4x Better Graphics and way more FPS Guide

Discussion in 'Technical Archives' started by Bart S, Jun 6, 2013.

  1. Bart S

    Bart S Member

    Oct 5, 2010
    Likes Received:
    Updated 05/09/2013 - finished and final edit

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    NVIDIA Optimum GFX Tuning Guide for rFactor 2

    For all those of you who find rfactor2s graphics a little more to be desirable well I was the same but with these settings its pretty much there, for me it doesn't have to be the best graphics but good enough to give immersion and feel, like an atmosphere I'm actually there. The number one thing is the delivery, it has to be crisp, clear, sharp and fast to give a better judgement of objects and distance this is number 1 for graphics and sim racing.

    In the hunt for crisp, clear, sharp and fast I found some awesome little secrets. My findings which took a little time an I mean I tested everything should help you gaining more FPS and/or much better Graphics, graphics that can't be achieve using the options ISI give you in game alone.

    I will continue to update and maintain my latest findings and settings, I've done the leg work so you don't have to. Where appropriate I will mention what I suggest for either increased frames or better graphics or both for fast and slow cpus and gfx cards alike.

    This guide only applies to NVIDIA graphics cards but you can try with AMD/ATI similar settings suggestions to see if it helps.

    rFactor 2 Config menu
    Sync = None
    Anti Aliasing = None
    Resolution = Your max
    Refresh Rate = Your max

    One of the first things I found out was rFactor2 Anti aliasing isn't as good as nVidia's, comparing in game AA to overridden AA in nVidia CP I noticed a marginal 2 fps gain. If nVidia are doing a better job here its quite clear ISI have plenty of AA rendering improvements to be made, in my experience in game should always be faster as the application better understands where to apply it.
    Start by applying your highest or most desirable resolution. I recommend HDR on, FXAA off, Sync : None - we don't want to slow anything down, Anti Aliasing : None - trust me nVidia is better at this right now, finally your highest refresh rate.

    rFactor 2 Display menu
    Circuit Detail = Full
    Opponent Detail = Full
    Player Detail = Full
    Texture Detail = Full

    Basically I run everything on full above here, but if your struggling for fps I would start with turning down Opponent Detail first the difference isn't very noticable then Player Detail and then the other two, If you are running low on gfx memory buffer these settings make a difference especially Texture Detail. You can check your memory by ctrl-f until you see the memory buffer in the top left a green bar turns red when overflowed. Also ctrl-c gives more details about whats going on with gfx. I will have to get more details from Tim about exactly what it all means and what idealy your aiming for.

    Texture Filter = x16
    Special Effects = Medium
    Shadows = Medium
    Shadow Blur = Optimal
    Movies = Off
    Sun Occlusion = yes
    Rain Drops = yes
    Road Reflections = low
    Environment Reflections = low
    Wind and Crowd Motion = no

    In the order of things I would start to lower if you need to find extra FPS. Wind and Crowd Motion is a nono turn it off first if you want fps.
    Turning off Sun Occlusion it makes quite a difference to performance yet you will find it hard to tell its missing.
    Reflections make a big performance difference set to low if you struggling for fps then lower other settings before you return here to turn them off entirely. Reflections look great so try keep them on its a big hit on the visuals if you have to loose them entirely.
    Shadows... look great max but heavy on frames same as high, imho if you cant handle max go straight to medium bcos high is still heavy. I would drop shadows to low before turnigh reflections off.
    Shadow Blur I cant really tell between fast and optimal fps wise but optimal has better quality and quality isn't that much better than optimal but its heavy on fps. Again change to fast before turning reflections off.
    Texture Filtering doesn't really make too much difference to performance so better set this high as quality difference is very visible performance hit negligable.

    Visible Vehicles = 20
    Default view = cockpit
    Mirrors = off
    Steering wheel = off
    vertical fov = 24
    Auto Detail FPS = off

    Mirrors are the first thing I turn off, there too much of a hit on fps vs having a high level of AA, turn them off first.
    Auto Detail FPS I just keep thiis off it makes parts of nearby cars magically chang shape, vanish and reappear, looks dreadful, its better to take a hit on something else than this hunting for FPS.
    Visible vehicles I keep this high, I cant stand cars vanishing.
    Vertical fov, lower = faster fps ( less visible objects to render ) better true life perspective.

    rFactor 2 Audio menu
    number of effects = 24
    spotter detail = full
    spotter laptimes = always

    music = 0
    sound effects = 45
    engine = 60
    tires = 120
    spotter = 74
    opponent = 15
    player = 55

