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Sc0rp10n
07-21-03, 05:15 PM
hi all. i just got the computer in my sig and i'm trying to understand all the options in the detonator 44.03 driver for my 5900. i've been out of the pc scene for a few years and am a little confused. is there a newbie guide to anti-aliasing and ansiotropic filtering? what each is, why you want it, how expensive it is in terms of performance? i thought with my current rig (see sig) i could run SWG and Unreal II at 1600x1200 with 8xAA, 8xAF, with all eye candy turned up to the maximum. well, that just wasn't the case. so, i'd like to read up on these and find out what i need to turn on and what i don't need. thanks.

yoladude
07-21-03, 06:14 PM
whoo......btw, ANY game that is even the slightest bit recent will struggle on any card at 1600x1200 with the settings you named. plus, the most popular anti-aliasing setting is probably 4 or 6. 8 is probably overkill at that res. and people who play with 4 or 6x fsaa tend to keep the res around 1024x768. if i were you, i would probably leave the res at 1024x768 to 1280x1024 if you're going to use AA (up to 4x or 6x). if not, max out the res. and as for AF, you should be fine at 4x or 8x. so you're probably fine with the setting you're using.

so, point is, even with the newest hardware (this is just in general, cause you're comp is blazing)......you're going to have to reduce the res a little to play with that much AA and AF. reduce one or the other. and, as i recall, SWG is a pretty taxing game.

my suggestion: the resolutions i suggested earlier at 4xAA/8xAF.

TeG
07-21-03, 06:17 PM
Well let`s spllit this in two:
1.Antialiasing-if you play 3D games you should certainly have seen the stairstep effect that appears at polygon edges-that`s aliasing.Antialiasing removes that stairstep effect.There are quite a number of ways of doing AA:supersampling, multisampling, mixed MS SS modes, fragment techniques-as Parhelia`s or Z3 etc.On the GFFX, 4X AA is the best choice because it is pure multisampling and benefits from colour compression and does little redundant work.Anything beyond 4X is a mixed modes, SS kicks in and kills performance(u could try 4xS).
2.AF-Anisotropy is a distortion visible in the texels make a 3D object that is oriented at an angle with respect to the plane of the screen.Any pixel mapped to a texel from a surface of this type will be distorted.AF handles that distortion, by taking into account more texels/samples.8x Performance is a good choice for gffxs.
Hope it helped:)

Sc0rp10n
07-21-03, 06:36 PM
wow, those are some pretty good explanations. okay, let me recap here...

for the latest games, scale the resolution back from 1600x1200 down to maybe 1280x1024.

set AA to 4x maximum.

set AF to 4x or 8x.

so i have another question. is AA more taxing on the GPU than AF? anywhere i see people talking about performance, they always suggest scaling back AA but rarely suggest scaling back AF. anyone have any idea?

jAkUp
07-21-03, 07:35 PM
it really depends on the card.. i recommend 4xaa and 4-6xaf for your setup with those games.. and as for swg, dont expect to run that game maxed... no current system can run it maxed with playable fps.

CaptNKILL
07-21-03, 08:15 PM
Originally posted by TeG
Well let`s spllit this in two:
1.Antialiasing-if you play 3D games you should certainly have seen the stairstep effect that appears at polygon edges-that`s aliasing.Antialiasing removes that stairstep effect.There are quite a number of ways of doing AA:supersampling, multisampling, mixed MS SS modes, fragment techniques-as Parhelia`s or Z3 etc.On the GFFX, 4X AA is the best choice because it is pure multisampling and benefits from colour compression and does little redundant work.Anything beyond 4X is a mixed modes, SS kicks in and kills performance(u could try 4xS).
2.AF-Anisotropy is a distortion visible in the texels make a 3D object that is oriented at an angle with respect to the plane of the screen.Any pixel mapped to a texel from a surface of this type will be distorted.AF handles that distortion, by taking into account more texels/samples.8x Performance is a good choice for gffxs.
Hope it helped:)
lol... I think thats a little too complicated... I know exactly what AA\AF do, but I dont have a clue what your talking about :D

