Adamski_NZ

Generic PTA testing scenario - suggestions please!

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Hmmm ... thanks, Mike. Those "Scenario 2" Nelson shots are very interesting. It justifies going to all this effort, I think - as there are definite differences. I've long suspected my presets appear to be a tiny bit dull on other peoples' systems - and this appears to confirm it.

 

All we have to do now is work out why!!!

 

If we get more test submissions from other people, we may be able to work out who the "odd man out" is. I suspect it might be me :nea:

 

Adam.

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Adam, your sky in 'Adam's Image' appears to have a touch more blue than in 'My Image' and yet, apparently, we are using the same REX4 TD Dawn/Day/Dusk Sky selection. Could that be a clue? I am using your recommended HDR settings for 20_10 (Brightness: 0.70, Bloom: 0.20, Saturation: 0.85).

 

Regards,

Mike

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Hi Adam,

I considered trying Gennadiy's 'Clear' set of Sky Textures, but that would necessarily entail having to use his specific PTA Preset and recommended HDR settings, the latter being very different: Brightness - 1.15, Bloom - 0.25, Saturation - 1.45

So, for the moment, I decided against as I thought that this would not be particularly helpful.

I have a sneaky suspicion that, in the end, this may come down to the calibration settings of our respective monitors. I'm hoping not as we are told that ASUS ROG Monitors are set up optimally before RTM and, to date, that has certainly been my impression as I have not had to make any adjustments.

On the other hand, could it be the default desktop colour settings in the NVIDIA Control Panel?
Adjust Image Settings: Use the advanced 3D image settings
Adjust desktop colour settings:
25ALyM1.jpg

Monitor ICC Profile in use:
1dxKOoO.jpg

Regards,
Mike

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Mike - I think the skies look different because the whole image has a different cast to it (yours or mine).

 

I've experimented with different monitor settings before - and taken P3D shots with two obvious/extreme settings. The images look different when viewed on that PC, but when viewed on another PC, they're identical. ie. It's only the output to that one monitor that's different - not the saved image. This was my original reason for trying PTA: to try and brighten up my P3D overall.

 

Adam.

 

EDIT: OK ... I have a theory. I'm going to re-run my mointor settings test. When I originally tried it, I wasn't using Reshade or PTA - ie. my P3D images were entirely without post-processing. However - my PTA presets have a couple of post-processing tweaks (contrast and vibrance) ... which is suspiciously close to the differences we're seeing. I always thought that PTA's post-processing tweaks simply "mimicked" the effect, but weren't true post-processing effects. As far as I remember, different moinitor settings *do* affect post-processing.

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Well ... I set up some extreme post-processing values in PTA, then took a whole raft of screenshots with different monitor settings and profiles. All my saved screenshots were *identical*. Mind you, these were all saved with the traditional "V" key - which stores a raw image. I dare say that if you used any other form of screengrab, then the colour changes would be visible.

 

Adam.

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Hi Adam,

 

This is certainly proving to be a challenging exercise for you. I too use the 'V' key to capture screenshots in P3D and these are, for the purpose of this investigation, being saved as TIFF files which, as you said, is a RAW or LOSSLESS format. So, that's not the explanation for the differences seen in our images. BTW, I used 'Paint' to resize (2560 -> 1280 x720 pixels) and save the images as JPEGs.

 

As yet we do not know which image is the more accurate representation of what we should be seeing as a result of using your PTA 20_10 Preset. My money is on your images as these are how I would like mine to appear. This thread has demonstrated that on occasions potentially this can come fairly close, but our images are never actually identical. Perhaps there are just too many variables involved making this forever a tantalising rather an an actual objective.

______________________________________________________________________

 

NOTAM

 

We need more data. Hopefully a few of you reading this thread might now feel persuaded to submit your own images of Adam's TEST Scenario 01 and 02 situations. There has been much discussion and praise about the various Presets in use right now, yet we cannot be sure how closely our individual results, as seen on our respective monitors, match that witnessed by our chosen Preset's creator, in this case Adam.

______________________________________________________________________

 

Adam, I know I have expressed my reluctance, but do you think it would be worthwhile me recalibrating my monitor? Do you think it might make a difference? I have an X-Rite ColorMunki Photo which, I'm ashamed to say, has lain idle for several years. If you think it might help clarify this situation I am prepared to put my reservations aside, blow the dust off the box and put it to 'good' use once again. All in a good cause and all that 😇

 

Meantime, let's hope others will feel inclined to join the party. After all, we can only benefit from this process.

 

Regards,

Mike

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Mike - I don't think calibrating your monitor would help - as P3D cpatures the *raw* image. If anyone needs their monitor calibrating, it should be me (ie. whoever's developing the preset) as it really needs to be as true and accurate as possible to start with.

