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A small guide for people with LowEnd Computers
#1
~Beep. Beep. Alert, I really couldn't think of a place to put this guide, since I couldn't find an area for one. So if this needs to be moved or what not, please go ahead and close/move it as you see fit.~
A quick edit: I seemed to have missed something, a new and better beta! Instead of 636, please use 658 ~Changes~
Another quick edit: Thanks to people like Zeydlitz, and darkt123 new updates have been added that increase performance and fix broken graphics

1. Small introduction thingy/whatever....
Okay, I've noticed as I looked around quite a bit of people saying

"Oh hey, your computer suxs, give up."
Or
"You probably wont get above 10 FPS with that processor"

And other things along those lines. Well for every one who has a 1.8GHz Processor ~Single Core~ Fear no moarz! (This will probably even give better FPS on 2.0+ Processors as well)

Now I say this, you probably will not get full 60 FPS, but I can promise you it will be playable with patients and will not drop below 28 FPS. But it is playable and frames are fluent.

I've only had the chance to test it with three games, which of are kinda 3D Heavy,

Shin Megami Tensai: Nocturne - About 28-40 FPS at random (My ISO I burned is really buggy, the screen is constantly bouncing up and down and is pretty crappy, a better one would give more FPS at a stable rate)

Persona 3 FES - About 28-60 depending on the area your in, cutscenes usually bounce from 49-60 (Note: I don't know if its the settings or my computer or the ISO but the ingame graphics for it are really broken and make the characters ugly, but if you just want the story go right ahead.) - Thanks to Zeydlitz this has been fixed, fix located in Graphics Config

Persona 4 - Now this game is the one I am currently playing through on the Emulator, I get at usual 29-40, mainly in the 30s stable. It doesn't kill the games feel but the slowness can get annoying from time to time (Notes: This is whats weird, there are very few graphical issues unlike with P3Fes, only real issues are some of the NPCs hair, and the skirts/shirt.) - Thanks to Zeydlitz this has been fixed, fix located in Graphics Config

Now, you can call me Chris, or Kryo, or whatever you feel like. I'm 16, have been using computers for god knows how long and I strive to be a game designer after my years in the United States Military (Marines Corp). I currently am a Sophomore in High school and have wonderful supporting friends ~I guess.~

Now to do this, you will only really need to do a little, and there are NO MODDED SVNS NEEDED DARNIT!!

Okay so lets begin


2. What you need, bare basics:
For one, you need PCSX2 Playground, SVN 636 Beta. I find it is slightly faster then just the offical PCSX2 Playground and version 0.9.5.

You will need no other plugins or patches or other programs....

A computer/ Laptop

A brain

A Small amount of time before you play PCSX2

Optional:

I guess a program like Game Prelauncher (I use none of these because its to much of a pain to find) Will kill off the small amount of time needed

Game Prelauncher or other kind of 'App Killing program'

And that is about it.


3. Setting it up -

1. First get PCSX2 Playground and SVN 658 set up, then open up the Emulator.

2. Head into Config, and press Configure (Part 1);
First make sure your graphics Plugin is GSdx 872mx (MSVC 15.00, SSE2) 0.1.14
Note: I originall had 0.1.12 up here, but thanks to DarkT123 I was able to hunt down more recent plugins, which utterly helped performance greatly.
Then Press Configure for the Graphics plugin and make sure its set as

Windowed
Direct3D9 (Hardware)
Pixel Shader 2.0
None
4:3
Then check NATIVE!!! That is important, Yo.
After that make sure you leave whats Checked, checked, and whats not checked not checked.
Note: Thanks to Zeydlitz the broken graphics can be fixed by setting Lograipmic Z, which will fix and heal the missing hair/shirts/skirts that appear in games like Persona.

After Graphics is done for first ~And if needed Second~ Controller set it to LilyPad 0.9.4 and configure your controller

Now come on, do you need help with that >_>...

For CDDVD ROM, set it too
Linuzappz ISO CDVD 0.7.0 and leave as is.

USB is pretty much unimportant, so just leave it as USB Null Driver 0.5.0

Sound, this should be put as
P.E.0p.S SPU2 1.9.0

Press configure
Put the volume on what you wish (Personally I have it on Loud)
Set Reverb and Interpolation to 0. Make sure all boxes below are unticked
Sound is all good now.

For Dev 9 and Firewire, Leave them as they come.

As for bios, grab you PS2 and dump them, I will not go into Piracy, try to use US if your Playing US games, etc etc... Come sense people >_>.

3. Now for the next part Press okay and head into the config tab again and press Cpu.

Now many people may say for this part "GO FOR VUSKIPPING LOLOLOLOL" I would too, it gives a MASSIVE FPS boost, from 20s to 40s with it on, but it has a major side effect (At least for me) it causes a black flicker across the screen, and if managed to fix (Which I did) it just causes frames to stutter really, and its non fluent. Because of this, it makes the game non-enjoyable and very annoying while trying to put in names/read stuff.

