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[Experience] Grand PCSX2 Struggle: XPDX9 vs Win7DX10
#1
It's no secret why do we all love PCSX2 and it's developers (even though they are menExcl) - it gives an absolutely new life to our oh so beloved playstation 2 games. Higher resolution, Anti-Aliasing, Savestates, Better Loading Times - just to name a few advantages over original PS2 that would change the way you ever looked at playstation2's games.
Unfortunately, as with anything based around emulation, PCSX2 has it's downsides and being very hardware demanding is on the top of that list. I'm pretty sure many of you find it hard to enjoy a game if it constantly slows down, has stuttering sound and just plainly doesn't run at it's full speed. But not all is lost (at least for some of you Wink) because a pretty simple solution lies closer than you think.

I read quite a few threads on this board mentioning a better performance of PCSX2 working under DirectX10 (Vista, Windows7) over DirectX9 but never actually considered it to be that important. "Nah, 3-5 fps" - i thought. But man, was I wrong. Some time ago I got my beta copy of Windows7 and a few simple tests I ran left me completely speechless, wanting to never return back to DX9 (no, Windows7 itself isn't worth moving to Wink.

THE RIG:
Intel Core2Duo E6400 2.13 Ghz @ 3.12 (OCed)
Installed Ram: 2GB (I removed my other 2GB for some reasons unrelated to testing)
MSI Geforce 8800 GT 1GB (Hardware DX10 support)
Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit (DX11)
Loads of Coffee

Games Tested:
Final Fantasy XII NTSC
Final Fantasy XII Zodiac Job System NTSC
Soul Calibur 3 NTSC
Valkyrie Profile 2 NTSC**
Radiata Stories NTSC**
* I didn't make any screenshots or videos, I was lazy, yeah.
** The games which aren't yet properly emulated (Tri-Ace) may not benefit

PCSX2 Settings:
PCSX2 Beta Rev 812
ABSOLUTELY NO SPEEDHACKS
EE Recs : Nearest / Clamp Mode Normal / Flush to Zero off / Denormals are Zero on
VU Recs: Nearest / Clamp Mode Normal / Flush to Zero off / Denormals are Zero on
All CPU options ON
GSDX 0.1.7 SSSE3 and 0.1.14 Rev 799 SSSE3 (NLOOP Hack: Greyed, Texture Filtering: Enabled; DX9 Only : Logarithmic Z and Alpha Correction Enabled). ZeroGS wasn't tested because it's obviously way behind GS.

Conclusions: Well, It's sure not usual to write conclusions before actually explaining anything, but just in case you are already tired of reading all that. DirectX10 mode really makes a difference. If PCSX2 does it's job on emulating the game correctly (well, for the most part at least Smile but you still experience slowdowns - moving to a platform that supports DX10-11 may save your day like it did for me.

RUNNING TESTS
Final Fantasy XII NTSC (regardless of GSDX version fps are pretty much the same)
There a black vertical line near character models when run under DX9 in higher resolutions. Well, in DX10 this line moves away from _near_ to onto the models Smile There is also a bug with GSDX9 with disappearing floor textures (walk around eastersand a bit to see it), in GSDX10 there is no such bug.
DX9: Basically, if you have enough processor speed it runs well on DX9. In my case, it does occasionally slowdown from 60 to 40-45-55 fps. Reks starting area is 52 fps for me. Cutscenes before and after the fight with Tonberry are around 45 before and 35 after. Eastern Rabanastre gate exit drops to about 48-52. At bazaar it may drop to 42.
DX10: Now with absolutely the same settings it really makes a complete difference. Reks starting area is constant 60 with no drops. Cutscenes with Tonberry is 52-55 fps before, 45-50 after. Hardly a slowdown in Rabanastre. Now I consider for another FFXII run, because I never actually got that Genji stuff complete Smile

Final Fantasy XII Zodiac Job System NTSC/J (regardless of GSDX version fps are pretty much the same)
DX9: This one is a completely different story. Under DX9 Reks starting area is 30Excl fps. But you know, everything looks pretty much the same..? Even worse, it drops lower during the battles. Have to confess, I could not finish the introduction due to the ridiculously low fps.
DX10: It's simply better. Still _a bit_ slower than the original FFXII, but FPS tends to stay 60, at least through the starting area.