    From what I've tested, I may be wrong but if you lower number of effects I'd say you will get better performance if you are cpu bottlenecked.

    rFactor 2 Video Res menu
    video driver = GTX780
    resolution = 1920 x 1080 32 bit
    refresh = 120
    Anti aliasing = 0
    sync = off
    fxaa = off
    hdr = on

    Resolution always use maximum size if you want sharp graphics and detail, lowering this has zero performance advantages for me but I'm not on triple screens and thats where it may help most.
    Refresh always the highest your monitor can handle, it will stop tearing and keep things smooth.
    AntiAliasing all off this we will do in nVidia Inspector
    FXAA off bad image quality when on and i really cant see the fps benefit when on either.
    Sync off were trying to make our system as fast as possible cpu and gfx both sides. This is actually the last thing you should change back to a none off state when you are happy with all your settings.
    HDR on its too beautiful to loose but do what you want, its one of the last things i will turn off.

    rFactor 2 .PLR file
    Transparency AA="0" // Soften edges around alpha test objects

    I have a big problem with transparency AA it seams to be distance activated, it change the way things like trees appear as you approach them, I rather have it off and have a fancy AA setting, if you prefer smooth trees with AA problems leave it on.
    With my recommended settings transparency AA will now be handled in nVidia inspector with a higher quality supersampling setting. The distant transparent objects will appear much nicer as you approach them and also there is non of the issues with transparency through the trees.

    NVidia Inspector

    now download the latest nvidia inspector mine is

    I overclock here, you can do your overclocking here or use other programs like MSI Afterburner or Precision X its upto you if you want more performance you should, its tricky to find stable settings alot comes down to heat in the room. Lookup an overclock suggestions for your gfx card online, that should give you a basic idea of what to aim for.

    mine for example is
    base clock = +150
    Memory Clock = +150
    Voltage offset = +25mv

    I will possibly do an overclocking guide sometime in the future..

    Tuning your graphics
    Open up nV Inspector and click the square tool and screwdriver next to your Driver version
    Btw my nVidia driver version is 320.49 WHQL currently the best, newer versions seams to have microstutter
    326.19 and 326.41 are both bad not tested 326.80 yet.

    1). Click on Profiles and find rFactor2 select rFactor 2(rFactor2.exe)
    2). Click "add application to current profile" at the top
    3). Find and Select rFactor2.exe and then click open
    4). Click "Apply Changes" button at the top

    Now you have successfully created an nVidia Inspector profile for rFactor2.
    Whenever you run rFactor2 the settings you set here will be applied to the
    game automatically.

    Ok close nVidia inspector profile settings window and then open it again.
    Notice now in the top left it no longer says rFactor 2 but Global Driver Profile
    To bring up your custom rFactor2 settings profile click the little house and select rFactor2.
    nV inspector will now load your rFactor2 profile again, remember everytime you make a
    change to your settings you always need to click "Apply changes" button, before clicking make
    sure your not on Global Driver Profile but rFactor2, otherwise you will make changes to the
    global profile and change your default settings for other games that may of been ok.

    Now the fun and rewards (rubbing my hands together)
    This will be brief just to get you started with some high quality graphics
    its upto you to find the better performance and graphics for your system.


    go to Antialiasing
    Antialiasing - Mode = Override any application settings
    Our AA settings will be applied by what we specify here
    we select override to stop the game controlling AA, instead it
    will be controlled here where we have better visual control options.

    Antialiasing - Settings = 8x [8x CSAA (4 color + 4 cv samples)]
    Antialiasing - Transparency Supersampling = 2x Sparse Grid Supersampling or 4x Sparse Grid Supersampling

    Antialiasing - Settings = 16x [16x CSAA (4 color + 12 cv samples)]
    Antialiasing - Transparency Supersampling = 2x Sparse Grid Supersampling or 4x Sparse Grid Supersampling

    Antialiasing - Settings = 8xS [Combined: 1x2 SS + 4x MS]
    Antialiasing - Transparency Supersampling = off

    Antialiasing - Settings = 4x [4x Multisampling]
    Antialiasing - Transparency Supersampling = 2x Sparse Grid Supersampling or 4x Sparse Grid Supersampling

    I found these settings best for my system visually vs fps. Turn this down to 2x or 2xQ for more FPS but you will notice the difference in telegraph poles at Spa. Using Multisampling 4x, 8xQ I do NOT recommend any more, fps seems to jump alot vs CSAA rendering for pretty much the same render time but you get more samples.

