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Help me develop a roadmap to X-Plane 11 fps.

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Hey guys, I need some advice.  I want to build a computer that can run X-Plane 11 at 40-60 fps with max or very high settings.  I'm having a problem getting a computer together that will even get me close to that.  I've come to believe that X-Plane is the best (by a wide margin) of the 3 big flight sims out there.  That's just a personal opinion I've come to based on my experience with them.  

 

I tried to run X-Plane 10 on a system that included an AMD FX8350 8-core overclocked to 4.9GHz, AMD Radeon R9-390X 8GB VRAM, 16GB DDR3 RAM @ 2400MHz, on a PCIE SSD.  After I built that about a year ago, I thought it would handle XP 10.  It wouldn't.  I'd get about 20 fps with medium settings.  Fast forward to today, After doing plenty of mind-numbing research about how taxing simulators are, last week I upgraded to an Intel I7 6800K overclocked to 4.8GHz, 16GB DDR4 @3000MHz, and the same R9-390X, same HD.  I had learned that AMD's FX series are practically useless with applications that require strong per-core strength because of the FPU-sharing core pairs.  I thought for sure that this hot new Intel chip would cure my woes, but it still won't run XP10 at higher than 25 frames in the demo area at medium-high settings.

 

It seems the more I learn, the less I know.  I've read that flight simulators are heavily dependent upon per-core performance, and that higher per-core speed trumps number of cores.  That's why I selected the 6800K 4 core @ 4.0GHz instead of the 6900K 8-core at 3.2GHz.  Did I make a mistake there?  Can XP 10 utilize more than 16GB of RAM, with all other system process included?  Would bumping up to 32GB lead to a dramatic increase of frames?  What about the GPU?  I understand that flight simulators aren't really GPU dependent, but is XPlane 10 or 11 an exception to that rule?  Should I buy a $600 NVidia beast?

 

Unfortunately, I've spent all I can on computer parts for a good while, and I won't be able to follow this "roadmap" that I hope you'll help me create for at least months, and then only piece by piece for a long while.  It may be that by the time I'm ready to buy replacement parts, something new and shiny will be out, and perhaps you can help me more at that time.  But for now, I'd like some info.  I'm dying to know what I'd need to do to get a system together that will run XP 11 as smooth as glass.  I love VFR bush-flying in sims with my TrackIR, but I need fluidity, or it's not worth it to me.

 

So, do you know what I need?  I appreciate your time, guys.

 

Chris 

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Important question: What monitor resolution do you intend on running at?

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i would like to know how you got that 6800k to run at 4.8 ghz, you are the first one i have read that has gone above 4.4ghz and even most won't do 4.4ghz

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Important question: What monitor resolution do you intend on running at?

1080 for now.  

 

i would like to know how you got that 6800k to run at 4.8 ghz, you are the first one i have read that has gone above 4.4ghz and even most won't do 4.4ghz

Corsair H115 cooler attached to 2 Noctua NF-A14 3000 fans, 1.36V, temps hover at around 65° under Prime95v26.6 and IBT.  Guess I finally won the silicon lottery.  I think I could hit 4.9 at a low 1.4V, but the temps.

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i am just shocked, i had terrible clocks with my 6800k, my uncore sat at 3ghz and couldn't get my clock speed over 4.4ghz without over heating.

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I understand that flight simulators aren't really GPU dependent, but is XPlane 10 or 11 an exception to that rule?

 

Yes. So is Prepar3d, but not as much.  If you use up all of your VRAM in XPlane (and that isn't hard to do if you have the GPU dependant settings too high) the FPS will suddenly drop down to a slow slideshow and stay there.

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Yes. So is Prepar3d, but not as much.  If you use up all of your VRAM in XPlane (and that isn't hard to do if you have the GPU dependant settings too high) the FPS will suddenly drop down to a slow slideshow and stay there.

The R9 390X has 8GB.  Do I need more?  I see that the pricey NVidia cards have better clock and memory speeds.  How much would that help?

i am just shocked, i had terrible clocks with my 6800k, my uncore sat at 3ghz and couldn't get my clock speed over 4.4ghz without over heating.

What were you cooling with?

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The R9 390X has 8GB.  Do I need more?  I see that the pricey NVidia cards have better clock and memory speeds.  How much would that help?

