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[Discontinued][1.1.x to 1.9.x] How to improve Performance


xXKSP_playerXx
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Im curious.  

202 members have voted

  1. 1. How is your average performance in KSP ?

    • Good (above 50FPS)
      34
    • Below Good (40-50 FPS)
      18
    • Playable (30-40FPS)
      42
    • Below Playable (20-30FPS)
      54
    • Bad (10-20 FPS)
      37
    • Sh*t (1-10FPS)
      17
  2. 2. Did the guide help you ? (if no, whats the problem?)

    • Yes
      157
    • No
      43


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Contents:

1. Software

  • 1.1: KSP Graphic Settings
  • 1.2: KSP Physics Settings
  • 1.3: Mods
  • 1.4: Graphic Driver Settings
  • 1.5  Additional Software Tricks

2. Hardware

  • 2.1: CPU Overclocking
  • 2.2: Computer Parts
  • 2.3 RAM-Caching

 

Notes:

Spoiler

A few things I have noticed:

  • AMD FX usurers: if your CPU is at around 50% and KSP is bottlenecked thats normal. Its because 2 cores have to share 1 FPU which is the bottleneck.

 

1. Software

  • 1.1  KSP Graphic Settings
Spoiler

What each setting does and how much it affects performance.

General

  • Terrain Detail: The distance at which the ground changes resolutions/detail, can affect performance a lot.
  • Terrain Scatters: The amount of terrain scatters i.e rocks and trees, doesn't affect performance by much.
  • Render Quality: The quality of the render mostly affects shadows and lights, affects performance a ton.
  • Aerodynamic FX Quality: How detailed the air movement around your craft is simulated, can affect performance a lot when flying supersonic.
  • Texture Quality: What resolution your games textures are at. I wouldn't recommend changing, only if you are low on RAM / VRAM. Does affect performance a lot
  • Surface FX: Sets if dust is rendered when you land/drive around. Doesn't affect performance a lot.
  • Underwater FX: IDK what it does for now but it doesn't seem to affect performance a lot.
  • Highlight FX: Just leave it on, doesn't affect performance at all.
  • Anti-Aliasing: The ammount of antialisaing you game does, it reduces choppyness around corners, at higher resulution you cabn lower this, affects performance quite a bit.
  • VSync: Limits you games FPS to the refresh rate of your monitor. Choose yourself.
  • Frame limit:  The game creates garbage per frame. Meaning that you're better off capping it at 60fps unless you don't mind the game stuttering twice as often due to garbage collection running.
  • Pixel Light Count: How many pixel ligh sources at rendered at the same time, leave it at max as it doesnt affect performance at lot.
  • Shadow Cascades: Controls shadow quality, higher numbers mean better quality, lowering this setting shows its effect at high render quality.

1.4 (+)

  • Ambient Light Boost: Doesn't affect performance

1.6 (+)

  • Refection Refresh Mode: How many times reflection are updated, has a lot of impact on performance.
  • Reflection Texture Resolution: How detailed your reflections are rendered, also has a big impact on performance.

1.8 (+)

  • Terrain Shader Quality: Quality of shadows cast on terrain and by terrain. Affects performance somewhat on ground.

 

Performance impact of any setting newer than 1.4 is just an estimation based on experience. More testing is needed.

 

  • 1.2  KSP Physics Settings
Spoiler

Ok this is a weird point, correct if im wrong:

Go to KSP general settings and look for Max. Physics Delta time.

Turn Max. Physics Delta time up to get closer to realtime physics speed, but the game will stutter more. Note: If you have your CPU overclocked, this option will be better as the game will be more stable.

Turn Max. Physics Delta time down to get less stutter, but physics will be much slower.

If you want to go beyond the settings slider: Open the Kerbal Space Programm folder and open settings.cfg, search PHYSICS_FRAME_DT_LIMIT and you can set it to whatever you want.

 

  • 1.3  Mods
Spoiler

If you are using mods with high resolution textures (Skybox mods, EVE mods etc...), its a good idea to use the lower resolutions if you have the choice. If you don't have these options you can do it yourself.