    Antialiasing - Transparency Multisampling = Disabled
    If your heavily suffering fps I would enable multisampling transparency and disable transparency supersampling.

    NVIDIA Predefinded FXAA Usage = Disallowed( has no benefit with FXAA of in game)
    Toggle FXAA Indicator on or off = off
    Toggle FXAA on or off = off

    go to Texture Filtering
    Anistropic filtering mode = Application-controlled
    there is no difference between here and ingame

    Anistropic filtering setting = 16x
    I keep the above at maximum fps gain is negligable, better to have the quality

    Texture filtering - Anistropic filter optimization = On ( fps gain )

    Texture filtering - Anistropic sample optimization = On ( fps gain )

    Texture filtering - Driver Controlled LOD bias = On

    Texture filtering - LOD bias (DX) = +0.0000 (if you edit this you must change
    the above to off, negative is sharper, positive goes cartoony) around -1 - -0.5 is best vs fps

    Texture filtering - LOD bias (OGL) = +0.0000 ( does nothing for rf2)

    Texture filtering - Negative LOD bias = Allow

    Texture filtering - Quality = Quality ( change this to whatever suits gain loss little fps here)

    Texture filtering - Trilinear optimization = On ( fps gain )

    go to go to Common
    Ambient Occlusion setting = Performance
    Turn the above off if your struggling for fps, the gain to be had is quite large. Remember to turn off in game if you turn off here.

    Ambient Occlusion usage = Enabled
    (this is a big hit on fps, if your struggling turn it off)

    Maximum pre-rendered frames = 1
    Multi-display/mixed GPU acceleration = ( this depends on what you have )
    Power management mode = Prefer maximum performance
    Treaded optimization = On( works better for me on)
    Triple buffering = Off( cant tell any difference on) If you use v-sync then turning this on will help reduce input lag possibly

    OK thats it remember "Apply Changes" to save and make sure rFactor2 profile is selected

    Now load up rFactor2 test your new enhancments tell me what you think and give me some feedback. If your playing with settings its probably best to exit and restart rFactor2 from the launcher, just to be on the safe side to know your changes have been applied.

    Well do you have better FPS? Do the graphics look alot better? please give feedback to me in this thread and for others.

    I play in 3D with these settings an I can promise you this I have 60+FPS - 100FPS
    it looks amazing to me perhaps if I turn off 3D I would have way more but 3D is too awesome
    and it makes me drive much better. Everything seems to feel much smoother for me throughout my drive, even in the event of a random drop in FPS where sometimes gone down to 45 but this is in single player.

    I will possibly add a video as DrR1pper suggests below if i get spare time.

    I would say the above is pretty final and isn't likely to change unless we get a big fps boost then we can increase our settings.
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 6, 2013
  2. DrR1pper

    DrR1pper Registered

    Apr 29, 2012
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    What would be interesting is if you performed a 60 second fraps benchmark of one of your replays with plenty of cars in front of you. Do this twice with the same replay (segment) with and without the external changes (I.e. not in rf2) to the graphics properties and tell us the quantitative difference it makes to the average fps please.
  3. BazzaLB

    BazzaLB Registered

    Aug 14, 2012
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    Just so you know, nvInspector does not need to be running for settings to take effect. They are written to the registry. You can safely close nvInspector. If you install new driver, you may want to export user settings and then re-import after driver upgrade if you do clean install.
  4. DurgeDriven

    DurgeDriven Banned

    Mar 20, 2012
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    Use MSi Afterburner for overclocking, just better, plus it has OSD to watch your card in game.

    Mirrors off, another virtual arcade mirror user. p

    NV Inspector does not need to be running, it is no different to using NVCP.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 6, 2013
  5. Nhra Racer

    Nhra Racer Registered

    May 12, 2013
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    What is this over clocking? I have an Nvidia GeForce gtx 560 ti. Would i gain anything with this card with this done? Also, what is hdr?
  6. DurgeDriven

    DurgeDriven Banned

    Mar 20, 2012
    Likes Received:

    Depending on the model and cooling among other factors significant gains can be had from overclocking your video card.

    GUIDE to OC GTX560Ti

    However it is not as simple as that, you must take into consideration many things, like ambient temperature, case cooling, card model and cooling capacity. Different model cards can be overclocked with different methods.

