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Perrie Juran
Posts: 8,919
Registered: ‎10-16-2009

Is it worth the upgrade?

[ Edited ]

Last year I got a new desk top, custom built by a family member and I was a happy camper on SL until the introduction of V3 and mesh.  V3 code brought me to a crawl, a 75% performance drop.  https://jira.secondlife.com/browse/SH-2694

Currently I have an EVGA GTS250 card in my computer.  One of the great puzzles has been I know other users with this card who are not having my troubles.  http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130514

Nevertheless I have been considering upgrading my graphics card but I am on an extremely tight budget.  The card I am looking at is a GTX 550 Ti (Fermi) FPB 1GBhttp://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130625

My system specs are this:

CPU:  3.00 gigahertz :  AMD Athlon II X2 250 Regor 3.0GHz Socket AM3 65W Dual-Core Desktop Processor
ADX250OCGMBOX

Board: ECS A780GM-A Ultra 1.0
Bus Clock: 200 megahertz
BIOS: American Megatrends Inc. 080015 11/14/2008

OS is Win XP.

I have 4 gigs of RAM.

Thanks for your input.

Perrie

 

eta to correct CPU info


Posts: 1,092
Registered: ‎06-16-2009

Re: Is it worth the upgrade?

Reply to Perrie Juran - view message

I am not very knowledgeable, so take what I say for what it is worth, which may be what you paid for it.  I can only tell you what my personal experience was.  My old computer was a Core 2 Duo with 4 GB RAM and a GTX 8800 graphics card.  Upgrading the CPU to a Core 2 Quad and doubling the RAM had no noticeable effect, but upgrading the graphics to a GTX 470 did produce noticeable improvement.  That was with V2, I think, and it could have been V1.  My current computer runs SL considerably better than the old one did.  It has a second generation Core i7, a GTX 580, and an SSD; I don't know which part makes SL run better.  If I had to guess, I would guess the graphics card.

I did not notice any decrease in performance with V3.

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Ross Mistwalker
Posts: 11

Re: Is it worth the upgrade?

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I think your issue is more impacted by your processor than your graphics card, afaik that processor is only a dual core, and most modern games require a quad core nowadays.

You should also know that GTS card is not a gaming graphics card, its for general windows use and fast processing.

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Ross Mistwalker
Posts: 11

Re: Is it worth the upgrade?

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Just thought Id post my system specs:

This runs Second Life on the highest of the high settings with great framemates on the Firestorm viewer:

Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 x64
Memory (RAM): 8GB DDR3
CPU Info: Intel i5 2500k @ 4.6GHz
Motherboard: ASUS P8Z68-V PRO/GEN3
Power Supply: Corsair TX750 0
Sound: Sound Blaster X-Fi Titanium /w 7.1 Speakers
Display Adapters: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 470

 

My i5 is overclocked to 4.6ghz, which for gaming is faster than a standard i7, i7s are simply a waste of money right now, its not worth the extra jump if your purchasing one solely for a better gaming experience, but for processing and rendering, then of course!

 

 

Posts: 1,092
Registered: ‎06-16-2009

Re: Is it worth the upgrade?

Reply to Perrie Juran - view message

One thing I forgot to mention is a 64 bit OS.  I have not tried SL on the same computer with a 32 bit and 64 bit OS, and I have never read any comparison.  For a while I had a computer set up to dual boot 32 bit and 64 bit XP.  Most program were noticeably faster and more responsive on the 64 bit OS.

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Ross Mistwalker
Posts: 11

Re: Is it worth the upgrade?

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Yes, if your system can support 64 bit Windows then its definetly the way to go, you WILL notice a difference.

What 64/32bit imply, is how effectively the computer handles large amounts of RAM, basically, your computer will run and process information faster on a 64bit version of Windows.

Microsoft has a handy tool to decide whether your system can support and be compatible with a 64bit upgrade.
Its avaliable here: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/downloads/upgrade-advisor

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septimusminimus
Posts: 25

Re: Is it worth the upgrade?

Reply to Perrie Juran - view message

The GTX550Ti is a fairly weak card, too, and frequently gets panned for being much slower than the GTX560ti, yet too close in price. I'd suggest you go Geforce 560 or keep your current, pretty reasonable and nearly as fast GST250. AMD did just drop a new Radeon series, so if you play other games than Secondlife, you might wish to look at that, too; i'm not much familiar with it yet.

