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Best Second Life Viewer


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I'm looking for a Second Life viewer, something better than the vanilla one.  I'm looking for a viewer that strikes a balance between a high number of features and a low amount of lag.  Does the vanilla viewer meet these demands, or is there a third-party viewer that's better?

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Hard to say that one is the best. Al depends on the user expectations and the hardware used. In my main computer I use Firestorm and love it, in my laptop Singularity gives me less lag and more stability. Just go to the Third Party Viewer Directory and test a few to make your own judgement. http://wiki.secondlife.com/wiki/Third_Party_Viewer_Directory

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LaVerria wrote:

I'm looking for a Second Life viewer, something better than the vanilla one.  I'm looking for a viewer that strikes a balance between a high number of features and a low amount of lag.  Does the vanilla viewer meet these demands, or is there a third-party viewer that's better?

I also recommend Singularity.

Singularity is high on features, and low on lag.  This viewer also has the option of the excellent old-style UI, which is intuitive and enjoyable to use. 

 

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LaVerria wrote:

I'm looking for a Second Life viewer, something better than the vanilla one.  I'm looking for a viewer that strikes a balance between a high number of features and a low amount of lag.  Does the vanilla viewer meet these demands, or is there a third-party viewer that's better?

 The topic of "what is the best viewer" has been brought up mulitiple times. I am linking (hopefully) those conversations to this thread. I hope that the OP would take the time and go through the information and determine which is best for them

Good luck

http://community.secondlife.com/t5/forums/searchpage/tab/message?filter=labels%2Clocation&location=category%3AForums&q=best+viewer

 

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Why is it that everyone seems to like the old UI better?


When I saw the buttons (and the ability to stick them everywhere) for the official new viewer, I was really excited, because I never used half the crap on my screen that the old UI forced me to have up.

Now I have about 5 buttons on my screen at a given time in places that don't interfere with my HUDs and life is better.

What's preferable about the busy old UI? I can see new users not liking it because nothing is labeled, but for oldbies like myself, the itty bitty unobtrusive buttons seems better for screen space.

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It's really difficult to recommend a viewer, since so much depends on both your equipment and what you want to use the viewer for.

If -- as do I -- you like V3, then I'd suggest giving Catznip a try.   It's got some very well-thought-out extra features (particularly with outfits and communications) that I use a lot,  while not -- from my point of view -- cluttering me up with lots of features I'll hardly ever use, if at all, as does Firestorm.

That's just my POV, and what works for me might not work for you, but it's certainly worth a try.   Otherwise, I agree Singularity is very good indeed.

But, as I said, so much depends on your machine, your preferred settings and what you enjoy doing in SL.    

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KlistiesSeMio Ewinaga wrote:

Why is it that everyone seems to like the old UI better?

 

When I saw the buttons (and the ability to stick them everywhere) for the official new viewer, I was really excited, because I never used half the crap on my screen that the old UI forced me to have up.

Now I have about 5 buttons on my screen at a given time in places that don't interfere with my HUDs and life is better.

What's preferable about the busy old UI? I can see new users not liking it because nothing is labeled, but for oldbies like myself, the itty bitty unobtrusive buttons seems better for screen space.

Screenshots of Singularity:

 

Without UI showing:

 

Sandbox shot UI_001B.jpg

 

 

With UI showing:

Sandbox shot UI-2B.jpg

 

Here's some shots messing with depth of field and windlights, just for fun.  *laughing*

 

Sandbox shot CN_001.jpg

 

Sandbox shot CN_002_001.jpg

 

Sandbox shot CN_003_001.jpg

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Good example, Celest.

Sing is the perfect choice for us connoiseurs of the clean and uncluttered V1 style. I can understand that people, who only came into SL after the introduction of V2, prefer the new GUIs better. It's always what we're used to which we like best. I felt kinda disconnected from SL when I tried V2, as if I was looking at the world through a filter, rather than being in it. Too much going on, too many of my most used features were hidden somewhere or in illogical places. V2 was simply not for me.

Fortunately the Singularity crew are doing  a super job keeping the V1 style alive and up to date. They are doing much  better than the FS guys.

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Yeah, but see how all those buttons at the bottom are just, well, sitting there?

Out of those shown, I use Search, Mini Map (sometimes, not always), and Inventory.
 (the others I have open in V2 are Camera Controls, Outfits & Chat)

Why have a fly button, or build, or radar, or map, or all that volume and media crap sticking out at the bottom?

If I want those, I'll go through the top menu (me personally, someone else might really like the map, for instance)

I agree that viewer isn't as obnoxious as v1 UIs, but the lack of deciding where stuff is and what stuff I have out brings down my interest.

Also, for those of you wanting a faster SL without taxing the comp much but still getting the pretty, just set LOD to 4, get you some pretty windlight settings, turn off everything (draw distance to like 128, particles to min (but not off), kill all the graphics you don't need like trees and land textures and blah blah water stuff - just make flexi prims, objects, and avatars high. turn off all the check boxes but basic shaders (local lights are cool for themed places tho), and keep graphics at low. If your comp is okay at this point, do anti aliasing in advanced to 4x and lovely avis all over yay)

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I dunno about that. I've been around since '07 - which isn't terribly long, but long enough to freak out when V2 happened (I'm stubborn) but after I got used to it during that first week, I loved it and decided it was much better (for me). But to each his own, I suppose! :matte-motes-wink-tongue:

eta: also on my main (not my rp alt who doesn't need things open aha)

uinone.png

ui.png

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Orca Flotta wrote:

I felt kinda disconnected from SL when I tried V2, as if I was looking at the world through a filter, rather than being in it. Too much going on, too many of my most used features were hidden somewhere or in illogical places. V2 was simply not for me.

