23: My New Gear – ASUS GTX580 Direct CU II Part 2

I’ve given up the card after using it  for 5 days.  It is hardly conceivable that such a high-end graphic card is a crap to FSX!

Indeed, it has pros:
1.  Better depth of field compared to my previous ASUS Matrix HD5870
2. Framerate is about 3 to 5% more than Matrix 5870
3. It generates less heat and relatively quieter

However, two intolerable problems with this card are:
1. Texture become incurably blurry
2. FSX crashes frequently

In the past few days, I have tried all different tweaks, including BP=0, RejectThreshold, etc, etc.  After a lot tweakings, I can manage to have it running FSX smoothly; but, blurry land texture was unpreventable and the worst thing was: FSX crashed uncontrollably.

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22: Modify GPS Window Size

It is possible to resize the GPS window during any flight session. However, it will resume to its default value once FSX is terminated.

To make the change permanent:

  1. Open the panel.cfg of the aircraft to be changed
  2. Locate [Window02] section
  3. Decrease the value of window_size for smaller window (0.4 or 0.35 represents 80% or 70% of the original size), or
  4. Increase the value of window_size for larger window

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21: My New Gear – ASUS GTX580 Direct CU II Part 1

ASUS GTX580 Direct CU II

Just purchased the newly released ASUS GTX580 Direct CU II card to replace my current ASUS HD5870 Matrix Platinum card.

I bought the HD5870 for two reasons:
*   allows connecting to 3 displays (I only have one currently, however)
*   GTX480 was reported very hot and noisy.

Although I am getting average 41 FPS in most sceneries with the HD5870, some micro-stutters and under 20 FPS performance within dense areas reamin the barrier for my system to break.   As nVidia card is generally agreed to be better for FSX and reviews of GTX580 show that the new card is now cooler and less noisy (especially the modify Direct CU II version), I decided to wait no more to find out the true side of it myself.

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20: Adjust Virtual Cockpit Panrate

There are two ways to adjust virtual cockpit panrate:

Option 1:

* Locate Cameras.cfg under C:\Users\<user name>\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\FSX directory
* Under CameraDefinition.002 (Virtual Cockpit) section
* Modify the number (degrees per second) of the following two:

  • PitchPanRate=15     // vertical pan rate — I am using 40
  • HeadingPanRate=45     // horizontal pan rate — my setting is 100

* Add the following line right after the two PanRates to improve response time

  • PanAcceleratorTime=0   // zero equals to no delay

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19: Less CPU Core is More FPS

If allocating more CPU cores to FSX will bring higher frame-rates sounds logical,  the findings from recent experiments show a different result.

By applying different numbers to the AffinityMask command in fsx.CFG file, frame-rates achieved vary significantly.  And most important, allocating more cores to FSX (including default setting without AffinityMask) doesn’t necessarily mean that framerate will be subsequently higher.

My CPU is an i7 930.  After many testings, setting AffinityMask to:

AffinityMask=20 (00010100; two cores) generates the highest framerate

AffinityMask=84 (01010100; three cores) generates the second best FPS performance

However, setting to use fewer CPU cores will lengthen the time to load all FSX session, especially when a system has installed many complicated add-ons.

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18: Redefine ATC Window Size and Position

The window of ATC by default is quite large.  Although it can be resized and repositioned as desired and remains applicable during the flight-simming period, it will revert back to the default situation when FSX is exit.

To change the default size and position of ATC permanently:

  1. Open the default flight (or any flight) in FSX
  2. Activate ATC
  3. Resize and reposition the ATC window as desired
  4. Save the flight as default again
  5. Restart FSX

The ATC window will start with the new size and position just defined from now on.