2x7600GT 256Mb each SLi-enabled stuttering in FS2004

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revoraman
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2x7600GT 256Mb each SLi-enabled stuttering in FS2004

Post by revoraman » Sat Oct 18, 2008 5:27 pm

Can somebody shed any light why despite having two XFX NVidia 7600GT 256Mb graphics cards inserted into an Asus AN8-SLi De Luxe motherboard,powered by a 700w Enermax PSU,coupled to an AMD 64 Athlon 3800 San Diego single-cored CPU overclocked from the stock 2.2GHz to 2.4GHz,with the 7600GTs running in SLi-enabled mode,I still get stutters when running Flight Simulator 2004?

I have installed all the latest drivers,etc,etc.It is so annoying specially in the middle of say a taxi or an approach,the aircraft just freezes up,while the simulator carries on in the background,then stutters and causes a crash or veering.Same annoyance when on take-off,the graphics goes into a stutter along the runway,or it may happen in the middle of a cruise.This happens at regular intervals.I'm completely baffled.

I had GeForce 4 card NVidia Ti4200 previously which I felt was not adequate for a flight simulator,and thus upgraded to the 7600GT which got good reviews at the time.

I have posted this on the NVidia support forum but got nowhere.I've also since discovered that neither FSX or FS9 supports SLi.A real shame that Microsoft developed a sim that could not utilise this.

Any assistance would be much appreciated otherwise I will end up tearing the NVidia cards out and replacing them with Ati cards.

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Post by Cat1 » Sat Oct 18, 2008 8:17 pm

I don't know the absolute answer to your question, thus I can't offer any real help beyond "play with the settings".
I used to say never mix an Intel chip with anything from ATi, and never mix anything with an AMD chip with Nvidia. It used to cause the utmost of headaches, but since then the market has gone more code friendly and flat.
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Post by tropicalfish » Sat Oct 18, 2008 9:15 pm

Cat1 wrote:I don't know the absolute answer to your question, thus I can't offer any real help beyond "play with the settings".
I used to say never mix an Intel chip with anything from ATi, and never mix anything with an AMD chip with Nvidia. It used to cause the utmost of headaches, but since then the market has gone more code friendly and flat.
That shouldn't make a difference, really.

How much RAM do you have?
What is your AA/AF set to?
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uh.....yeah....

Post by groundsquirrel » Sat Oct 18, 2008 11:26 pm

uhhhh.......yeah......think of it like this. You've got this really kickin' motor under your hood...swapped a big block chevy into your toyota starlet, but one tiny detail....you're tryin' to use the original fuel feed line which is about a quarter inch in diameter when your guzzler needs a half inch line. Same thing. You've got twin turbo graphics cards out-pacing the rest of the system. Yes, they will work and should kick some serious a**. This is going to take a little poking around so be patient. First, try setting the frame rate slider to 26 with all other levels maxed out. Also, what resolution are you calling up in FS? For testing purposes use 1024x768@32 until we get her smoothed out.
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Post by revoraman » Sat Oct 18, 2008 11:44 pm

Ooops! Sorry.Meant to add that I have 2Gb/3200 Crucial system RAM in dual-channel mode+XP Pro SP3+Hitachi SpinPoint 500Gb SATA 2 HDD split into 4 partitions;defragged regularly.

Just tried FS9 again,and it drove me mad to line-up a take-off,full throttle only for me to see the runway under me come to a stop,then jer pick-up speed to a climb-out.Ascending to altitude,same stuttering lasting between 15-25 secs.

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Post by revoraman » Sun Oct 19, 2008 12:02 am

The AA is set from within FS2004 even though the Nvidia nTune applet has a facilty to set the AA and AF from there.I get frame rates ranging from 36 down to 10-11 depending on the scenery and I do have a vast number of add-on scenery augmented with FS Gobal SE displayed via an Iiyama 19-inch at 1024x768@85Hz refresh.

Not all settings within FS2004 are maxed out.
Target frame rate=unlimited
Filtering=trilinear
MIP mapping=8
Hardware render=8
Global max texture=massive
Scenery objects=all three to Dense

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Post by harkonnen » Sun Oct 19, 2008 12:37 am

Isn't the Anti-Aliasing from within FS2004 supposed to be notoriously awful? I've read again and again to set it from the graphics card. Don't think that'll help frames though.
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Post by revoraman » Sun Oct 19, 2008 12:53 am

This Forum without a shadow of a doubt is about the best there is.The help rendered here be it to a novice or to an experienced Flight Simmer is absolutely fantastic.

I had over a 140 viewings of the same posting within NVidia's Forum,and only got one reply,and that was not much of a help.

Thanks to all so far.

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first..

Post by groundsquirrel » Sun Oct 19, 2008 3:02 am

First.......make your mip map 4, I have found this leading to flashing and frame hangs on many occasions. lights are okay at 8, change your framerate to 26. Also, tell us what your "max texture size" is in your Fs9.cfg, as well as "terrain max vertex level". Inquiring minds want to know.
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Post by 121a » Sun Oct 19, 2008 3:02 am

1. FS does not really know you have SLI, it does not use it like most high end games do.
2. Traffic has a lot to do with FPS, set it to about 50-65.
3. Clean up and defrag your disks.
4. Overclock the video cards and make sure there fans are running at 100% all the time.
5. Close all background tasks, i used a program called Smart Close, but you can do it manually with task manager, just get rid off all the ones under your user name EXCEPT: explorer.exe and schost.exe (sp?) oh and tskman.exe
6. set your FPS to about 30. Humans cannot notice anything more that 27fps.
7. Honestly that is about what your going to get, your system is not high-end but with a few tweeks you might be able to get a few more FPS. I had a 7800gt and i had hiccups at busy airports.
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2x7600GT 256Mb each SLi enabled stuttering in FS 2004

Post by Boldpilot » Sun Oct 19, 2008 5:25 am

Hi revoraman. I sent your problems to my son who dabbles in these nerdy things ,here is his reply. Have fun. BP

AMD Single Core at 2.4GHz would bottleneck quite badly with SLi running. You should at least have a dual core CPU to handle the GPU speeds. The other things to try is to ensure as many services as possible have been stopped before starting FS2004 – like MSN / Monitoring tools / Updaters / etc but usually stutters at the start simply mean you run out of power – Get a New CPU!!

