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View Full Version : BFG PhysX... My Impressions


jAkUp
05-18-06, 01:33 AM
Hey guys, finally got my PhysX card yesterday after much debate among myself.

Since Ageia does not have any x64 drivers as of yet, I spent most of yesterday installing Win32 and the latest drivers/updates. After that, installation was a breeze. Pop the card in, and grab the latest drivers from ageia.com.

First thing I loaded up was Cellfactor, and wow, what an impressive techdemo! It runs a little laggy... and if you watch my video you will see the hitch right before the explosion. It's pretty annoying, however, it definitely is rather impressive with fluid effects, and millions of boxes flying around. I have created a movie that shows off the cool effects, you can check it out here:

Stream my Cellfactor Video (http://media.putfile.com/Cellfactor---jAkUp)

As for GRAW, it looks a little better with bullet particles flying around, but it's nothing dramatic. In all honosty, the GRAW effects look more like a marketing ploy to buy Ageia cards, rather than the effects actually needing a PPU.

However, the future is bright and there is no doubt in my mind that we will see some cool uses for the Ageia card in the near future. As of now though (May 18th, 2006) I can't help but admit that the usable software titles are rather lacking.

Anyways, check out my Cellfactor video if you can, it highlights some of the fluid effects and mass explosions :)

Here are some pictures of the card:

jolle
05-18-06, 01:55 AM
I just ran GRAW with FRAPS and Im getting the same FPS with and without the PPU.
Tho Im using the beta driver they released after Havok attacked them about the FPS drop in Graw..
How does it run for you Jak? any difference in FPS and what driver?
I take it you run it maxed out, Im using the automatic settings for my ole 6800GT, which is mediumish..

Explosions throw around alot more debris and dust, but like you said its nothing showstopping..
CellFactor, which I have to run on "low graphics" is really impressive, I cant recall having any hitches tho, maybe cause im running "low graphics"..
Tho it seems more like a PPU techdemo, or early beta version, I mean the bots on "easy" simply CANT MISS hehe..
Ive tried starting it with "enablephysx = false" but it doesnt seem to disable it, and if I try starting it with the board disabled in Device Manager it wont start at all, so its hard to compare it to anything..

On my list is Bet on Soldier, Rise of Legends demo (hope its implemented in the demo), and this "switchball" game that was bundled with the ASUS board along with GRAW.
ASUS ditched their 256mb plans it seems.. the chip would only address 128mb anyway as I understand it, so its just as well.. good for the devs too, to only have 1 spec to aim for..

jAkUp
05-18-06, 01:58 AM
Graw seems to be running fine, I haven't really noticed it running any slower with the PPU effects, and yea, the fact that Asus cancelled their 256MB version is the reason I decided to get the BFG this early :)

I am using the latest Beta driver as well

Fotis
05-18-06, 02:00 AM
Congrats Jakup on your new card but according to users over at hardocp (http://www.hardforum.com/showthread.php?t=1056037) running Cellfactor with and without the PPU they get almost the same fps for the same effects.
Another nail in Ageias coffin maybe?Remains to be seen.

jAkUp
05-18-06, 02:05 AM
Well, without the PPU you do lose cloth tearing effects, as well as fluid effects, so that could have a hamper on performance.

Also, it has yet to be proven if the nophysx switch runs the physics engine at a lower precision...

Fotis
05-18-06, 02:09 AM
I see.So when are going for Quad SLI?(nana2)

jolle
05-18-06, 02:16 AM
Congrats Jakup on your new card but according to users over at hardocp (http://www.hardforum.com/showthread.php?t=1056037) running Cellfactor with and without the PPU they get almost the same fps for the same effects.
Another nail in Ageias coffin maybe?Remains to be seen.
Thats the question, cause when I start the game with the "Enablephysx = false" the game runs the same, and has the same CPU usage around 50-59% on my X2.
Now due to this Im assuming its STILL using the PPU, so I disabled it in Device Manager and the game refused to start.
I think a hint is that the cloth and fluid simulations arent in the game when running without a PPU, if you get it to work..

EDIT
hmm.. not getting any "lava blobs" on the flamethrower in Bet On Solder.. maybe the support isnt in yet?

jolle
05-18-06, 03:58 AM
Well, its not really mine.. review sample, have to return it later.
Its pretty hard to review these things this early.. I mean it all depends on the software support and its mainly "on the way" so..

agentkay
05-18-06, 06:44 AM
Congrats! Thanks for the confirmation that the PPU doesnŽt affect framerate in GRAW once it runs with the latest beta drivers and a Dual-core CPU.

