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DDSOpt and Oblivion Textures


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#1 Hlafordlaes

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Posted 13 January 2018 - 08:20 AM

Hello, first post. Thanks so much for this site and the guides.

 

I've been using DDSOpt and PyFFi for some time now, but after discovering the guides, I've redone some of my old work on Oblivion vanilla and mod textures to much better effect. For entirely unrelated reasons, my install went south (late-to-notice mod conflicts), and I'm redoing the install and taking advantage of the opportunity to apply more of what I have learned so far. To the point, my doubts are:

 

(1) In the case of Oblivion files, I assume the file naming conventions are enough for DDSOpt to know which are which (normal maps, textures with parallax, etc.), and that the guide instructions regarding dividing up Skyrim files before processing does not apply. Is this correct? I know it is not entirely correct, since OCO textures suffer if used with DDSOpt, but otherwise things seem to be processed properly.

 

(2) I still cannot quite comprehend the difference between compressed and uncompressed textures. Last time around, I left uncompressed at 8192x8192 and only set compressed to 1024x1024. Using DXTx compression, a freshly processed original set of QTP files resulted in the smoothest and most attractive install yet. However, the guides and my (poor) reading of them seems to suggest both settings should always coincide. What gives with these two settings?

 

Thanks in advance for any insights you might provide.


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#2 Kelmych

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Posted 13 January 2018 - 02:37 PM

Hello, first post. Thanks so much for this site and the guides.

 

The most important question is why DDSopt is being used. If there are VRAM usage problems then it is used to provide some VRAM reduction while maintaining graphic quality. If there are no VRAM usage issues then the only possible value it provides is that it replaces the texture mipmaps with better quality ones.

 

(1) In the case of Oblivion files, I assume the file naming conventions are enough for DDSOpt to know which are which (normal maps, textures with parallax, etc.),

Yes, although DDSopt does not handle textures with parallax differently. I don't think there are any of these with Oblivion.

and that the guide instructions regarding dividing up Skyrim files before processing does not apply. Is this correct? I know it is not entirely correct, since OCO textures suffer if used with DDSOpt, but otherwise things seem to be processed properly.

I haven't used DDSopt on Oblivion so I can't comment on any need for separation (or even for VRAM usage reduction). When using Skyrim with less capable systems (less than 2Gb VRAM) the guide showed how to reduce some texture sizes to reduce VRAM use while trying to maintain good graphics. This is not likely to be as big an issue with Oblivion since the texture resolution is often lower. Care is always needed is with body-related  textures (body and facial)  if DDSopt is used since its OK to reduce sizes with some textures but not others. In general it's best to leave body-related textures (body and facial) alone unless there are significant VRAM problems, as disussed in the DDSopt Skyrim Quick-Start guide portion of the DDSopt guide.

(2) I still cannot quite comprehend the difference between compressed and uncompressed textures.

Compressed textures use much less VRAM. Uncompressed textures are what the graphic artist created before compression was applied; these have larger file sizes and better quality. They are often used for some body model textures

Last time around, I left uncompressed at 8192x8192 and only set compressed to 1024x1024. Using DXTx compression, a freshly processed original set of QTP files resulted in the smoothest and most attractive install yet. However, the guides and my (poor) reading of them seems to suggest both settings should always coincide. What gives with these two settings?

They are separate settings. They don't need to set at the same value. Often the uncompressed resolution is set high so DDSopt doesn't touch these textures at all. If you don't need VRAM reduction you can set the compressed resolution high also.

 

Thanks in advance for any insights you might provide.



#3 Hlafordlaes

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Posted 13 January 2018 - 04:11 PM

@Dragon King. Thanks for the info. I have 16GB of main memory and 4GB of vidram (GTX 980). I am not looking to reduce as much properly generate all mipmaps. Meanwhile, I can handle fairly low FPS and still enjoy gameplay, since I also use GSync.

 

My concern is smoothness of play (@2k monitor resolution), which seems to be greatly aided by using DDSOpt to ensure all mipmaps are properly present (which by bumbling experience, ie, going by stuttering before processing and smooth play after, seems a common issue), and then choosing a good trade-off  between resolution and performance. The settings I already mentioned, leaving uncompressed at maximum and using 1024 for compression, seemed to be sort of just what the Oblivion game engine ordered, while delivering a sharpness that seemed better that even a higher setting for compression.

 

I am going to try mostly or all lossless on an upcoming test install to check performance, now that I can isolate the impact of textures alone, after having recently refreshed my recall of how to set up the crash, fix, and memory tools for stability. My takeaway for the moment is that I can dump all my textures pretty much through DDSOpt, and it is confirmed that face/body are a case apart, best left untouched (there are some parallax alternatives around, which I'll test in isolation, choosing the *_p.dds filter option, iirc).

 

In the end, it was the Skyrim guide that sort of knocked me off kilter, thinking there might be more to do in Oblivion than what I'd understood to be the case before. Nice to get some reassurance on the matter. Still, the detailed settings found in the guide, and your feedback, have already improved my use and understanding of the tool, which is great.


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