UK update - photogrammetry performance / quality

Try deleting the rolling cache first, maybe there is still old data in there. It looks like water polygon issues.

it’s a widespread problem and persistent without cache. The London update sunk London a bit creating an interesting transition with the rest of the data.

Perhaps where you are the terrain height was adjusted and most of the water polygons stayed at the old height. Where is that exactly?

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that’s because the web site isn’t very optimized

I have a 100Mbs connection which was peaking at 99Mbs just now and mostly sitting at 97Mbs over the London Eye. It wasn’t really keeping up with rendering while in a Cessna 172S at low altitude, no rolling cache.

Flying at two thousand ft it seems fine though and was using about 75Mbs. I was getting framerates around 40 - 50fps, all ultra except trees at medium at 1440p resolution.

Ryzen 5600X
Radeon 6800X
32MB 3200MHz RAM
2 * 1TB M.2 drives, 1 * 2TB Sata SSD

Oh thank you for the answer! I emptied the cache, I still have a lot of level error

It’s in the north of France, where everything is flat! LoL !

PG quality is almost always only mediocre in many cities, either with default BingMaps coverage or World Update coverage as in Tokyo and London.

My problem with it is actually the coverage, which is with the World Update very limited extending across downtown Tokyo and London only, considering the stretch of the urban areas of those two hubs. Google Earth coverage for both of the cities is just jaw dropping though.

I mentioned it in other post but I distinctly remember the whole streaming graphics on the fly for gaming has been tried and abandoned in the past. If memory serves it may have been as far back as the late 90s. The internet has come a long way since then but judging by this thread perhaps not far enough.

If they cant get this worked out it is likely to be a deal killer for a lot of people given other sims being better at flight dynamics, auto pilot etc.

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Well there are PG cities / areas outside of the UK which do work fine so it is not impossible I assume?

It’s all relative, I’ve been stress testing the game to find the extremes. Just now I did a flight from Southend to Heathrow at 2,000 ft altitude. Much more reasonable height. 185 knots TAS, the sim had no trouble keeping up, network usage stayed just under 50 mbps over London.

I’m running on a very modest setup, slow CPU, 16 GB ram, wi-fi, 1060, it’s a laptop.

This is on high settings with a couple things turned up to Ultra (trees, texture synthesis, windshield, 8x8 texture supersampling, 16x anisotropic, high cockpit refresh rate) Terrain detail 200, object detail 150, and it completes the flight without any issues. Fly high and fast, no problem. Low and slow works as well. Low and fast is no go with my avg gaming laptop. But good to test the limits an find the bottlenecks.

This flight consumed 1.24 GiB with most of that over London, way less than the 4.38 Gib needed when flying at 500ft at terrain 200. What the game can use is smarter LOD. At 500 ft altitude, it pretty much looks the same with terrain at 100 or 200, the only difference, 1.65 GiB extra data you can’t see from that height. At 2,000 ft terrain 200 is still on the short side, the horizon looks rather bare.

One thing comes out in every test flight, need more RAM! 16GB just doesn’t cut it.

Comparison with Tokyo, 500ft altitude, sim can keep up on my system

(Switched to 150 render scale to get GPU limited again, 2880x1620 render resolution)
It’s far less data. Even after crashing into those buildings (500 ft is too low) picking the plane back up, doing a circle and finishing the 12 minute flight from RJTL to RJTA, data consumption was 1.36 GiB, only slightly more than London at 2000ft and less than 1/3rd of London at 500ft.

London has an unprecedented level of detail in this sim in the largest continuous PG area yet. Sure, it could use a lot of refinement, but very impressive nonetheless.

There is another issue affecting terrain LOD and this might also be a factor with PG areas if the expected and the computer LOD are different:

LOD Problems - Distances revisited

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Some great analysis in this thread which I think shows that the streaming of photogrammetry needs a lot of optimisation and fixing.
If a 100mb connection on a high end PC cannot get close to a decent outcome the issue is with Asobo and Microsoft not the hardware.
I have 32GB RAM and the sim is installed on a Nvme drive. My PC spec are high end and my internet speed pretty standard for UK testing at 38 meg down and 10 meg up.
Obviously not cutting edge but worked perfectly fine with New York etc before this update and if this is not enough then there are going to be many thousands of irate Xbox users who bought a cutting edge console to play cutting edge games.