    MSI Afterburner and Inspector are tools that lets you overclock most any brand/card , adjust voltage and monitor.

    Be careful of heat levels ( Afterburner lets you monitor in game with OSD )


    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 6, 2013
  7. Nhra Racer

    Nhra Racer Registered

    May 12, 2013
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    WOW! Thanks Durge! I am going to go small increments, like 30 mhz and use futuremark 3dmark 11 to test it as i go. Thanks again!
  8. Hermmie

    Hermmie Registered

    Oct 5, 2010
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    I tried your Settings, although i don't want to overclock my gpu. Using the settings i gained about 10% FPS. Thanks!
  9. Foxiol

    Foxiol Registered

    Nov 23, 2011
    Likes Received:
    Thank you...I´ll try some of this.

    I noticed that mirrors take out between 15 to 25FPS, and at Malaysia and Portugal when you pass in front of the pit-lane between 2 to 3 laps the frames also drops a lot even up to 45FPS and then suddenly stops happening. It is like the game is still loading stuff or the ambience sound do something when you are passing by through the pit-lanes. (I mean at the main straight not entering to the pit-lane)
  10. Bart S

    Bart S Member

    Oct 5, 2010
    Likes Received:
    I keep nVidia inspector open because I overclock in it and use the graphs. MSI AB is more tuned to its job roll but I wouldn't say it did a better job maybe with the fan speed and temp control, I came from using MSI AB, then I used EVGA Precision X and I'm happy with nVidia inspector OC it does the job. You only neen 4 controls gpu freq, memory freq, voltage and fan. Oh and yes I dont use mirrors cos of the hit and no virtual mirrors just a simple look back.

    in your nVidia Inspector settings
    Change Antialiasing - Settings to 4x Multisampling
    those are my settings you may want to try the others but 4x gave me the fastest fps and great AA on visuals
    x2,x2Q,x8,x8Q,x16,x16Q play with all those settings to find what works best for you
  11. Bart S

    Bart S Member

    Oct 5, 2010
    Likes Received:
    I get this alot too fps wise I loose about 20, if its a problem for you you can try reducing sound effects to say 16 and also reduce your garage detail in your player.plr file to 0 see if that helps any.
  12. mclaren777

    mclaren777 Registered

    Oct 5, 2010
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    Thanks for the guide, but the quickest way to get more performance is to disable road and environmental reflections.
  13. Rob Berry

    Rob Berry Registered

    Mar 28, 2011
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    What should my settings be in rF Config.? If I've chosen to run in 4X Multisampling should I select Level 4 in the Anti Aliasing tab and None in the Sync?
  14. lopsided

    lopsided Registered

    Apr 16, 2012
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    For those of you who enjoy Afterburner (or are considering it), they also have a remote software that runs on Android and now iPod's so you can OC, adjust fan speed etc. or monitor stats from your tablet/phone.
  15. Knight of Redemption

    Knight of Redemption Registered

    Jun 23, 2012
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    Thanks for this I reckon about a ten percent improvement overall was gained using your guide, no overclocking of my card. I am running triples on a 2 gig 670 and like to keep as much eye candy as possible so every little helps. :)
  16. Satangoss

    Satangoss Registered

    Jun 2, 2011
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    Anybody else is having noticeable FPS losses after 218 build?
  17. MystaMagoo

    MystaMagoo Registered

    Oct 5, 2010
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    is this just nvidia or does it work ok for ATI?
  18. Bart S

    Bart S Member

    Oct 5, 2010
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    Just nVidia but why not try for yourself, is AA faster and better in CCC than in rfactor.

    I have since turned all AA off in rFactor2 and now I just overide in nVidia Inspector result seem the same in FPS but AA quality seems marginaly better, this probably due to AA renders not fighting with each other.
    The research goes on
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 10, 2013
  19. Magzire

    Magzire Registered

    Mar 26, 2012
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    never mind
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 10, 2013
  20. Bart S

    Bart S Member

    Oct 5, 2010
    Likes Received:
    Sorry I missed this, you do not select any AA in game or in rf config, use nvidia inspector to overide or enhance and select 4x multisampling, tbh I think 2x multisampling does a good enough job and keeps the fps high.
    Sync? thats nothing to do with AA I have that turned off for my 120hz screen.

    The true is nVidia do a better job with AA than ISI at the moment, its quite possible ISI hasnt even started optimising AA. It should always be faster in game but its not in this case.

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