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shane2801

P3d - GPU Or CPU Driven??

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Hi guys,

My current CPU is an I9 9900k wiht a 1080Ti graphics card. I also run an Acer Predator X27 4k monitor. My question is am I wasting my money upgrading to the newer GPU's when they get released later this year? I always thought the P3d was GPU driven but now I am hearing its more CPU driven?

Thoughts??

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If you have a well balanced system as you have, upgrading only one component does not achieve very much... The 1080Ti is a great card for P3D, so I would keep my money in my pocket..

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Bert

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3 hours ago, shane2801 said:

My current CPU is an I9 9900k wiht a 1080Ti graphics card. I also run an Acer Predator X27 4k monitor. My question is am I wasting my money upgrading to the newer GPU's when they get released later this year? I always thought the P3d was GPU driven but now I am hearing its more CPU driven?

It's both.  Some elements of P3D take advantage of a powerful CPU like the 9900K (e.g. autogen and AI), some take advantage of a powerful GPU (e.g. SSAA with heavy clouds and/or dynamic lighting, high-res ground textures)

I use a 9900K and a 1080Ti on my portable sim rig...but that drives a UHD (2560x1440) display, not 4K.  I consider that to be a reasonably optimal match.  For 4K, I think more GPU is better.

With a 4k monitor and a 9900K (I will assume it's overclocked) you should see a performance difference with a 2080Ti vs a 1080Ti with heavy GPU-intensive workloads.  My 2080Ti performs a little bit better than my previous configuration did--two 1080Ti GPUs in SLI.  The performance difference is most noticeable with heavy GPU loads like multiple layers of heavy clouds and dynamic lighting with 4x or 8x SSAA.

As is usually the case, the money isn't "wasted", but the bang for the buck tradeoff is definitely up on the steep backside of the cost vs performance curve.  That last measure of performance never comes cheap.

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Bob Scott | AVSIM Forums Administrator | AVSIM Board of Directors

ATP Gulfstream II-III-IV-V

System: i9-10900K @ 5.2GHz on custom water loop, ASUS Maximus XII Hero, 32GB GSkill 3600MHz CAS15, eVGA 2080Ti XC Ultra, Samsung 55" JS8500 4K TV@30Hz, 5xSamsung SSD, eVGA 1KW PSU, 1Gbps internet

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Solid state drives also help performance. Loading times and the ability to switch cams smoothly increased significantly when I upgraded to an SSD.

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P3D is a single-thread CPU-dependent application. As such, upgrading your GPU is a waste of money.


Klaatu barada nickto

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I would disagree that its a waste.  Especially running in high resolutions.  Now is upgrading from the 1080ti worth it?  I don't know.  I haven't actually seen a comparison.  


9700k | Maximus XI Hero| 32gb DDR4 3000 | 1080Ti 11GB | 1tb EVO Plus 970 and 500GB M2+3TB HDD | 43" Samsung X60R 4k and 2  22" monitors | Corsair RM1000x |  240MM AIO.| MFG Crosswind | T16000M Stick | Saitek Throttle Quad | Skalarki MCDU and FCU | Saitek Radio Panel

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1 hour ago, W2DR said:

P3D is a single-thread CPU-dependent application. As such, upgrading your GPU is a waste of money.

This is not true..

Note how all cores are in use.. CORE ZERO is always the first to be used, this is normal with ALL APPLICATIONS out there.. as soon as CORE ZERO is utilised new threads are spanned to the next available core:

Regards,

S.

 

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1 hour ago, W2DR said:

P3D is a single-thread CPU-dependent application. As such, upgrading your GPU is a waste of money.

Well, no, it's definitely not a single-threaded application.  How can you explain concurrent loading across the CPU cores if P3D is a single-thread application?

I have P3D running, sitting on the ground at KJFK in the PMDG B737.  Process Lasso is reporting that P3D has 102 threads running across all six cores.

