Zeiss Ikon

I swear, it isn't for KSP. Well, mostly not. Okay, partly not...

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The last couple days, I've had packages arriving on my porch.  Yesterday it was a couple RAM sticks.  Today, a new AMD FX8350 Black Edition -- 8 cores, 4.0 GHz, unlocked (allowing overclock capability to 5 GHz).  Soon, a motherboard to accept the parts (and presumably to let me plug in my existing expansion cards, though I might have to get a PCIE-x1 PATA controller for my old 120 MB platter drive, present as a "last ditch" in case of boot issues, and CD-ROM).

This is upgrading from a Core2Quad with 8 GB RAM -- should be a nice step up, 50% higher plain old clock speed, and for most other software, the doubled core count should improve things a good bit as well (I should see close to triple my credit rate on BOINC distributed computing tasks).  I've got plenty of power supply, I'm already running from SSD, and I have an nVidia GTX950 with 1 GB VRAM.  I might find myself finally able to install some eye candy mods like E.V.E. or Scatterer -- or at least turn up the quality in the stock game.  This should also improve my experience in a couple other games -- There has always been laggy (another single-core game), and Path of Exile just barely worked when I had 4 GB RAM (haven't run it since my last MB swap let me upgrade to 8 GB).

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Nice, have you ever tried to launch the game in OpenGL, or DirectX 9 / 11? That can give you a real big boost performance wise, not sure about graphics.

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13 minutes ago, Darth C3P0 said:

Nice, have you ever tried to launch the game in OpenGL, or DirectX 9 / 11? That can give you a real big boost performance wise, not sure about graphics.

I'm on Linux, so DirectX is out for me (not present natively, and DX9 doesn't work correctly in Wine last time I checked; I have to run There in OGL via Wine).  I thought I was running OGL by default for Linux native software, but I'm not sure how to verify that.  The only other graphics intensive games I run are There, Path of Exile, and occasionally Myst Online: URU Live (all in Wine; MOUL is about 15 year old software, so not very demanding by today's standards).

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5 minutes ago, invision said:

kerbal use to murder my fx-8120 OC to 4ghz

Hmmm.  Don't forget, my Core2Quad at 2.7 GHz is close to the same performance as a dual core i7 mobile the same clock speed.  Unless AMD is still flatly lying about their clock speed I should still see a significant improvement (a few years ago, they labeled their chips with "equivalent speed" because they were more efficient than  Intel, but they couldn't crack the 2 GHz barrier for actual clock speed -- but they've obviously long since busted that).

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I spent about $800 on my new computer that was pretty much just for KSP.  Nothin' wrong with that.  :D

Would have been significantly more, but I managed to get a 22" Monitor from a thrift store for 9ish bucks and didn't need to pay for a Windows license.

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10 minutes ago, Geonovast said:

I spent about $800 on my new computer that was pretty much just for KSP.  Nothin' wrong with that.  :D

Would have been significantly more, but I managed to get a 22" Monitor from a thrift store for 9ish bucks and didn't need to pay for a Windows license.

This upgrade is around $535 so far -- I upgraded my power supply last winter when my computer suddenly wouldn't start (turned out to be a motherboard failure), and I installed an SSD three years ago, when the 256 GB size came down to a reasonable price.

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14 minutes ago, Zeiss Ikon said:

Don't forget, my Core2Quad at 2.7 GHz is close to the same performance as a dual core i7 mobile the same clock speed.

Nope: https://www.cpubenchmark.net/compare.php?cmp[]=2863&cmp[]=1045&cmp[]=1780

The I7 has a 70% higher single core performance. The problem here is not that AMD is lying about their clock speed but that CPU performance is not directly linked to clock speed. That's why the new Ryzens will massively outperform any of the older FX processors in KSP. You always have to look for benchmarks.

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45 minutes ago, Zeiss Ikon said:

Hmmm.  Don't forget, my Core2Quad at 2.7 GHz is close to the same performance as a dual core i7 mobile the same clock speed.  Unless AMD is still flatly lying about their clock speed I should still see a significant improvement (a few years ago, they labeled their chips with "equivalent speed" because they were more efficient than  Intel, but they couldn't crack the 2 GHz barrier for actual clock speed -- but they've obviously long since busted that).