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Post by rd » Sun Oct 19, 2008 6:03 am

Boldpilot's kid is dead on, to a degree.

FS9 does not understand dual core nor SLI setups.

If anything, I would take out one of your G-Cards, and see what happens. More than likely, it will improve.

RD

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Post by revoraman » Sun Oct 19, 2008 10:53 am

Thank you 121a,rd,Boldpilot,groundsquirrel,harkonnen for your respective inputs.As I have already stated in my post,I do realise that FS2004 and FSX as well does not support SLi mode in graphics cards.

I do not run anything in the background other than the antivirus monitor.

I always re-boot the PC to flush out the RAM to give FS2004 a clean amount of RAM.Unnecessary Services that Microsoft reckons we cannot live without have all been disabled.

I do not necessarily agree that I need a dual-core to run an XFX 7600GT 256Mb SLi card----it and FS9 existed before dual-core was even thought of.

Traffic is set to 50

Already stated that the HDD is defragged regularly.That is not an issue.

GPU fans are running dust-free and at 100% and was one of the reasons I bought the 7600GT cards because of its active cooling

Will try the MIP mapping setting and frame rate settings suggested.

Terrain Max vertex level in FS9.cfg=19
No such entry as "Max texture size" to be found in FS9.cfg

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Post by tropicalfish » Sun Oct 19, 2008 5:05 pm

rd wrote:Boldpilot's kid is dead on, to a degree.

FS9 does not understand dual core nor SLI setups.

If anything, I would take out one of your G-Cards, and see what happens. More than likely, it will improve.

RD
FS9 uses only one core on the processor.
FS9 does not use SLI to it's FULL advantage.

He could simply disabled SLI as a test, but I doubt that would do anything.
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Post by revoraman » Sun Oct 19, 2008 6:55 pm

Boldpilot's nerdy son clearly advises that I'd need a dual-core CPU when tropicalfish and I have already stated that FS9 does not require a dual-core CPU, as FS9 came into being before dual-core CPUs,and yes,I have already discovered that FS9 does not see an SLi-graphics set-up

As to harkonnen's point that the AA in FS9 is awful,in fact I have just discovered that opting for the AA setting from within the NVidia nTune applet and disabling the Sim's AA option,I ended up getting awful 'jaggies' as I observed when departing VIDP custom secenery add-on and all the parked bus transports in a line at VIDP and a departing AI A310,plus my own PSS 777-200ER had them.Opting for the Sim's AA soon cured that.

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set..

Post by groundsquirrel » Sun Oct 19, 2008 7:21 pm

set your vertex level to 20. This way your sim will display terrain mesh at the 38 meter resolution. 19 is for 76 meter and interpolates all other resolutions below it.
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Post by tropicalfish » Sun Oct 19, 2008 8:11 pm

revoraman wrote:Boldpilot's nerdy son clearly advises that I'd need a dual-core CPU when tropicalfish and I have already stated that FS9 does not require a dual-core CPU, as FS9 came into being before dual-core CPUs,and yes,I have already discovered that FS9 does not see an SLi-graphics set-up

As to harkonnen's point that the AA in FS9 is awful,in fact I have just discovered that opting for the AA setting from within the NVidia nTune applet and disabling the Sim's AA option,I ended up getting awful 'jaggies' as I observed when departing VIDP custom secenery add-on and all the parked bus transports in a line at VIDP and a departing AI A310,plus my own PSS 777-200ER had them.Opting for the Sim's AA soon cured that.
I have heard that nVidia's AA doesn't always work with FS.
Try disabling the nVidia AA and AF settings, and see if you still get the stutters.
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Post by harkonnen » Sun Oct 19, 2008 8:59 pm

Revoraman...here's where to set that 'Max global texture size'; In FS9's 'Settings', 'Hardware'. I find it hard to live without this one maxed out though...you'll see the aircraft and scenery textures go to a lower resolution. Not that appealing if you're used to having the slider maxed out. :cry:

Kill the 'ground scenery casts shadows', and try and live with 'simple' clouds, or 'clear all weather' to save more frames per second?
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Post by rd » Sun Oct 19, 2008 9:15 pm

tropicalfish wrote:
I have heard that nVidia's AA doesn't always work with FS.
Try disabling the nVidia AA and AF settings, and see if you still get the stutters.
I've owned nothing but nVidia's, and all have had excellent rendering with FS9 and FSX with AA and AF settings set to max.

Experience rules over "what you heard".

RD

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Post by revoraman » Sun Oct 19, 2008 9:21 pm

Thanks for your posts,tropicalfish,groundsquirrel & harkonnen.

Already done before your respective posts.Disabled the NVidia AA and AF settings.Display settings set as per your suggestions,harkonnen,and yes,scenery and aircraft textures do take a hit lowering this setting.Will try adjusting the vertex level in FS9.cfg,groundsquirrel.

Just interrupted a 1224nm flight from VIDP-OMDB PSS 777-200ER,to check posts,and so far,except for a very slight stutter at take-off threshold,the track itself at 40k has been pretty smooth,no 'jaggies',and coping with downloaded Jeppesen real-weather too.Touch wood!

Will update.

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