If performance is measured solely in terms of frame rate (something I view as pretty short-sighted), and the CPU is the limiting factor, then additional GPU power will not improve performance in terms of a higher frame rate.  It can, however, still improve smoothness, allow higher levels of AA and/or higher screen resolutions, and avoid even more significant slowdowns due to GPU saturation with dynamic lighting, heavy weather and complex scenery.

I've used a steady progression of both CPUs and GPUs here...on the CPU side an i7-975, i7-2600K, i7-7700K, i7-8086K, and i9-9900K, and on the GPU side a 970, 980, 980Ti, 2x980Ti in SLI, 1080Ti, 2x1080Ti in SLI, and a 2080Ti.  There's clear improvement in performance when moving from a fairly balanced CPU-GPU combo up to the next balanced pairing. 

I still actively run a good progression of performance computers--a 4790K + 1080Ti for driving and FPS games, a 7700K + 970 for general use plus as the second PC for auxiliary sim programs connected via the LAN (ActiveSky, Aivlasoft EFB, Radar Contact 4 etc), a 9900K + 1080Ti portable for simming and gaming on the road, and my primary 8086K + 2080Ti sim system.  I certainly would have returned the $1200 2080Ti and reverted to the 1080Ti had I not gotten the performance bump I expected when moving from the 1080Ti.

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Bob Scott | AVSIM Forums Administrator | AVSIM Board of Directors

ATP Gulfstream II-III-IV-V

System: i9-10900K @ 5.2GHz on custom water loop, ASUS Maximus XII Hero, 32GB GSkill 3600MHz CAS15, eVGA 2080Ti XC Ultra, Samsung 55" JS8500 4K TV@30Hz, 5xSamsung SSD, eVGA 1KW PSU, 1Gbps internet

SB XFi Titanium, optical link to Yamaha RX-V467, Polk/Klipsch 6" bookshelf spkrs, Polk 12" subwoofer, 12.9" iPad Pro, PFC yoke/throttle quad/pedals with custom Hall sensors, Coolermaster HAF932 case, Stream Deck XL button box

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I’ll be buying the 3080ti whenever it comes out. I could use it. My 1080ti routinely is limited when in weather due to my 4K and aa


9700k | Maximus XI Hero| 32gb DDR4 3000 | 1080Ti 11GB | 1tb EVO Plus 970 and 500GB M2+3TB HDD | 43" Samsung X60R 4k and 2  22" monitors | Corsair RM1000x |  240MM AIO.| MFG Crosswind | T16000M Stick | Saitek Throttle Quad | Skalarki MCDU and FCU | Saitek Radio Panel

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Perhaps our understanding of single-thread differs. But, as far as I know, the main rendering thread still runs on a single core. And that is a definite performance limiter. The slower the maximum CPU speed the greater the limitation. And I still say that going beyond the 1080ti solely for P3D is a waste of money.


Klaatu barada nickto

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13 minutes ago, W2DR said:

Perhaps our understanding of single-thread differs. But, as far as I know, the main rendering thread still runs on a single core. And that is a definite performance limiter. The slower the maximum CPU speed the greater the limitation. And I still say that going beyond the 1080ti solely for P3D is a waste of money.

Single threaded means that the program runs...now wait for it...in a single thread.  P3D is a multithreaded program--as I posted earlier, over 100 threads tasked across all the CPU cores in my system.  Yes, the throughput of the main thread is a limiting factor, but it's only a part of the performance equation.

Do you have any hands-on experience with running P3D on a GPU beyond the 1080Ti?  If not, what's the basis for saying it's a "waste of money?"


Bob Scott | AVSIM Forums Administrator | AVSIM Board of Directors

ATP Gulfstream II-III-IV-V

System: i9-10900K @ 5.2GHz on custom water loop, ASUS Maximus XII Hero, 32GB GSkill 3600MHz CAS15, eVGA 2080Ti XC Ultra, Samsung 55" JS8500 4K TV@30Hz, 5xSamsung SSD, eVGA 1KW PSU, 1Gbps internet

SB XFi Titanium, optical link to Yamaha RX-V467, Polk/Klipsch 6" bookshelf spkrs, Polk 12" subwoofer, 12.9" iPad Pro, PFC yoke/throttle quad/pedals with custom Hall sensors, Coolermaster HAF932 case, Stream Deck XL button box

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There is no way I going to get sucked into an argument about it. In my opinion it's a waste of money. End of discussion for me.....


