The truth about PRE-RENDERING 0?

Discussion in 'Videocards - NVIDIA GeForce Drivers Section' started by Tastic, Jul 16, 2012.

  1. Tastic

    Tastic Member

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    Hello peeps, this is my first thread on this forum, so any help/advice on the matter would be much appreciated.

    I am looking for the truth behind 'Pre-rendering 0' with Nvidia cards. This may come off as a silly question as the option clearly states 0 pre-rendered frames. However, I have heard many trains of thought regarding this matter.

    For one, when you set pre-rendered frames to 0 in either the nvidia control panel or by using nvidia inspector, are the pre-rendered frames really 0? If not, what drivers are they not 0, and what do they default to if 0 is selected?

    I have been reading and hearing about how the setting of 0 for pre-rendered frames actually defaults to 3 in many scenarios. I even read a benchmark test review that their results confirm that by setting your Nvidia card to 0 pre-rendered frames, your card resorts to its default setting, which is 3 pre-rendered frames. So, a selection of 1 or 2 will actually render less frames than a setting of 0.

    Here's one example I'm talking about: http://forums.laptopvideo2go.com/topic/29333-max-pre-rendered-frames-benchmarks/

    I have tested pre-rendered frames from 0-3, and I'm having trouble coming to a definitive conclusion about whether a setting of 0 or 1 renders less frames. I play Quake Live, so finding the setting that truly renders the least amount of frames is ideal. I have a fairly fast system so my system should handle the least amount of rendering possible. I want the configuration that offers the LEAST amount of input lag. I can't find many definitive sources about whether pre-rendered frames 0 actually renders 0 frames, or if it resorts to driver defaults of 3. I've heard angles from both sides.

    Current configuration:

    i5-2500k
    EVGA 550 TI
    16gb 1333 Ram
    SSD
    Asus VG236H 120hz LCD

    Basic video settings:

    The driver-set (Nvidia) I'm currently using is 295.73.
    Pre-rendered frames set to 0 or 1
    GPU Scaling off
    Play games at native resolution (1920 x 1080) even though I prefer lesser resolutions
    Most filtering settings turned off or to high performance
    120hz refresh rate

    If anyone can shed any light on this subject I would appreciate it, immensely!

    Discuss.

    -T
     
  2. Cyberdyne

    Cyberdyne Ancient Guru

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    Newer versions of the NVidia drivers remove the option to use 0. Instead, it was replaced with "use default app setting". Setting it to 0 in the newer drivers using Inspector just sets it to "use default app setting" as well.
    Knowing that, it would make sense that settings it to 0 in older drivers makes it actually use 3 (or default), giving a reason for the more recent change. Maybe for clarity.
     
  3. Tastic

    Tastic Member

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    I noticed that as well.

    I did find an interesting comment in the ESR forum @ http://www.esreality.com/post/2283041/nvidia-removes-0-pre-rendered-frames/

    Here's the comment:

    "Fact is, you have to "pre-render" a single frame before displaying. So you're suggesting that this option is "how many _more_ frames to pre-render" and 1 is keeping a single frame always in the buffer while previous one is displayed and next one is being rendered? Does it do it even with vsync off? I was under impression this setting is for vsync users..."

    This makes sense, but is it true? Does your video-card have to pre-render at least 1 frame before displaying on your screen? Are video-cards not capable of rendering real-time and displaying the image on your screen as it's rendering? I suspect that if this is true, your system has to be fairly fast to handle real-time rendering.

    Your thoughts?

    -T
     
  4. ManuelG

    ManuelG NVIDIA Rep

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    I asked our engineers and their reasoning for removing "0" was because there was practically zero difference in setting this to either "0" or "1". The result was the same.

    Manuel
    NVIDIA Forums Technical Advisor
     

  5. Agent-A01

    Agent-A01 Ancient Guru

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    was there really a need for 3 threads?
     
  6. sykozis

    sykozis Ancient Guru

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    The short answer is yes, at least 1 frame has to be pre-rendered.
     