Soul Calibur 3 NTSC (regardless of GSDX version fps are pretty much the same)
The game has to be run on NATIVE resolution, otherwise you face uncool artefacts. It also has to be run without speedhacks if you want to see menu/character selection screens properly.
DX9: It's unplayable under DX9. 15 fps menus, 2 fps ingame. Says it all, I think.
DX10: Playable.Constant 60 fps in menus, 48-50 fps in battles, which is still pretty fair (only streched sound is rather annoying). I know some people said they could get get contant 60 fps in battle with x3 Cycle Rate speedhack enabled, I didn't try it. Setting it to x1.5 Cycle Rate broke menus and didn't bring me ANY speed in battles.


Valkyrie Profile 2 NTSC
Tri-Ace games are not properly emulated yet and require a hack to work, but I suppose everyone knows that. The game has to be run on NATIVE resolution to reduce an amount of graphical bugs. The game got decent framerate on GSDX 0.1.7 ONLY. Differences between DX9 and DX10 aren't very obvious, 1-5 fps perhaps. With 0.1.14 areas are about 12-15 fps, didn't test battles. With 0.1.7 areas are 40-49-55 fps(yay). Battles are 57-60 fps with minor artefacts.


Radiata Stories NTSC
Just as with the above, Tri-Ace games are not properly emulated yet and require a hack to work. The game has to be run on NATIVE resolution to reduce an amount of graphical bugs. The game got decent framerate on GSDX 0.1.7 ONLY. Well, 0.1.14 is capable of producing 60 fps too, but it also produces 9-15 fps on about half of the scenes. Differences between DX9 and DX10 aren't very obvious, 1-5 fps perhaps. With 0.1.14 I simply couldn't sit through the opening Smile. With 0.1.7 it's mostly 60fps, with slowdowns to at most 40 in "hawk's view" places and crowded areas. Battles I tested are 60 fps with minor artefacts.

As you see, certain very popular cases may actually benefit from moving to DX10 hardware and raise an overall "enjoyment level". So, if you can - do it. It is unlikely you will regret it.
That's about it, hopefully my tests were helpful to someone in any way Wink

P.S.> Kingdom Hearts 1/2 aren't included here, as these were proven to work fine with DX9. Shadow of the Collosus and Okami I don't have, and I couldn't find my ICO dvd to test it.
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#2
Running more tests and, well, PCSX2 under Win7 simply pawns PCSX2 under WinXP. Dunno if it's good or bad.
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#3
I came to the exact same conclusion so far. based on Dragon quest 8.
On xp it slows down to to an unbearable 15fps even at 720p with speedhacks on and a low native res. On win7 with dx10, almost flawless speeds overall. Maybe a slight dip into the 50s at times, but that's it.
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#4
Well that's mainly due to gabest working in the DX10 side of his plugin way more than the DX9 counterpart. Also due to the additional functions DX10 provides too.
So it's more of a DX9 implementation of gsdx vs DX10 implementation of gsdx rather than Xp vs Vista vs Win7 although the OS does play a (small) role in speed
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#5
@Cain
I have a queestion to ask of you.
What speed will you get with Soul Calibur3 with cpu clocked at 2.12 and or 2.3GHz with windows7 DX10.
I'm considering to buy this game.

I get full speed in soul Calibur 2 with ZeroGS and my cpu is clocked @2.3GHZ.
Have you tried the game with ZeroGS?
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#6
(03-23-2009, 12:02 AM)redlof Wrote: @Cain
I have a queestion to ask of you.
What speed will you get with Soul Calibur3 with cpu clocked at 2.12 and or 2.3GHz with windows7 DX10.
I'm considering to buy this game.

I get full speed in soul Calibur 2 with ZeroGS and my cpu is clocked @2.3GHZ.
Have you tried the game with ZeroGS?

Ohhkay, I've tested this one. For the purpose of this test my clock speed was reset back to 2.13 GHz. PCSX2 Advanced options were set as follows:
EE Recs : Chop/Zero
Clamp Mode: None
Flush to Zero: off
Denormals are Zero: on
VU Recs : Chop/Zero
Clamp Mode: None
Flush to Zero: off
Denormals are Zero: on
Noticed nothing broken with these settings.

Without speedhacks: All graphical elements are perfect is GSDX is on NATIVE. All menus are ok and full speed. Ingame speed drops to 49-60%

With speedhacks (x3 Cycle Rate): All graphical elements are perfect is GSDX is on NATIVE. THX arcade intro is veeeery choppy. All ingame menus are broken and even though 60 fps are shown it feels like they are in slow motion. Character selection screen speed dropped from 100% to about 45 fps (x3 Cycle Rate slowdown hack?Laugh). Ingame speed is 100% (60fps), but it feels a bit... skippy. It doesn't prevent you from enjoying the game, the battles are fine themselves, but just to let you know it runs differently (not as smoothly I suppose) from how it originally should.

