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Highest FPS viewer?


Phil Deakins
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Generally speaking, which is considered to be the viewer that gives the highest FPS?

The reason I am asking is because I finally decided to update Firestorm, but Firestorm made a right pig's ear of it. I ended up have to remove some it's stuff by hand. I did eventually get the current one running though, but the FPS was much lower than the previous version. So I've downloaded and installed the previous version, but I'm wondering which viewer is considered to have the highest FPS rates, because I'd like to try it.

 

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@Phil Deakins:  I suspect the issue you ran into is due to the changeover from Windlight rendering to EEP and the "Love Me Render" code now used by LL.  Many folk are seeing big reductions in their viewers' FPS as a result and the best info I have seen so far suggests that there is a bug (STILL) in the EEP rendering code!  It is also my experience that the new rendering system is far more sensitive to poor bandwidth on a user's connection.

FS 6.3.9 gives much better FPS for the majority of folk primarily due to it still using the Windlight rendering system, while 6.4.12 is brought up to the current LL codebase, ie EEP.

All viewers will eventually HAVE to update to the EEP code if they wish to appear on the  TPV list, since the ability  to render a "shared experience" in a prerequisite for TPV listing.

This all gives me flashbacks to the chaos that surrounded the initial introduction of Windlight itself, when a number of previously perfectly adequate GPUs were rendered ('scuse the pun) obsolete at a stroke.  My FPS went from about 25 to less than 10 and I had to drop my render quality to achieve even that!

So presently some viewers, which have not adopted the EEP code, appear to give superior results simply because they are using the old code.  I have little doubt that Niran Dean will adopt the EEP code, and if my experience of his abilities is anything to go by, Black Dragon will do a better job of rendering EEP than the current Firestorm.  FS will improve, that is also in my experience, but how long it will take is anyone's guess.

To my knowledge no other TPVs are on a par with the current LL codebase but I bow to the superior knowledge of others if I am wrong.

To my mind this move to EEP is a classic case of "shiny for shiny's sake" - it seems to offer not much gain for a whole lot of pain, but others may hold a different view.  Whatever I think, LL have decided to move to EEP and that is final...it's their world and their rules so we must come to terms with it as best we can.

Edited by Aishagain
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If you have an Intel cpu and Nvidia graphics, perhaps Cool VL Viewer will suit you. On my AMD Ryzen & RX 580 system running Ubuntu 20.04 MATE (with compositing turned off), Cool VL Viewer is slower than other viewers even in Windlight mode, which is an option Henri maintains on his viewer. I like Cool VL Viewer, but I only use occasionally now. For speed, Singularity beta 8193 is still my choice, but it is likely to become obsolete at some point. I have an issue with the last official Singularity release, which is why I still use that particular beta. I'm uncertain whether or when the Singularity team will once again start a round of updates.

As for other EEP viewers, you could try Kokua, which has received updates quite often this year and is at version 6.4.11. The downloads are found at Sourceforge: https://sourceforge.net/projects/kokua.team-purple.p/files/Kokua-SL/

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Thank you both for your replies. I didn't expect the answer to be perfectly straight forward, and it isn't lol. I had no idea that EEP causes such a problem. It's of no interest whatsoever to me.

I'm back on FS 6.3.9, but I will try viewers like the version of Singularity that was mentioned, and Kokua - and even Cool viewer. I'll give them a shot. Thank you again for your very helpful replies.

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Wanted to mention (this from the "New Environment" thread conversation that while I did not update to FS EEP viewer I DID test the older version (the FS BOM viewer) against the current Linden viewer and surprisingly had EXACTLY the same FPS (yes, a surprise there).  There have been improvements in the Linden viewer code that were not available for the current FS EEP latest viewer. So some things have been fixed and will improve no doubt in the future.  

 

From the two EEP threads we can surmise ^^ that those with middle level dedicated video cards are doing fairly well and those with less than powerful computers (especially notebooks on wifi with integrated cards  -- no surprise there) are having difficulties and some cannot even log on.  This is all from anecdotal info in those threads. 

 

Also note that there is a new texture cache slider (info on that at the FS site and a link there to Inara's blog post on new features) that is causing issues for folks with more powerful computers simply because the default is set lower than previously. So changing that could certainly help SOME people.

 

That's pretty much what is known regarding the frame rate issue. The latest crashing issue seems to have been fixed in the current Linden viewer also (this again from anecdotal reports).  So switching to a different viewer may not help at all right now. Going back to or staying with the FS BOM viewer is what some folks are doing -- including me. 