By using a image editor like paint.net.

For example: 4096x4096 -> 2048x2048 = 1/4 the amount of pixels

If you don't want to downsize the skybox yourself, I made downsize versions of popular skyboxes.

If you want me to downsize a texture mod, just contact me and we'll see.

 

Some other improvements that can be done with mods.

 

  • 1.4  Graphic Driver Settings
Spoiler

The options not listed here can be skipped.

NVIDIA:

Open Nvida control panel -> 3D Settings -> Application-Settings -> Kerbal Space Program (Add if not in the list)

The Settings:

  • Anisotropic filtering: Application controlled
  • Anti-Aliasing - FXAA: Off
  • Anti-Aliasing - Gamma correction: Off
  • Anti-Aliasing - Mode: Application controlled
  • Anti-Aliasing - Transparency: Off
  • Power Management Mode: Max. Performance
  • Max. Pre Renderd Frames: 4
  • MFAA: Off
  • Shader cache: On
  • Texture Filtering - Anisotropic optimization: On
  • Texture Filtering - Negative LOD-Bias: Allow 
  • Texture Filtering - Quality: High Performance
  • Texture Filtering - Trilinear optimization: On
  • Vertical Sync: Off

 

AMD:

I can't say for sure, because I own a Nvidia GPU.

Open AMD control panel -> Games Tab -> Kerbal Space Programm (add if not in the list)

The Settings:

  • Anisotropic filtering: Application controlled
  • Anti-Aliasing: Application controlled
  • Anti-Aliasing - Mode: Multi Sampling 
  • Shader cache: On
  • Vertical Sync: Off
  • Tessellation: Off

 

Intel HD Graphics:

No

 

  • 1.5  Additional Software Tricks
Spoiler

You can improve performance by using these software tricks.

Game Booster:

Use a game booster to end unnecessary backgrounds process. I would recommend the Razer Cortex booster.

Or you can end unnecessary backgrounds process by using the Task manager if you know what your doing.

 

Run the Game in OpenGL/DirectX11:

If you are running out of RAM playing KSP you can run the game in OpenGL/DirectX11 mode which can save you about 30%-40% RAM.

There are two ways to activate this:

Using Steam:

Spoiler
  1. Open your Steam Library
  2. Right-click Kerbal Space Programm
  3. Open "Properties"
  4. Click "Set Launch Options"
  5. Fill in "-force-opengl" or "-force-d3d11"(without quotes) Warning!: "-force-d3d11" might cause graphical glitches when specific mods are installed on some versions
  6. Click "OK"

qqzLzJsl.png

Desktop Shortcut:

Spoiler
  1. Right-click on the Shurtcut
  2. Open "Properties"
  3. Open the Tab "Shortcut"
  4. Search the "Target" box
  5. Add on the end "-force-opengl" (without quotes)
  6. It should now look like this: ................\KSP_x64.exe" -force-opengl or -force-d3d11

OGG6dFz.png

 

Process Priority:

Improve performance by upping the process priority in the Task manager.

  1. Open Task Manager 
  2. Find KSP_x64.exe
  3. Right-click -> Go to Details / Priority
  4. Priority -> High (don't set it to Realtime)

 

Use a older KSP Version:

If you don't care about the version you are playing, you can go back to a older version.

For example, I got 50FPS in KSP 1.3.1 and 65FPS in 1.2.2, using the same settings, same scene and same craft.

 

2. Hardware

  • 2.1  Overclocking
Spoiler

Until Squad fixes the Physics single Core problem and introduces multi-threaded physics we need to help ourself in other ways.

Using overclocking I got up to 30% more overall performance and 20% single thread performance out of my 7 year old FX-6300.

I DON'T TAKE ANY RESPONSIBILITY FOR ANY DAMAGE THAT MIGHT OCCUR!!