So personally and professionally speaking ... AVOID VUSKIP UNLESS THERE IS SOME KIND OF FIX I AM MISSING!!!!!

Now what I use here, is just regular Skip with a custom FPS limit of 60
Everything else is at 0 except consecutive frames to skip which is 8. Make sure every box is clicked except
Multi Threaded GS Mode, which is for Dual Cores... Last I checked this is for Single cores =P


4. Config Tab ... Again:
This time, press config and go to SPEED HACKS.
Enable IOP x2 Cycle should be checked as well as
Wait Cycle Sync hack (If it causes your game to hang/freeze disable it)
You should also check Use x3 Cycle Rate, it causes your FMVs to become choppy and skippy in audio, but not horribly.


5. One last time: Config Tab, Advanced:
Now this is the simplest part, click the Advanced tao under Config and make sure you click

Chop/Zero under Round Mode

None Under Clamp Mode

Flush to Zero Denormals are Zero
That fors EE Rec Options

For VU Recs Options
Set


Chop/Zero under Round Mode

None Under Clamp Mode

Flush to Zero Denormals are Zero
All to check.

Now that that is over, we are done with PCSX2 Config.


6. The beginning to Stability:

Now that PCSX2 is done and configured its time to turn your PC into a PCSX2 Machine, if you happen to have game prelauncher or anything like it use it now and skip the rest of part 5, if not...

~For Vista users:
Go into Control Panel, Classic View -> System -> Advanced Settings -> Performance -> and click Adjust for best performance, this will turn off Aero and any other Vista crap not needed.~

Okay, this is the fun part ~Especially for people with billions of programs running~

First hit CTRL+ALT+DEL and open your task manager

CTRL+ALT+DEL -> Task Manager -> Go under Processes and kill off ALL PROGRAMS THAT SAY YOUR USER NAME NEXT TO THEM!!!!!

EXAMPLE: firefox.exe Kryo I
explorer.exe Kryo I

So on an so forth.. If the User Name area is blank leave it.


7. The best part...:
SHUT THE HELL UP AND PLAY DAMN YOU!! Go have fun you little boys and girls, remember VU Skipping = Hell, and Skipping = Fluent and bearable.


All in all, this should give your FPS a great boost, and I know there are other people out there that can and probably have a better set up and what not.
If you have any suggestions, comments, criticism ( If you flame me, or my computer, that is not criticism, thats just rude and will be ignored. ) or ways to increase FPS further ( if you say get a better computer/ CPU you probably will also be ignored, because if you would think maybe we cannot AFFORD one ~Like myself~ Cannot AFFORD a new one, I have 7 Siblings, both my parents, my cousin and my Grandfather all under one roof, its hard enough to get food.~)

I also know this is pretty sloppy, but it is also my first written guide, (usually verbal or physical) and I will try to make it clearer and more vibrant in time as more additions and updates/ findings are added in.

I hope you can have fun with this guys,
THERE IS HOPE MY FELLOW 1.8GHz PROCESSOR BROTHERS!!! (And sisters xP)


P.S:

My computer specs are

AMD Sempron™ Processor 3400+ 1.8GHz(Stock) SlimLine Pentium s7613w PC
2Gigs of Ram
Vista 32 Bit
nIvida GeForce 6150 LE With Latest Drivers

Also to all you people suggesting an overclock, I would, but HP computers cant be overclocked from the bios(?) I believe, I do not know any trust software, I do not feel like putting in more fans, not do I have the case to do so.

So yeah. Once again, Have fun people.
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#2
If you use GSDX always set Logaripmic Z for hair pieces.
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#3
Good guide for the most part, but I would definitely note the difference in directx 9 behavior / performance versus the dx 10 (obviously this can only be selected if you have vista) because some games do take advantage of the streamlined code; i.e SoC, FFXII and some others. Couple more critiques would be that the Peops sound plugin has a couple glitches in sound here and there and I've found ZeroSpu2 to more accurately emulate sound across the board with better compatiblity; also the GSdx plugin that you mentioned is a little dated :\. Lastly, and this maybe just on my end who knows, but changing the options in the advanced tab have led to disaster for me and very rarely a speed boost; the thought is still the same though.

Other than that, I'm sure there are people that would appreciate this guide and in the very least they'll be able to play FFX or a couple other RPGs. Nice job Smile.

PS. Are you going for extreme speed and not really worrying about compatibility or stability?
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#4
Thanks Zey! I will go into GSDX now to see if it works.