 

 

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6 hours ago, Aishagain said:

So presently some viewers, which have not adopted the EEP code, appear to give superior results simply because they are using the old code.  I have little doubt that Niran Dean will adopt the EEP code, and if my experience of his abilities is anything to go by, Black Dragon will do a better job of rendering EEP than the current Firestorm.  FS will improve, that is also in my experience, but how long it will take is anyone's guess.

To my knowledge no other TPVs are on a par with the current LL codebase but I bow to the superior knowledge of others if I am wrong.

BD has had EEP for months now. Ever since it officially came out BD supported it too and was using the EEP code (minus the broken water reflection rendering code as it was causing reflections to break when rolling the camera or zooming too close)

BD is on the second last LL codebase version right now, originally i planned to have updated to the latest but due to the lack of meaningful changes since the last code merge i've chosen to instead continue focus on fixing more bugs that cropped up. Pretty sure Cool VL Viewer is also always up to date.

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Thank you all for your replies. EEP is of no interest to me whatsoever. I'm only interested in the FPS rates. I've now tried those that have been suggested - Black Dragon, Cool Viewer, Singularity, Firestorm, and the LL viewer. I knew Firestorm and the LL viewer so I logged in with each of the others, and just stood still on my sky platform, where there is a little bit of activity, and watched the FPS rate. And, purely on FPS, with my hardware (below), I have a winner.

Singularity shows a significantly higher FPS rate than the others. I would like the FPS to show in the top bar, but it doesn't, although there may be an option to show it there. It does one other thing too that is important for me. Like Firestorm, it has a button in the Edit box to get an object's uuid. So I'm on Singularity, at least for now.

@NiranV Dean Perhaps the way that the camera works in Black Dragon is better than the way we are used to, and it's just a matter of getting used to it, so I can't argue with it being BD's default. But I'd like to suggest a one-click change to make the camera work like it works in other viewers, instead of having to go through several steps to achieve it. I can imagine it putting some people off from using the viewer. It's just a suggestion.

My hardware
CPU: AMD Ryzen 3 1200 Quad-Core Processor            (3094.19 MHz)
Memory: 8143 MB
OS Version: Microsoft Windows 10 64-bit (Build 19041)
Graphics Card: GeForce GTX 750 Ti/PCIe/SSE2
 

 

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3 hours ago, Phil Deakins said:

Singularity shows a significantly higher FPS rate than the others. I would like the FPS to show in the top bar, but it doesn't, although there may be an option to show it there. It does one other thing too that is important for me. Like Firestorm, it has a button in the Edit box to get an object's uuid. So I'm on Singularity, at least for now.

Alchemy Viewer as far as i know is the highest FPS Viewer atm. Singularity does include Alchemy's performance improvements as Singularity has the Alchemy Dev on it too.

3 hours ago, Phil Deakins said:

@NiranV Dean Perhaps the way that the camera works in Black Dragon is better than the way we are used to, and it's just a matter of getting used to it, so I can't argue with it being BD's default. But I'd like to suggest a one-click change to make the camera work like it works in other viewers, instead of having to go through several steps to achieve it. I can imagine it putting some people off from using the viewer. It's just a suggestion.

Uh, did i miss something? I didn't mention how the camera works at all. Nonetheless the camera works exactly the same in all Viewers including BD. I haven't touched how the camera itself works, just added more to it (like the camera roll). Controls should all be the same too (if i didn't miss any more).

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17 hours ago, KjartanEno said:

If you have an Intel cpu and Nvidia graphics, perhaps Cool VL Viewer will suit you. On my AMD Ryzen & RX 580 system running Ubuntu 20.04 MATE (with compositing turned off), Cool VL Viewer is slower than other viewers even in Windlight mode, which is an option Henri maintains on his viewer.

If you could stop making your personal (and quite unique) experience a generality !

I do not know what is your hidden agenda (and to me it furiously looks like you have a nasty one !), but you are the only person so far who dares to pretend that my viewer is the slowest (whatever the hardware) !

I tested it on multiple computers (Intel//AMD & NVIDIA/AMD alike), and it always came first or second (Singularity is sometimes faster, but Singularity got some breakages, such as water reflection and displacement maps, as well as missing features).

To be valid a benchmarking protocol must be strict; all tested viewers must render the exact same scene(s) with the exact same settings (and there are settings specific to some viewers, that do need to be adjusted to be on par with others), and you need to be able to reproduce the results several times for each viewer (if you can't reproduce the same results in three sessions in a raw, then your protocol is flawed).

Also, default settings (as well as some algorithms) may be different in other viewers than mine (e.g. regarding the objects caching, or the data fetching routines, which impact how well the viewer renders and rezzes the world while moving around, i.e. not just in a static scene), but once everything is set equal, my viewer is definitely one of the fastest if not the fastest; I have been optimizing it (and especially the C++ code) for the past 13 years, so it's no surprise, really.