Intel:

  1. Download Intel Extreme Tuning Utility/ Or use BIOS.
  2. Look up how to do it. 
  3. ???
  4. Profit!

AMD (old CPUs):

  1. Download AMD Overdrive. / Or use BIOS.
  2. Look up how to do it.
  3. ???
  4. Profit!

AMD (Ryzen):

  1. Download Ryzen Master Utility. / Or use BIOS.
  2. Look up how to do it.
  3. ???
  4. Profit!

 

  • 2.2  Computer Parts
Spoiler

GPU:

Spoiler

KSPs GPU usage is heavily dependent on the mods you are using. On the chart the GPUs are sort of a minimum requirement to play KSP at higher settings.

Stock:

Resolution AMD Nvidia
1080p RX 560 GTX 1650
1440p RX 580 GTX 1660
2160p RX 5700 RTX 2060

 

Mods: (SVE + Scatterer used for reference)

Resolution AMD Nvidia
1080p RX 570 GTX 1660
1440p RX 5600XT RTX 2060
2160p RX 5700XT RTX 2070S

CPU:

Spoiler

KSP is mostly limited by CPU power. You should look out for the singe threaded performance of a CPU since this is what KSP benefits from.

Some recommendations:

Category AMD Intel Notes
Very Low Budget Athlon 3000G DO  
Low Budget R3-3200G NOT  
Value R5-3600 BUY  
Performance R5-3700X INTEL  
Very High Performance

R9-3900X

i9-9900k (?)

 

 

RAM:

Spoiler

KSP is quite heavy on RAM which means the game will run better on faster RAM (up to +5 FPS at best)

  • 8GB if don't use many mods, 16GB if you do.
  • Ram choice depends on the CPU but mostly faster = better
    • Note: If you are using Ryzen 3000 you shouldn't go faster than 3733MHz
  • Timing are also important as they dictate the latency of your RAM, lower timings = better
    • Example: 3000 (MHz) ÷ (CL) 15 = "score" higher score means better
  • The amount of RGB doesn't affect performance.
  • Always use the dual (or better) channel configuration.

 

 

Thanks @Tig for pointing out a lot of mistakes I made with the previous version of the Hardware guide.

 

  • 2.3 RAM-Caching:
Spoiler

Using a USB stick:

  1. Plug in the USB stick
  2. Open in Explorer
  3. Properties -> ReadyBoost
  4. Tick "Use this device"
  5. Use the slider to configure how much space will be used
  6. DONE!

 

Edited by xXKSP_playerXx
> General Update
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  • 1 month later...
On 10/2/2017 at 6:58 PM, xXKSP_playerXx said:
  • Frame limit 120 FPS
  • Tripple Buffer: On
  • Vertical Sync: Fast

- AFAIK the game creates garbage per frame. Meaning that you're better off capping it at 60fps unless you don't mind the game stuttering twice as often due to garbage collection running.

- Triple Buffering in the nVidia Control Panel is for OpenGL programs, though they might have changed it recently as the reference to this is now gone from the CP. (Went from stating it's for OpenGL to not stating what it's for)

- Fast sync is nice and all, if it works properly. It's finicky in when it works though and it's pretty counterproductive when you first set a fps cap in the first place. Especially if you're on a 120hz/144hz monitor this will do absolutely nothing except introduce nVidias patented driver finicky-ness. (If you remove the FPS cap, you'd get mileage out of fast sync, but only if you can run more than 120 fps in which case you'll get a LOT of garbage collection runs. if you're on a 60hz monitor you can try fast sync if you want FPS like responsiveness but tbh I'd let the driver let KSP decide on vSync.)

No idea on the rest, that's more of a YMMV thing, but the above things I thought were useful to note.

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18 hours ago, Jognt said:

- AFAIK the game creates garbage per frame. Meaning that you're better off capping it at 60fps unless you don't mind the game stuttering twice as often due to garbage collection running.

- Triple Buffering in the nVidia Control Panel is for OpenGL programs, though they might have changed it recently as the reference to this is now gone from the CP. (Went from stating it's for OpenGL to not stating what it's for)

- Fast sync is nice and all, if it works properly. It's finicky in when it works though and it's pretty counterproductive when you first set a fps cap in the first place. Especially if you're on a 120hz/144hz monitor this will do absolutely nothing except introduce nVidias patented driver finicky-ness. (If you remove the FPS cap, you'd get mileage out of fast sync, but only if you can run more than 120 fps in which case you'll get a LOT of garbage collection runs. if you're on a 60hz monitor you can try fast sync if you want FPS like responsiveness but tbh I'd let the driver let KSP decide on vSync.)