 

I only have experience with Nvidia cards.  My GTX780 only has 3GB, so I can certainly get the slideshow effect if I turn on HDR + shadows and crank up the AA. Fortunately Xplane can look very good with lower settings. I would think 8GB is plenty, but Xplane can and will take advantage of it with high enough settings.

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Hey guys, I need some advice.  I want to build a computer that can run X-Plane 11 at 40-60 fps with max or very high settings.  I'm having a problem getting a computer together that will even get me close to that.  I've come to believe that X-Plane is the best (by a wide margin) of the 3 big flight sims out there.  That's just a personal opinion I've come to based on my experience with them.  

 

I tried to run X-Plane 10 on a system that included an AMD FX8350 8-core overclocked to 4.9GHz, AMD Radeon R9-390X 8GB VRAM, 16GB DDR3 RAM @ 2400MHz, on a PCIE SSD.  After I built that about a year ago, I thought it would handle XP 10.  It wouldn't.  I'd get about 20 fps with medium settings.  Fast forward to today, After doing plenty of mind-numbing research about how taxing simulators are, last week I upgraded to an Intel I7 6800K overclocked to 4.8GHz, 16GB DDR4 @3000MHz, and the same R9-390X, same HD.  I had learned that AMD's FX series are practically useless with applications that require strong per-core strength because of the FPU-sharing core pairs.  I thought for sure that this hot new Intel chip would cure my woes, but it still won't run XP10 at higher than 25 frames in the demo area at medium-high settings.

 

It seems the more I learn, the less I know.  I've read that flight simulators are heavily dependent upon per-core performance, and that higher per-core speed trumps number of cores.  That's why I selected the 6800K 4 core @ 4.0GHz instead of the 6900K 8-core at 3.2GHz.  Did I make a mistake there?  Can XP 10 utilize more than 16GB of RAM, with all other system process included?  Would bumping up to 32GB lead to a dramatic increase of frames?  What about the GPU?  I understand that flight simulators aren't really GPU dependent, but is XPlane 10 or 11 an exception to that rule?  Should I buy a $600 NVidia beast?

 

Unfortunately, I've spent all I can on computer parts for a good while, and I won't be able to follow this "roadmap" that I hope you'll help me create for at least months, and then only piece by piece for a long while.  It may be that by the time I'm ready to buy replacement parts, something new and shiny will be out, and perhaps you can help me more at that time.  But for now, I'd like some info.  I'm dying to know what I'd need to do to get a system together that will run XP 11 as smooth as glass.  I love VFR bush-flying in sims with my TrackIR, but I need fluidity, or it's not worth it to me.

 

So, do you know what I need?  I appreciate your time, guys.

 

Chris 

 

Hi Chris, unfortunately at this time, X-Plane 10/11 is broken on AMD cards.... that is the problem you are having.  If you search my threads, you will see a long thread where I documented this problem a few weeks ago.

 

I have been in contact with Laminar support for the past few weeks, but unfortunately they are completely useless with this problem.  They know it exists, but there is no solution.

 

See my thread I mentioned for details, but simply swapping in a Nvidia GPU will solve your performance problems. 

 

It's totally silly, and only X-Plane has this problem out of tons of other sims or games I enjoy, but at this time AMD GPU's are simply broken with X-Plane.

 

http://www.avsim.com/topic/499553-xp10-performance-issue-i7-6700k-vs-my-surfacebook-tablet/?p=3526225

 

EDIT: Added link

Edited by be77solo

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Hi Chris, unfortunately at this time, X-Plane 10/11 is broken on AMD cards.... that is the problem you are having.  If you search my threads, you will see a long thread where I documented this problem a few weeks ago.

 

I have been in contact with Laminar support for the past few weeks, but unfortunately they are completely useless with this problem.  They know it exists, but there is no solution.

 

See my thread I mentioned for details, but simply swapping in a Nvidia GPU will solve your performance problems. 

 

It's totally silly, and only X-Plane has this problem out of tons of other sims or games I enjoy, but at this time AMD GPU's are simply broken with X-Plane.