Fortunately the Singularity crew are doing  a super job keeping the V1 style alive and up to date. They are doing much  better than the FS guys.

That's how I felt also, Orca; I even feel like that on Firestorm using the Phoenix interface and I LOVED Phoenix.  I felt like I needed to take time just to figure out how to do the things I already learned 6 years ago as well as buttons and gee-gaws popping up everywhere which I later discovered were IMs.  I felt like I was playing a game of Whack-a-Mole with them. :matte-motes-mad:

I'm not badmouthing FS because I am so grateful that their devs developed Phoenix and if I *did* like the V3 interface I'd go with them - a lot of my friends use FS and several have constant crashing issues.  I did convince two of them to try Singularity and voila!  no more crashing.  I don't know if it is because FS is more bloated or what but I have seen this happen now twice.  (Yes, I realize that is not a huge sampling; I do find it interesting, though.)

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Those camera controls being that size would be enough to annoy me.

It's just a matter of personal preference...there are enough TPVs out there as well as the official viewer that people can find what works the best for them and how they use SL.  I've heard several forumites say they use FS for building and Singularity and/or CoolVL Viewer for doing other things in SL.  I honestly don't care what viewer others in SL use; I only make suggestions when there are issues like my friends who were crashing or when someone asks what is a good viewer. :)

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Yeah, Klisties, to each their own. I freaked out as you but I'm proabbly even more stubborn than you and haven't stopped freaking yet. :smileyvery-happy: V2 was a stillborn baby, certified. Maybe V3 is better but I've lost interest in LL's own viewers much earlier. Started using Nicholaz viewer in mid 07, when I was still a n00b, liked it a lot on my weak laptop I used back then ... and never went back to LL. Only once for a test of V2 but that didn't last long.

And, sorry to say, I use almost all buttons in the taskbar regularly and often. Minimap and Worldmap I have open very often (I'm a sailor), Search sometimes, Radar is one of my fav applications, Communication very often and I even use the Fly button from time to time. My connection from South Africa always has latencies between 300 and 500 ms so I live with some lag and slow response all the time. And flying up with the arrow key often just doesn't lift me of the ground but sends me much too high once the command gets computed, while a click on Fly always does the trick perfectly.

Also I don't understand your graphics preferences. I want eyecandy, dammmit. Else I could play SL on a text-only application. I have everything maxed out except shadows and am almost always on DD 256 and still get 20 - 60 FPS.

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Orca Flotta wrote:

Yeah, Klisties, to each their own. I freaked out as you but I'm proabbly even more stubborn than you and haven't stopped freaking yet. :smileyvery-happy: V2 was a stillborn baby, certified. Maybe V3 is better but I've lost interest in LL's own viewers much earlier. Started using Nicholaz viewer in mid 07, when I was still a n00b, liked it a lot on my weak laptop I used back then ... and never went back to LL. Only once for a test of V2 but that didn't last long.


Nicholaz users unite!!!  I was really sad when Nicholaz bowed out of developing his viewer when *coughs* v2 *coughs* arrived but can't blame him.  Fortunately Phoenix was to appear on the horizon.

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Sephina Frostbite wrote:

NOOB question alert... Does singularity have mesh viewing capability? I might give it a try. I love FS but sometimes when I minimize my conversations it reads it as I am pushing the x button and logging off, Rather annoying.

Mesh, materials, SSA, everything the official viewer offers plus some additional features that are in FS (and why I fell in love with Phoenix) but I'm not sure if they are in the official viewer although I admit I don't know.  Some of my favorites:

*Object area search - This was my #1 favorite feature on Phoenix.  Especially in huge stores with no tp boards, this feature is a life-saver.

*Pose stand - No more having to wait until one is on land that allows rezzing to wear an object and be able to edit it on the spot.

*The choice to use certain applications with v2 or "old school" style, such as viewing profiles, etc.

*Same with how one wishes to view IMs

*(For me) a MUCH cleaner, easier to understand UI

*Less PC-intensive

And a lot more features I'm forgetting but have just become accustomed to using.

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I guess I'm just used to using keyboard shortcuts more often than not! :matte-motes-grin:

Using the pg up and pg down buttons can help for flying since the arrows are finicky.

 

Oh, and my preferences get eye candy! My computer just isn't so hot at handling graphics all bumped up, and I don't like SL's shadowing and lighting (unless I'm at an rp place or a themed sim) because I'm terribly vain and I like my seamless windlight settings. Everyone is smooth, all mesh is lovely, textures come in quickly (for sl) and they look nice, no jagged edges on avis, even ugly avis have nice skin (no jowls and those nose lines), etc. Basically I don't have fancy linden water (but since I live up in the air, my pond in my forest is prim water haha), or super fancy shadows, but that's ok. Most of my furniture comes with its own shadows and the houses I buy have baked shading so I can trick myself into thinking everything is super hq.

Look at the one screenshot I put up. That's on the lowest graphic setting, and my avi still looks A+. /not vain shh

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