GTS250 + GTX550Ti bench:

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/geforce-gtx-550-ti-gf116-radeon-hd-5770,2892-5.html

Windows XP 32-bit is fine, as Secondlife viewers won't use over about two gigabytes of RAM, While 32-bit XP can only address around 3.25 gigabytes in a typical setup, between the game, your OS, plus background processes, you'll yet have breathing room.

 

As for the CPU,  Intel sells the Itanium, not AMD. I also am sure you do not have an Itanium, as they're expensive, used in servers, and don't wun X86 code natively. What I can tell you, though, is that Secondlife is a CPU-bound game and does require a very fast processor. AMD cores, even Phenom II, run to the weak side. Secondlife can scale past two cores now, but not perfectly. In any case, a Phenom II or Core 2 Duo dual core, even if overclocked, is a bit weak for lighting/shadows. You'd do well to pull your current CPU, hawk it on Ebay (great resale value,) and buy a new Phenom x4. Supplies are getting slim, so you might have to resort to Ebay for this; fear not, though, as Ebay has many deadstock CPU sellers. If you really wanted to go big, and this might actually be prudent, sell your motherboard + CPU as a combo and instead buy an i5 2500k, new 1155 motherboard, plus an aftermarket cooler for the overclocking Intel chips are so well suited to.

 

Nalates Urriah
Posts: 2,968
Registered: ‎03-26-2009

Re: Is it worth the upgrade?

Reply to Perrie Juran - view message

Look through this thread for others using GTS250. How Fast is Your Viewer? - Second Life

The GTS is slower than a GTX. A 50 is slower than a 60.

Since you don't give us your FPS its hard to know where you fit in the performance range (Ctrl-Shift-1). Many of us have seen performance decrease as the Lab has worked to improve OpenGL compatibility. Also, nVidia has had some problems.

If you have the latest driver, use System Explorer (free) or Task Manager (built in) and GPU-Z (free) to see if it is the GPU or the CPU that is bottle necking performance. I run a Core2 Quad and GTX560Ti. The card runs at about 20 to 30% load and the CPU's at 30 to 60%. I get 12 to 20 FPS with graphics on HIGH and L&S, AO, & S/M Shadows on with Anti-alias 2x.

If you look through the thread linked to above, you may notice those running 64-bit Windows seem to consistantly get better performance.

Perrie Juran
Posts: 8,919
Registered: ‎10-16-2009

Re: Is it worth the upgrade?

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Nalates Urriah wrote:

Look through this thread for others using GTS250. How Fast is Your Viewer? - Second Life

The GTS is slower than a GTX. A 50 is slower than a 60.

Since you don't give us your FPS its hard to know where you fit in the performance range (Ctrl-Shift-1). Many of us have seen performance decrease as the Lab has worked to improve OpenGL compatibility. Also, nVidia has had some problems.

If you have the latest driver, use System Explorer (free) or Task Manager (built in) and GPU-Z (free) to see if it is the GPU or the CPU that is bottle necking performance. I run a Core2 Quad and GTX560Ti. The card runs at about 20 to 30% load and the CPU's at 30 to 60%. I get 12 to 20 FPS with graphics on HIGH and L&S, AO, & S/M Shadows on with Anti-alias 2x.

If you look through the thread linked to above, you may notice those running 64-bit Windows seem to consistantly get better performance.


I had posted my performance in that thread.  But to give you an idea of what I am dealing with I just did these two screen shots at Junkyard Blues, Graphics set to High.  Firestorm Beta, 25 FPS, Firestorm 4, 5 FPS.  The Official SL Viewer is just as bad.  Also screen shots of GPU Z and Sys Explore.  I have tried several other V3 based viewers and the results are always the same.  Even with graphics set at LOW I will only gain a couple of FPS.

So this is what I am trying to overcome.

statistics FS Beta.jpg

Statistics FS 4.jpg

Sys Exp.jpg

 

gpuz.jpg

 

 

 

Perrie Juran
Posts: 8,919
Registered: ‎10-16-2009

Re: Is it worth the upgrade?

Reply to septimusminimus - view message


septimusminimus wrote:

 

As for the CPU,  Intel sells the Itanium, not AMD. I also am sure you do not have an Itanium, as they're expensive, used in servers, and don't wun X86 code natively.

 


I ran Bel Arc advisor to get all my system specs because I couldn't find my original receipt when I posted this. I have found it now and this is my CPU:

AMD Athlon II X2 250 Regor 3.0GHz Socket AM3 65W Dual-Core Desktop Processor
ADX250OCGMBOX