 

http://www.avsim.com/topic/499553-xp10-performance-issue-i7-6700k-vs-my-surfacebook-tablet/?p=3526225

 

EDIT: Added link

I suspect that you may be right.  Interestingly, when I tried the XP 11 demo on my old machine, the one with the FX8350 at 4.9GHz, I was getting 20fps at KSEA.  So I started lowering settings, but nothing would get the fps up, not even 1 or 2 frames.  I ended up setting EVERYTHING to its lowest setting, and still got 20 fps.  No improvement whatsoever.  I just wrote it off as an unoptimized beta problem.  If you haven't done so yet, take a look at XP 11 at the lowest possible settings across the board.  It's...funny.  

 

So, first thing to do to get some better performance is get an NVidia card.  Check.  I'll start saving my pennies.

 

From what I saw of XP10, slideshow that it may have been, I've never seen anything as visually stunning as the streetlights at KSEA at dusk.  I really, really want to get this working. 

 

If you guys have any more suggestions, please, let me know.  I'd still like to know if I'd see a significant performance boost if I added another 16GB of memory to my system.  That'll be cheaper than an NVidia card, and I could probably do that sooner.

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Hi Chris, unfortunately at this time, X-Plane 10/11 is broken on AMD cards.... that is the problem you are having.  If you search my threads, you will see a long thread where I documented this problem a few weeks ago.

 

I have been in contact with Laminar support for the past few weeks, but unfortunately they are completely useless with this problem.  They know it exists, but there is no solution.

 

See my thread I mentioned for details, but simply swapping in a Nvidia GPU will solve your performance problems. 

 

It's totally silly, and only X-Plane has this problem out of tons of other sims or games I enjoy, but at this time AMD GPU's are simply broken with X-Plane.

 

http://www.avsim.com/topic/499553-xp10-performance-issue-i7-6700k-vs-my-surfacebook-tablet/?p=3526225

 

EDIT: Added link

 

I am sure it will get sorted out eventually ? Hopefully sooner then later. This rather concerning because I was looking fwd to this new Vega GPU.  

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It's interesting. Firstly, it's hard to compare with subjective terms such as "medium-high" settings. I have a 2014 iMac with a 4GHz i7 (2700K), with 32GB 1600 DDR3 RAM. So, no outstanding system, in fact very dated and somewhat historic by today's standards 😀

 

For a GPU I have an AMD R9-M295X with 4GB VRAM. Firstly it's AMD, secondly it's limited to 4GB VRAM, and thirdly it's an "M" chip (mobile version, considerably down-rated compared to it's fully-blown GPU card). And, fourthly, it gets throttled by high internal temps, which could occur often due to the useless cooling that Macs have. So, I'm surprised it runs XP11 at all. The system is advertised as 5k, although the highest I have run it is 4k. But in order to get good performance I run XP11 at 1080p.

 

Reflections and clouds tank the fps, but I hear that from many others in this (pb3) uncompleted version of XP11. I run Visual FX on "High (HDR), Texture at "Maximum", AA at "2XSSAA+FXAA", Objects "High" and Reflections "Minimal". Time is noon, weather "clear" at KSAN with the stock B738.

 

This is not wonderful performance, but when comparing to the OP's setting everything at the lowest level and still getting 20fps, something is going on here that defies logic? Comparing a geriatric iMac to a smoking CPU...

 

I wish the OP the best of luck if we ever get a logical explanation to all of this.

 

Bruce.

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That's why I selected the 6800K 4 core @ 4.0GHz

 

The i7-6800K is a 6 core processor, with a base frequency of 3.4GHz, and a max turbo of 3.6GHz. I'm not a serious overclocker by any stretch, but from what I understand, 4.8 on the 6800k would be the domain of sub-zero cooling setups.

 

Are you sure you don't mean a i7-6700K? That's a 4 core processor, with a 4.0 Ghz base frequency.

 

Regardless...

 

You almost certainly having issues with your AMD GPU. I can't tell you exactly what areas are exclusively the domain of the CPU, and what is predominantly running on the GPU, but I can tell you that up until very, very recently I was running a modest 5 year old i5-3570K, and with my 980ti, was able to push a near-constant 30 fps in XP11 with quite high settings and 4x AA at 1440p. I was getting a fair bit better than that in XP10 even, often running 8x AA.