Short and sweet:
AA: Smooths out the edges of things. Even at very high resolution, games still have jaggies (they are just SMALLER). Games with lots of small objects far away (like racing\flying games) should benefit the most from AA. 2x AA should have a noticable smoothing effect on jagged edges. 4x should be much smoother. 8x should look great but run like crap. But remember this: AA will not smooth out the edges of most textures\sprites (2d images), such as leaves\branches on trees made with sprites. ONLY models and other 3d stuff. 4xS AA smooths out 2d stuff as well, but runs quite a bit slower than normal 4x, so its not really an option in most games. Also, AA can blur\garble text in some games. If you have trouble, just change your AA settings.

AF: Sharpens textures that are far away or at a sharp angle. Play a game with a large flat area (prefferebly with brick or other sharp edged-textures) with AF off. Take a look at the area about 100feet in front of you. It will appear blurry\smudged. This is normal. Go back to this spot with 8xAF on. It will be MUCH sharper and more accurate looking. This adds a LOT of realism to an image. I personally think AF enhances the image more than AA. 2x AF will sharpen the image a bit to get rid of the nastiest of the smudges, 4x will make the textures even more accurate, 8x makes them almost perfect. I have had AF cause some wierd text problems in some games with some drivers, so if you have problems and turning off AA doesnt fix them, lower AF too.

I hope this stuff helps :)

Sc0rp10n
07-21-03, 08:19 PM
so which one is more taxing on your gpu?

The Baron
07-21-03, 08:22 PM
AA is much more stressful on your card than AF.

CaptNKILL
07-21-03, 08:23 PM
Originally posted by Sc0rp10n
so which one is more taxing on your gpu?
On MINE? Uh... AA is by far more taxing. I think it will almost always be that way on most cards.

8x AF can greatly impact the performance, abut 4x AA will probably hurt it a little more. And like I said before, I prefer 8x AF over any AA, so if you want something to turn off to improve performance (a LOT) turn your AA down to 2x or Off, then leave 8x AF on. This should look and run awesome on any game you throw at that 5900.

Sc0rp10n
07-21-03, 08:28 PM
i guess i'm just gonna have to spend an evening just testing things out and seeing how they run and writing notes on what works and what doesn't. sure would be helpful if there was a definitive gaming guide for the Detonator settings.

The Baron
07-21-03, 08:30 PM
Originally posted by Sc0rp10n
i guess i'm just gonna have to spend an evening just testing things out and seeing how they run and writing notes on what works and what doesn't. sure would be helpful if there was a definitive gaming guide for the Detonator settings.
Settings?

You mean NVIDIA lets you set stuff yourself? ;)

StealthHawk
07-21-03, 08:55 PM
Originally posted by The Baron
AA is much more stressful on your card than AF.

Actually, I don't think that's true at all. 4x FSAA almost certainly has a lower performance hit than 8x AF does on his card, the gfFX5900Ultra.

The general rule(for your card): 2x FSAA will have ~10% performance hit. It will have a greater hit at 1600.

4x FSAA will have a bigger hit, around 15-25% depending on the game. It will have a greater hit at 1600. 4x IMO is not much better quality-wise than 2x on your card, but the performance hit isn't too bad. Enable it if you like the slight difference.

4xS is the best looking mode of FSAA on your card. 6xS and 8x do not look better, but have larger performance hits. 6xS is better at some angles than 4xS, but worse at others. 8x just sucks and eats up the most performance. 4xS takes at least a 35% performance hit, and can take more depending on the game and the resolution.

8x AF: Expect a 30%+ performance hit. It really clears up textures though. I would recommend using 8x AF on your card, it can handle it. 4x AF looks is the lowest setting of AF I would consider using, if you need more performance.

Sc0rp10n
07-21-03, 09:03 PM
i won't get any time to play the game (SWG) again until friday. i'm going to do some testing with different options to see what i like, what i don't, what performs, and what doesn't. i appreciate the help.

The Baron
07-21-03, 09:06 PM
Originally posted by Sc0rp10n
i won't get any time to play the game (SWG) again until friday. i'm going to do some testing with different options to see what i like, what i don't, what performs, and what doesn't. i appreciate the help.
SWG auto-adjusts detail based on your current framerate.

