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SH64
08-18-05, 01:20 PM
Ok i'm not sure how to explain it , but .. here it goes . i started to notice it when i first built my SLI PC (see sig).
i usually bench or test performance of the new/old games on my 2 gaming PCs (again see sig for detailed info) . the thing i noticed while testing that on the SLI PC is that i needed higher framerate to get a smooth experiance while that was not the case on the other PC which is running smooth even at lower framerates.

let me make its more clear for you .. for example in games like FarCry , BF2 & any other games usually :
on SLI PC i need atleast 35fps+ to get the feeling of smooth gameplay which means better mouse control & precision.
on the other (non-SLI) PC 25fps+ is enough to get the same feeling!

this resulted in more baising towards the other PC because of that ...

notice that the 2 PCs have same type of monitors (Samsung 19" Flat) , same res , same refresh rate & even same mice (MX1000).
the only difference i can tell is the CPU & the video card :
CPU in SLI PC is AMD , while CPU in the other AGP PC is Intel.
Video card in SLI PC is nVIDIA GeForce , in the AGP PC its a ATi Radeon.

heck even on this "n00b" PC as me & friends call it .. i still get the same feeling of smoothness at low framerates. again this n00b PC is Intel P4 powered & has a Radeon card on it.

now whats getting me crazy is why this is happeing ??
do you think the CPU has something to do with it ?
do you think its the video cards difference ?
is it the SLI ??
what do you think guys ??

zoomy942
08-18-05, 01:29 PM
you know, ive noticed that too with my 6600gt SLI. i had a 6800GT before, same monitor, cpu, mouse, desk chair, ram, all that... but things dont seem as smooth unless i am getting higher framerates. i feel better knowing someone lese has noticed this too

SH64
08-18-05, 01:36 PM
Hmmm interesting .. seems more like the SLI is the reason here ..
i believe OWA can help on this matter aswell :)
he has a similar setup of PCs.

zoomy942
08-18-05, 01:45 PM
its odd cause it isnt as if it runs badly, it's just not smooth and silky like my single card was. and the 6600GT SLI, at the res'es i play at is just a hair faster than the 6800GT, so i have been stumped.

SH64
08-18-05, 01:50 PM
its odd cause it isnt as if it runs badly, it's just not smooth and silky like my single card was. and the 6600GT SLI, at the res'es i play at is just a hair faster than the 6800GT, so i have been stumped.

Exactly!! thats why i described it as "wierd" .. it dosent look like its something wrong like a bug or issue its just a major feel you have when playing.

if i play the same game under exact same conditions & framerate without running FRAPS or any framerate measurement program i'd tell that the non-SLI PC is faster even if the framerate was actually a little higher on the SLI one.

CaptNKILL
08-18-05, 02:00 PM
This is interesting... good thing for people to keep in mind before jumping on SLI. It probably just has something to do with the way the picture is displayed with SLI as opposed to a single card.

Toss3
08-18-05, 02:11 PM
This is very good to know :) But not of much use to me because my TFT display doesn't support resolutions over 1280x1024... and I believe that SLi is for people with high resolution displays, of course I can gain some fps in newer games by getting an SLi rig, but not worth the extra $ IMO. I've never played on an SLi rig so I can't tell, but if it's anything like you say, then I think I'll stay on single GPU solutions until ATI releases their's or there's a fix for this weird feeling :)

jAkUp
08-18-05, 02:13 PM
Hmmm... you know what? I think I notice this too. I thought it was just because I was getting used to High fps, so 25fps seems atrocious now, when before, it was playable.


Maybe SLI needs high FPS in order to sync, or have a "smooth" feeling? Its definetely very strange...

Maybe stenous GPU activity tax the CPU more?

Hey SH64, do you think you can test an AFR game under the same conditions? Maybe this only applies in SFR... split frame rendering...

SH64
08-18-05, 02:20 PM
Maybe SLI needs high FPS in order to sync, or have a "smooth" feeling? Its definetely very strange...

Yep i believe thats the reason too.
at first i thought its related to how video cards from different vendors render the picture on screen .. now seeing more people having that feeling on thier SLI rigs then its more like what you & CaptNKILL said.

SH64
08-18-05, 02:21 PM
Hey SH64, do you think you can test an AFR game under the same conditions? Maybe this only applies in SFR... split frame rendering...

I get this in BF2 & SC:CT aswell .. both use AFR profiles!
& its there on FarCry which uses SFR.

Benotti
08-18-05, 02:22 PM
When I was used to lower fps, 25fps was no big deal for me. Since a while though Im used to excellent fps, and anything below 35 is just not smooth anymore. I preferably get 40/50+.

And I dont use SLI. Its all in the perception. When you used to something, the old thing looks bad.

Nowadays, it almost hurts my eyes to see a screenshot without fsaa. Couple of years ago I played all games without fsaa.
Old games looked beautifull back then, now its just plain ugly. Etc etc.. Im sure you get it ;)

SH64
08-18-05, 02:25 PM
When I was used to lower fps, 25fps was no big deal for me. Since a while though Im used to excellent fps, and anything below 35 is just not smooth anymore. I preferably get 40/50+.

