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120hz monitor, Vsync or not?

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#1
I am running SLI GTX 570s and in some types of games, like shooters for example, I make sure to get plenty of FPS. For example, in BFBC2, my fps stay mostly between 90 and about 140-150.

Question is, what's the disadvantage of turning on vsync? I know I won't get the yucky tearing I do when firing the blackhawks' miniguns, but what else should I consider?

Thanks
 
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#2
http://www.anandtech.com/show/2794
While enabling vsync does fix tearing, it also sets the internal framerate of the game to, at most, the refresh rate of the monitor (typically 60Hz for most LCD panels). This can hurt performance even if the game doesn't run at 60 frames per second as there will still be artificial delays added to effect synchronization. Performance can be cut nearly in half cases where every frame takes just a little longer than 16.67 ms (1/60th of a second). In such a case, frame rate would drop to 30 FPS despite the fact that the game should run at just under 60 FPS. The elimination of tearing and consistency of framerate, however, do contribute to an added smoothness that double buffering without vsync just can't deliver.
You can force triple buffering on in games that don't support it using D3DOverrider included with the RivaTuner suite.
 
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#3
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#4
Well you will have a lower but more stable framerate. You will likely be capped at you refresh rate, which even with a 120hz monitor might be 60 FPS. However, if the refresh rate is 120 then you will likely see a constant 90 FPS, with occasional jumps to 120. Personally, I always use vsync. The tearing bugs the crap out of me, and the constant framerate jumping when it is off gives the feeling of stuttering and lag.
 

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#5
Yup, you should always turn on vsync, no question about it.

More to follow...
No, you shouldn't unless you like input lag. Vsync works fine with say racing games for example, but with FPS's blech. Read that anand article on triple buffering.
 

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#6
No, you shouldn't unless you like input lag. Vsync works fine with say racing games for example, but with FPS's blech. Read that anand article on triple buffering.
Yeah, I read it before. That's not my experience of using vsync, so I stand by my answer.
 

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#7
Yeah, I read it before. That's not my experience of using vsync, so I stand by my answer.
Yeah, with some games it's not as noticeable. Try L4D with it off on on, it definitely makes a difference for me.
 

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#8
Yeah, with some games it's not as noticeable. Try L4D with it off on on, it definitely makes a difference for me.
I might just give that a go. :toast: I reckon if it's very laggy or the frame rate drops a lot, then it's more of a game or driver issue than anything else.
 

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#9
I reckon if it's very laggy or the frame rate drops a lot, then it's more of a game or driver issue than anything else.
No, I'm speaking about mouse input lag. Frame rates are locked at 60fps.
 

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#10
No, I'm speaking about mouse input lag. Frame rates are locked at 60fps.
Yeah, I knew what you meant and I don't notice any problems with it. Admittedly, I can notice a tiny difference if I'm looking for it in a fast-paced FPS, but it's nothing serious.

Ultimately, each user should just try it for themselves for each game and see which way they prefer it. If the system is dropping frames, then you're gonna get motion judder anyway, which vsync won't help with.
 
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#11
Hi

Your monitors native screen resolution is 1680 x 1050 with your SLi setup you will not do any harm using v-sync; best way forward for you is to test a few of your favorite games with it enabled and disabled and see what you think. However saying this you may notice a big difference with non-SLi capable games as you will notice a sharp drop in frames per second and may need to disable v-sync for these.

nb: I must say I prefer v-sync on all the time "cannot stand the tearing at high res"

atb

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#12
No, I'm speaking about mouse input lag. Frame rates are locked at 60fps.
Well I set my mouse at 500 updates a second, and my monitor being 120hz, that would mean that my frame rate would be locked at 120fps. So in essence, my mouse would update at least 4 times per frame, which I think should make input lag absolutely insignificant?

However, I imagine that triple-buffering means 3 frames are rendered ahead of time, so I would likely introduce lag of 3/120th of a second, or 1/40th? Vsync off is single buffering or is there also buffering-induced lag?

Maybe qubit's other post contains an answer, I'm going to go read that now.
 
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#13
Well you will have a lower but more stable framerate. You will likely be capped at you refresh rate, which even with a 120hz monitor might be 60 FPS. However, if the refresh rate is 120 then you will likely see a constant 90 FPS, with occasional jumps to 120. Personally, I always use vsync. The tearing bugs the crap out of me, and the constant framerate jumping when it is off gives the feeling of stuttering and lag.
Its the jumping around with vsync that looks like stuttering that bothers the crap out of me. Although as long as I can force triple buffering that isn't a problem.

No, you shouldn't unless you like input lag. Vsync works fine with say racing games for example, but with FPS's blech. Read that anand article on triple buffering.
I agree
 

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#14
Its the jumping around with vsync that looks like stuttering that bothers the crap out of me. Although as long as I can force triple buffering that isn't a problem.
If you're seeing 'jumping around that looks like stuttering', then it's not the fault of turning on vsync. It's your system dropping frames because it can't keep up with the monitor refresh - and it is stuttering that you're seeing.

Remember, if the system can keep up with the monitor refresh at all times, then you'll see no stutter. Eliminating stutter/judder is the whole point of spending lots of money on expensive processors and graphics cards. :rolleyes:
 
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#15
If you're seeing 'jumping around that looks like stuttering', then it's not the fault of turning on vsync. It's your system dropping frames because it can't keep up with the monitor refresh - and it is stuttering that you're seeing.
Seeing a sudden drop from 60fps to 30fps is what vsync does without triple buffering when the actual framerate drops below 60fps. Its one of those things that wouldn't be noticeable with vsync disabled since there is no framerate cap. Triple buffering can help since the steps aren't as large.

