RealFlight 8 VR Tips

Ryan Douglas

Administrator
Staff member
Here are some things we would like everyone to know about VR. They are grouped into two different sections based on whether they apply specifically to performance or to the overall experience.


VR Experience

Resolution
The current virtual reality headsets provide roughly half as many pixels as a standard widescreen monitor. VR is not about a high resolution presentation. The hardware isn't there yet. Instead, it's about the experience.

Even if the aircraft doesn't look quite as good as it does on your monitor, it's far more immersive to look around the world freely, tracking your model just like you would at the field. VR lets you do things like glance between your model and the runway when lining up for a landing. If you get away from yourself and lose orientation, no longer can you rely on the movement of the camera as a clue; you really need to fly your way out of it. A simulation should feel as close to the real thing as possible. VR adds a new level of realism that has nothing to do with adding pixels.

PhotoFields and VR
PhotoFields do work in VR, but you won’t get the full experience. Because the panorama used to create the PhotoField is monoscopic (2D), the entire simulation has to be rendered that way. This means that you don’t get the 3D effect that lets you judge distance, etc. in VR. This might make the aircraft’s scale seem strange, and it might make it harder to focus on the aircraft against the background.

The 2D panorama also means that you can’t move your head around. Your look direction is tracked, but your position has to be locked.

We know that many users swear by the PhotoFields, so we kept them working in VR. Just bear in mind their limitations.

3D Airports and VR
3D airports (all airports except PhotoFields) allow the full VR experience. In these flying sites, the terrain and all objects are rendered in full stereoscopic 3D. You can even walk around if your physical VR space is big enough. All camera modes are enabled at 3D fields.

Camera Modes and VR
For extra fun, try the different camera modes. Models with cockpits are particularly rewarding. Scaling is applied to cockpit cameras to make the aircraft feel bigger - your head wouldn’t fit inside many model canopies! In general, the cockpit VR experience will feel like flying a full-scale aircraft.

Some users may experience VR-sickness with flying camera modes. This is a hazard with any application that moves the camera around, not just RealFlight.


VR Performance

Framerate is Important!
Maintaining 90 frames per second (FPS) is critical for a good experience in VR. The system automatically locks the framerate to 90 fps. If it can’t sustain that, it drops all the way to 45 fps (and even further to 22.5 if needed). At framerates below 90 fps you can expect to see some doubling of the image and generally have a subpar experience. Therefore, it is important to check your framerate and adjust settings as needed to achieve 90 fps.

Checking Your Framerate
First, make sure you are running version 8.00.019. Then simply turn on the NavGuides gadget within RealFlight and look at the “Graphics Frames/Sec” readout. Note that some airports and aircraft are more demanding than others. You may find your framerate varies depending on what you are doing and where.

Improving Your Framerate
Improve your framerate by adjusting RealFlight’s graphics quality settings. The simplest way to do this is to select Simulation->Graphics… from the main menu and choose a lower setting. For finer control, select Simulation->Settings… from the main menu, navigate to the Graphics->Quality settings group, then tweak individual settings. (Note that changes to some settings do not take effect until the sim is restarted. See each setting’s description for more info.)

You should do whatever it takes to achieve 90 fps in VR, even if it means lowering quality settings beyond what you might otherwise find acceptable for regular sim usage. Some of these settings aren’t very noticeable in VR and won’t be missed. For example, normal maps add a lot of value on a standard monitor, but provide almost no benefit within VR. Turn them off for an easy and painless gain.

“VR Quality” Setting
Within a separate Virtual Reality settings group in the Simulation->Settings dialog you will find a “VR Quality” setting. Its name makes it a tempting target when trying to enhance your VR experience, but use it only as a last resort! Lowering that setting will have more of a negative impact on the visual quality than anything you might change in the Graphics->Quality group.

That is because the VR Quality setting alters the resolution of the entire image being presented to each of your eyes, which is then scaled up or down to match the physical resolution of your headset’s screens. If you lower it, everything is rendered at a smaller size and then stretched to fit (think of it like zooming in), which creates ugly artifacts.

