View Full Version : Upgrading your video driver may DECREASE FPS performance
07-15-2003, 10:22 PM
I know that all conventional wisdom dictates that we should immediately upgrade our video drivers the moment they become available for our particular cards, especially with FS 2004 only two weeks away. My own experience, however, is that newer drivers do not always perform better than older ones -- and sometimes not as well.
On my NVidia GeForce4 Ti 4200, there have been two "upgraded" drivers made available since I purchased my card last year. Neither of these "new and improved" drivers works nearly as well as the original driver that came with the card. And, no, I've not installed the wrong driver for my card. The older driver gives me about 8 frames per second more than either of the upgrades, and the graphics flow is smoother using the older driver.
My point is that, whenever you upgrade your video driver, observe VERY carefully whether you're actually improving your system performance. You may in fact be doing more harm than good. Newer drivers sometimes become bloated and glumsy. I'm reminded of the phrase, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it."
07-16-2003, 04:48 PM
I agree completely. I share the very same card, and tried several drivers, only to go back to the one shipped on the install CD...44.03 I think...I also found the card works very well with the 29.42...
and fwiw, I have been hammering away with this to much disbelief, but it is true. On my system, a Tyan 1854S mobo, I went into bios setup and as an experiment, completely disabled agp acceleration. I did, however, leave agp acceleration enabled on the dxdiag program. The result was an increase of fps from the low to mid teens (single digits at busy airports) to the upper 20s or more (i'm locked at 29), to the mid teens on the lower end. My pix, btw, are razor sharp with not enough blurries to even mention. If your mobo allows you to do it, and you have the ti 4200, I suggest you try it. If it does not work, you can always reset to the way it was.
07-16-2003, 05:15 PM
Thanks, Sherm! I'll give it a try.
07-16-2003, 06:14 PM
Anisotropic filtering was not fully implemented in the 29.xx series Detonators, only with the 30.xx's and beyond. Unless you are using a tweak package like RivaTuner or aTuner you cannot, cannot, get the same image quality from 29.42 as you can from later drivers.
The later drivers (post 44.xx) also introduced better handling of the AF so that it causes less of a fps hit when used. This is what I was told by a former forum-whizz, and it seems true to me.
So the argument that the earlier drivers are `best` is not really true, but if you are happy with the IQ and the FPS then I agree, why change? What you have never had, you've never missed.
BTW the beta 44.90's are out and they are fantastic. But please don't feel you have to try them.
07-18-2003, 05:52 PM
There is a very good study here at FS.com of a gent who had the time to evaluate the performance of pretty much the entire slew of drivers. It's a good piece of work.
His recomendation for my system was spot on. The newest drivers were really slowing down my machine. Reverting back to his recomendation for my CPU speed made a noticable difference.
07-19-2003, 12:26 PM
Can somebody suggest which are the best drivers currently available for the GeForce 3 ti200?
07-19-2003, 12:55 PM
LAST EDITED ON Jul-19-03 AT 11:56AM (EDT)[p]Although I don't own that particular card, I've heard it's among the very best. My own thoughts are that only YOU can determine the answer to this question by carefully installing and observing the results with each driver available. Your computer system is always going to be slightly different from someone elses -- different amounts of RAM, different size swap files, different game settings, etc. -- and so a driver that is perfect for one machine and its configuration might not be the best driver for another. My own machine works best with the original drivers that came with the card. But yours may work better with the very latest drivers. Only you can make the tests and final decision.
07-20-2003, 04:12 AM
When I read your message, it made me wary of installing the new 44.03 drivers for my Nvidia GeForce4 MX 420. But my curiosity got the best of me and I did it anyway. Then I fired up FS2002 and huzzah! It started whippin' some booty. I got framerates high enough that my eyes couldn't catch them. I guess it goes on a computer by computer basis. I am running (don't laugh) a Celeron 1.2 GHZ with 256 megs RAM and the aforementioned graphics card. I was running with mostly medium detail settings, with a few set a little higher. I hope my computer holds up with FS2004.
07-20-2003, 06:16 AM
To the person who started this topic I agree completely. ATI and Nvidia company tell you that video driver upgrades should only be done be if your card is not working correctly but its always good to give it a go.
07-20-2003, 06:31 AM
But how are you guys testing whether it's better or not? I mean, putting on the framerate display in fs does not give a very good indication because it changes all the time.
Do you use a special program for it?
Does anyone know of a 'reviewsite' where they test the drivers for general conclusies?
07-20-2003, 06:43 AM
the problem is that conventional 'wisdom' does NOT say you should 'upgrade' your driver ....
just another internet myth thats been exploded many times..
"Are you jealous that the voices are talking to ME ?"
07-20-2003, 04:24 PM
we can't recommend the best drvers for your hardware, cos hardware runs differently on every single system and so do drivers, you have better luck just picking drivers at random
07-20-2003, 05:01 PM
You should stick with WHQL certified drivers, and what the number of the latest WHQL drivers is, depends on your Operating System.
With your card, if you are using Win9x or WinME then the latest is 30.82...However, if you are using WinXP then the latest WHQL driver number is 44.??...you will have to look it up. Goto Nvidia's site to check.
07-20-2003, 05:16 PM
44.03 is the latest WHQL
07-22-2003, 12:02 AM
Best driver for Nvidia GeForce 3 ti200 is Nvidia driver version 30.83. I've tried all the upgrades and 30.82 still gives the best frame rate and quality.
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