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Glzmo
09.17.2012 , 05:56 PM | #29
Quote: Originally Posted by Ewen Vowels
In addition to these functional changes, there have been numerous optimizations made to the underlying core technology to reduce the load on the player’s computer. In most cases, players should notice an improvement to framerate compared to the previous system. Players with high-end AMD CrossFire or Nvidia SLI machines should notice a large improvement when running the game with the new shadow system.
Unfortunately, the performance gain for Nvidia SLI powered systems doesn't appear to hold true, at least on my computer. To the contrary, my dual GTX 580 3GB Nvidia SLI powered PC (which I think is rather high-end - see the bottom of this post for detailed system specs), I am experiencing a massive performance loss with the new shadows on Public Test 1.4 compared to 1.3 on live and also compared to 1.4 with SLI disabled.
Two areas are all of Alderaan where there is lots of grass as well as the Jedi Knight's Defender' starship's big room with the big holocom in it (just examples, most areas of the game are affected by this performance hit). Framerate is halved from live (from around ~50 down to ~20 FPS on Alderaan, from 110FPS down to 43 FPS on the defender). The game also runs a lot more choppy with framerate (noticeable microstutter, even with Vsync disabled) being far less inconsistent in 1.4. 1.4 with new shadows is nigh-unplayable on my machine with the same settings as 1.3 with the old shadows.

GPU usage for both GPUs in SLI is also way down in 1.4 from 1.3. Where in 1.3 both of my GPUs were used between 94% - 98%, which is proper SLI scaling, both GPUs are only utilized around 30% - 40% each in 1.4 on the Public test Server in the same, problematic areas. SLI scaling basically isn't working properly at all.
How are you rendering the new shadows? Using the CPU instead of the GPUs?

Both 1.3 and 1.4 run on the "Very High" Graphics Quality Preset, at 1920x1080@60Hz, Full Screen (Windowed), same with proper Full Screen mode. I'm using 4x Multisampling FSAA + 2x SGSAA Transparency Anti-Aliasing. I'm using Nvidia's latest WHQL GeForce driver, 306.23.

Which video cards did your testers test with and which driver versions did they use? Perhaps you have tested with unreleased beta drivers with a new Nvidia SLI Profile for TOR? Or much older drivers than the current ones?
Or maybe it's just an issue with the current build on the Public test server and has already been fixed on the build you have internally?

With that in mind, I think it would be a good idea to leave the old shadows in as an option. Perhaps you leave the old, blocky, more static shadows for the High Shadow setting and then use the new, dynamic shadows/Ambient Occlusion as new, Very High shadow setting.

If you can't keep the old, more performant shadows as an additional option, it may be a good idea to leave the new shadows out until you have implemented DirectX 11 support (for increased performance) and a native x64 client.

On a side note, the old bug from beta that cripples performance (FPS and GPU utilization) after leaving the Galaxy map (including entering space combat) on ships like the Jedi Knights's Defender on multi-GPU setups until one reloads the graphics is back in Game Update 1.4 as well.

Here are my system specs:
Spoiler

I tried to post my Dxdiag.txt as well, but unfortunately, the post would exceed the maximum character limit for posts as I have so many devices installed, sorry.