 

My other thought is that it may be video card dependent (who knows - maybe even individual driver dependent). I remember in FS9 days, thinking that all ATI cards looked slightly blue-er (and sharper) than their nVidia counterparts - which seemed a little "muddy" by comparison (sound familiar?). I've owned a few ATI cards over the years, but always found their drivers/and support appalling. However - it does show, I think, that different card brands have different colour characteristics.

 

My current nVidia driver is 378.49 - what's yours?

 

Adam.

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I don't think calibrating your monitor would help - as P3D cpatures the *raw* image. If anyone needs their monitor calibrating, it should be me (ie. whoever's developing the preset) as it really needs to be as true and accurate as possible to start with.

 

Hi Adam,

 

I understand what you are saying and I'm pretty sure you are correct. However, my curiousity has been piqued and, like the irresistible force, I feel I have no choice but to follow this one through..LOL! No harm in trying and, you never know, there might be a surprise waiting at the end.

 

I'm using the same driver - see signature.

 

Regards,

Mike

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I'll retake that test shot. I updated my drivers not that long ago (typically, I can't remember when, but I suppose it's not too difficult to find out). There's an outside chance that the pic was taken with the previous driver.

 

If you ever want to sell your "FunkyMunki" ... :wink:

 

Adam.

 

EDIT: It's also possible that your "Paint" program is changing the palette slightly. My scenario archive has the full .tif file in it - how does it compare with your uncompressed one?

I just checked my 378.49 install date: 5 days before taking the test shot.

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before you guys get too much farther, can you double check your time/day for your comparison Nelson shots? look at the tree shadows at the north end of the field. they are different between your shots.

 

and also - are you running the same resolutions?

 

and finally - with dynamic lighting, how will you ever know that you are both allowing the same amount of time for brightness and contrast and saturation to adjust? or do you both run HDR off?

 

Im enjoying reading your thread but have little useful input for you. sorry. but do recheck your time/day/date. theres something not right there.

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Hi Dave,

 

Many thanks for your helpful input. Keeps us on our toes! I'll answer each of your points in turn.

 

Can you double check your time/day for your comparison Nelson shots? Look at the tree shadows at the north end of the field. they are different between your shots.

 

I am sure we have this covered. I used Adam's provided 'PTA Generic TEST 02' flight scenario files thus ensuring our initial viewpoint, weather, time and season setups were the same. However, your eagle-eyed observation regarding the tree shadow differences were due, I believe, to the position of our respective 'Scenery Object' sliders in P3D. Having brought this to my attention (thanks!) I find Adam's sliders are hard right (Extremely Dense). I will post another image in my next update for Adam below and you will see the change.

Are you running the same resolutions?

 

I am running 2560x1440x32. Adam's could be different.

 

With dynamic lighting, how will you ever know that you are both allowing the same amount of time for brightness and contrast and saturation to adjust? Or do you both run HDR off?

 

Screen captures throughout this exercise are always performed with the sim Paused so any spontaneous adjustments should be irrelevant. Anyway, 'Turn off HDR luminance adaptation effect' has been checked in Adam's PTA 20_10 Preset. HDR must be active in the sim for the Preset to work as intended when applied to the Shaders.

 

Edit: Been playing around with HDR settings and, yes, you are correct, the shadows are longer in Adam's image! Nice spot! Now how did that happen, I wonder? The settings in my Sim after loading Adam's flight file are Summer, Day, 7:00am. Therefore my image, presumably, was taken a little later. But then the image appears darker which appears to fly in the face of this theory, at least as far as it affects the lighting of the scene.

 

Regards,

Mike

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EDIT: It's also possible that your "Paint" program is changing the palette slightly. My scenario archive has the full .tif file in it - how does it compare with your uncompressed one?

 

I just checked my 378.49 install date: 5 days before taking the test shot.

Hi Adam,

 

Sorry, I should have been more specific. The 'Paint' Application is the one that comes with Windows7. I ran a few TIFF/JPEG image comparisons using Picasa Photo Viewer (makes it easy to flip back and forth) and my images are identical apart from being a little less sharp in the JPEG image.

 

Sadly my monitor calibration adventure turned out to be very disappointing :Hmmmph: Not sure why, but the resultant screen image turned out to be far too dark, in fact virtually unusable. Haven't used Colormunki Photo for a while, installed and updated the software and followed the instructions to the letter, including pre-test Calibration, and yet, to my eyes, the result is unacceptable. Tried upping the monitor brightness fom the default setting (80%) to 100% and still the image was too dark. I used the 'Easy' calibration mode which, I'm told, handles everything automatically, including making allowances for ambient lighting. perhaps if I knew what I was doing I could have experimented with the Advanced calibration route but, hey, life's too short. That will have to wait for another day.