Finally, you cannot compare the Windlight and Extended Environment render pipeline and shaders unless you compare them over a range of different scenes (e.g. WL is usually (much) faster, but in scenes where there are a lot of alphas, EE will be faster than WL, thanks to its alpha batching feature).

Edited by Henri Beauchamp
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1 hour ago, Henri Beauchamp said:

I do not know what is your hidden agenda (and to me it furiously looks like you have a nasty one !), but you are the only person so far who dares to pretend that my viewer is the slowest (whatever the hardware) !

I've been civil and polite in every interaction with you here and in your forum. I present my own personal experience based on thousands of hours in Second Life and several Opensim grids using every viewer available for Windows and Linux over the past five years. I may not be a master coder, but I have submitted bug reports and interacted with viewer developers on various occasions. I take every day as a learning opportunity, never assuming that I know it all. I appreciate your contributions to the viewer code. Perhaps you missed the part in my post where I said that I like your viewer? I'm not sure why you react this way. I've certainly never told anyone to not use your viewer.

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5 hours ago, NiranV Dean said:

Uh, did i miss something? I didn't mention how the camera works at all. Nonetheless the camera works exactly the same in all Viewers including BD. I haven't touched how the camera itself works, just added more to it (like the camera roll). Controls should all be the same too (if i didn't miss any more).

In your download page you suggested reading some pages first, which I did. Well, I read the one about the camera anyway :) So I wasn't surprised when the default camera operations didn't cause the camera to stay behind the avatar when the avatar changed direction. Instead, the avatar is viewed moving sideways etc. on direction changes with the cursor keys. It can stay behind the avatar if the Alt key is pressed along with the cursor keys. All other viewers that I've used cause the camera to stay behind the avatar. It can be changed to the more SL norm with a few clicks in Prefs if you read how to do it, as I did.

That's what I meant. I suggested making it change to the SL 'norm' with a single click, because the default may be off-putting to some people. It was a constructive suggestion :)

 

ETA: I'll give Alchemy a go tomorrow :) Thank you for that tip.

Edited by Phil Deakins
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2 hours ago, Phil Deakins said:

In your download page you suggested reading some pages first, which I did. Well, I read the one about the camera anyway :) So I wasn't surprised when the default camera operations didn't cause the camera to stay behind the avatar when the avatar changed direction. Instead, the avatar is viewed moving sideways etc. on direction changes with the cursor keys. It can stay behind the avatar if the Alt key is pressed along with the cursor keys. All other viewers that I've used cause the camera to stay behind the avatar. It can be changed to the more SL norm with a few clicks in Prefs if you read how to do it, as I did.

That's what I meant. I suggested making it change to the SL 'norm' with a single click, because the default may be off-putting to some people. It was a constructive suggestion :)

 

ETA: I'll give Alchemy a go tomorrow :) Thank you for that tip.

I've also written in those very posts that this is not a camera thing!

Its a swap of the default A/D (Arrow Left/Right) controls from rotating to strafing which is commonly used in... well everything that has at least some standard to uphold. Every game, every mmo everything that is even remotely not a working application and features 3D rendering makes you strafe (or moves the camera to the side, which would be the same as moving the character to the side) does this, has always done this long before SL was even a thing, a few exceptions crop up now and then where A/D still rotates you rather than strafe but these often offer keybindings to change this (which is very commonly the very first thing to be changed which begs the question why it wasn't a default to begin with). Strafing is so common because it offers you additional movement precision and flexibility in comparison to rotating via keys as rotating via keys is very imprecise and depends on the time you held down the key. We have a mouse which has been used for mouse-view since a long time which solved the issue of imprecise looking around and frees A/D up for ... well strafing while using the other hand to use your mouse and look up/down/left/right in a proper, non infuriating way while at the same time offering precise controls when necessary (the UI for instance) whenever needed without having to move your hand.

If LL had made a better controls tutorial and everyone would have completed and known about the basic movement and camera controls this wouldn't even such a big of an issue really. I know how weird it feels at first, i've been there too, using rotational controls for many years before i switched the controls and had to get used to it. I'd never want to go back to the old controls  (which i have to sometimes when switching to the official viewer) but ultimately as soon as i start dragging my avatar, the controls swap to BD's defaults anyway, which has always been weird... both mouselook and mouse-view use BD's defaults, only keyboard-only controls don't. But that's why i made the controls configurable, so everyone can change them to whatever they want, including any non-standard setups like AZERTY. A one-option setting would just be unnecessary at this point, it would be much better to do a full control preset system and offer several standards (all of which i cannot offer because i don't know them at which point it would become obsolete again because someone would only ever set his own controls and only keep using those, no presets necessary)

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16 minutes ago, Lillith Hapmouche said:

Again, why does SL need ultra high FPS numbers? To be the fastest one clicking that vendor?

