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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is not really a home theater question, but it's about my HTPC, so here goes. I'm looking to buy a new video card, and I'd like one that can be used for games as well as home theater. I've basically decided to get a 9500 Pro, but just before I do that, I was wondering: for gaming how many FPS is enough? Is there general agreement on this matter, or is it a matter of taste? Can someone tell me in general what is considered "slow", "OK", and "fast"? All the reviews simply list FPS without ever saying what's good enough and what's not good enough.
 

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i'd say that 30fps is the minimum. but fps benchmarks just tell you what the card is capable of at a particular setting in a particular situation. the numbers will vary greatly depending on your settings and the game. 100fps for one game may mean 30fps for another. unless you have a particular game and setting in mind, using fps figures as a purchasing criterion doesn't make much sense.


games will forever require faster and faster video cards. so if you're planning on keeping up with new games, then no level of fps is "enough."
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Quote:
no level of fps is "enough."
You're right, but I learned long ago that it's better to buy new mainstream hardware every year (or two) than to buy top-of-the-line every 2 (or 4) years. Bleeding edge hardware never gives you the same bang for buck, and the pace of innovation is so fast. Next year's mainstream video card will probably blow away the Radeon 9800.


In fact we're seeing an interesting exception right now: the 9500 PRO is faster than the 9600 PRO, and almost as fast as the 9700. So if you can find one, the 9500 PRO is a fantastic buy.
 

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60fps is the minimum that I would tolerate.
 

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I'm amazed at all the people saying they won't tolerate less than 60fps. Consider that film runs at 24fps.


To me, it's not so much a matter of framerate anymore as it is quality. 100fps with low polygon models, poor texturing, and no fog, antialiasing, etc will look like garbage. If I can add in all those bells and whistles and still get a decent framerate, I'd be much happier than a high framerate with poor quality. That said, there aren't going to be cards that'll give a high framerate but not support the recent advances in effects and stuff.


I remember reading once the theoretical limit to framerate beyond which your eyes can't even see each frame, I think it was 90fps or so but I might be wrong. At any rate, speed is becoming less and less a concern while image quality gains in importance. This makes it harder to compare cards, but generally means that most cards will give decent results, though you may have to sacrifice quality.


As an example, I can play CNC Generals quite well on a gf2mx with most of the settings turned down. It looks much nicer on a gf4 440 with the settings cranked. I really don't have any idea what the framerate is for either, and I really don't care.
 

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you can't compare it with film. there's no motion blur here. and the framerate can be pretty low and still be considered 'smooth' as long as it's consistent and doesn't vary. that's why a max_fps setting in some games is pretty useful. better run the game at 40fps constantly than notice and be annoyed by the ups and downs from 40 to 120. Of course, you may want higher than 40 for first person multiplayer games, but you'd be surprised at how smooth it actually looks.
 

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I think the main reason it can't be compared with film is the level of detail. Film images obviously have much better quality than modern 3d games, and probably will for some time. My main point was that there comes a point where framerate is less important than image quality, and I think it's safe to say we've pretty much reached that point for gaming.
 

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If I go much below 60 on Unreal Tournament 2K3 I get my ass kicked, but I can win driving games with 20 fps, so it all depens on the game. :cool:
 

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The usual recommendation is a minimum of 40 (preferably 60) fps in the absolute hardest, most busy moment of the game. Getting 150 fps during a lull and then getting 6 fps during the moment that you have 6 opponents firing on you really sucks.
 

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Ain't it the truth! That's why I got the Radeon 9500 that can be soft modded to 9700 pro. And that really kicks! :cool:
 

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before this thread gets big i'm gonna get my 0.02 cents in. Ideally u'd want a constant (and thats the keyword) 60fps. Anything beyond that human eyes cant really tell the diff. If you look at all the modern next gen consoles, b/c of hardware conformity they can lock in the frame rate to 30fps or 60fps (on a console the developer know what hardware to expect). On a PC its quite difficult b/c there is infinite hardware combination not to mention diff software tweakings. If you want to run a particular game and want to know what is "good" hardware, then I would say when you have all the visuals turned up max and you can run at nothing less than 60fps at all time.


Also, like some mention before some types of games are more critical about constant high frame rate. On a FPS (first person shooter) or racing game...smooth constant gameplay is critical. but on a fighting game, physical sports, PRGs a 30fps constant will be sufficient.
 

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30 FPS in my opinion is the minimum, anything else just improves the situation.
 

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Yep, of course there is no magical number.


The ideal is in my experience a constand frame rate, as high as possible. The higher the resolution, the higher fps you will need to make it appear smooth too (in theory). Think of it as the number or pixels an object will move with each new frame.