 

So, clearly the ASUS ROG team really do know what they're doing. I've reverted back to the previous default .icm monitor profile, as shown in post #18 above, and all is well once again :smile: Also, looking at this test image seems to be providing further confirmation that the monitor is, in fact, set up correctly using this default profile.

 

http://web.ncf.ca/jim/photography/photofinishers/multitarget5.jpg

 

Here is your Image again, Adam. This time I have fiddled with my HDR settings producing another comparison image which now appears to be getting closer to yours in appearance. I am still using the REX TD Dawn (Set 22 Chill) / Day (Set 14 Fair) / Dusk (Set 03 Dust) Sky selection.

 

pta_generic_test_02_adam (Brightness: 0.70, Bloom: 0.20, Saturation: 0.85)

Bi4HNpj.jpg

 

My image with HDR adjustments (Brightness: 0.95, Bloom: 0.20, Saturation: 1.20

0dejiew.jpg

 

Unfortunately these HDR changes come with a cost in that the Sky is lighter in colour. The general lighting of the sim is brighter and I have noted some cirrus clouds exhibit clipping with loss of detail. Your settings, on the other hand, are so much better.

 

Regards,

Mike

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Hi Mike - two other thoughts - both long shots:

 

On my system, on one of the previous versions of P3D, when I first loaded the sim and for quite a while after I had a problem with dim and dull looking skies. I even complained about it at the LM forum. After running the sim for a while the problem seemed to go away. And then one day I decided to delete my shaders and the dullness problem returned. It appeared that my shader cache had to build up for the sky to look better. Maybe that's an issue here?

 

The latest versions of P3D seem to be good from the start for me but I cant help but think that the P3D setup program may not include all possibly useful Visual C++ Runtimes and if I install a game like Train Simulator or some driving sim then it may install something that makes P3D look better. It may install a runtime that has a function that P3D can use (or an updated version of the same function).

 

I really have no idea if this may be the case but it couldn't hurt for you and Adam to compare installed Visual C++ Runtimes. I've got 8 or 10 on my system and I try to avoid deleting my shader cache too often as I'm convinced its not a good idea.

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Dave - the shader cache is possibly a red herring. Just waiting a while or just panning around usually does the trick. I sometimes do that, then simply reset the scenario to take the test shot. In any case, when I'm tweaking the tweaks, I *have* to rebuild the shader cache.

 

I'm intrigued by the apparent co-relation with C++ runtimes. Coincidentally, I also run Trainsim - so you may be onto something. It's really confusing when you have to have so many versions on a system (not to mention the same thing with .net). If the libraries are affecting colour output, then that's really bad news - as the combinations of libraries different people may be running will be limitless :-(

 

Here are mine:

c_libraries.png

 

Mike - tweaking HDR is a really dodgy business. I find that even 1% or 2% changes in brightness can cause the clipping you've been getting. A better workaround for you would be to play with the PTA settings (Post-processing contrat, maybe), but that still isn't addressing the problem of *why* our results are different.

 

I'm wondering whether it's simply hardware related (GFX card). When reading reviews of similar chipset cards (but different manufacturers) I often find comments that imply that there are colour differences between (say) EVGA and MSI for the same card (eg GTX 970). If that's the case, then producing identical results will be nigh-on impossible unless we all own decent calibration hardware as well.

 

Shame about your Munji. I've heard from people in the publishing industry that many of the cheaper calibration devices are totally useless - and only the top end ones work correctly. A professional outfit can recoup the costs fairly easily, but it's just too expensive for the average home user.

 

Adam.

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Hi Adam,

 

...and here are mine:

 

71IkXOp.jpg

 

I do see a few differencies.

 

Missing from my installation:

Microsoft Visual C++ 2005 Redistributable (x64)  (The other 2 are present)

Microsoft Visual C++ 2008 Redistributable
(x64) 9.0.21022    
(x64) 9.0.30729.17    
(x64) 9.0.30729.4148

Microsoft Visual C++ 2012 Redistributable
(x64) 11.0.60610
(x86) 11.0.60610

Missing from your Installation:    

Microsoft Visual C++ 2015 Redistributable
(x64) 14.0.24210
(x86) 14.0.24210

 

I confess I am finding it hard to know how much importance should be attached to these findings in relation to the subject of this thread. To date no adverse impact has been experienced by any of my installed Applications. Presumably each App will either install the appropriate prerequisite, if not  present, or flag its absence for user intervention.

 

Edit: I've submitted a Support Case with x-rite regarding my ColorMunki issues. Notwithstanding its relevance here I felt it would be daft not to pursue this further. It will be interesting to see what they have to say.

 

Regards,

Mike

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