Well, I did try running it with ZeroGS some time back, under DX9, it was about 15-20fps (compared to 2 fps with GSDX Laugh) but with tonsss of artefacts. Personally I prefer not to use ZeroGS because it's truly outdated now.

(03-22-2009, 11:54 PM)Bositman Wrote: So it's more of a DX9 implementation of gsdx vs DX10 implementation of gsdx rather than Xp vs Vista vs Win7 although the OS does play a (small) role in speed

Yes sure, I provided OS names just to show where were DX9 and DX10 tested.
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#7
(03-23-2009, 05:39 AM)Cain Wrote:
(03-23-2009, 12:02 AM)redlof Wrote: @Cain
I have a queestion to ask of you.
What speed will you get with Soul Calibur3 with cpu clocked at 2.12 and or 2.3GHz with windows7 DX10.
I'm considering to buy this game.

I get full speed in soul Calibur 2 with ZeroGS and my cpu is clocked @2.3GHZ.
Have you tried the game with ZeroGS?

Ohhkay, I've tested this one. For the purpose of this test my clock speed was reset back to 2.13 GHz. PCSX2 Advanced options were set as follows:
EE Recs : Chop/Zero
Clamp Mode: None
Flush to Zero: off
Denormals are Zero: on
VU Recs : Chop/Zero
Clamp Mode: None
Flush to Zero: off
Denormals are Zero: on
Noticed nothing broken with these settings.

Without speedhacks: All graphical elements are perfect is GSDX is on NATIVE. All menus are ok and full speed. Ingame speed drops to 49-60%

With speedhacks (x3 Cycle Rate): All graphical elements are perfect is GSDX is on NATIVE. THX arcade intro is veeeery choppy. All ingame menus are broken and even though 60 fps are shown it feels like they are in slow motion. Character selection screen speed dropped from 100% to about 45 fps (x3 Cycle Rate slowdown hack?Laugh). Ingame speed is 100% (60fps), but it feels a bit... skippy. It doesn't prevent you from enjoying the game, the battles are fine themselves, but just to let you know it runs differently (not as smoothly I suppose) from how it originally should.

Well, I did try running it with ZeroGS some time back, under DX9, it was about 15-20fps (compared to 2 fps with GSDX Laugh) but with tonsss of artefacts. Personally I prefer not to use ZeroGS because it's truly outdated now.

(03-22-2009, 11:54 PM)Bositman Wrote: So it's more of a DX9 implementation of gsdx vs DX10 implementation of gsdx rather than Xp vs Vista vs Win7 although the OS does play a (small) role in speed

Yes sure, I provided OS names just to show where were DX9 and DX10 tested.

thanks for replying Cain, the reason why I told you about ZeroGS is because I use ZeroGS to play soul Calibur2 in XP with X3hack and I get 60fps with cpu@2.3GHz and 9500GT card. And with GSdx I get 70-80% full speed.
From your results I think getting this game would not be a bad Idea.
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#8
(03-23-2009, 07:15 AM)redlof Wrote: thanks for replying Cain, the reason why I told you about ZeroGS is because I use ZeroGS to play soul Calibur2 in XP with X3hack and I get 60fps with cpu@2.3GHz and 9500GT card. And with GSdx I get 70-80% full speed.
From your results I think getting this game would not be a bad Idea.

To everyone it's own Smile FPS isn't everything to me, the game must look and feel right for me to enjoy, and it's not worth playing if I can't enjoy it to the fullest Smile
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#9
Hence the reason people should look into a seperate partition to install vista/win7 if they want to utilize dx10.
Ninja
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#10
(03-23-2009, 07:29 AM)Cain Wrote:
(03-23-2009, 07:15 AM)redlof Wrote: thanks for replying Cain, the reason why I told you about ZeroGS is because I use ZeroGS to play soul Calibur2 in XP with X3hack and I get 60fps with cpu@2.3GHz and 9500GT card. And with GSdx I get 70-80% full speed.
From your results I think getting this game would not be a bad Idea.

To everyone it's own Smile FPS isn't everything to me, the game must look and feel right for me to enjoy, and it's not worth playing if I can't enjoy it to the fullest Smile

Well right now I play games in 55FPS just to help me with some combos in games sooo yeah sometimes not getting FULL speed helps a lot in games.

Is this what you mean by FPS isnt everything????
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