install in Program File (x86). I then installed my PMDG stuff. I wanted to see if their was any truth to what folks were saying.

After firing up and getting a flight plan from Sim Brief I was sitting at JFK getting 28 FPS. I figured their must be something wrong, can't happen, but it was. Took off and was getting 55+ FPS in climb and cruise. Then I figured I would try Steams ASNext and Rex Soft Clouds. I saw NO apparent decrease in frame rates. ASN's weather is a sight to behold. I have the sliders advanced way, way beyond what they were, almost maxed.

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In a word to the thread title, 'no'.

 

Long answer to the thread title is 'yes' but you have to turn down sliders and settings.

 

Every single sim subforum has dozens(hundreds) of threads discussing or complaining about performance/running issues. I feel this will continue until a 12Ghz cpu is invented or someone makes a new sim from the ground up. (DCS comes closest, for example)

 

 

Uh.. long answer to "can you MAX OUT THE SLIDERS" is "yes, TURN DOWN the sliders"....?  What...? :fool: 

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Yes, you can max out all the sliders and encounter an OOM much faster.

 

Computers are now strong enough you can launch FSX straight into an OOM because you're up against the 32 bit limit.

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Yes, you can max out all the sliders and encounter an OOM much faster.

 

Computers are now strong enough you can launch FSX straight into an OOM because you're up against the 32 bit limit.

I don't understand where your coming from. Your logic seems to suggest that a strong enough machine would run notepad into an OOM. I agree with the 32bit limit. It's the code in FSX thats the problem, not a strong machine. Every time I built a stronger computer it ran FSX a bit better, particularly on the visual side with higher end graphic cards.

MS-FSX alone? I'll give it a 6

MS-FSX AND FSX-SE together? I'll give it an 8

FSX-SE installed alone? I'll give it a 10

This is the result I have personal;y seen on MY  machine. The scores in my mind are mine and mine alone, no benchmarking or anything, just seat of the pants.

An added bonus in my mind is on a proper clean Steam install you get Folders named FSX, NOT FSX-SE, that solves a whole bunch of problems. Many with 3rd party addon's.

I can advance the sliders a lot more with a clean FSX Steam install. Check it yourself with process explorer.

Good luck!

 

Baldy 

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I recall when the Aces team got their hands on a Q6600 chip and reported that this processor really "kicked a_s_s" !

 

I'm still using one of those...  :smile:

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I'm still using one of those...  :smile:

To be honest I wish the AMIGA machine got the attention and credit it deserved. I had several of them. It was, funded by a group of Doctors who wanted a Flight Simulator machine. At least that's what I was told. MS built the operating system. I did a little programing in Lattice C:, it had 9 view ports and 3 graphic chips that were amazing for their time. It was used by the Cable TV company's for scrolling thru the programs on the time slots in each channel it's directory. It scrolled so smoothly it was phenomenal, no other computer came close. I had a Cad Cam application that was way better than Auto Cad. I zoom a dot in a drawing until it became a square, you could then place your cursor in the DOT and write a letter. I wrote one to my brother and asked if he saw the message, " What message?" he asked. Told him it was right on the drawing, he said" Your nuts", then I told him where to look.  It could run the Video Toaster . NO other computer then could do the wipes and folds, vinnitien blinds, whirl away effects etc. It used the Moto 68000 which cost $1,500.00.  I had 6 Scussi HDrive daisy chained, one on top the other.

They were a lot of fun!

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