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Anything I can tweak in Catalyst to sqeak a little bit more

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July 31, 2007 3:06:05 AM


I play Civilization IV BYS, Sims2 and expansions, Rollercoaster Tycoon 3 and expansions, Caesar 4, Simcity4000 RH, Haulin (18 wheels of steel), and Zoo Tycoon 2. I have the dial in the middle for equal performance. I read the artile in TomsHardware about changing some things to get the most out of the card. Anyone have any recommendations for a Saphire (ATI) x1900xtx card?
July 31, 2007 1:47:54 PM

By get a little bit more are you talking fps or quality?
For fps improvement the 3D settings can all be set with sliders to performance turn off things like AF and AA temporal AA basically go through the whole menu and turn stuff off or down as applicable.
Mactronix
July 31, 2007 3:34:13 PM

mikeny said:
Anyone have any recommendations for a Saphire (ATI) x1900xtx card?


For the games you list, that 1900 XTX should be able to handle them with ease. They aren't high speed, intensive shooters that strain a card for fps. I speak with some experience, having used a Sapphire 1900 XTX Toxic until recently. You don't list the cpu, ram, etc, so its possible that what you're experiencing is more of a slow cpu problem than a slow gpu problem.
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July 31, 2007 3:54:27 PM

Agreed, if you want to make the game look dumpy then by all means... set the sliders to performance...

...IMO though, all the games you mentioned really do not hit that hard. (simcity4 does only when the cities get huge) but it is a trade off between quality and performance. Personally I would go for quality as those games are all about that and not "speed" in the same sense that Unreal Tournament or other FPS games need the speed to be fun in many cases.

so I would crank everything to quality and not performance and enjoy the visuals regardless of speed. But that could just be me. ;) 
August 1, 2007 3:58:27 AM

sailer said:
For the games you list, that 1900 XTX should be able to handle them with ease. They aren't high speed, intensive shooters that strain a card for fps. I speak with some experience, having used a Sapphire 1900 XTX Toxic until recently. You don't list the cpu, ram, etc, so its possible that what you're experiencing is more of a slow cpu problem than a slow gpu problem.
\



I dont play Fps games and maybe in a few months I might go to a mmorpg. My specs are: E6300, 4GB ddr2-675 Corsair XMS2 (4x1GB), saphire x1900xtx, x16 Lite-ON DVDRW w/ lightscribe, SoundBaster X-FI XM, 2 WD Caviar 250GB SATAII HD's, and 19" Viewsonic VX922 monitor.
August 1, 2007 4:07:34 AM

Your basic system are good. You might try overclocking the cpu a bit for more performance, if you haven't already. As to the settings for the X1900 XTX, since these aren't high fps games, I'd move the sliders for quality, as sojrner suggested. Other than that, you should be good.
August 2, 2007 12:36:08 PM

I've never overclocked and since I dont have a backup in case if I do and it dies, Im too chicken. When I so some upgrades in the coming months I'll put the spare parts in a case and maybe I'll attempt to overclock. Im getting the little voices saying, try it, try it, part part of me refuses to overclock. I hear to wait till december but I was eyeing either the E6850 or the QuadCore 6600 or 6700. Looking to see whats going on within 4 months. Im also eyeing the new Ultra2 P35 Gigabyte mobo that can handle QuadCore and C2D and also has ddr3 capability. I might also get another case that has pullout mobo tray, logitech gaming keyboard and keyboard and figure out how to utilize 2 hard drives lol one is still sitting in my system hooked up but not used. Only things Im keeping are my soundcard and DVDRW. I might get a Dx10 card then. I want to turn it into a screaming gaming system .
August 2, 2007 1:31:49 PM

Putting the slider all the way to performance is the correct thing to do. Ignore the others. All it does in Ati Catalyst is allow the application to decide what levels of aa and everything else that is used rather than using the driver to force the settings.

Set the slider to performance and then adjust the in game settings. From their you can apply different settings while checking the result of the changes made. This allows you to find a balance for quality and performance. Use your judgement of what you find acceptable not what other people tell you should be acceptable.

