SU5 graphics quality

Microsoft’s Flight Simulator used to be one of the most demanding PC games ever made, but a new update introduces significant engine optimizations that drastically reduce hardware usage.

“We have re-written a lot of the parts of the engine, the architecture, in order to get the maximum performance of the sim and minimize resource memory bandwidth footprint,” Asobo Studio CEO and co-founder Sebastian Wloch said.

Before the update, the game about 35-40FPS with 100% CPU and 16GB of RAM memory used in a congested NYC Manhattan scene on a PC with an Intel Core i7-9700K, NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 Super with Ultra graphics with upscaled 4K visuals.

After Update 5, FPS was practically doubled, RAM usage was down to just 4.7GB (a 70% reduction).

Now I wonder if anyone believes ASOBO?

It should be also said if the video over Manhattan was showing any 70% reduction of RAM, it was also showing a 70% reduction of render resolution :slight_smile: (were they running with 40% render scaling or something like than to prove 60fps over Manhattan with a 2060?)

Wasn’t this the same config for before and after?

I agree with you. We really do not know what they did and it seems like only little information is coming from OSOBO.
I have done some investigation as to shimmering.
If I was over downtown Shanghai, China I got a lot of the shimmer.
Switched to Hong Kong, China without changing anything the shimmer was gone.
What was the difference between the two cities the number of houses and structures.
It is my believe that in Shanghai, China it could not load them do to memory limitations.

@NineMile1 I’m sure they’ll find out and correct this bug, they shall have enough material now!

@scriptkid I believe they were, I was just pointing out the Q&A video was showing 60fps but maybe some didn’t notice they were also using a render resolution of 40% (or so) in the video (in both pre and post SU5 examples) in order to make the 2060 running this fast, and this helps. This doesn’t relate directly to the 70% reduction of RAM usage though, my post was more about highlighting the similar 70% figure (RAM and render res.). In other words, what they are showing and telling is great, but like any number, you also have to see what they are relating too. In the example of the 40% render res., you can search online and count the number of press outlets relaying and preaching how much better SU5 because FS2020 can run at 60fps on a 2060…

Quick question, are you flying with “i live vfr US mod?” I’m missing the masts

Yep, now also seeing it, it’s minimal, but, it’s there:
I marked where it was most noticable, other parts where really single pixel and barely noticable. But it definitely is there, these pictures taken with a drone cam which appears to be 100% stationary.

I needed to search for an angle and distance. It was more noticable when moving, but not by any “normal flying” margin.

If i would record this, i need to record this raw as compression would f it up.

But i can confirm it’s also on desktop screen (widescreen)

Some specs:


MFS specific settings:

I know these are not VR settings, but in case.

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Yes I have the the “Love VFR” mod installed. Otherwise you should try at an earlier time of the day with the sun lower. This will amplify the bug.

It is because of the risk of ruining the details with compression that I’ve shot the monitor close up (with iPhone) and cropped the 4K source image so that I can fit at least about 1.5 sec of material in 4MB in H264. I’ve made multiple conversions adjusting the compression rate (using HandBrake) until I can maximize filling 4MB. In my videos, since each physical pixel from the monitor is displaying as multiple pixels in the video, this helps eliminating video compression artifacts from the equation.

NB: my videos are “pulsing/shaking” but it is the “auto focus” working hard, and my heart beat holding the phone! If you look closely at the pixels near the mast against the background, you can see there isn’t much change in parallax and the camera is not moving (I selected clear weather no wind, outside view - not drone -, and these are from the VR headset acting as the camera and held in place).

Fully understand, it’s also clear you have individual pixels showing in the clip.

To your earlier response on the asobo clip: Cheers :+1:

When i change the sun it’s a shimmer fest, when settled (around 11:15 utc september 5th 2021), it reduces to almost not there. but it’s more then when it’s lighter, slightly.

I think, in my case, i should consider it neglegible as i really need to try hard where objects are close to 1,2,3px? on screen. But in case of VR… i can imagine the frustration when facing this.

I also know these settings are not optimal for an RTX2060. But it suits me fine as it is ok for my play style (bit having a bit more powerfull card would be very welcome, i refuse to pay these scalper/inflated prices. i understand chip shortages and increased cost, but not by these margins).

Why Asobo make it tests with 40% of render scale?
I have everything in ultra and i have an average of 50 fps with a render sclae of 100
Of Course if I use 40 of render scale i can get 80 -90 frames but with not the same quality
Asobo should focus on getting good performance with a minimun of render scale of 80-90.
And another suggestion is to use more CPU. Its true that now ot uses more , but still can use more and more

Because that looked to be like the sweet spot. And they told in the clip why :wink:

What memory limitations? Are you suggesting that shimmering may be related to lower levels of physical system memory? Because if so, and if people complaining about shimmering have only 16GB of RAM (or even 32GB), that may actually help explain why my system with it’s 64GB of available physical RAM does not exhibit any shimmering.

If that is not where you’re going, then I’m afraid I’ve lost you. Or maybe you’ve lost me.

