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Stupid Video Card question...

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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September 30, 2006 4:20:29 AM

Ok folks... don't hate me or make fun of me for this question.. I'm just a network admin and VB .net coder, so I know almost zero about gaming...

Here goes...

My understanding of the "refresh rate" on my monitor is that it is essentially the number of times per second the image gets repainted. For example my old CRTs refresh at 85-120 hz (85 to 120 per second) while my LCDs are usually 60 hz (60 times per second) with a few LCDs doing either 72 (for 3-3-3 dvd pulldown) or 75 HZ.

So here is my question....

When a video card for games does, say 200 frames per second, what good does it do me?

I can see why you would not want your frame rate to drop below the refresh rate of your monitor, but when frame rates exceed the refresh rate, what good does it do you?

If your monitor only refreshed 60 times a second, what benefit do you get from say 180 fps from the video card?
September 30, 2006 5:13:24 AM

Oh come on... will somebody answer this....?
September 30, 2006 5:30:57 AM

***I'd appreciate any corrections to this explanation.***

Refresh Rate - The number of times a display's image is redrawn per second.

I can't give you the best explanation, but I will try. Real quick, forget about LCDs, as they refresh on a pixel-by-pixel basis, versus the CRT that redraws the entire screen at once. 60Hz on an LCD is different than 60Hz on a CRT.

Now obvously, when the frame rate falls below the refresh rate, the screen is redrawing itself faster than new frames can be rendered and output. The end result is a very brilliant slide show. When the frame rate surpasses the refresh rate, the machine is rendering more frames than the computer can display. The result is tearing, which occurs when the display of one frame overlaps with another. Tearing is percieved in the form of motion blur and dropped frames (The display's image may skip around becasue it can't display every frame being rendered).

To eliminate tearing, you can activate vertical sync, which synchronizes the frame and refresh rates. If your refresh rate is 85Hz, then your maximum frames per second is capped at 85. Note that vSync only creates a maximum limit - the frame rate can change depending on conditions, but FPS will never surpass the refresh rate.

So to answer your question, running 200FPS on a monitor refreshing at 60Hz is a matter of personal preference. Some people prefer to use vSync to keep a steady image; others do not because they enjoy the speed. If you're asking whether this will cause damage to the involved equipment, the answer to the best of my knowledge is no.
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September 30, 2006 5:34:17 AM

Basically when a claim like "182fps in Quake9!" is made, it is bragging about the AVERAGE frame rate over the entire benchmark test. However for gaming, particularly first person shooters, maintaining the highest possible frame rate is critical as you're reaction can never be faster than the FPS your computer is putting out. What is far more important IMHO is minimum frame rate. If a game is getting like 100fps+ standing in a hall, but chunks and lags when turning around (dropping to say 14fps) that is no good and can ruine the experience. So cards claiming absurdly high frame rates are more likely to keep you're monitor at least at the refresh rate, and less likely to run into bad min frame rate problems.

Also CRT monitors are able to display part of an image at higher rates than the refresh rate- this is called taring an image.
September 30, 2006 5:34:59 AM

Well basically I assume there is no benefit of going over the monitors refresh rate, sometimes it can even result in artifacts like tearing.

the only reason to get a really High end vid card is so that the min frame rate doesnt fall too low. A good min framerate would be considered 30+fps (as most people cant see the difference after 30fps, but a few can).

Otherwise the 200+ fps that you can accieve only means that you can turn up the eyecandy and that you could also increase the resolution that you play at.
That and it can be used for bragging rights. :roll:

Also, the higher framerate that a vid card can accieve on current games means that it can handle future games better than a lower end card.

HTH

EDIT: Seems that others have beaten me to the point, takes too long to write these posts :wink:
September 30, 2006 6:49:17 AM

Quote:
Oh come on... will somebody answer this....?


well, you are proud to be a network admin and VB .net coder or craps like that but quite sad you don't know about GOOGLE or YAHOO or any other search engine.
Then you are pushing peoples to answer your thread without even saying at least "THANKS" ?

You've got your salary for your VB .net craps. That's good. Have you paid us for answering your thread ? You can be polite when you need free help.

You just don't understand what the hell the meaning of forum.
September 30, 2006 4:13:05 PM

Quote:
Well basically I assume there is no benefit of going over the monitors refresh rate, sometimes it can even result in artifacts like tearing.

the only reason to get a really High end vid card is so that the min frame rate doesnt fall too low. A good min framerate would be considered 30+fps (as most people cant see the difference after 30fps, but a few can).

Otherwise the 200+ fps that you can accieve only means that you can turn up the eyecandy and that you could also increase the resolution that you play at.
That and it can be used for bragging rights. :roll:

Also, the higher framerate that a vid card can accieve on current games means that it can handle future games better than a lower end card.

HTH

EDIT: Seems that others have beaten me to the point, takes too long to write these posts :wink:


Ok, so basically what I should be looking at then is the MINIMUM number in a given game?

So if the minimum remains about, say 30 frames per second or so, everything is cool and above that it doesn't matter?

Thanks - that makes sense :) 
September 30, 2006 4:16:50 PM

Quote:
Basically when a claim like "182fps in Quake9!" is made, it is bragging about the AVERAGE frame rate over the entire benchmark test. However for gaming, particularly first person shooters, maintaining the highest possible frame rate is critical as you're reaction can never be faster than the FPS your computer is putting out. What is far more important IMHO is minimum frame rate. If a game is getting like 100fps+ standing in a hall, but chunks and lags when turning around (dropping to say 14fps) that is no good and can ruine the experience. So cards claiming absurdly high frame rates are more likely to keep you're monitor at least at the refresh rate, and less likely to run into bad min frame rate problems.

Also CRT monitors are able to display part of an image at higher rates than the refresh rate- this is called taring an image.


Cool, that makes sense. So here is a related issue, i

In some parts of the game you fly along at 200 fps, others you crawl at maybe 20 frame.... You can vary the frame rate you get by turning the "eye candy" (filtering, anyi-aliasing etc) on and off.

Is there any way to dynamically vary the eye candy settiing so that if FPS drop below a given value, some eye candy gets disabled to keep the frames up? - Seems like it's such a good idea I assume somebody has set things up to do this?
a b U Graphics card
October 1, 2006 4:44:14 AM

do you want to get paid or what
his op was stupid video card ?
try contributing instead of bitching
October 1, 2006 5:27:37 AM

Quote:
Is there any way to dynamically vary the eye candy settiing so that if FPS drop below a given value, some eye candy gets disabled to keep the frames up? - Seems like it's such a good idea I assume somebody has set things up to do this?


Many games will dynamically vary the eye candy variables - such as hig/low geometry models, textures, etc. based on performance.. but none that I know of will mess with AA or AF settings.

Not sure why... I think AA and AF settings are pretty low-level and might require a notable lag/re-initialization of the graphics card to enable/disable.

As for the other stuff, yep... minimum framerate is king, max is only as good as your refresh rate. Keep in mind also alot of gamers will run refresh rates alot higher than 60 Hz.
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