Your system specs shouldnt have much of a problem running the games you mention. Make sure you have the latest drivers for gpu, mobo and everything else.

I have noticed you have 4gb of ram. What os are you using? Because if its not 64bit your ram is going to waste.

Search is your friend their are a lot of very good guides in this forum for overclocking c2d. The chances of you frying anything with modern hardware is very low. You have to do something really stupid to achieve that. If you dont feel comfortable just do a small overclock of only 400mhz its easy to do and gives a nice little performance increase.
August 2, 2007 2:27:20 PM

gpippas said:
Ignore the others

wow, not only are you dead-on that we are all idiots and know nothing... but you are also perfect in your implication that only what you say is truth. How could I be so stupid! Thank you for enlightening me...

:heink: 

gpippas said:
Your system specs shouldnt have much of a problem running the games you mention. Make sure you have the latest drivers for gpu, mobo and everything else.

And that is why so many have said to move it all to quality. For the games he plays there is no reason to slowly tweak settings. Go for quality and enjoy it all as he needs no more performance. Personal preference aside, running on "performance" settings would be a waste on the level of games he is on when quality does not slow him down.

oh, and you can have the settings on quality and still let the application decide you troll. :pfff:  Check your ccc.

go leave your droplets somewhere else.
August 2, 2007 3:01:41 PM

sojrner, I think that gpippas was refering to the other sliders, not other posts (because he agrees with you).

A 1900XTX is more than enough for those games. Make sure nothing is running in the background, that your HD is defragged, and that you have the newest drivers. Other than that, set everything to max (except possibly AA) and enjoy :D 

August 2, 2007 3:04:35 PM

gpippas said:
Putting the slider all the way to performance is the correct thing to do. Ignore the others.


Yes, that's it! On a turn based game where fps is not an issue, you should put the slider all the way to performance for the best fps. Sure thing, and how many extra fps is that going to get? And there is a box to check in CCC which allows the application decide on how much AA and AF to use. Anybody say not to do that? Or wait, did we say to use "quality" settings, which mean to use AA and AF as needed?

And as for your statement that the OP use his judgment of what is acceptable instead of what other people tell him is acceptable, he started by asking what other people thought was a good idea. All any of us can do is give our thoughts as to what's best. We didn't tell him to do it, we just told him what worked for us and why it worked and then leave it to him to make the final decision. I myself did that based on my personal experience with the same card that he is using, a X1900 XTX. But its still his decision as to what to do next.
August 2, 2007 3:31:54 PM

EXT64 said:
sojrner, I think that gpippas was refering to the other sliders, not other posts (because he agrees with you).


That is possible and if that's the case, I must apologize to grippas for my reaction.

But, the way he worded his response implied that the OP should ignore the other posters, this especially beause of his statement "Use your judgement of what you find acceptable not what other people tell tell you what should be acceptable". But of course, by the other things he wrote, gpippas was telling the OP to do what he thought was best.

Then gpippas got after the guy for having 4 gig of ram. Why for? Or does gpippas expect the OP to reduce his ram in order to please gpippas? It doesn't make sense to me, but then again, maybe I'm just looking at things differently.
August 2, 2007 3:51:48 PM

Hey sailer
My bad I just read the post. I meant the sliders not other posters.
August 2, 2007 4:07:14 PM

gpippas said:
Hey sailer
My bad I just read the post. I meant the sliders not other posters.


Very well, let bygones be bygones and we get on with life. Other things are far more important.
August 2, 2007 4:11:02 PM

I admit I did contradict myself saying "Use your judgement of what you find acceptable not what other people tell you should be acceptable." Because there I was giving him advice.

The op seems like he/she unsure of what all the settings do and other aspects of his/her pc. Are we not all here to help. I know that the op could put all the CCC to quality but they might as well learn now to fine tune the settings and get a feel for the different options available because it wont always be the case that everything will run fine. I thinks its good practice for the future. And if everything was running fine this post wouldnt exist.

I only asked about the OS out of curiosity. Its just that if he has a spare system which doesnt have a lot of ram he has an extra 2gb ram that wouldnt make the biggest difference in the world if it was wasnt their.

