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How GPU dependent is PCSX2?
#1
I understand that PCSX2 requires a fairly decent video card with support for shaders and whatnot, but how important is your GPU in comparison to your CPU for running this emulator? I would imagine that there's a point where the GPU doesn't matter so much anymore, and your CPU becomes the main focus in determining how well the emulator runs.

The reason why I am asking this is because I'm considering upgrading my computer some time in the near future, and aside from emulators and older games, I don't really do any other gaming, so I'm thinking of ditching the videocard upgrade and instead going for a new CPU, RAM, and motherboard.

According to this list, http://www.videocardbenchmark.net/gpu_list.php Intel's HD 4000 integrated graphics actually have a better benchmark score than my current videocard, a Radeon HD 4650. Based purely on this I'm almost tempted to ditch my video card completely and install it in another computer, but I wonder, how well does this integrated graphics solution work in the real world, especially for things like Dolphin and PCSX2? Would I be better off sticking with my trusty old Radeon? Tongue
[Image: qzt04w.png]
^the motherboard in this box has been swapped for an ASUS P5B Laugh
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#2
Yes-- PCSX2 is less GPU dependent than CPU. By the time you have a DDR5 unit, it's basically just gaining further upscaled resolutions beyond that.

Your HD 4650; Is it DDR2...?

That means it has considerably less memory bandwidth than what an Intel HD 4000 can have, with any reasonably spec'd DDR3 DRAM in dual channel. There is something to be said about an Intel unit's low fillrates and a few DirectX issues, but bandwidth can be a bigger factor with PCSX2.

Can it be better? Yes.
Will it be better? Not necessarily in every case.
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#3
My 4650 uses GDDR5, but it only has 512MB of it. Tongue That said, its bandwidth is probably better than most motherboard DDR3 chipsets.

Also, I just noticed you have Jace as your avatar. MTG FTW! Laugh
[Image: qzt04w.png]
^the motherboard in this box has been swapped for an ASUS P5B Laugh
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#4
Well, the 512mb shouldn't hold you back too much, and really only at higher res.

I'm just a little surprised. I'm not familiar with any Radeon HD 4650 with GDDR5. (lol) I see they had 2, 3 and 4, but I'm not pulling up any with GDDR5. What's the bus width...? I would love to see a GPU-Z sceenshot of yours. Smile
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#5
Just give me a sec, I have to install GPU-Z. Laugh I've used it before on other systems but never on here for some reason.

EDIT: Turns out I had it installed all along, it was just buried in my "utilities" folder. Tongue Here's the screenshot:

[Image: 7cq.png]

Wait a sec, that says GDDR3. I could swear it said GDDR5 on the box when I bought this thing back in '09. These utilities often misidentify my hardware though. Considering that this was a budget card though, it would make sense if it were really only GDDR3.
[Image: qzt04w.png]
^the motherboard in this box has been swapped for an ASUS P5B Laugh
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#6
GPU-Z can be portable, and run off a flashdrive, you know. Wink

EDIT:
Hmmm... I hate to say it, but it seems you may have recollected that wrong. (Sad)

You could try other GPU-Z versions, cause that does happen sometimes. (Ok-- a lot. lol) If your system memory is at least 1600Mhz (dual channel), it would have more bandwidth than the GDDR3 variant indicated by that GPU-Z shot.
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#7
Did you see the screenshot yet? I just posted it. I'm actually kind of surprised by the fact that my card may in fact only have GDDR3.
[Image: qzt04w.png]
^the motherboard in this box has been swapped for an ASUS P5B Laugh
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#8
I'm afraid i've never seen GPU-Z get the memory wrong, i think you might have been seen off, sorry Sad
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#9
Yeah-- I don't really think the HD 4000 would come out ahead in that race, and possibly not even if your system RAM is @ 1866Mhz (~29 GB/s). You can OC the 4650 a bit, right? It's not like it is likely to do worse (with PCSX) by but a fragment, if it ever does. You could use a newer, better, GPU these days, anyway. Smile

I have seen GPU-Z get the memory wrong, BTW. Certain versions, that is. But this Wiki page rarely steers me wrong. Wink
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#10
I've tried OCing my GPU before just for the hell of it, but I start seeing problems even after only a 10-20MHz boost. Strangely, it copes just fine with me overclocking the PCI-E bus somewhat. I'm actually quite happy with the performance that this thing delivers, but I just think it would be cool if I could get the same performance without it being installed, and maybe make my next build a mini-ITX or something.

Actually, just thinking about it, I probably wouldn't be able to make my next build a mini-ITX unless I decide to take my current hard drives (3x 500GB, filled with all sorts of backups and other junk), and throw them into a home server. It might be a cool thing to do, but ultimately I like to have all of my data right at my fingertips, and it would be less work just to keep my current case and drive setup and just upgrade the rest of the internals, GPU included. Or, maybe I could leave this box as it is and build a whole new one as my "upgrade", since I love this thing so damn much as it is and would hate to modify it much from how it currently is.
[Image: qzt04w.png]
^the motherboard in this box has been swapped for an ASUS P5B Laugh
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