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Testing the Alchemy viewer which apparently utilizes the GPU more (FPS test)

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So apparently the Alchemy viewer actually utilizes the GPU (Graphics Card) more than other viewers and might give you extra performance (it doubles my performance) if you have good GPU.

Statistics bar is on in the video so you guys can see the FPS difference.

Not sure if the increase in performance is really because it utilizes the GPU more or not, but hey it's there. Graphics settings are similar on viewers tested.

 

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On 6/6/2020 at 2:03 PM, lucagrabacr said:

So apparently the Alchemy viewer actually utilizes the GPU (Graphics Card) more than other viewers and might give you extra performance (it doubles my performance) if you have good GPU.

Statistics bar is on in the video so you guys can see the FPS difference.

Not sure if the increase in performance is really because it utilizes the GPU more or not, but hey it's there. Graphics settings are similar on viewers tested.

This is interesting, and will certainly appeal to those wanting to see if they can double their FPS, but it lacks some benchmarking details. 

The video links to the Alchemy website, so I'm assuming the current Beta 6.3.6.46699 which is merged up to Linden Lab Version 6.3.6.535003.

There's no indication which Firestorm version is being used. If it's the current Version 6.3.9.58205, that is merged up to Linden Lab Version 6.3.8.538264. That includes 7 updates from Linden Lab, compared with the Alchemy Beta. 

The current version of the official Second Life Viewer from Linden Lab is 6.4.3.542964. (That has Firestorm 3 updates behind.)

How much any of this is a factor, who knows. But this is indeed part of the challenge of doing a "test". 

On 6/6/2020 at 2:03 PM, lucagrabacr said:

Graphics settings are similar on viewers tested.

Similar, but I see 2 significant differences. Not easy to see the settings. Nor could I hear what you may have done in between running the different viewers for comparison. 

Interesting though. I wonder if it will inspire the Alchemy developer to continue his efforts. 🙂

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6 hours ago, Willow Wilder said:

This is interesting, and will certainly appeal to those wanting to see if they can double their FPS, but it lacks some benchmarking details. 

The video links to the Alchemy website, so I'm assuming the current Beta 6.3.6.46699 which is merged up to Linden Lab Version 6.3.6.535003.

There's no indication which Firestorm version is being used. If it's the current Version 6.3.9.58205, that is merged up to Linden Lab Version 6.3.8.538264. That includes 7 updates from Linden Lab, compared with the Alchemy Beta. 

The current version of the official Second Life Viewer from Linden Lab is 6.4.3.542964. (That has Firestorm 3 updates behind.)

How much any of this is a factor, who knows. But this is indeed part of the challenge of doing a "test". 

Similar, but I see 2 significant differences. Not easy to see the settings. Nor could I hear what you may have done in between running the different viewers for comparison. 

Interesting though. I wonder if it will inspire the Alchemy developer to continue his efforts. 🙂

The Firestorm version I was using in the video is the newest one, and I tried my best to make sure the settings and factors are similar on both viewers during the testing (sliders, draw distance, amount of non-impostor avatars, etc except that Alchemy's draw distance is at 128m and Firestorm at 120m) which is why I had the radar open as well to show how many people are around me during the testing, and I tried not to go to too many places before recording, I only tp'd between the town and my place. The shadow on Alchemy does look kinda different but I didn't mess with shadow quality setting on both viewer and left them at their default parameters.

The improvement seems to not be an isolated occurrence just for me so far, other than my friend I mentioned in the video and her other friend, another friend of mine and some commenters on YT / Facebook have reported an increase in performance as well, some said they actually got better performance from Firestorm though.

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11 hours ago, lucagrabacr said:

some said they actually got better performance from Firestorm though

Which of the two viewers has better performance probably depends on if the users system is GPU or CPU bound.

This change in Alchemy isn't something we could do in Firestorm.  The consequences of the optimizations Alchemy did would stop users on older systems being able to run the viewer at all - it wouldn't even launch. I don't think it would run on any Windows 7/8 system either, no matter how new the hardware was.
Unfortunately there are a large proportion of SL users running on outdated OS with older hardware.