We strongly recommend keeping this setting on High unless you have a compelling reason to change it. On High, visuals are rendered at exactly the right size for the hardware, meaning no scaling occurs.

When Should I Adjust the VR Quality Setting?
  1. Your graphics card is at the very low end of what is supported and struggles to sustain a desirable framerate even after reducing standard graphics quality settings as described above. Lowering this setting just might give you the last little boost you need to experience VR.
  2. Your powerful system easily maintains 90 fps everywhere you fly even with all the graphics quality settings cranked up, and you are looking for ways to further improve the visuals. Increasing this setting will result in supersampling of the entire image for each eye, which can add a small amount of antialiasing. Be sure to verify that you still see 90 fps with it raised.
V-Sync and VR
If you are using VR, make sure Vertical Sync is disabled in RealFlight. This setting is located in the Graphics->Hardware group.


Support

If you need additional help with RealFlight 8, please contact Product Support.
 
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BaMMeR991

Member
something else that will help is in the debug tool set your pixel override to 1.2 up to 2. depending on your video card. even at one it will put a lot more load on. i have mine set at 1.5......when i go higher i start seeing double images when i do a fast fly-by
 

csgill75

Well-known member
What is some hardware you would recommend? preferably no more than $200 per unit?
I honestly don't think there is anything under 399 dollars for VR. Occulus is 399 and is the cheapest on the market. You also have to have a decent Video adapter in the PC.
 

Ryan Douglas

Administrator
Staff member
For VR what should we set the resolution to in the settings under graphic hardware????
In VR mode RealFlight overrides that setting and determines what resolution to use based on other factors. So you can leave it at whatever you like for non-VR use.

If you discover that it does have any kind of an effect while in VR, please let us know! That would be unexpected.
 

Quado

New member
Using Radeon RX 580 on i5-7400, can't get 90 fps in VR. Get 300- 400 fps on monitor, but drops to 45 in VR/3D Airports.
Simulation->Graphic is set to 'Medium'
View->Scenery set Shadows OFF
1.Should this setup get 90 fps?
2. Are there any guides available like 'Turning Off Normal Maps for Idiots'? If I tried to follow what directions I find via Google, I'd probably make it worse.
 

NigelR

New member
I am also getting poor performance in VR mode. I get 90 fps in photo airfields, but as soon as I go to 3D airfields it drops to 45fps.

If I check the machine load (in VR 3D Fields) using MSI Afterburner/Riva Tuner, the stats show that the graphics card is running below half load and the CPU is running at about 12%.

Is the VR performance being limited because RF8 is a single core/threaded application?

The machine is a AMD1700x(@3.6GHz)/GTX1080ti/16Gb ram, In RFX the GPU maxes out but again with a low CPU usage, in AccuRC the CPU usage is about 50% (4 cores in use).

Nigel
 

BaMMeR991

Member
I am also getting poor performance in VR mode. I get 90 fps in photo airfields, but as soon as I go to 3D airfields it drops to 45fps.

If I check the machine load (in VR 3D Fields) using MSI Afterburner/Riva Tuner, the stats show that the graphics card is running below half load and the CPU is running at about 12%.

Is the VR performance being limited because RF8 is a single core/threaded application?

The machine is a AMD1700x(@3.6GHz)/GTX1080ti/16Gb ram, In RFX the GPU maxes out but again with a low CPU usage, in AccuRC the CPU usage is about 50% (4 cores in use).

Nigel
thats odd. im not that much different than you and i get 90 no matter what field. i have an I-7 6700 @ 4.5 GHZ and 32 gig of ram and 1080TI. i do overclock my cpu from 4 to 4.5, but for whatever reason if i use afterburner and overclock my video card my framrate drops in RF8 ( VR ) and RF-X
 

Quado

New member
I am also getting poor performance in VR mode. I get 90 fps in photo airfields, but as soon as I go to 3D airfields it drops to 45fps.

