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I have also heard that if you are CPU bound (many are) that changing to Ultra shifts some of the physics work from your CPU to your GPU which (counter-intuitively) may actually increase FPS (if you have a great graphics card and a not so great CPU).
"The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it." - George Bernard Shaw
As much as I would like to play on ultra, I constantly have to change my graphic settings. If it's 8:00 A.M. in the morning on a Monday I can play on med/high/ultra, but on a Friday Night I can barely achieve higher than 30 fps on low/very low.
8 gigs ram
500 5400rpm HD
“Big Brother is Watching You.”
― George Orwell, "1984"
I just completed a new compy build that can run Ultra, but I don't see a big difference in appearance or fps from High settings. The only difference I notice is a little hiccuping or rubber-banding, which might be disk access delay, not sure.
What does everyone usually use to track FPS? Just the in-game tool?
Have new ultra settings been released? I've been running on Ultra textures because I thought that was the only one available, and that shouldn't have any impact on performance if you've got sufficient video RAM. As someone with an old CPU but a new, memory rich GPU, it was an obvious step for me.
If there are new settings which ship the burden from the CPU to the GPU, sign me UP!
Do you think an ssd would drastically improve my fps? Thinking about pitching over more money :/
No. The effect would be minimal if any. You would get much better load times in general for all your applications and OS. It isn't a bad investment in general, but won't help with Planetside. Honestly there are few upgrades that will drastically help with this game the way I feel it.
I've flipped back and forth between ultra and low settings, and honestly I always return to low. Yes the overall look of the game is better with Ultra and it has more of a realistic feel to it. But concerning the class I mostly play the infil/sniper, I need to go to the lowest common denominator. So I turn fog/smoke off, flora off, motion blur off and set everything else to low. My reasoning is that I can't see through smoke to aim so I turn it off, My class relies on concealment so if my flora is off then I know if the other person's is off then I can hide in the bushes that I can see (thanks Mindkill). Harder to aim with motion blur on, textures low so I know I have a good target in sights.......etc.
So I guess what I'm saying is that even though I can run on ultra I chose not to, and set my graphics to best suit the class I mostly play.
I moved from a HDD to an SSD last week and for whatever reason saw a 10 FPS increase with the same settings in the same situations. I didn't expect to see anything improve besides load times so I was pleasantly surprised.
PenandPencilman: What you'll notice most when moving to an SSD (well, besides shorter load times) is that you won't get the framerate-crashing stutter when you're travelling and the game has to load in a bunch of new assets.
If you're going to get an SSD though, make a clean install of your OS on it! One of the nicest things about having an SSD is putting your OS on it... startup times will be sub-30 seconds, and windows in general will just be snappier, more responsive. For a lot of things though, an SSD won't make much of a difference. Myself, I put my operating system on my SSD and then a select few games/programs that I feel could benefit from the SSD. Planetside, for one.
Teamwork and Tactics are OP
Strait /strāt/ (Noun) A narrow passage of water connecting two seas or two large areas of water: "the Northumberland Strait".
I did exactly what Strait Raider suggested and have been very happy. Snagged a 120GB Kingston V300 for $85 and have Windows 7 and my usual apps on it including PS2 and still have 60GB free. User folders and all media, etc. are on my 500GB SATA HDD.