So, you might lose some improved models/textures if you turn on too much AA/AF. Play around with it, see what you like.

Sc0rp10n
07-21-03, 09:12 PM
yeah, that's what i've got to do. i'd rather be spending my time playing the game than tweaking it for performance, but heck, i guess that's fun too.

stncttr908
07-21-03, 09:37 PM
It all depends on the game. I can run UT2K3 at 1280x960 (by the way I recommend this instead of 1280x1024, to keep the 4:3 ratio) with 4x AA and 16x AF with smooth framerates, but with Wolftenstein: ET I can't really do 1152x854 with those settings. However, old games like halflife and its mods are beautiful (the smooth lines anyway) on 1600x1200 with 6x AA and 16x AF. Just play with the settings, and remember that most new games that come out with new hardware can't be run at those resolutions with all that eye candy. It's usually at least a generation afterwards at least. Hope that helps.

Sc0rp10n
07-21-03, 09:43 PM
quick question...how can you run 16AF? my detonator drivers only up to 8xAA and 8xAF.

The Baron
07-21-03, 10:14 PM
16xAF is only on Radeon 9x00 cards.

Sc0rp10n
07-21-03, 10:18 PM
got it. thanks.

saturnotaku
07-21-03, 10:38 PM
Originally posted by Sc0rp10n
sure would be helpful if there was a definitive gaming guide for the Detonator settings.

Don't get your hopes up because there are so many different types of games, so many GPUs, so many different driver sets...well, you get the idea. There are simply far too many variables to even begin thinking about doing something like this. The only way to find out is through trial and error on your own machine.

-=DVS=-
07-22-03, 04:04 AM
Don't realy need to test much set and forget it at AA 2x AF 8x , 1280x1024 res , and all your games will run good and look good , waisting time and changeing setting for evry games is no fun :rolleyes: better play games :D

Uttar
07-22-03, 05:27 AM
Nice to see someone playing SWG on these forums too! Yeah, you can blame my lack of updates due to me first deciding to be an architect, then deciding there are too many of them, and now wanting to be a chef. Go ahead, blame it all on SWG :P

I'd talk specificially about SWG here: at 1600x1200, I wouldn't suggest enabling more than 2x AA.
SWG uses HUGE textures, and a lot of them. They still need to optimize the game in that aspect too. So you need free memory for textures and stuff, unless you want huge slow downs.

That is, if you got a 5900 Regular - the 5900 Ultra got twice the memory, so there 4x AA should be no problem at all.

AF: Just put it at 8x Performance IMO. The performance hit with Quality is really big, and the IQ of High Performance is too low.

As for settings... Well, in SWG, just max out everything! :) Unless you got an insufficent CPU, then you might want to reduce things like terrain detail if it becomes choppy.


Uttar

extreme_dB
07-22-03, 05:42 AM
Originally posted by Uttar
Nice to see someone playing SWG on these forums too! Yeah, you can blame my lack of updates due to me first deciding to be an architect, then deciding there are too many of them, and now wanting to be a chef. Go ahead, blame it all on SWG :P

Excuse my ignorance but do you mean an architect/chef in real life or SWG? (I don't know anything about those online RPG games). I can't imagine either case because playing an architect/chef in a game seems too weird to be true, and your interest in 3d graphics makes a career choice between those two fields too weird to be true too. :D

StealthHawk
07-22-03, 05:53 AM
Originally posted by extreme_dB
Excuse my ignorance but do you mean an architect/chef in real life or SWG? (I don't know anything about those online RPG games). I can't imagine either case because playing an architect/chef in a game seems too weird to be true, and your interest in 3d graphics makes a career choice between those two fields too weird to be true too. :D

If he's telling us to "blame it all on SWG" he is talking about a character class in SWG :D

extreme_dB
07-22-03, 06:04 AM
Originally posted by StealthHawk
If he's telling us to "blame it all on SWG" he is talking about a character class in SWG :D

That's too funny then!

"I'm a financial analyst" in SWG (pimp)