Monday, 13 May 2013

FPS Limiters Or Vsync and the stuttering Skyrim fix


When I first got Skyrim, I was hit by an arrow to the knee in the form of the stuttering bug when playing the game in first person after researching it for a while it was suggested that it is an issue with Vsync and an FPS that fluctuate a lot above and below the refresh rate of the monitor.

Hardforum.com has a good write up on the pros and cons of Vsync and from reading people with Nvidia cards turning this on resolved the issue but not so with the ATI cards,  the best fix for ATI cards is a FPS limit put on the game using 3rd party software like rivatuner.

Now I already use MSI Afterburner which has rivatuner built in for the overlay in games so enabling the On Screen display and giving it a limit fixed my Skyrim stutter issue.

Since using it in Skyrim I have also started to use it in all my games as it allows me keep control of the temperature in my laptop and does help with physics and fog effect ingame as you get a constant FPS that can be maintained.

The FPS you set it to depends on what your computer can maintain in each game and will need some experimentation until you get a good number but to set the limit in MSI Afterburner is as follows.


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The first thing we need to do is to set MSI Afterburner to start with windows and to also start minimized.

The Next thing we need is to enable the (OSD) On Screen Display and we do this by telling MSI to display one of the meters in OSD.





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I normally monitor FPS and frame time as both are good to see how the computer is performing at a given moment while in game.

To enable OSD we need to monitor something with it so we need to go in to the MSI settings and select the monitoring tab and from here you will see a few ticks in the 'Active Hardware Monitoring Graphs' area, select a monitor say like 'Framerate' and then from there you will be able to tick 'Show in On-Screen Display'

This will add a new icon to your system tray that looks like this.







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Right Click on it and select 'show' and you will now see this screen, from here we can use the + icon in the lower left of the window to drill down to the exe of the actual game which will add it to the list that is currently there.



Once its in the list, select it so that its highlighted in blue and then change the 'Application Detection Level' to 'Low' and then press the spanner icon on the top right and it will allow you to set the Framerate Limit from there.

This limit is set per game so if you highlight another entry you can set another FPS for that game.

There is an art to this as if you set it too low you will see micro stutter but if you set it too high then you will not get the benefit.

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