FX series is a decent cpu. it has good multicore speed but terrible single core. so games like rise of the tomb raider is fine, but then you play a game like kerbal is where you start to see its faults. other games it struggles are high player counts like battlefield where CPU can hit 95% when there is everything and everyone around you.

i switched to a ryzen 5 1600 and all those problems went away. but im a snob gamer who needs high FPS with all the settings on max.

 

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I'm not stuck on AMD or Intel -- if I could have afforded a 3.5 GHz or faster i5 or i7 (which would turbo to 4.2 GHz), I'd have gone that way following a previous discussion indicating an i5 at the same clock ought to outperform my Core2Quad for KSP -- though I haven't been seeing that on my laptop's i7 dual core at up to 30% higher in turbo --  but CPU + MB cost for the FX8350 was hundreds of dollars less than a 3.5 GHz dual core i5 plus motherboard, and RAM about the same per GB (don't recall if the RAM spec differed, but if so, it wasn't a lot of $$ difference).

I don't see the single core performance of the FX8350 per GHz being any worse than a Core2Quad (ten-plus year old architecture -- this exact chip was available when I first upgraded to Core2Duo in 2007).  And if I find it's still too slow, anything that fits an AMD3+ socket can go in its place (when I have money to spend on the computer again).

18 hours ago, Harry Rhodan said:

The I7 has a 70% higher single core performance. The problem here is not that AMD is lying about their clock speed but that CPU performance is not directly linked to clock speed. That's why the new Ryzens will massively outperform any of the older FX processors in KSP. You always have to look for benchmarks.

I'm here to tell you, those benchmarks don't seem to apply directly to KSP.  Same total RAM, less than 10% difference in CPU clock (standard speed, not counting turbo on the i7 mobile): my laptop (Core i7 mobile, 2.9 GHz with turbo to 3.5 GHz) is barely faster in KSP than my desktop (Core2Quad 2.7 GHz).  Unless there's a huge(ish) difference between Ubuntu 14.04 (with HWE kernel, 4.04.* series) and Ubuntu 16.04 (4.10.* series kernel), I don't see any way to reconcile that with 70% higher single core performance from the Core i7 mobile.

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3 hours ago, Zeiss Ikon said:

I'm not stuck on AMD or Intel -- if I could have afforded a 3.5 GHz or faster i5 or i7 (which would turbo to 4.2 GHz), I'd have gone that way following a previous discussion indicating an i5 at the same clock ought to outperform my Core2Quad for KSP -- though I haven't been seeing that on my laptop's i7 dual core at up to 30% higher in turbo --  but CPU + MB cost for the FX8350 was hundreds of dollars less than a 3.5 GHz dual core i5 plus motherboard, and RAM about the same per GB (don't recall if the RAM spec differed, but if so, it wasn't a lot of $$ difference).

I don't see the single core performance of the FX8350 per GHz being any worse than a Core2Quad (ten-plus year old architecture -- this exact chip was available when I first upgraded to Core2Duo in 2007).  And if I find it's still too slow, anything that fits an AMD3+ socket can go in its place (when I have money to spend on the computer again).

I'm here to tell you, those benchmarks don't seem to apply directly to KSP.  Same total RAM, less than 10% difference in CPU clock (standard speed, not counting turbo on the i7 mobile): my laptop (Core i7 mobile, 2.9 GHz with turbo to 3.5 GHz) is barely faster in KSP than my desktop (Core2Quad 2.7 GHz).  Unless there's a huge(ish) difference between Ubuntu 14.04 (with HWE kernel, 4.04.* series) and Ubuntu 16.04 (4.10.* series kernel), I don't see any way to reconcile that with 70% higher single core performance from the Core i7 mobile.

basic rocket 51 parts on an fx-8120 overclocked to 3.9ghz running paired with a radeon 7970 overclocked to 1033mhz