Klaatu barada nickto

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2 minutes ago, W2DR said:

There is no way I going to get sucked into an argument about it. In my opinion it's a waste of money. End of discussion for me.....

Well I don't think anyone wants to argue about it.  After all, this is the P3D forum and not (thank God) the MSFS forum.

I can say from my standpoint, I run a 1080ti and I wish I had a 2080ti at times.  I run 4K and getting the AA levels up there, can push the 1080ti.  Then I see reports from guys like @w6kd of their results with the 2080ti and...it takes a lot of willpower for me to not pull the trigger.  I think I'll sit out that generation of card though.  So I'd say if you run 1080p, no question a 1080ti or more is overkill.  But not 4K for sure.

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Rhett

i7-8700k @ 5.0 ghz, 32 GB G.Skill TridentZ, 1080Ti, 32" BenQ, 4K res

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As you'll note from this thread, and your own query, there's a few misconceptions and some confusion about what parts of your set up P3D is using.

For P3D at the moment, what you want is a good balanced system rather than the latest GPU blasting along and being bottlenecked by other components and the throughput limitations of how P3D runs. That all might change when a new version of P3D comes out of course, and there is also the fact that you might run other sims too, in which case that shiny GPU might be worth having. But sticking a super-duper GPU on what is already a well balanced system that is working well, and not changing anything else, for P3D at least, will be like upgrading your car engine but not upgrading the transmission, nor the wheels, nor the brakes etc; it'll be expensive and it won't do much other than, at some point, make the wheels fall off.

Since P3D was initially based on the FSX (ESP) engine which was largely CPU-bound as well as being a 32 Bit application, when talking about bare FSX as it came from MS, and the earliest incarnation of P3D, yes, these sims were pretty much mainly running off the CPU, and indeed also held back by being 32 Bit applications, severely limiting how much RAM they could make use of. However, when you get to other versions of the sim things change a bit, Dovetail's Steam Edition of FSX was rejigged and optimised a bit to make it run a bit better on modern systems, but they did not go to the expense of redoing the sim from scratch, they did however have a stab at making a 64 Bit version of it, which was their short-lived and stillborn Flight Sim World sim. All these tweaks 'GPU'd it up a bit' although there is only so much which can be done with the base program and the way it works at a fundamental level.

In parallel to all that Dovetail commercial 'game stuff', Lockheed Martin have gone along a broadly similar path with P3D's ongoing 'non-game marketed' development of FSX as P3D - the first version was pretty much a re-branded FSX in most respects, but with each subsequent major version number of P3D, LM have and optimised it to access more of the capabilities of modern GPUs, eventually themselves 'doing an FSW' and making their V4 iteration of P3D a 64 Bit application too. 

So nowadays it is fair to say that FSX (in its 32 Bit optimised Steam guise) and P3D, in its 64 Bit V4 guise, are both capable of using the GPU, but of the two, P3D is the one which can do it the most thanks to its constant tweaking and 64 Bit architecture. But without basically starting completely from scratch however, and using an entirely different graphics engine which is geared toward being able to make use of the whistles and bells of modern GPUs (which LM are allegedly going to do in a newer version of P3D), there is until then going to be a limit to how much P3D can make use of a GPU, although it undeniably does help its performance that it can do to some extent as everyone's frame rates confirm when compared to a circa 2006 installation of MS FSX.

All this is why many flight simmers are in for a shock when they get hold of the new MSFS 2020. They've been so used to having to have a PC which was a sledgehammer to crack a walnut in running FSX, since it was so CPU-bound and CPU development had slowed down a lot, that many are still stuck in this mindset instead of realising that with the new MS sim, a fairly decent gaming PC with a good GPU will run it well, instead of requiring a ridiculously overpowered and stupidly expensive 'run FSX with all my add-ons' PC, as has been the case prior to this. 


Alan Bradbury

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