To not be a slideshow in some extreme cases?

25% (just a random number here, difference can be more or less) difference in fps if we talk about hundreds on a good machine and at empty sky platform is pretty irrelevant, but 25% difference is a busy place can be significant. 60fps feels a lot better than 45 if we talk about bare acceptable minimum for modern screens. And if go lower, then 30fps in a "laggy place" is somewhat tolerable, while 23fps is already in the slideshow territory. Although some people are fine with <15fps and don't see a difference either for frames or resolution.

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This is SUCH an old potato.  Time and again I keep being told the since the simulator can only produce 45 FPS "anything more in the viewer is wasted and most folk cannot distinguish more that 30FPS in the viewer". That is nonsense.

From my years in SL ponyplay and in car and bike racing in SL it is VERY obvious that 75FPS "feels" much smoother and allows many more inputs per simulator frame than 25 or even 50!

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Ive switched over to the FS EEP and have already videoed a couple of wedding (lag bomb affairs) I really haven't noticed a performance hit with FPS compared to non EEP, as I thought I would. Of course, a while back I went full rebel and maxed out my bandwidth setting despite all the warnings - so dunno maybe EEP likes higher bandwith who knows

In general I can say if you are running shaders on shadows and can get above about 20fps, SL will still be ok for moving around in

BTW I tested Alchemy a while back and while it was a blazer, it did so mainly because of the 'dynamic draw' When I set all the settings to my FS settings and uncheck dynamic draw - it performed about as well as FS. For photos and video, dynamic draw sometimes has to be unchecked but for most cases walking around its fine keeping it checked. It was a pretty fast viewer though right out of the box

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9 hours ago, Lillith Hapmouche said:

Again, why does SL need ultra high FPS numbers? To be the fastest one clicking that vendor?

For me, it's a case of being able to move reasonably well on the ground, instead of arriving at a club and waiting until I could move before going in. I'm not interested in the pros and cons of this and that. I just want to be able to move ok when there is plenty of stuff (inc. avs) around, without having to wait for a minute or more, and even then not moving particularly smootlhy. Simples :)

Edited by Phil Deakins
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12 hours ago, NiranV Dean said:

I know how weird it feels at first, i've been there too

And that was why I made the suggestion :)

I can't argue about which is better, because I'm only used to one of them. I'm just saying that, imo, having it as the default, which it is, would be off-putting to some people. It was just what I believe is a constructive suggestion, that's all.

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14 minutes ago, Phil Deakins said:

And that was why I made the suggestion :)

I can't argue about which is better, because I'm only used to one of them. I'm just saying that, imo, having it as the default, which it is, would be off-putting to some people. It was just what I believe is a constructive suggestion, that's all.

Trust me you're not the only one who made this suggestion and i had this option in the past (prior to being able to fully customize controls). But at some point you simply have to stop, if people are put off by what is a normal first-time configuration of the Viewer then this Viewer is not for them (none are actually, since all of them you should configure to your liking first)

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14 hours ago, Lillith Hapmouche said:

Again, why does SL need ultra high FPS numbers? To be the fastest one clicking that vendor?

It's a matter of comfort.

Things are better to look at with higher FPS, faster motions become much more fluid. Even if all you do on SL is play dress-up, you deserve at least semi-decent FPS (which I would put at 30). Low FPS can strain your eyes or cause motion sickness.

The effect your FPS has on the way you interact with anything is exponentially more significant when you have to do something even remotely precise, like moving around (especially the faster you go). If your viewer is running around 10 FPS, getting an increase to 30 FPS is night and day. Going up from 30 to 60 is clearly noticable as well, not as much in a non-interactive video.

Another important factor is consistency. If your FPS jumps around 60 and 15 all the time, it's both very annoying and, again, makes it harder to do anything.

Edited by Wulfie Reanimator
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9 minutes ago, Wulfie Reanimator said:

The effect your FPS has on the way you interact with anything is exponentially more significant when you have to do something even remotely precise, like moving around (especially the faster you go).

Does this explain why I run into RL doorways a lot lately? Maybe my FPS is off.

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21 hours ago, Phil Deakins said:

ETA: I'll give Alchemy a go tomorrow :) Thank you for that tip.

I just tried Alchemy and I'm really very pleased. It does fly along as someone said so, from from point of view of this thread, I would say it's the best.

I was disappointed because it doesn't have a button in the Edit box to get an object's UUID like some viewers have. I asked about it in the Alchemy group and someone told me where to get the UUID. So I'm happy.

I'm happy because, I really dislike what the Singularity viewer does with script menus (dialogs). So I'm on Alchemy now.

 

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