On my system it doesn’t even try, it is molten broken low texture buildings all the way yet my fps is 50 on the EGLC runway and 35-45 low over the city in a standard prop.
This is not acceptable and I can only assume that a lot of the issue is caused by the conversion of the photogrammetry data they got from Blue Sky, we know the update was delayed because of issues with this.

I would like an official announcement from Asobo that they are ware of the issue and working on it because the response I got to my ticket was to check the forum for solutions!
That indicates they do not think the issue is important or see no issue at all.

This update has shown the weakness and limits of the engine and streaming service.
The PG data itself needs massive optimisations as does the streaming service or the spec should be raised considerably for what you need and for Xbox expectations lowered massively instead of hyped


I agree, there are not only bugs in the mesh:

[World Update 3] London Photogrammetry Mesh Holes - Bugs & Issues / Scenery - Microsoft Flight Simulator Forums

But it is far from being optimized at all:

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Quiet true. :laughing:

It will be interesting to see when Asobo fix the manual cache how big a file this scenery location actually is when cached to a local drive at high resolution.

I did a scan of London this morning, flying low in a grid pattern with 30 GB rolling cache. Which is not enough. This search pattern at 500 ft downloaded 30.26 GiB in total

Confirmed use of rolling cache as network activity stopped completely every time I crossed my path then go up again to 80 mbps treading new ground.

Enough data to get an accurate guess, it’s between 41 and 44 GiB of data in total.

I had to do this at half sim rate reducing my speed to avg 60 knots with network activity spiking to 113mbps already (on my 100 mbps connection)

That’s with terrain detail at 200

Double the LOD increases data load by about 1.6x and double the rate of travel obviously doubles the bandwidth needed.

There is a problem where allocated memory keeps increasing, the sim basically falls behind updating the rolling cache and the game crashes on my system when it tries to allocate more than 40GB (16 GB physical ram) hence the CTD. I have to pause and wait for allocated memory to go down, it was about to crash again when the rolling cache was full. (Normal load is about 25 GB allocated)

Anyway I got a good look at how detailed the data is while paused

Hanging wires are visible

All the towers for overhead wires

Open structures

Open bridges


House boats, power converters, light masts

Construction sites

Just so much detail

Beware here I hit the building, boundary boxes are wide

It will be a tough task to optimize this

That is a hell of a lot of poly’s (does photogrammetry use poly’s or some kind of terrain mesh?) talking Centimetres of detail here, I’m glad I don’t visit London often. Thanks for the insight SvenZ :slight_smile:

17 7700 4.2ghz
32.0gb ram
rtx270 super
500gb ssd
all was working fine till the uk update i too have melted buildings in london and also bristol,so got the hotfix and thought id look at southampton and dam melted buildings ,im now fed up with tinkering to try and sort this mess out,as ive said ive been lucky in that ive had no problems with the sim up until now,i do hope asbo can get this sorted as there a lot off ppl having the same issues

sorry not the best of pictures

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Yeah. I have melted buildings too. Not only in UK, but in States too. :confused: (haven’t tried Japan) I have pretty low bandwidth usage compared to figures from this topic. Today it has used 7 GB (and I play for last 10 hours, went to few cities in States, but smaller ones except Miami and Chicago). I tried to monitor it and haven’t seen any spikes past 10 mbps (and I have 300 mbps connection, as fast as advertised :P).

Specs similar (perfomance-wise) to roxter6969, i7 7700k, 1080Ti, 64 GB of ram, MSFS on NVME, rolling cache on dedicated SSD.

I made some comparative shots in NY, same settings, same height to give a good sense of how much mor detailed London is. Btw flying at those low altitudes is a lot of fun in NY!

Compare with my screenshots a few posts above. Iron girder bridges in NY

Just a box with photo on top, parked cars are mostly flat

Roof detail is very crude

Construction sites in NY

St Patrick’s Cathedral

Columbus Circle

Times Square

Queensboro Bridge

Up the resolution of the source data and bridges become actual bridges instead of a box with textures. Yet higher resolution also adds more noise and a much bigger strain on CPU and bandwidth requirements.

Anyway the difference in detail between NY and London is huge.

In my view FS2020 photogrammetry is just not good eneugh. In the USA update it was very poor and in the UK, its almost as bad.So I have disabled it. The way to go for detailed scenery is the handcrafted method. The handcrafted POI s in the UK update are quite superb…thanks Asobo, please keep such standards up in future scenery updates.I’m going to learn how to import additional POI s that I want from “the usual scource”. My observation is that they always result in better quality objects than the MSFS PG produces and they are often PG generated…I wonder why.

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