And I dont use SLI. Its all in the perception. When you used to something, the old thing looks bad.

Nowadays, it almost hurts my eyes to see a screenshot without fsaa. Couple of years ago I played all games without fsaa.
Old games looked beautifull back then, now its just plain ugly. Etc etc.. Im sure you get it ;)

True but i'm playing the same game at same time on the 2 PCs!! how do you explain why i get used to lower fps in one & not the other ??

saturnotaku
08-18-05, 02:29 PM
True but i'm playing the same game at same time on the 2 PCs!! how do you explain why i get used to lower fps in one & not the other ??

I honestly think there's some kind of deep-seated, psychological explanation. When you play on your single GPU PC, something deep in your subconscious tells you that it's a single GPU and to have lower performance is something that acceptable, just a part of gaming that way. But when you move to your SLI rig, you come to expect greater performance and when it's not up to your standards (be them conscious or not) you notice it more. Yes, this is probably just a crackpot theory, but I thought I'd put it out there. :p

SH64
08-18-05, 02:35 PM
LOL! you know that thought came into my mind too ...

Delbert
08-18-05, 02:59 PM
Can't you just turn off SLi temporarily and do a test in the system with a single GPU... then you would definetly know it was the SLI.

SH64
08-18-05, 03:02 PM
Can't you just turn off SLi temporarily and do a test in the system with a single GPU... then you would definetly know it was the SLI.

Yes .. i'm going to do that & investgate.

OWA
08-18-05, 04:34 PM
I'll play around with that tonight to see if I see something similar. I have my two main systems right next to each other so I can have the games running on both, etc.

SH64
08-18-05, 05:07 PM
Ok i just tested FarCry in Single & Dual GPU .. i cant really tell a difference between the two. maybe on single its slighlty smoother but not certain really.

TimeOut
08-18-05, 05:13 PM
Can't you just turn off SLi temporarily and do a test in the system with a single GPU... then you would definetly know it was the SLI.

Yeah, well, following saturnotaku's psychological theory you must turn off SLI without knowing you did it, otherwise something deep in your subconscious tells you that with SLI turned off your lower performance is something acceptable. :eek:

CaptNKILL
08-18-05, 06:01 PM
Ive got it... set the graphics settings really low so single or SLI could easily hit 25fps. Then cap the framerate at 25fps (if possible). Then have someone randomly enable or disable SLI a few times without telling you which they chose(and have them record what their choice), and record the results of which you thought was smoother. The framerates (and the graphics) will be the same so itl be down to what you "feel" is smoother.

Sounds a bit extreme, but this is pretty important... lots of people should know about this if its real. Wouldnt it be a big surprise if it turned out that SLI simply simulates framerate increases most of the time? Like its copying frames, so that it can report higher FPS :p

(im mostly joking, but seeing how most people are agreeing that they notice this, whos to say?)

OWA
08-18-05, 06:21 PM
I don't think I'm noticing it but I'm having a hard time finding a fair match. In SCCT, I'm in the 70s and 80s and on the 6800U I'm in the mid 20s. The SLI system is super smooth and while the 6800U is in the mid 20s in the area I'm testing, it seems pretty smooth considering. In BF2, the SLI system seems much smoother. In Far Cry, the framerates are closer (using HDR mode 7). On the SLI system it is mainly in the mid to upper 30s and on the 6800U it's in the mid 20s. The SLI system is okay but doesn't feel silky smooth. The 6800U isn't very smooth at all.

OWA
08-18-05, 06:53 PM
Ive got it... set the graphics settings really low so single or SLI could easily hit 25fps. Then cap the framerate at 25fps (if possible).
Any idea how to cap the framerate? That would make it easier to test.

SH64
08-18-05, 06:57 PM
Ive got it... set the graphics settings really low so single or SLI could easily hit 25fps. Then cap the framerate at 25fps (if possible). Then have someone randomly enable or disable SLI a few times without telling you which they chose(and have them record what their choice), and record the results of which you thought was smoother. The framerates (and the graphics) will be the same so itl be down to what you "feel" is smoother.


Haha that wont work. the test i did on FarCry was actually very close in framerate .. (20s-30s on both cases). i couldent tell which is smoother.
i can only feel the difference with 2 separate PCs now.

adpr 02
08-18-05, 07:02 PM
I notice it also. 2 of my friend have 6800gt's, both overclocked. (I'm to poor for a 6800 so I have to make do with a 6600gt) one day they came over, and they both sayed that my Battlefield 2 was smoother than their's. Also, I go on message boards which ppl. say that 6600gt can only play this game at medium. I play every single game maxed out, and there is no sign of framerate going down............

One thing though. I made battlefield 2 go to ultra high (not high, ULTRA HIGH. U do it from outside the game). and it runs smooth as silk, but I sometimes get frame spikes. for example. I am running, and I get smooth everything, and suddenly I stutter once, and it becomes normal. it happens more toward the beginning of a game though.... if anybody knows how to fix that I would appreciate the help.

Acid Rain
08-18-05, 07:07 PM
How about some v-sync, guys?