 

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5 minutes ago, Whirly Fizzle said:

Which of the two viewers has better performance probably depends on if the users system is GPU or CPU bound.

This change in Alchemy isn't something we could do in Firestorm.  The consequences of the optimizations Alchemy did would stop users on older systems being able to run the viewer at all - it wouldn't even launch. I don't think it would run on any Windows 7/8 system either, no matter how new the hardware was.
Unfortunately there are a large proportion of SL users running on outdated OS with older hardware.

 

That's what I thought and mentioned in the video too! That you guys / LL aren't using the GPU more and put more of the load on CPU because most SL users are people without a good discrete graphics card or none at all c=

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Potato computers...   I have some.  Due to hardware failures I am down to one passable GPU for SL.  My GTX 1070 still works.  I have several Intel CPUs with graphics in them but am not satisfied with their performance with Second Life.  Not at all.  I am not a gamer.  I have tried playing games and wear out on them and don’t buy more because the mechanics of the games rarely appeal to me.

I may try this Alchemy Viewer with a pauper alt. I still can’t bring myself to trust a third party viewer with my primary account but am sufficiently curious to see what it does.  First I need to acquire  a GPU for a computer I am willing to install a TPV into.  Should I order that RTX 2080 Ti?

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Darn.  I looked at what I presume is the web site and see no hardware/OS requirements mentioned.

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18 minutes ago, Ardy Lay said:

First I need to acquire  a GPU for a computer I am willing to install a TPV into.  Should I order that RTX 2080 Ti?

Errrm... why won't you stick to your 1070? Especially since you got no other needs, but SL.

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Posted (edited)

I could if I were to move it to a different computer, for a GPU upgrade on my primary, for example.  I may not install any third party viewers on the primary computer nor may I log in to SL via a third party viewer on an account that has access to money or land ownership.  These are the rules of engagement I must abide.

Edited by Ardy Lay
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Posted (edited)
3 minutes ago, Ardy Lay said:

I could if I were to move it to a different computer, for a GPU upgrade on my primary, for example.  I may not install any third party viewers on the primary computer nor may I log in to SL via a third party viewer on an account that has access to money or land ownership.  These are the rules of engagement I must abide.

I am familiar with those rules.  They no longer apply to me.  Alas, I have no real GPUs.  I only have the Intel stuff in the CPU so it's not likely to do me any good to try Alchemy.

Edited by TVTuner
spelling

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Yeah, whatever about those third party viewer installing vows, that's your business.

But perhaps draw a chart or simply post the specs of your various setups and what you use them for... not in this thread, though, to avoid confusion. 
Only thing worth mentioning: it is an extremely unlucky time of the year to buy a new GPU. Details about NVidia's new releases might come up during the week. AMD is plotting as well and both should be on the market by the end of the year. 

Even if there ever was a good point to buy an insanely overpriced 2080 TI... it has passed.

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1 minute ago, Lillith Hapmouche said:

Yeah, whatever about those third party viewer installing vows, that's your business.

But perhaps draw a chart or simply post the specs of your various setups and what you use them for... not in this thread, though, to avoid confusion. 
Only thing worth mentioning: it is an extremely unlucky time of the year to buy a new GPU. Details about NVidia's new releases might come up during the week. AMD is plotting as well and both should be on the market by the end of the year. 

Even if there ever was a good point to buy an insanely overpriced 2080 TI... it has passed.

Heh.  Mentioning the RTX 2080 Ti was half in jest.  I guess I could have asked what GPU could Alchemy running on an i9 9900K @ 5.1 GHz keep busy, for some value of busy.

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I tried it out briefly on a couple computers and saw no significant difference between Alchemy and Fiestorm. Quadro K2200 with an i7-2600 and an AMD RX550 with an i5-4570. Both GPUs are 4GB.