 

Now, everything is always a trade-off, and with that older CPU, it was noticeable that I was more often CPU limited than GPU limited - stuff like complex aircraft or really super dense airport areas would cause me to dip below 30 if I didn't balance settings carefully. On the flip side, it's also very easy to max out my 980ti at 1440; heavy clouds + highest levels of AA will cause me to become GPU limited pretty quickly.

 

Now, having very recently (1 week ago) upgraded to a 6700K and running a pretty easy to achieve 4.4Ghz overclock, my performance hasn't jumped through the roof by any means - but I am finding it far easier to hold at 30 fps at the very least without any CPU related slowdowns. In undemanding areas (and clear skies), I have no problem hitting 40 or 50 fps easy.

 

Unfortunately, my 980ti is now clearly the thing that maxes out first... I'll have to see how flush I feel when the inevitable 1080ti is released.

 

Long story short - an i7-6700K + a 980ti makes for acceptable XP11 performance, but settings still need to be balanced.

 

 

 


I'd still like to know if I'd see a significant performance boost if I added another 16GB of memory to my system.

 

Doubtful. I went from 16GB to 32GB quite awhile ago, and stayed with 32GB with my new build. My reason was to handle the UHD scenery mesh though - with default mesh, or even HD mesh, I don't think I saw a difference.

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The i7-6800K is a 6 core processor, with a base frequency of 3.4GHz, and a max turbo of 3.6GHz. I'm not a serious overclocker by any stretch, but from what I understand, 4.8 on the 6800k would be the domain of sub-zero cooling setups.

 

Are you sure you don't mean a i7-6700K? That's a 4 core processor, with a 4.0 Ghz base frequency.

 

Regardless...

 

You almost certainly having issues with your AMD GPU. I can't tell you exactly what areas are exclusively the domain of the CPU, and what is predominantly running on the GPU, but I can tell you that up until very, very recently I was running a modest 5 year old i5-3570K, and with my 980ti, was able to push a near-constant 30 fps in XP11 with quite high settings and 4x AA at 1440p. I was getting a fair bit better than that in XP10 even, often running 8x AA.

 

Now, everything is always a trade-off, and with that older CPU, it was noticeable that I was more often CPU limited than GPU limited - stuff like complex aircraft or really super dense airport areas would cause me to dip below 30 if I didn't balance settings carefully. On the flip side, it's also very easy to max out my 980ti at 1440; heavy clouds + highest levels of AA will cause me to become GPU limited pretty quickly.

 

Now, having very recently (1 week ago) upgraded to a 6700K and running a pretty easy to achieve 4.4Ghz overclock, my performance hasn't jumped through the roof by any means - but I am finding it far easier to hold at 30 fps at the very least without any CPU related slowdowns. In undemanding areas (and clear skies), I have no problem hitting 40 or 50 fps easy.

 

Unfortunately, my 980ti is now clearly the thing that maxes out first... I'll have to see how flush I feel when the inevitable 1080ti is released.

 

Long story short - an i7-6700K + a 980ti makes for acceptable XP11 performance, but settings still need to be balanced.

 

 

 

 

Doubtful. I went from 16GB to 32GB quite awhile ago, and stayed with 32GB with my new build. My reason was to handle the UHD scenery mesh though - with default mesh, or even HD mesh, I don't think I saw a difference.

Yes, I meant 6700K.  Major typo, I don't see how to edit my original post...

 

Thanks for the info.

i would like to know how you got that 6800k to run at 4.8 ghz, you are the first one i have read that has gone above 4.4ghz and even most won't do 4.4ghz

Oops, I meant 6700k.  Sorry.

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Just my thoughts:

 

I run X Plane 11 on the system in my signature and with all sliders cranked up, it is absolut smooth in 1080.

In fact I run at soemthing between 1080 and 4K, cannot remember the exact resolution 2400x1400, something like this, because 4K with a lot of details cannot be handled by the 1080 GTX, I get around 15 FPS here.

 

I think your main problem is the Graphicscard. The CPU should not be the issue here.

 

But you can find that pretty easy.

Open up the task manager and run Xplane. Are all cores maxed out? -> CPU limited.

Run a software to show the GPU load. GPU maxed out? -> GPU limited

Pretty simple :-)

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