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Test Results: CPU vs GPU and FSX performance.

Pro Member First Officer
JLangevin First Officer

This is nearly a copy and paste of a reply I posted in another post, but I did make some changes... I got tired of hearing people say "you need a 512mb card to run FSX maxed" - BS!! Here is my results... Tests were performed with RivaTuner and 3D acceleration programs.

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People are also grossly misinformed on whether or not the graphics cards are the REAL problems with FPS... For instance, I own an NVIDIA GeForce 7600GTKO 256mb... When I had my Pentium D running at 3.6ghz, was lucky if I got 15-16fps in urban areas, but mostly hang out around 10fps, with roughly 60% autogen and scenery.

The moment I changed to a Core 2 Duo E6300 (1.86ghz), noticed that without touching ANYTHING jumped to nearly 28fps!!! I couldnt believe it. I then decided to up the scenery... I then was running at roughly 80% scenery with 18-22fps... when I maxed out all scenery sliders, I noticed I dropped down to 12-14fps... Well, I then decided to take the awesome overclocking abilities of this chip and see what happens... I overclocked to 2.94ghz and took my 2gigs of 533ghz DDR2 to 630ghz of overclocking.

I then went back into the sim and noticed... 26fps!!! This is in Los Angeles with ALL scenery sliders maxed... EVERYTHING!! I did notice the occasional stuttering, but its rare, and nothing significant. I decided to back the water down to 2.x Mid since this stopped the stuttering.

I then decided to perform another test... My 7600GTKO is factory clocked at 580mhz with 2 x 750mhz DDR3 @ 1500mhz effective. I added a Zalman cooler and maxed the overclockablility of the card at 635mhz and 1650mhz Mem... Guess what... no change in performance. So I then went the other way, underclocked it at 480mhz and 1000mhz mem effective and guess what... same performance!

I then dedided to perform one last test... I turned on a small 3D benchmark utility that consists of a bunch of floating marbles... This charges up the 3d accelerator on the card and gives me real time temp, speed, and usage of the 3D memory and core speeds... when this is on, everything jumps, you can see the card working. When I turn on Counter-Strike, same thing... But when you turn on FSX, nothing changes. It stays at idle speeds, temps, etc. the temp doesnt even rise 2*c when running FSX in urban areas..... Perplexing!

What does this mean?! Well, it appears, MS programmed this is a processor based sim, rather than graphics based. There is no script that lets the graphics card know its a 3D program, therefor, the card does not open itself up to broadening performance parimeters.

FSX is more concerned with your processor capabilities rather than your graphics capabilities which is why it does not benifit from SLI... MS needs to do some major reprogramming and release these changes in their first service pack.....

14 Responses

Pro Member Trainee
ThunderRide Trainee

What is the easiest way to "clock" your card settings? I read your post and seen the pics that you posted and am trying to get the same results. I was told that I should "clock" the card settings in the bios settings... Is this what you did and if so how do I go about doing that?

Pro Member First Officer
JLangevin First Officer

My Bios (ASUS P5NSLI) does not give me the specs of my video card in bios, it does allow me to change the bus speed of the PCI-E socket itself... that is left to default of 100mhz.

If you have an NVIDIA card, the control panel will usually allow you to change your overclock settings... this will also show you the factory settings. As for other cards (and nvidia) use a program like RivaTuner... you can get it at www.guru3d.com :

...but if you read my post, you would realize that overclocking the graphics card did not help performance in FSX. It did help other programs and games but not FSX. So you can overclock the graphics, reduce its life, and still not gain anything in FSX.

Pro Member Trainee
sinebar Trainee

JLangevin wrote:

This is nearly a copy and paste of a reply I posted in another post, but I did make some changes... I got tired of hearing people say "you need a 512mb card to run FSX maxed" - BS!! Here is my results... Tests were performed with RivaTuner and 3D acceleration programs.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

People are also grossly misinformed on whether or not the graphics cards are the REAL problems with FPS... For instance, I own an NVIDIA GeForce 7600GTKO 256mb... When I had my Pentium D running at 3.6ghz, was lucky if I got 15-16fps in urban areas, but mostly hang out around 10fps, with roughly 60% autogen and scenery.

The moment I changed to a Core 2 Duo E6300 (1.86ghz), noticed that without touching ANYTHING jumped to nearly 28fps!!! I couldnt believe it. I then decided to up the scenery... I then was running at roughly 80% scenery with 18-22fps... when I maxed out all scenery sliders, I noticed I dropped down to 12-14fps... Well, I then decided to take the awesome overclocking abilities of this chip and see what happens... I overclocked to 2.94ghz and took my 2gigs of 533ghz DDR2 to 630ghz of overclocking.

I then went back into the sim and noticed... 26fps!!! This is in Los Angeles with ALL scenery sliders maxed... EVERYTHING!! I did notice the occasional stuttering, but its rare, and nothing significant. I decided to back the water down to 2.x Mid since this stopped the stuttering.

I then decided to perform another test... My 7600GTKO is factory clocked at 580mhz with 2 x 750mhz DDR3 @ 1500mhz effective. I added a Zalman cooler and maxed the overclockablility of the card at 635mhz and 1650mhz Mem... Guess what... no change in performance. So I then went the other way, underclocked it at 480mhz and 1000mhz mem effective and guess what... same performance!