No idea on the rest, that's more of a YMMV thing, but the above things I thought were useful to note.

Ok, thanks for the help. I will have a look at it and change it accordingly.

Edited by xXKSP_playerXx
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1 hour ago, xXKSP_playerXx said:

Ok, thanks for the help. I will have a look at it and change it accordingly.

Check out Memgraph, it's a nice mod that visualizes the garbage being created per frame and the interval since the last garbage collection cycle. Helped me a LOT in determining what mods were causing stuttering (GC issues) and to improve overall game responsiveness. (though it's defo not a install&done thing, I read the whole thread to get a semi-basic understanding of it)

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  • 2 months later...

i just set everything to MAXIMUM OVERDRIVE!!! and ksp behaves like a slob...i did it becase i have the VODKA INFUSED SLAV CHEEKI BREKI PC!!! made in mother land soviet union (1m2 left of motherland soviet union)

THANK U RULO6000 (warthunder refrance)

 

after setting everything to maximum overdrive...just wait to the end (2:10)

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  • 2 months later...
  • 2 weeks later...

Because 500 parts are many, many parts. I have a suspicion that fps decreases faster than part number increases, IE twice as many parts gives less than half the FPS. In that case, your experience matches mine on a very similar rig.

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25 to 33 fps with the same craft, wow, and I still have to find a KJR for my old install. Thanks man! One thing I noticed: According to the debug FPS counter, my FPS is perfectly stable. This doesn't seem logical to me, as I'd expect it to rise and fall a little. Is it normal for the FPS to be perfectly flat?

 

EDIT: Hmm, now it is 12.5 with the same conditions and less other stuff open. I don't think the in-game FPS counter is very accurate...

Edited by superstrijder15
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  • 2 weeks later...

a little help what helps me to improve the fps of ksp is connecting a pendrive previously formatted with fat 32 or NTFS if it is 8 gb with ntfs you can use it completely as ram if your pc supports it my pc has 4gb of factory ram and it supports up to 8 and with the pedrive I have 8 and it improves the performance of ksp a lot so do not forget that you do not have
is a solution to improve the fps of cheap ksp
 

:wink:


 

Dispute for any translation error
 

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16 hours ago, asus legion said:

a little help what helps me to improve the fps of ksp is connecting a pendrive previously formatted with fat 32 or NTFS if it is 8 gb with ntfs you can use it completely as ram if your pc supports it my pc has 4gb of factory ram and it supports up to 8 and with the pedrive I have 8 and it improves the performance of ksp a lot so do not forget that you do not have
is a solution to improve the fps of cheap ksp

I did that too but after I added some extra ram it disabled it.

I upgraded from 4GB to 16GB but I think windows shuts the feature down if you have over 4GB.

Edited by xXKSP_playerXx
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1 minute ago, asus legion said:

That's strange because it works for me with 9.8 GB. It works for me. You can pass me the specifications of your PC.

CPU: AMD FX-6300

GPU: Nvidia 1050Ti by Gigybyte

RAM: 16GB DDR3 1600MHz

512GB SSD for windows and KSP

2TB HDD for everything else

Windows 8.1 64Bit

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1 minute ago, xXKSP_playerXx said:

CPU: AMD FX-6300

GPU: Nvidia 1050Ti by Gigybyte

RAM: 16GB DDR3 1600MHz

512GB SSD for windows and KSP

2TB HDD for everything else

Windows 8.1 64Bit

your pc is pretty good but I do not know what the problem is sorry
 

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5 minutes ago, xXKSP_playerXx said:

It is not very good, the CPU is very weak for KSP.

it's weird because my pc has a celeron n3450 processor that in the performance tests the amd fx 6300 is better than mine and I only play with intel hd 500 which is worse than the 1050ti
 

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