VSync vs white spinning circle vs game loading time

Accidentally today when I was trying to tweak the sim one more time I have observed the following correlation between vsync settings and the infamous white spinning circle (and game loading times as well) that may be interesting for some of you:

  • disabling vsync completely or leaving it at ‘fast’ setting in the Nvidia panel results in no white spinning circle at the beginning of each flight, MSFS loading time from black copyright screen to hangar ~2 mins
  • enabling any other vsync mode in Nvidia panel or setting it in MSFS (along with ‘controlled by application’ in the Nvidia control panel) results in white circle at the beginning of each flight spinning sometimes a few minutes or more, additionally game loading time increases to ~5 mins when using 30FPS lock or ~3.5 mins with 60FPS lock
  • using RTSS scanline sync results in the same behaviour like enabling vsync

I have completely no idea why the above correlation exists or what it means, I’ll be happy to hear if anybody else is able to observe similar behaviours.

My specs: i5 10600kf (all cores @4.8Ghz), 32GB RAM (3200MHz), GTX 1060 6GB (GPU @2025MHz), two SSD NVMe drives, game resolution 1920x1080, most of the in-game settings at High or Ultra, TLOD 150, OLOD 100, a lot of stuff in the community folder (~100GB) including AIG models, multiple cities and many airports from flightsim.to, a few payware aiports as well. Overall smooth experience with 30FPS locked in-game, sometimes stutters, mainly when turning on the ground or when flying low over dense urban areas.

Hmm - very interesting. So you mean ONLY changing it in the NVCP? Can still have 30fps lock enabled in the MSFS settings?

I had this white spinning circle starting since a couple of Sim Updates ago and it’s still there now BUT only in some areas.

I figured out that it hangs around (sometimes 3-5 mins in UK where I have a ton of added stuff) if the airport I’m loading into is somewhere where I have a lot of add-ons within range (whatever that pre-loading range might be - is a mystery!!??).

If I load to same airport with all those add-ons disabled, no spinning wheel!

In your test are you sure that you always loaded to the same airport for comparison?

FYI, my add-ons add up to much more than your 100gb. More like 270gb WITHOUT my UK stuff. Add another 100+ for those but I had to split what I load into different profiles as I hit another couple of issues.

This thread may be of interest to you :wink:

NVCP overrides the in-game vsync/fps lock setting unless set to ‘application controlled’. So you can disable vsync in nvcp, run msfs (your in game fps lock will have no effect at all I guess) and check if your white spinning circle is still there - in my case it always disappears. And yes, I was using exactly the same scenario (airport, plane, time of a day, and all the other in-game settings unchanged).
With NVCP vsync set to ‘application controlled’ the in-game fps lock needs to be disabled when the game starts, otherwise you will continue to see the spinning circle. So in my tests with nvcp set to ‘application controlled’ I disabled in-game vsync, restarted the game, loaded the flight and the spinning circle was gone. With that I could re-enable in-game vsync to get the smooth flight…
The biggest mystery for me right now is why the vsync affects the sim loading time (when there’s nothing to vsync, just a static splash screen + tiny loading bar) and (this is just my theory) why speeding up the loading time helps with the infamous white spinning circle. This is somehow in sync with your statement about not seeing the spinning circle when your community folder is empty (and I assume your loading time in such scenario is much shorter).
Thanks for pointing out the other vsync related thread, I’ll go through it carefully :wink:

Someone once pointed out that the speed of pushing and pulling the throttle knob depended on the frame rate of the sim. This indicates that the physics engine is somewhat bound to frame rate, which many games try to avoid, for good reason.

1 Like

The physics engine isn’t controlled by the model animation. They both respond independently to user input, and they often don’t match. For instance, if you have a yoke with 90 degrees of rotation (such as the honeycomb) you’ll notice that it’s not 1:1 with the yoke animation in the C152, even though it should be. Because for whatever reason the animation isn’t linear 1:1, instead it accelerates, my guess because 45 degrees was the standard for consumer-grade PC yokes. However, if you check using simconnect you’ll see that the sim is receiving smooth linear input that doesn’t correlate with the in-game yoke animation.

Well that’s a relief.

Ideally, loading times should also be independent from FPS/V-Sync.

Edit - No meaningful difference in startup load time for me, with Vsync on or off (didn’t test pre-flight load time though, my PC gets too hot with Vsync off)