I then dedided to perform one last test... I turned on a small 3D benchmark utility that consists of a bunch of floating marbles... This charges up the 3d accelerator on the card and gives me real time temp, speed, and usage of the 3D memory and core speeds... when this is on, everything jumps, you can see the card working. When I turn on Counter-Strike, same thing... But when you turn on FSX, nothing changes. It stays at idle speeds, temps, etc. the temp doesnt even rise 2*c when running FSX in urban areas..... Perplexing!

What does this mean?! Well, it appears, MS programmed this is a processor based sim, rather than graphics based. There is no script that lets the graphics card know its a 3D program, therefor, the card does not open itself up to broadening performance parimeters.

FSX is more concerned with your processor capabilities rather than your graphics capabilities which is why it does not benifit from SLI... MS needs to do some major reprogramming and release these changes in their first service pack.....

So if I upgrade my processer I can see some improvement?

Pro Member First Officer
JLangevin First Officer

What is your current processor? Its all dependent on what generation you are using... for instance, I moved from a Pentium D 805 2.66 overclocked to 3.6, and had a STOCK Core2Duo E6300 @ 1.86 smash it in FSX!

Pro Member First Officer
GoodisonBlue First Officer

Well I moved from a 7950gx2 to a 8800 gtx and got an average fps increase of 10-15fps without changing any settings or any other hardware

Must have been magic then 🙂

Pro Member First Officer
JLangevin First Officer

Thats awesome!! It was the same for me when I went from X1300 to 7600GT... There are so many variables that contribute.... BUT, sounds like your system is running awesome!

Pro Member First Officer
GoodisonBlue First Officer

JLangevin wrote:

Thats awesome!! It was the same for me when I went from X1300 to 7600GT... There are so many variables that contribute.... BUT, sounds like your system is running awesome!

I must admit, I was disaspointed with the 7950's performance

I'm looking forward to see what improvements we get when the dx10 patch is released or whether it's over hyped

Pro Member Trainee
b3mmredm Trainee

Could i then somehow with clear instruction overclock my Intel Core 2 Quad Extreme Processor (4x2.66) to make it run even faster?

Pro Member First Officer
JLangevin First Officer

Its impossible for me to simply tell you how to overclock, but I can tell you that you will have to have some serious memory speed, along with a very stable board. There would be little reason to overclock the Quad Extreme yet since you are already effectivly running at 10.64ghz of processing power.

x pilot Guest

Please tell me how or where to get a program so i can overclock my amd athlon 64 3500+ and see if i get a better performance? i have a Geforce 7600GT graphics

cheers

Pro Member First Officer
JLangevin First Officer

If you want to learn, I would suggest doing a LOT of research at either of these sites...

www.overclockers.com

www.extremeoverclocking.com

There is no program that you use for overclocking your CPU... you CAN do it with GPUs, but not CPU... BE WARNED!!!! Overclocking is a LOT of trial and error.. YOU WILL FRY YOUR COMPONENTS UP TO AND INCULUDING YOUR MEMORY, VIDEO CARD, MOTHER BOARD, ETC if you do it wrong!!!

If you have to ask me how to overclock, you are not ready to begin poking around your bios... AMD CPUs are more sensitive than Intel in that if you overheat it, you will damage it. It does not have an auto throttling feature like Intel...

You do not overclock with a program, you manipulate the frequiencies going to your CPU and Memory via your bios settings... You will have to usually supply more VCore voltage, MCH voltage to your chipset, will have to make sure your memory can handle the overclocking.

So please, for the sake of your hardware, do not attempt overclocking if you have no experience... unless you can afford the wrong turns you can/will make.

x pilot Guest

cool makes sence cheers for that! i would love to see if there would be a satisfactory difference as that could save the pennies to have to buy a space shuttle just to play a flight simulator!

i will have a look at those websites for interest and learning sake,

cheers

x pilot Guest

I have ordered the best Amd due core processor that i can fit on my mainbo and another Gig of corseair RAM for my pc, will bring my RAM up to 3gig and the CPU will be a big sig from the 3500+ i have in there at the moment....

Corseair RAM comes at a price though!

Guest

Maybe someone could help me....I was reading the first post and talking about how effective the CPU is for FSX...I am having mad problems loading MSX, Yesterday I was flying through Vancouver in a 747 no problems, no lag, and it ran amazing. Today I go to load it and everytime it gets to 82% It just starts flashing and takes forever to get to 100%, It'll get to 100% load complete and then just flash on and off, like it just wont even work. I didnt adjust the settings at all and it still does this. I turned down the settings to medium low everything and still doesnt work.

I've got an BFG 8800GTSOC 640MB version AMD 5200+X2 Dual 2.6GHz 4GB Corsair XMS2 800MHz along with Vista Business. I can't get this game to work to save my life, all my other games work amazing but this one just wont work. My friend is having the exact same problem with his XFX7900GTX on a P4 3.2 w/ 2GB's of ram, also running Vista Business. Any help would be appreciated. Both of us also have the latest sound/video drivers. I just got mine from Nvidia and still won't adjust anything. Seems software related but not sure. Thanks.

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