Remember, if the system can keep up with the monitor refresh at all times, then you'll see no stutter. Eliminating stutter/judder is the whole point of spending lots of money on expensive processors and graphics cards. :rolleyes:
What is your point and what is the eye rolling smiley for? Does that make you feel smarter?
 
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#16
No, you shouldn't unless you like input lag. Vsync works fine with say racing games for example, but with FPS's blech. Read that anand article on triple buffering.
i totally agree with you.... but then again ive never had crossfire 6990's with 200+ FPS.... From my useage, vsync screws lags things for me even though i consistently get over 60FPS in most games on my setup
 

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#17
Seeing a sudden drop from 60fps to 30fps is what vsync does without triple buffering when the actual framerate drops below 60fps. Its one of those things that wouldn't be noticeable with vsync disabled since there is no framerate cap. Triple buffering can help since the steps aren't as large.

What is your point and what is the eye rolling smiley for? Does that make you feel smarter?
Yeah, I've seen that 60 to 30 drop and it's not the end of the world. The alternative is to have constant line tearing and animation artifacts (including very annoying judder) all the time as the game's framerate freewheels. If you want an example, 85Hz animation on a 60Hz monitor is especially juddery and annoying.

This thing is so simple and so duh! obvious and people are being so dumb about it which is why I'm rolling my eyes. What the hell's the point of spending hundreds or even thousands on an expensive tricked-out system only to ruin it by unlocking vsync? :shadedshu

It boils down to what I said before that the system must be able to keep up with the monitor refresh to ensure smooth animation ie one frame per refresh, no ifs, buts or maybes. If you're getting frame drops then you must do one or more of the (non-exhaustive) following things:

- Drop detail/resolution settings
- Upgrade your system hardware/drivers/optimise Windows of power-sucking services etc
- Play a game with better frame rates
- If you can't do any of the above, then live with it

The only time to turn off vsync is when benchmarking or troubleshooting.
 

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#18
Its the jumping around with vsync that looks like stuttering that bothers the crap out of me. Although as long as I can force triple buffering that isn't a problem.
I never have that problem because I properly adjust the settings in games like everyone should.;)
 
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#19
I never have that problem because I properly adjust the settings in games like everyone should.;)

Yeah, ok. :rolleyes:
Not every game uses triple buffering. Dragon Age Origins comes to mind as a game where I had to use D3DOverrider. But whatever you think apparently there is a better way.
 

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#20
You can force triple buffering on with the nvidia drivers. I expect the AMD ones allow this too.

I hope you can understand why vsync must be left on now, BababooeyHTJ.
 
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#21
You can force triple buffering on with the nvidia drivers. I expect the AMD ones allow this too.
No, you can't. That only works with opengl. It says it right in the control panel, at least it used to.

I hope you can understand why vsync must be left on now, BababooeyHTJ.
What are you talking about?
 

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#22
No, you can't. That only works with opengl. It says it right in the control panel, at least it used to.
Are you sure it's OpenGL only? It doesn't specify it in the nvidia control panel, see screenshot:



Therefore that question remains open.

What are you talking about?
My detailed and helpful reply to you in post 17 that you decided to ignore. tsk! :)
 
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#23
Are you sure it's OpenGL only? It doesn't specify it in the nvidia control panel, see screenshot:
Try it, I don't know what to tell you. It did not work 7 months ago when I last had a Nvidia card and afaik that hasn't changed. It doesn't work in the AMD control panel either. You have to use Radeon Pro with AMD/ATI.
 

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#24
Yeah, ok. :rolleyes:
Not every game uses triple buffering. Dragon Age Origins comes to mind as a game where I had to use D3DOverrider. But whatever you think apparently there is a better way.
Triple buffering has nothing to do with it. Tweak the game settings so you get constantly over 60FPS and the problem is gone, no Triple buffering needed. How is that hard to understand, serioulsy?
 
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System Name An experiment in continuous upgrading
Processor Intel Core i7 2600k @ 4.2 Ghz | Phenom II X4 965 | Phenom II X4 965
Motherboard MSI P67A-GD53 | MSI 990FXA-GD80 | Asus M4A79 Deluxe
Cooling Noctua NH-D14 | Zalman CNPS10x | Coolermaster*212+
Memory Kingston KHX1866C9D3K2 |*8Gb | 8Gb
Video Card(s) MSI GTX 580 TF2 x 2 (SLI) | Sapphire Radeon 7970 + GTX 460 | Radeon 4870 1Gb
Storage Crucial M4 120gb Sata3 SSD + WD Caviar black 1Tb + 1.5Tb | WD Caviar Black 1Tb x 3 | WD Blue 500gb
Display(s) Samsung S23A700D 120hz + nVidia 3D Vision + 17" Acer secondary LCD | 40" Sony 1080p TV | Sam. 2233rz
Case Antec 1200 | Lian-Li PC-8 | Antec 302
Audio Device(s) Auzentech Prelude X-Fi + Senn. PC360 G4ME | Prelude X-Fi + Home theater | Creative HS-1200
Power Supply Corsair TX850W | Corsair TX 750 | OCZ 700
Software About 400 top-rated games. | 150 top-rated games | No games
Benchmark Scores No time for benching, I prefer gaming.
#25
Yep, I now realize I am lacking in the CPU department in order to consistently surpass 120fps no matter what graphics settings I use.

6-core, here I come.