August 2, 2007 4:18:45 PM

To sailor

Iv been working since 6.30am uk and im very tired. Iv been apologising all day on here because I keep offending people with my wording today everyone keeps thinking im telling them what to do. Im not like that i just cant think straight but I dont finish till 10pm and its not busy today so this is the only way I have to pass the time. If I sound like dick in the future just let me know I dont get offended easily. Just send me message saying Greg ur talking sh!t.
August 2, 2007 4:39:33 PM

I understand long days. I put in quite a few myself. Because of some mistakes I've made in the past, I try to be very careful when I write, but sometimes something that makes sense to me doesn't to someone else. So all things considered, lets learn by this and try not to repeat the mistakes.

I think you are correct, that the OP isn't sure about all the settings in CCC and that's why he asked for suggestions. I made mine based on my direct experince with a similar card. As you say playing with settings is a good way to learn what they do, and which ones help and which ones hurt performance. I do suspect that everything was running fine on his computer, but the OP had read some articles about tuning his card and they caused him to wonder if there was something he could do that would make things better. Maybe there is, but maybe the computer is doing fine as it is. But learning about the settings will help in the future.

The thing that got to me about the ram was that I've seen too many wars start over hardware. A person has "X" type of cpu and others who have "Y" type get after him and call him dumb because of it; the same concerning video cards, ram, motherboards etc. The way I see it, if someone asks advice about which of two different pieces of hardware to buy, I give him advice based on my experience. But when it comes to hardware that is owned, I let that be the choice of the person who has it. There may be a particular reason for owning said hardware, or it may be personal choice, or it may be something else that I don't know about. I do know that it irritates me when someone critisizes my computer because they don't like my choices, they are mine based on reasons that I have, so I try not to critisize others when the hardware they have. For now, I have to leave and go to work. Take care.
August 2, 2007 5:26:49 PM

I totally agree with you. I said the same thing in another post earlier. I advise on personal experiance and what I know. I dont offer my personal preference. I prefer amd/ati always have done but I wont tell other people to buy a product just because I like it. Intels are a no brainer at the moment I wouldnt recommend anything else. But I prefer Amd as a company so I dont buy Intel. Likewise with graphics. If you are looking for the best and you have the budget 8800gtx is the way to go. But I would never pay for one. Im just too stubborn I suppose.

I'll take your advice and try to be more carefull when I write. I have reread the post and it did sound offensive to the other posters. But like you said I know what I wanted to say I just didnt say it correctly.

I think youve hit the nail on the head. I dont think their is anything wrong with system. But its part of the learning curve. This will sound sad but if you have put a lot of time into a system I find you develop a feeling of whether it is running correctly. Just like a car engine.

I have just been allowed to go home early cause work is dead. Yey home to a sick, menstrating, moaning girlfriend!!! Its gonna be a long night! Take care.
August 3, 2007 8:25:14 PM

Thank you for all the advice. Gpip did you survive your g/f's wrath :) 

I was just looking to see what I can tweak and looking for ideas. I also read ATI's 10 tips to optimize my card, and I have all the sliders to performance. I also checked " allow program to optimize". I also unlocked the overdrive but didnt touch anything. I changed the refresh rate to what it said on maximum reported refresh rate which was 75mhz. On the other window it says the desktop is at 60mhz but the override refresh rate was disabled. Should I change it to 60mhz, 75,mhz or leave it alone there is no real gain here?
Im sorry If I wasnt clear that I was looking for input from others. Sometimes if I change things or let the system change things I think I dont see a difference or I read an article on TH HOW TO OPIMIZE YOUR VIDEO CARD, and I was just wondering if I should do that so I was looking for advice on what I could change that other eyes might be better. I think I saw that Anti Alising should be disabled? Adative Anti-Alising? For standard setting should I put aplication performance optimized or optimize image quality? I have it at balanced. How do I take a picture of my setting on CCC and put it on the post.
August 3, 2007 8:39:17 PM