Asobo Studio CEO and co-founder Sebastian Wloch said.
After Update 5, FPS was practically doubled, RAM usage was down to just 4.7GB (a 70% reduction).
So if you believe this statement how can you use all your ram on your system?

Unrelated to the shimmering (but I was reminded when looking at those videos!), to me it seems like the buildings in general reflect a bit too much light compared to the surrounding terrain, which in real life has many surrounding unmodelled 3 dimensional objects which would also be reflecting. I think it makes the buildings stand out as squares against the terrain and I guess would be an easy thing to tweak. However I am no photographer so interested to hear any other opinions ?

It is naturally most apparent when the sun is low (and in VR when everything larger and brighter!)

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Because, well… I do!

I do not think he in any way meant the RAM usage would ever exceed 4.7GB of RAM, because that statement makes no sense whatsoever. RAM usage can and will fluctuate based on a whole host of different factors, including (but not necessarily limited to) what aircraft you are in, where on the planet you are, whether or not you have dense or sparse scenery around you, whether or not your plane is moving, what view you may be using and a whole lot more.

I attempted an experiment a few days ago where I simply watched how much RAM the system used from right when MSFS was started, all the way to spawning on the ramp at Charles de Gaulle in an A32NX. I did not take note of which livery, but I suppose that, too, could use more or less RAM depending. It used 17GB.

Windows can will and does stuff that 17GB into some smaller amount for people who simply do not have 17GB to give to the sim, which obviously includes all people with only 16GB total, and could even include some with 32GB. However, I will note that during my test at no point did the total go above (or even close to) 32GB total in use, so I suspect 32GB is the “sweet spot”. I think windows using it’s magic to stuff that 17GB into something smaller simply MUST come with a downside somewhere, and it may be manifesting itself in the form of some of the graphical anomalies others report that me and my too much RAM do not have.

While I am not Seb, and I am incapable of reading his mind, there is simply no way he meant that under no circumstances would the sim ever use more than 4.7GB of RAM. During the scene they showed, perhaps, but it’s too big of a variable to put a hard limit like that on.


This is also what I’m thinking of in a certain way:


Did a flight above Grenoble earlier, big autogen city… Worst shimmering I’ve seen, really really bad, downright ugly. Tried to record it with my phone but didn’t really work.

What’s the easiest way of recording in such a way that it appears as if it would in VR?

What I did for the above videos is to take a video in 4K at 60Hz with my iPhone of the VR view displaying on the monitor.

Back again, day after day, with the same ridiculous, disproven (many times) theory.

You seem unable to grasp that the sim NEEDS less memory to do the same thing (OPTIMISATION) - it WILL (and does) use more if required. XBox specs are completely and utterly irrelevant to how much your system uses.

You have been shown how to resolve the ONLY issue you have demonstrated with a simple setting change, so clearly less memory is not causing you any problems.

If Asobo add a routine which simply increases the amount of RAM your system uses (and does absolutely nothing else) would that make you happy? :thinking:

Please bear in mind you’re comparing a DX11 implementation with a DX12 implementation, both of which are really but really not managing VRAM nor assets the same way at all.

As it has been discussed in the past, the more VRAM your video card, the more RAM the game will use ONLY because DX11 maintains a RAM copy of every single buffer and textures you’re hosting in VRAM (well not all but it is just to keep it simple enough here).

It is also the reason why many (maybe not all though) have reported having better fps with 64GB+3090 vs 32GB+3090 because of the 3090 24GB VRAM…

[HOW-TO] Graphics Settings and Performance Guide - Discussion Thread - #62 by CptLucky8

PS: last but not least, the DX12 model is meant for the app managing the backing store, the DX11 is all handling this for you. This also come with additional benefits, such as DX12 being more capable to support streaming assets than with DX11 (hence as an extension of this capability the added DX12U Direct Storage feature).

PPS: in my opinion all the discussion about SU5 limited on PC because of Xbox is moot until they deliver the DX12 version on PC. However it is not moot in the sense they’ve probably tuned the engine for Xbox limits, which is in any way positively impacting the PC experience by the mere fact they’ve had to further optimize their structures and algorithms to make it fit.

However, tuning for the Xbox hardware is not good for the PC for a simple reason at least: 100% of Xbox is using AMD GPU, 85% of simmers are using NVidia GPU (at least in the Navigraph survey). And this is a factor which you can’t ignore if the most demanding part of the code is tuned specifically for the AMD GPU. It doesn’t sound like something evident at first, but here is an article showing how this matters in practice. For example if the game is optmized with the following in mind because of the Xbox, this might not translate to any particular gain for Nvidia/PC…

etc… all these papers are about optimizations based on the actual AMD hardware specific architecture.


I’m fully aware of what I am comparing. This is purely to refute (once again) the repeated and ridiculous claims that the PC version of the sim cannot exceed the specifications of the Xbox - in this case 16GB RAM. The image posted (along with multiple others) categorically proves this claim is a fallacy, but some will continue to say it - one in particular, almost daily.

P.S. I was also being generous as to the XBox’s memory availability, as it’s not only the sim that has to reside in that 16GB.