@Darkt-
My graphics card is pretty bleh so I forgot to note the difference in directx9 behavior / performance versus the DX10, which is that DX9 in most cases is better then DX10 ~From what I have read~, I will quickly after this post check out ZeroSpu2 for the sound Emulating, as for the GSdx plugin being dated, its the only one I've had, I'll look up another one and see if I get better out of it. As for the disaster in your Advanced tab, I don't see why? I really never have issues ._.

Ahh, the awesome question. I really am going for extreme speed, with most fluent frames, compatibility or stability are minor in most cases, as I haven't noticed anything yet "Will try with other games later". So, now that I have this information, I'll download the newest GSdx and test out all these new Suggestions~

Hope we get more people like Zey and Dark in here~!

Thanks you two.
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#5
I'd try and make an effort to explain why each option is chosen (instead of just listing a bunch of options).

In particular, native means resolution that's used for rendering in gsdx is the ps2 resolution, and then it gets scaled to fullscreen. The resolution is lower, but matches that of a PS2, which should be good enough.

Overclocking, if backed with knowledge and common sense, helps a lot. So far, I've been running all my games with no speed hacks at 1600x1200 (not native!) and without hacks, with good performance, on a cheapass e2160 (overclocked from 1.8 to 3.25GHz), which was the lowend back when I bought it. Nowadays it's the e7400, very cheap and far more powerful.
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#6
~Small bump~

A few minor updates have been done, added in the fix for broken graphics thanks to Zey, and the small performance update thanks to newer plugins.

@Matsuri - Eventually I will get around to explaining them all out, issue is, as if you read the thing about comments, I have a large family giving me very little time to do much. If anyone, like yourself would like to help out and contribute things like this it would be awesome.

As for overclocking, I personally have never done it to a computer because I have never had a need (Hell I got Oblivion to run FLAWLESSLY on this computer with awesome graphics). So to really tell the truth, when it comes to Overclocking I am at a loss, also, one of my only choices for cooling it would be to take the case off as more fans would not fit. Which really isn't a problem. If anyone would like to help me, like yourself, overclock it and give some info it would be nice. I really can't afford to fry my CPU, also since it is an HP computer, bio overclocking is out of the question, so I would also need a nice overclocking programs. So yeah.

^_^

I thank you for your input though, everything is helpful.
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#7
(01-31-2009, 10:33 PM)matsuri Wrote: I'd try and make an effort to explain why each option is chosen (instead of just listing a bunch of options).

In particular, native means resolution that's used for rendering in gsdx is the ps2 resolution, and then it gets scaled to fullscreen. The resolution is lower, but matches that of a PS2, which should be good enough.

Overclocking, if backed with knowledge and common sense, helps a lot. So far, I've been running all my games with no speed hacks at 1600x1200 (not native!) and without hacks, with good performance, on a cheapass e2160 (overclocked from 1.8 to 3.25GHz), which was the lowend back when I bought it. Nowadays it's the e7400, very cheap and far more powerful.

@Kryosan

Well for the advanced features they really do do a number on some a lot of games that I've tried, but then again on some others no matter what option I've changed it hasn't mattered. And you can always overclock lol, the question is do you want hardware OCing or SW OCing Smile. That's a topic for another forum/thread me thinks.

@ matsuri

I think YOU need to explain how you managed that lol. I have an e8400 stock 3.0GHZ OC'ed to 3.6GHZ and I have to put on some speed hacks for certain games to play at 1280x720 kinda sad really. I would love to be able to play at 1600x1200 no speedhacks, but unfortunetly SoC is very hungry and so is XGRA. What games are you playing and what are your settings?
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#8
The maximum resolution you can use with a good speed has little to do with the CPU.
What are your graphic cards?
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#9
(02-01-2009, 10:57 PM)Nneeve Wrote: The maximum resolution you can use with a good speed has little to do with the CPU.
What are your graphic cards?

Maybe not the resolution but as far as the FPS achieved I think it has a good bit to do with the CPU (could be wrong) which is why overclocking affects performance so much. Either way, I'm running 2x8800GT Stock speeds in SLI, although, only running single GPU mode for PCSX2. I know enough to know that my GPU's storm through any and all the latest games out there to date with no problem, but any tips are more than welcome. I'm always willing to learn after all Smile.

On another note, for me dx9 has always given me poor performance vs dx10, but with SVN 679 which I compiled, I'm getting a decent FPS boost and x3 cycle rate hack works smoothly. This has never happened before in the 300+ revisions I've tested. I have no idea :|.
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#10
Well, I guess it depends on the card, for me running in DX10 kills performance, while Dx9 Increases, but then again i have the 6150LE Card. which is Crap compared to yours. As for overclocking, I really am at a loss for it, if anyone would like to hit me up on Msn (NYC_Skater@hotmail.com) and hit me up with a short walk-through on how to do it through software, that would be beauty.

Also, dark you are correct, FPS is dependant on CPU, so a 56% increase in CpU, is a 56% increase in FPS.
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