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Improve low quality system for AA
06-14-2016, 03:44 PM,
Post: #1
Improve low quality system for AA
I've recently setup AA (SVN) on a very old Toshiba Satellite 2200MHz, single core. The first thing I did was set video to highest compatibility mode. That seems to do sorta ok as long as I play windowed with a slower resolution like 900x700 (custom). I also turned off all the effects such as raindrops, etc.

I'm looking for ways to get just a little bit more out of it. I was hoping people might offer some suggestions here. Thanks in advance Smile
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06-14-2016, 04:09 PM, (This post was last modified: 06-14-2016, 04:18 PM by Max.)
Post: #2
RE: Improve low quality system for AA
Try dropping the texture resolution a couple of notches. Try disabling fog (gl_fog cvar.) Paradoxically, increasing your FOV can improve framerates because it allows the GPU to pick a more aggressive mipmap (and the engine will likewise pick a more aggressive LOD for player models in some cases.) You can also try setting gl_texturemode to GL_LINEAR_MIPMAP_NEAREST or even GL_NEAREST_MIPMAP_NEAREST, and although this will make everything look pretty terrible, the performance gains are significant. You can also switch to simple items, turn off lens flare ("r_lensflare 0") and light beams ("r_lightbeam 0") which can actually make a difference in some scenes. Even something as simple as picking a smaller HUD and crosshair can be worth a couple of FPS (although likely not in your situation, that's more if you already have a framerate well into the triple digits and you're looking for a marginal improvement from that.)

Some of these settings will automatically disable screenshots though, that's how bad they look.
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06-14-2016, 05:34 PM,
Post: #3
RE: Improve low quality system for AA
(06-14-2016, 04:09 PM)Max Wrote: Try dropping the texture resolution a couple of notches. Try disabling fog (gl_fog cvar.) Paradoxically, increasing your FOV can improve framerates because it allows the GPU to pick a more aggressive mipmap (and the engine will likewise pick a more aggressive LOD for player models in some cases.) You can also try setting gl_texturemode to GL_LINEAR_MIPMAP_NEAREST or even GL_NEAREST_MIPMAP_NEAREST, and although this will make everything look pretty terrible, the performance gains are significant. You can also switch to simple items, turn off lens flare ("r_lensflare 0") and light beams ("r_lightbeam 0") which can actually make a difference in some scenes. Even something as simple as picking a smaller HUD and crosshair can be worth a couple of FPS (although likely not in your situation, that's more if you already have a framerate well into the triple digits and you're looking for a marginal improvement from that.)

Some of these settings will automatically disable screenshots though, that's how bad they look.
gl_texturemode was already set to GL_LINEAR_MIPMAP_NEAREST I also tried GL_NEAREST_MIPMAP_NEAREST but could not detect any difference. I also tried all the other recommendations, and I'm not seeing much improvement. I guess I didn't expect a lot more.

I seem to remember someone going to back and white somehow because they seemed to think that would improve things. Is that true? How is that done?
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06-14-2016, 07:59 PM,
Post: #4
RE: Improve low quality system for AA
This person might have been referencing the gl_lightmap cvar. But IMO that makes things too unintelligible onscreen to really be playable. It's also disabled for multiplayer. That cvar is more intended for mappers, it allows you to check the lighting of your map directly without the textures.

What GPU do you have in that toshiba? I assume it's integrated. If it's not Intel HD series or better, I doubt you'll get AA to run right no matter what you do.
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06-14-2016, 09:42 PM, (This post was last modified: 06-14-2016, 09:42 PM by {DO}Rigel.)
Post: #5
RE: Improve low quality system for AA
It runs, its just low FPS (under 30 right now).

Code:
> sudo lshw -C display
PCI (sysfs)  
  *-display:0             
       description: VGA compatible controller
       product: Mobile 4 Series Chipset Integrated Graphics Controller
       vendor: Intel Corporation
       physical id: 2
       bus info: pci@0000:00:02.0
       version: 07
       width: 64 bits
       clock: 33MHz
       capabilities: msi pm vga_controller bus_master cap_list rom
       configuration: driver=i915 latency=0
       resources: irq:30 memory:f2400000-f27fffff memory:d0000000-dfffffff ioport:1800(size=8)
  *-display:1 UNCLAIMED
       description: Display controller
       product: Mobile 4 Series Chipset Integrated Graphics Controller
       vendor: Intel Corporation
       physical id: 2.1
       bus info: pci@0000:00:02.1
       version: 07
       width: 64 bits
       clock: 33MHz
       capabilities: pm bus_master cap_list
       configuration: latency=0
       resources: memory:f2100000-f21fffff
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06-15-2016, 01:40 AM, (This post was last modified: 06-15-2016, 02:12 AM by {DO}Rigel.)
Post: #6
RE: Improve low quality system for AA
I put a CPU graph up and I can see that its at 100% all the time while the game is running. Just now with 35 FPS the game is playable enough, though I won't be pwning anyone. I'm expecting that to drop noticeably when other players connect (do I have that right?).

Are there any tricks to relieve the CPU without adding more burden to the GPU?

Note: The only real goal here is for me to play with my kids while we are all downstairs. Honestly, I'm pretty much there now. It would however be nice to see if I can't squeeze just a bit more out of it though Cool

Something else I might mention that I didn't expect; when we are on a public server and good players start to join our little games, I find I'm far more comfortable being definitively pwned. I've found playing on a super crappy system is oddly liberating. Big Grin Tongue By contrast, when I can't play well on my desktop (which has pretty decent specs) I struggle with myself. Huh Dodgy I'm tickled that by going the opposite direction (with an even worse system) the game has become more enjoyable. Idea Cool Quite honestly I'd all but quit before this unlikely discovery.


Last note, I've decided to use the name {DO}Orion while playing on this machine to help distinguish/explain my capabilities (or lack of) on this machine. Rolleyes
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06-15-2016, 02:27 AM,
Post: #7
RE: Improve low quality system for AA
I couldn't dig up much info about that chipset beyond this datasheet: http://www.intel.com/assets/PDF/datasheet/320122.pdf It specifies "Intel Gen 5.0 Integrated Graphics," which according to Wikipedia is actually of the HD era, but the 2009 date doesn't fit. Also, according to the logs you provided, the old i915 Mesa driver is being used, rather than the newer i965-- so I think it's one of the old GMA GPUs, in which case you probably won't get good performance out of it.
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