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Getting better FPS with max MSAA and Anisotropic filtering?

PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2015 12:45 pm
by Amuscaria
So I've been trying to maximize my framerate for Skyrim with my GTX 960. I turned off the MSAA and Anisotropic Filtering (which was normally at maximum allowed) and I'm actually getting a worse or equal FPS than with them on? How can this be?

Re: Getting better FPS with max MSAA and Anisotropic filteri

PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2015 1:17 pm
by Dark-Assassin
Not sure, but the main FPS killer for me in Skyrim is anything script and/or cpu heavy. I'm using a GTX 660.

Though, you could try this:
First off, make sure you'r drivers are updated. (But I haven't really been doing so, stuck with 320.49 for compatibility reasons. Though, Skyrim still runs fine.)
Second, in your NVidia Control Panel, under "Adjust image settings with preview", try changing the slider to Performance.
Next off in Skyrim, try setting your shadows to Medium. Anything higher actually looks worse, but draws farther and eats your FPS. Read up about some INI tweaks to make them look sharper.
Lastly, keep your Anti Aliasing off, unless you really want your edges to look smooth. If so, just check the FXAA option. Anisotropic Filtering has next to no impact these days.

Re: Getting better FPS with max MSAA and Anisotropic filteri

PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2015 1:39 pm
by Blox
I would recommend getting MSI Afterburner and checking the GPU Usage/Power percentages while you're in-game to see if your GPU is struggling or if the issue lies elsewhere before cranking graphics options down.

A GTX 960 should crush Skyrim.

If the power percentage is over 60% and the GPU usage is at 100% then it is definitely your GPU that is slowing things down, if not - then the problem does lie elsewhere.

Re: Getting better FPS with max MSAA and Anisotropic filteri

PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2015 4:20 pm
by Amuscaria
Blox wrote:I would recommend getting MSI Afterburner and checking the GPU Usage/Power percentages while you're in-game to see if your GPU is struggling or if the issue lies elsewhere before cranking graphics options down.

A GTX 960 should crush Skyrim.

If the power percentage is over 60% and the GPU usage is at 100% then it is definitely your GPU that is slowing things down, if not - then the problem does lie elsewhere.


It does, in most cases I generally maintain 60 fps. But my Skryim is quite modded, so some towns drops it to 20-30-ish. Without MSAA or AF it drops even more, when I thought it would help it. Not a big bother, but still, a curious occurrence. But i guess it doesn't really matter, since I can't keep the game from CTDing every 10 minutes anyway.

Re: Getting better FPS with max MSAA and Anisotropic filteri

PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2015 7:15 pm
by leileilol
Skyrim's is probably loaded with technical incompetence with little desire to make LOD meshes or reasonable texture sizes, so there's that........ And then there's the community.

BTW a decked-out Morrowind slows me down a lot too. There's not a single graphics card in the world that has a 'fix bethesda game' function, it's all entirely the fault on Bethesda's poor use of memory and CPU as they haphazardly frankenstein on a 1999-era NetImmerse.

Re: Getting better FPS with max MSAA and Anisotropic filteri

PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2015 7:43 pm
by Amuscaria
That's the strange thing though. Setting my game on higher settings actually makes the FPS better for some reason.

Re: Getting better FPS with max MSAA and Anisotropic filteri

PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2015 9:01 pm
by NeuralStunner
Which "higher settings"? Some settings use native GPU functions that work faster on newer cards and drivers.

By the way, The official GeForce guide for Skyrim says to force antisotrophic filtering for the game via the nVidia control panel. It does better in quality and performance.

Personally, I have good enoguh screen resolution that I never turn things over 4xAA. Beyond that I don't see enough improvement to justify the extra pull.

Personally I never got graphic-related slowdowns. (Especially since the launcher detected my card for "Ultra", after which I turned things down manually...) The main thing you want to watch out for is to not use so many mods. A lot of the gameplay features in Creation engine use the Papyrus script engine, which is slow and dumb.

Re: Getting better FPS with max MSAA and Anisotropic filteri

PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2015 11:02 pm
by Dancso
NeuralStunner wrote:Personally, I have good enoguh screen resolution that I never turn things over 4xAA. Beyond that I don't see enough improvement to justify the extra pull.

This. I am so tired of hardware benchmarks showing fps comparisons using unrealistically high AA. I wanna know if a graphics card will be good for all new games in the next years, and seeing that every benchmark shows cards sub-60 for many games (Titan X being the exception usually), how am I to make an informed decision? Sometimes they don't even mention what AA they use, we're just left to guess.

Re: Getting better FPS with max MSAA and Anisotropic filteri

PostPosted: Thu Jul 30, 2015 10:48 am
by Blox
Dancso wrote:I wanna know if a graphics card will be good for all new games in the next years, and seeing that every benchmark shows cards sub-60 for many games (Titan X being the exception usually), how am I to make an informed decision? Sometimes they don't even mention what AA they use, we're just left to guess.

Now see, that's why I really like HardOCP - everything in the GPU reviews is shown. I also like the non-sterile language, but apparently some people are absolutely allergic to it "because that's not how reviews are done!!!".

As for antialiasing, then DSR at twice your native resolution is amazing for windowed games, while 2x2 supersampling still looks great in games that refuse to run windowed.

Of course, either of the two are probably quite a bit more resource-hungry than 4xMSAA. :v