32 gigs of ram

F3121FC0943B92C304500943BEB3F7BE054BE11D

Edited by invision

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same rocket

ryzen 5 1600 @3.8ghz

GTX1080

16g ram

3218B975DBC2FBD91564F7F32196FC16F55D893F

so as you can see the ryzen is able to give 3x the frame rate pushing through the atmosphere where its the harshest on the cpu

Edited by invision

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14 hours ago, Zeiss Ikon said:

I'm here to tell you, those benchmarks don't seem to apply directly to KSP.  Same total RAM, less than 10% difference in CPU clock (standard speed, not counting turbo on the i7 mobile): my laptop (Core i7 mobile, 2.9 GHz with turbo to 3.5 GHz) is barely faster in KSP than my desktop (Core2Quad 2.7 GHz).  Unless there's a huge(ish) difference between Ubuntu 14.04 (with HWE kernel, 4.04.* series) and Ubuntu 16.04 (4.10.* series kernel), I don't see any way to reconcile that with 70% higher single core performance from the Core i7 mobile.

Interesting. But I would still guess that this might be actually the GPU bottlenecking.

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22 hours ago, invision said:

same rocket

ryzen 5 1600 @3.8ghz

GTX1080

16g ram

so as you can see the ryzen is able to give 3x the frame rate pushing through the atmosphere where its the harshest on the cpu

I am with @Harry Rhodan on this one:  Pretty sure the fps increase is caused by the two different GPUs. The GTX1080 is quite a sledge hammer. It does outperform my GTX1060 6GB by ages.

When I used integrated graphics of my i5 4690 @3.5 GHz, I have been bottlenecked by the GPU, not by the CPU. Using the GTX1060, I gained a huge increase in fps while keeping all other components. (Actually KSP runs at higher fps with Scatterer and EVE compared to integrated graphics without eye candy)

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It a totally invalid comparison. If you want to compare CPUs, then everything else needs to stay the same.  Same with video cards.

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I'll be making that comparison (well, as nearly as possible) after my upgrade.  Same graphics card (GTx950), same SSD, but new CPU, MB (required for the new CPU), and RAM (required for the other new hardware).  I'll be happy if I can just stay out of yellow clock with a 50+ part vessel in sight of Kerbin's surface.

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22 minutes ago, Zeiss Ikon said:

I'll be making that comparison (well, as nearly as possible) after my upgrade.  Same graphics card (GTx950), same SSD, but new CPU, MB (required for the new CPU), and RAM (required for the other new hardware).  I'll be happy if I can just stay out of yellow clock with a 50+ part vessel in sight of Kerbin's surface.

i looked into it some more.

the 8350 is 25% faster single core clock vs 8120 so you may not see or have the issues as much as i did.

other than kerbal and a few other games that were super CPU heavy i ran all my games on max settings @60fps and it was fine.

btw man the prices of GPU is through the roof and if you planned on upgrading you may want to hold off until prices go back to normal.

the gtx 1080 i paid 500.00 for 4 weeks ago is now 699.99

Edited by invision

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Well I guess it's due to crypto mining. At least it was half a year ago, when I wanted to buy my gtx1060. Pricrs more than doubled for some cards. So yeah, do some price investigation if you want to get a new VGA. Although, I assume the 950 might still be more than good for KSP...

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Congrats on the new hardware. I hope everything goes together well and you'll enjoy your system.

I know the feeling, I just finished my first ever PC build, at the age of forty, and I couldn't be happier. Was worth it to save up on money, time and components. Now I can finally play KSP with all the mods I want. Let alone enjoy some other eye candy games. Universe Sandbox runs a solid 165fps now, was a slideshow on my "gaming" laptop from 4yrs ago.

 

cheers

Daf

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KSP will run perfectly fine on an FX-whatever. Nevertheless, one can run into issues with modded installs, as KSP and most of its mods do the vast majority of their logic in the game thread, and current FX-processors are based on the Bulldozer (and derived) CPU architecture, which is optimized for multithreaded workloads (not that KSP wouldn't be multithreaded, but it's bottlenecked by one of the threads, so effectively the single-thread performance of the CPU counts). For workloads such as KSP probably even a $50 Skylake Pentium will show better performance than any current AMD FX CPU.