I hope youŽll get a lot of games with PPU support over the next months/years. :thumbsup:

jolle
05-18-06, 08:05 AM
I got cellfactor working without the PPU now..
Difference isnt very big performancewise, and with the cloth and stuff usually being idle anyway, I cant se how that would make THAT much difference.
As Jakup mentioned it might be running lower precision, but it doesnt really seem any different to me, so if it is, maybe it doesnt matter in the end..
CPU usage is significantly higher, and fps drops a bit lower, but its not a world of difference it seems.
seems like standing looking a mass of objects both modes are about 35 fps here, lobbing a nade in drops both to about 5-6 for a sec and then PPU enabled goes up to 26 during aftermath and No PPU to about 16...

EDIT
man, why cant they let us DL the techdemos they showcase on their site?
That would rock...

OWA
05-18-06, 04:10 PM
How loud is the card? Does it add any noticeable fan noise?

jAkUp
05-18-06, 04:14 PM
How loud is the card? Does it add any noticeable fan noise?

Not noticable enough for me to hear it... I'm kinda pissy about noise lately so I'm sure I would have noticed.

I wonder if a Zalman VF900 will fit on it?

OWA
05-18-06, 04:18 PM
Thanks for the info. I was worried about it since the small fans are sometimes pretty noisy. Good to know that it isn't.

Digital_Trans
05-18-06, 04:27 PM
Hey guys, finally got my PhysX card yesterday after much debate among myself.

Since Ageia does not have any x64 drivers as of yet, I spent most of yesterday installing Win32 and the latest drivers/updates. After that, installation was a breeze. Pop the card in, and grab the latest drivers from ageia.com.

First thing I loaded up was Cellfactor, and wow, what an impressive techdemo! It runs a little laggy... and if you watch my video you will see the hitch right before the explosion. It's pretty annoying, however, it definitely is rather impressive with fluid effects, and millions of boxes flying around. I have created a movie that shows off the cool effects, you can check it out here:

Stream my Cellfactor Video (http://media.putfile.com/Cellfactor---jAkUp)

As for GRAW, it looks a little better with bullet particles flying around, but it's nothing dramatic. In all honosty, the GRAW effects look more like a marketing ploy to buy Ageia cards, rather than the effects actually needing a PPU.

However, the future is bright and there is no doubt in my mind that we will see some cool uses for the Ageia card in the near future. As of now though (May 18th, 2006) I can't help but admit that the usable software titles are rather lacking.

Anyways, check out my Cellfactor video if you can, it highlights some of the fluid effects and mass explosions :)

Here are some pictures of the card:


jAkUp, I noticed that your running two eVGA 7900's and all the PCI BFG PhysX
card. Is there an advantage to having the two 7900's in conjunction with the
BFG PhysX? Do they all work togeather thus allowing for the best in PhysX,
2D and 3D features? :D

jolle
05-18-06, 05:01 PM
Im really bugged about CF, the performance difference isnt that big with PPU and without.
The difference is the cloth banner, which is prolly idle most of the time, and fluids, which are only spawned on certain events and fades out pretty fast, and the clothy flapthing, which are presumable also idle if not collided with..

Jak, you got a solid rig there, you got any numbers on doing a "force push" thing on a mass of objects, with and without the PPU enabled?
Cause Im largely GPU bottlenecked over here, hovering around 25ish FPS around big heaps of objects on this ole 6800GT.

tacos4me
05-18-06, 06:07 PM
Where did you get Cellfactor..?

Sazar
05-18-06, 06:12 PM
Jakup, I love your art skillzzzzzz !!!

You really need to get into art school :D

Btw, you drive like an old woman :smoking:

jolle
05-19-06, 03:32 AM
Where did you get Cellfactor..?
Its just a demo, released last week or so..
http://www.ageia.com/physx_in_action/cellfactor.html

whiskeychaser
05-19-06, 08:28 AM
Jakup, How is your cooling working out on that 2nd 7900gtx. Your sound card looks really close. Do you have a side case fan throwing air onto your video cards?

robertonumeruno
05-19-06, 09:57 AM
Alot of people say that it hurts performance without a dual core CPU. anybody that has a single core: Have u used it yet?

jolle
05-19-06, 10:04 AM
Alot of people say that it hurts performance without a dual core CPU. anybody that has a single core: Have u used it yet?
Running GRAW with the PPU seems to have the same CPU usuage as without, and its unaffected by explosions and stuff..
Using a DC CPU, but CPU usage doesnt seem to be affected so it prolly shouldnt matter, it stays around 56%.

lowrider007
05-19-06, 10:13 AM
I wonder if a Zalman VF900 will fit on it?

I've been wondering this also, it's not loud but I can hear it over my 7800GTX, can anyone confirm if the VF900 will fit on the BFG PhysX card ?, it looks like it will.