mikeny said:
I was just looking to see what I can tweak and looking for ideas. I also read ATI's 10 tips to optimize my card, and I have all the sliders to performance. I also checked " allow program to optimize". I also unlocked the overdrive but didnt touch anything. I changed the refresh rate to what it said on maximum reported refresh rate which was 75mhz. On the other window it says the desktop is at 60mhz but the override refresh rate was disabled. Should I change it to 60mhz, 75,mhz or leave it alone there is no real gain here?
Im sorry If I wasnt clear that I was looking for input from others. Sometimes if I change things or let the system change things I think I dont see a difference or I read an article on TH HOW TO OPIMIZE YOUR VIDEO CARD, and I was just wondering if I should do that so I was looking for advice on what I could change that other eyes might be better. I think I saw that Anti Alising should be disabled? Adative Anti-Alising? For standard setting should I put aplication performance optimized or optimize image quality? I have it at balanced. How do I take a picture of my setting on CCC and put it on the post.


As far as the refresh rate is concerned, 60 mhz should be fine. Find out what refresh rate is native to your monitor and use that. There are no real gains to be made here, but if your set it contrary to the monitor, you may mess things up.

Back when I used an ATI card, I generally let the program decide on the AA, but I did change it for some particular programs. That's kind of a "try it and see" type of thing. Since you unlocked the overdrive, try giving it a boast and see what happens. It should tell you what the optimum settings are for your machine, balancing the overclock with temps. I usually balanced performance and image quality, but again, I set it for individual games. A fast paced game RTS game would usually take more performance and less image, while with a slow paced game, I increased the image quality. I downloaded FRAPS, which would tell me a running fps while playing the game. Using that, I would increase image quality until the fps would fall off to much.

Just a few ideas to try. gpippas might have more.
August 4, 2007 2:30:06 PM

Yeah I survived the missus thanks.

Like sailor said refresh rate wont make much difference.
The overdrive will help a little. It just overclocks the card by set amount using CCC which ATI deem to be safe.
Off the top of my head I cant think of anything else. You've got loads of info anyway and you seem to be getting the hang of changing the settings.

Like Sailor said its about finding the balance. However this is different for almost every game. Downloading FRAPS is a good idea as it gives you a number comparison between different settings.

If I think of anything else il let you.
August 4, 2007 2:31:38 PM

Yeah I survived the missus thanks.

Like sailor said refresh rate wont make much difference.
The overdrive will help a little. It just overclocks the card by set amount using CCC which ATI deem to be safe.
Off the top of my head I cant think of anything else. You've got loads of info anyway and you seem to be getting the hang of changing the settings.

Like Sailor said its about finding the balance. However this is different for almost every game. Downloading FRAPS is a good idea as it gives you a number comparison between different settings.

If I think of anything else il let you.
August 4, 2007 3:38:52 PM

mikeny said:
I play Civilization IV BYS, Sims2 and expansions, Rollercoaster Tycoon 3 and expansions, Caesar 4, Simcity4000 RH, Haulin (18 wheels of steel), and Zoo Tycoon 2. I have the dial in the middle for equal performance. I read the artile in TomsHardware about changing some things to get the most out of the card. Anyone have any recommendations for a Saphire (ATI) x1900xtx card?


As said turn up the settings....i would just go AA 4X(with temporal) and AF 8X
And try it.....if you find its good and the FPS are ok. even in large cities on simcity 4000 then notch it up some more.
You point noticing lower fps will vary from game to game. just play until you get a good balance.

I know i sure would not want to play SimCity 4000 or even the sims(not that i play it, but my girl friend does) @ 15 fps(40 is about the limit)
August 10, 2007 12:19:37 PM

ok, did that nuke :) 
August 10, 2007 1:34:05 PM

Your system looks good, like every one else said your X1900XTX should be able to handle all those games. But if you are experiencing laag it could be that you got spyware/virus.
August 13, 2007 10:59:30 PM

damn, so much for keeping my system clean and virus free lol
August 13, 2007 11:02:34 PM

mikeny said:
damn, so much for keeping my system clean and virus free lol


So, you never did listen to those lectures about using protection, huh? When you mess around with strange websites, you always have to be careful. You don't know what they'll be carrying.
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