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I had a mess about with Alchemy, I experienced an increase in reported framerate, but notably also an increase in perceiveable framerate (in firestorm, sometimes the framerate is reported high, but there are noticable slow downs when looking with your eyes at what's happening in the scene)

How different is the render engine code to firestorms? Maybe it would be worth maintaining a special build with that uses that engine, and just tuck it away from the main release builds so non-tinkerers don't complain it doesn't work?

 

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On 6/8/2020 at 1:34 PM, Ardy Lay said:

Darn.  I looked at what I presume is the web site and see no hardware/OS requirements mentioned.

You need a CPU and OS that support the AVX extensions. That's a 2nd generation Intel Core-i CPU or AMD FX-4/6/8xxx CPU and Windows 7 SP1 or later. Any GPU that can run the Linden viewer should work. 

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Posted (edited)

Me thinks that I should probably deactivate the FPS lock in Firestorm before coming to conclusions. Might be an idea.

I do like the colors and the feel of the UI. But I never felt comfortable with the weird official viewer chat layout. Probably a showstopper, no matter how much the viewer excels in utilizing the available resources.

// Uuuuuh... more Windlight presets! 😃🤩

Edited by Lillith Hapmouche

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Ill give it a try, but what is with all this 'perceived' difference? using the task manager one can see EXACTLY what the CPU/GPU is and is not doing......

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Or just hit Ctrl + Shift +1 and bring up the statistics window / use a monitoring tool to actually see your FPS.

Then again, I haven't really found a reason yet why one would need much more than, say, 60fps in SL.

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ok some my first impressions (related to observed performance not anything to do with the UI)

I went to area in Grove Estate I know likes to chug alot. I set the FS and Alc. viewer to the same WL and same draw distance, same display settings

First of, observing the windows task manager, the usage of the CPU / GPU is really no different than of FS

Firestorm:

after intial load I'm getting anywhere from 6-11 FPS and if I let the scene 'bake in' longer up to 20 FPS or so. FS has for me for a while now, chugged and very low FPS on some sims until it gets more processed. It's loaded, no grey, just takes a while for the FPS to build up.

Alcehmy:

The loading was very fast and I was instantly getting rates from between 40-90 FPS (I walked back and forth along a path in both viewers) there was no observed 'bake in' period where I had to wait for the FPS to pick up. From my observation on this particular sim in this particular area, I would say it was anywhere from 2-5 times better in FPS, and in addition, when walking, no choppiness

I plan on doing more testing and with the 3D mouse I use for machinima work and on different sims to do more comparing. So far I have to say, it performs really well. Now, I can't say something in my Win 10 just doesn't like a certain file or process within FS, but from my early observation, alchemy works quite well

my computer:

core i7 4790

16g RAM

GTX 1080 

Win 10 build 19041

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On 6/8/2020 at 8:48 AM, Whirly Fizzle said:

Which of the two viewers has better performance probably depends on if the users system is GPU or CPU bound.

This change in Alchemy isn't something we could do in Firestorm.  The consequences of the optimizations Alchemy did would stop users on older systems being able to run the viewer at all - it wouldn't even launch. I don't think it would run on any Windows 7/8 system either, no matter how new the hardware was.
Unfortunately there are a large proportion of SL users running on outdated OS with older hardware.

So what is Alchemy doing in the GPU?

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tested it as well, but my computer is lower spec'd than what has been related here as the target machine. So FPS-wise didn't make a lot of difference

i did get some visual artifacts in the sky rendering up on my sky platform

i did tho love that I could increase my Texture Memory to 3072MB.  Woohoo! never saw a texture thrashing at all anywhere

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Posted (edited)

I just tested Alchemy on my iMac Pro. I didn't check every Graphics setting, but on Ultra with DD = 256, I got about half the frame rate of Firestorm.

Edited by Madelaine McMasters
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Tried it in some more locations, and with different settings on the i7/Quadro system, and did see some significant differences. I did see some higher frame rates, GPU utilization and better frame times. I would very much like to see an AVX optimized version of Firestorm now.

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