And there is no magical number for what our eyes cannot notice the difference too. the human eye can notice things that happen in 1/1000 and less of a secon in given situations, and theoretically that could be useful in games too.


Still, for most games a constant fps of 40 or higher looks really sweet on my hardware.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by jjarmoc
I'm amazed at all the people saying they won't tolerate less than 60fps. Consider that film runs at 24fps.
And films look like CRAP because of this. I don't know about you guys but it really gets on my nerves when the camara pans and you can see the individual frames.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by The Machine
And films look like CRAP because of this. I don't know about you guys but it really gets on my nerves when the camara pans and you can see the individual frames.
Amen!!

That's why I'm so interested in Digital Natrual Motion. It can help aleviate some of our wohs.

(rant)I don't know about you, but when I look at the world I don't see frames per second.



peace
 

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Indeed, when there is fast action in film, you cannot focus at all, you don’t see what’s happening.


In games, it depends on the “speed†of the game, if you play a low action RPG (Neverwinter Nights for example), 30fps is enough, but if you play First Person Shooters, where fast action is king, you need much more. Sure it’s subjective, I can tolerate 50fps, but 60fps is very appreciated. 30 frames per second in a fast game is VERY slow. The important thing when looking at benchmarks is to look at MINIMUM frame rate, the average frame rate doesn’t really matter because normally you need an high frame rate when there is 3 opponents coming at you for example, but ironically, that’s when it drops! That’s why average fps is irrelevant, look at the minimum fps.


Now, regarding HTPC, here is my question: How can I get 60fps on a DIGITAL big screen?


Do LCD RPTVs do 60fps?

Do DLP RPTVs do 60fps?

Do LCOS RPTVs do 60fps?

Do Plasma do 60fps?


At 1280x720 via DVI-D?


Thanks in advance.


EDIT: SIMJEDI, What is Digital Natrual Motion?
 

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Here's a quote from Philips consumer site:


What is Digital Natural Motion?

It uses the digital memory to estimate motion of objects in a field and creates new frames that are inserted in between the existing frames with corrected motion positions of motion positions of moving objects. The benefit is that objects move more smoothly on screen, remaining sharp, while avoiding motion jutter effects.


There's some illustration's on this site: http://medienservice.philips.de/apps...5?opendocument


Their 34PW9818 HDTV has this already, and I can't wait for it to get to the PC.:cool:



peace
 

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mad_arab,
">>you can't compare it with film. there's no motion blur here"


I have to disagree. It doesn't matter if it is film, video or videogames. If you watched pans at 24fps IMAX film and 48fps IMAX film, you begin to notice there's slightly more motion blur in 24fps IMAX film than 48fps IMAX film.


It's all relative. Motion blur is also created by the human brain as the eyes analog-ly tracks an image that has finite framerate. The lower the finite framerate, the more motion blur your brain creates for the image as your eyes smoothly tracks an image - your eyes is in a different location of the picture during the same frame. Your eye will track a few millimeters or centimeters down the image during the 1/24th of a second interval. A very good article is from Microsoft Technical's Dave Marsh: Article about Temporal Rate Conversion . Please read the section about 'Flicker'

http://www.microsoft.com/hwdev/image...TempRate16.GIF


This is the motion blur that your human brain 'creates' (blur that doesn't already exist in the image being watched) as the image moves. The lower the framerate, the more this gets noticed.


I notice this all the time in 24 frames per second film, even when I use a CRT projector at 48 Hz, or go to the movie theater. It is also because I have already watched 48 frames-per-second IMAX film, so I have a basis to compare 24 frames-per-second hollywood films and IMAX film to.


Mind you, not everyone pays attention to this. Maybe you don't notice, that's perfectly normal! But once you know the difference because you saw something else like 48fps FILM, you notice it in 24fps FILM too!!
 

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teaberry,

>>"before this thread gets big i'm gonna get my 0.02 cents in. Ideally u'd want a constant (and thats the keyword) 60fps."


Exactly right, but only if your display is running at 60 Hz.

However, it's proven that 75fps on 90 Hz display - not as smooth as 60fps on 60Hz. You can see the proof in the download of the MOTION.ZIP motion demo from my webpage. I wrote this in 1993, so I know a lot about this topic!!

THE KEY:

You REALLY want a framerate that matches the refresh rate of your display mode, at the minimum. If your display is 75 Hz, then you CAN tell the difference between 60fps and 75fps. The human eye is sensitive enough to tell when the framrate IS NOT matching the refresh rate (when this happens, you see slight amounts of judder in fast pans). (Sometimes you don't notice until you see motion perfection - which you can see in the MOTION.ZIP download from my website)


Mind you, this is usually "cutting hairs". And yes, there is a law of diminishing returns. And most people don't care beyond approximately 40fps, anyway. (I do, though)
 
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