Nigel
Same here. Photo fields get 90 fps. Almost all others get 45 fps. Disappointing.
 

NigelR

New member
I have now managed to get my Oculus to run at 90fps most of the time, try reducing shadow quality. I still get 45fps with the heli on the ground occasionally , but airborne get 90fps.
 
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OnTheSnap

New member
I've given up getting the Samsung Odyssey to run well with my Asus Zephyrus 1080GTX.

Until there is some optimization, I'm loving 4.0 SuperSampling with Next locked at 90fps with Odyssey. You can comfortably fly away in the distance and maintain orientaiton. But the physics are lacking. RF8 has the edge there.
 

Ryan Douglas

Administrator
Staff member
Same here. Photo fields get 90 fps. Almost all others get 45 fps. Disappointing.
Quado, you never responded to my post in another thread, so I don't know what kind of system you have or what settings you're using. As I think everyone is aware, VR imposes considerably higher system requirements than non-VR usage. Nevertheless, as I posted here, we have seen quite good performance with hardware that is very reasonably priced. So I am curious about your system specs and quality settings.
 

Ryan Douglas

Administrator
Staff member
I am also getting poor performance in VR mode. I get 90 fps in photo airfields, but as soon as I go to 3D airfields it drops to 45fps.

If I check the machine load (in VR 3D Fields) using MSI Afterburner/Riva Tuner, the stats show that the graphics card is running below half load and the CPU is running at about 12%.

Is the VR performance being limited because RF8 is a single core/threaded application?

The machine is a AMD1700x(@3.6GHz)/GTX1080ti/16Gb ram, In RFX the GPU maxes out but again with a low CPU usage, in AccuRC the CPU usage is about 50% (4 cores in use).

Nigel
We expect better performance given your system specs. I wonder if AMD doesn't run our software as well as the competition?

We have a Ryzen laptop here in the office. It doesn't quite match yours for specs, but it should still be a good test. We will try it out when we get a chance.

In the meantime, is anyone else running on an AMD processor? We would like to hear your results.
 

Bellah1z

Member
Smashing VR

I can say an I7 6700K Oc'd to an easy 4.6Ghz and a GTX 1080Ti OC edition with built in OC is smashing VR,

I have also gone totally wireless with the HTC Vive TPCast and the RF SLT wireless dongle and the cheappie TTX 810. This Radio is perfect to bash around in a sim.

This adds an amazing level of immersion that I only dreamt about months ago.

I cant wait to see what we can do with RFX in VR! Hurry up with the update please!

Thanks Ryan for the best SIMs:):D:)
 

jgsteven

New member
In the meantime, is anyone else running on an AMD processor? We would like to hear your results.
I am running an AMD FX-8350 with a Radeon R9 290X. 2D works fine, of course, with FPS in the hundreds. When using the Oculus, I can't get to 90 FPS unless I set graphics quality to 'low' and VR quality to 'medium'.

Interestingly, the various Oculus games I have run well. and SteamVR gives a score of 6.9 with no frames below 90 FPS (see attachment). I would expect better performance than the i3-7100 and GTX 1050 Ti (that you posted here: https://www.knifeedge.com/forums/showthread.php?t=32853) but it seems to not be the case.

Regards,

Joe
 

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jasond

Member
I'm running an R9 Fury X graphics card, AMD processor 8 core, 16 GB ram, can't get 90 FPS only 24 when running graphics on medium, and VR set high! No jOy! I bet you a hundred dollars its only using one of my cores

jason
 
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jasond

Member
Ok went home to make sure what I'm running specs of machine
Windows 10.0
AMD 8350 eight core 4.GH
Memory 16GB
AMD R9 Fury X

Graphics set to medium
VR Quality high

What I'm getting at Japanese Temple is around 30FPS :mad: Unflyable I can run other VR games and they are doing around 90 FPS no problem.
 
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