  7. Prophet

    Prophet Master Guru

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    I can feel the difference between 0 and 1. 'Practically no difference' is an actual difference. Some guy where this was discussed says it adds ~5-15 ms per each pre-rendered frame which seems accurate to me.

    Mind I only care about this in the fps games. When I play this makes quite a difference. I usually am in the top 3-5% or so in the fps´s I have played.

    ATi doesnt have 0 pre rendered any more (or flip que as its called on ati iirc). This is one of the biggest reasons I bought a Nvidia card.

    Please bring 0 back in the newer drivers so I dont have to use 296.x drivers.
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2012
  8. rewt

    rewt Maha Guru

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    The video drivers will also pre-render frames when vsync is disabled, and it's easiest to detect that behavior in OpenGL applications.

    The option in the control panel affects the length of the command buffer between CPU and GPU. Back buffering is a different story.

    In drivers before r300, a setting of 0 shortened the command buffer to a minimum. In r300 drivers and above, a setting of 0 is application/driver controlled and typically equals 3 frames.
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2012
  9. Shadowdane

    Shadowdane Maha Guru

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    I use 1 or 2 pre-rendered frames here, depends on the game. Most games run smoother with a setting of 2 I found. When I used lower settings I found the framerate to fluxuate more. The difference in response was pretty much non-existent.

    I think that could be partly due to having an SLI configuration, this way it renders one frame per GPU ahead?
     
  10. rewt

    rewt Maha Guru

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    Nvidia says the setting in the control panel does not apply to SLI. Either that info is inaccurate, or you are experiencing the placebo effect.
     

  11. hallryu

    hallryu Don Altobello

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    The other 2 threads are closed. This one stays open as it has the most replies and discussion.
     
  12. Burnt_Ram

    Burnt_Ram Ancient Guru

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    what, pre rendered frames ahead doesn't apply to sli, surely that's wrong?
     
  13. rewt

    rewt Maha Guru

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    If it's wrong, then benchmarks would reflect that. I don't know why Nvidia would say it doesn't apply to SLI if it does.
     
  14. Brendruis

    Brendruis Maha Guru

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    Makes sense to me.. With SLI you would always be using at least one pre-rendered frame because you are using alternate frame rendering...
     
  15. p0ppa

    p0ppa Master Guru

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    So it's best to have it on 1 or 2? mine is default on 3. does it differ from different graphics cards? For example a high-end and a low-end?
     

  16. Kolt

    Kolt Master Guru

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    I have put mine to 1 for BF3 and it seems smoother. I'm pretty sure my CPU is a bottleneck for my GPU, even overclocked like it is, so it being set to 1 seemed like a smart decision.
     
  17. Prophet

    Prophet Master Guru

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    Depends on game. If its a game that doesnt require immediate response generally setting it higher is better. D3 for example I put 3.
     
  18. tweakpower

    tweakpower Banned

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    nVidia and their stupid tricks, sorry to be a constant "black sheep" on the forum, but i have to share personal experience with this.

    Many cards was tested, all of them older than this i will mention here.

    9800GT, RFA = 1, 2 or 3. 3Dmark score is around 10-15% better than RFA = 0. Games are smoother, lag is almost eliminated (OK, lag was problem with most if not all nVidia cards for me, having on mind that i always used AMD CPU's, it can be that), but with less FPS, and with more "harder" stutter, but less micro.

    Here is example i saved on 9800GT Mafia II game, same scene.

    [​IMG]
     
  19. Prophet

    Prophet Master Guru

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    Not sure what you are trying to say here buddy. That graph only shows that render ahead frames has little to no impact on fps. I have tested this in d3 and bfbc2 and, apart from the first 30 secs being somewhat less fps with pre-rendered 0, the result were almost similar. Similar enough that I claim that with a recent system that difference is neglible.
     
  20. Noisiv

    Noisiv Ancient Guru

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    @tweakpower which setting has "harder" stutter, but less micro?
    How can you even an impartial judge if you're heavy CPU limited?

    It's perfectly fine to be a "black sheep", but you're not making much sense buddy
    Lost in translation... or sumtin :)
     

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