KSP was one reason for me to retire my old FX-6350 system in favor of a new shiny Ryzen machine, as Ryzen offers far superior single-thread performance (though not as good as Coffee Lake, but that one wasn't out at the time I bought the new system). The other reason was Dwarf Fortress, which is also mostly bottlenecked by one thread.

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On 1/7/2018 at 1:05 AM, Zeiss Ikon said:

The last couple days, I've had packages arriving on my porch.  Yesterday it was a couple RAM sticks.  Today, a new AMD FX8350 Black Edition -- 8 cores, 4.0 GHz, unlocked (allowing overclock capability to 5 GHz).

The RAM sticks are really worth it for KSP mods, but Bulldozer has a long decoding pipeline and behaves similar to Pentium4 with low instructions per clock (IPC).  In addition the core design shares FPU unit across two cores (modules). To sum up, this architecture lacks both in two areas critical for KSP - floating point operations for physics and high single-core IPC for rendering pipeline.  I fully agree with @soulsource here, although it *is* indeed a good upgrade from Core2.

That said, I made a mistake myself purchasing WestmereEP-based Xeon, that behaves similar to multicore FX, and yet the performance borderline-sufficient to use with half-hundred of mods. I also think about Ryzen sometimes :)

Edit: regarding the single thread performance, I use these two benchmarking lists.

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As far as I can tell, the ideal KSP processor before 1.1 was the highest clocked Intel pentium you could find (technically the big boys with the much larger caches would show an improvement, but it would be pretty small).  Even after 1.1, I'm guessing that the ~$75 Pentium G4560 is easily the best value for KSP (unless you decide to stream it).

As far as "everything else", things are finally interesting after roughly a decade of Intel dictating what the market should be.  AMD pulled out ahead for everything between the extreme lows and highs of performance (and still hit high performance if you have enough threads).  Recently Intel bumped up the number of threads (look carefully at #of cores and hyperthreading, Intel hasn't been consistent with what i3, i5, and i7 really mean (especially for notebook CPUs)) so between the higher overclocking and matching cores, Intel is back competitive with AMD (of course, check your applications *after* patching meltdown).  Hopefully before spring we should see AMD's answer in the form of higher clocking Ryzen processors.

But for [just] KSP you probably want the Pentium (but check prices on motherboards, you might find an AMD+motherboard bundle more valuable, especially if you live near a microcenter).

PS: does Unity use SSE/AVX/other vector systems for floating point calculation?  Judging by core2 performance, it doesn't appear that they ever go beyond SSE (and might only be filling a single position: you wouldn't want to use x87 past a Pentium4).  This should make a big difference (and would show a difference between a Pentium and a i3, and give a big advantage to an i5 over an AMD if you could use AVX256 instead of SSE/2).

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10 hours ago, soulsource said:

The other reason was Dwarf Fortress, which is also mostly bottlenecked by one thread.

Dwarf fortress can have FPS problems? :confused:

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6 hours ago, wumpus said:

 Even after 1.1, I'm guessing that the ~$75 Pentium G4560 is easily the best value for KSP (unless you decide to stream it).

If this build were just for KSP, there'd be no question -- clock * IPC / $sys would be the only metric that matters.  However, I still need to do common desktop stuff on this machine, some of which assuredly does benefit by higher thread count -- and since the 8-thread Core processors with high clock were out of my budget, this looks like it's still the best deal for the dollars I had available to spend.  Not to mention I needed at least one PCI slot, else I'd have had to buy another SCSI card (for my scanner), and the "latest and greatest" motherboards that accept top-end Intel CPUs seem to be dumping PCI in favor of multiple x1 and x16 slots (some of the latter which run slower than x16 speed, despite x16 connectors).

If I had thousands of dollars lying around, I could build a super-machine that would do KSP and everything else well -- 4+ GHz i7 or Ryzen with 64 GB RAM, PCIe-x1 direct SSD for the OS, $1000 video card, etc.  This is not going to be that machine.

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