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ftreeloaddistance or Distant Object Detail on Ultra causing Stuttering...fix?


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#1 drift123

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Posted 13 March 2018 - 07:20 AM

Hi,

 

I've started modding Skyrim on a new PC with decent specs, and was surprised when I was experiencing noticeable "macro-stuttering" when running around outside Whiterun on a horse in third person. After much testing and research, I came across a 2015 post on here by DynDOLOD mod author Sheson, claiming that when ftreeloaddistance is set to 1,000,000 , and you cross a cell border it causes stuttering.

 

So I tried it out and enabled cell borders in the console and set ftreeloaddistance to 1000000. Sure enough whenever I crossed a cell border there was a large stutter. When I put this value down to 40,000 , or set Distant Object Detail from Ultra to High, the stutters went away or became too small too notice.

 

My question is if this issue has been fixed or if there is a way to keep Distant Object Detail on Ultra and still remove this stutter?

 

Thanks!


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#2 sheson

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Posted 13 March 2018 - 07:54 AM

DynDOLOD offers a workaround for traditional tree LOD. It can use static object LOD for trees instead.

 

See DynDOLOD\Docs\trees.ultra\DynDOLOD-Trees.html

 

If 3D (hybrid) tree LOD models are too taxing, just set LOD 4 to Billboard instead of Static LOD4, as mentioned in the Generate 3D Tree Static Object LOD section.


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#3 drift123

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Posted 13 March 2018 - 08:14 AM

Thanks, I'll try this out!


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#4 drift123

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Posted 13 March 2018 - 08:16 PM

Hi,

 

I have read the documentation and have some questions before I install DynDOLOD.

 

1) Will DynDOLOD retain tree animations (especially for nearby trees)?

 

2) My Skyrim is mostly unmodded at the moment. Should I add all my other mods (textures, water, lighting, etc.) before installing DynDOLOD? Will I need to regenerate LOD after installing new mods?

 

3) My specs are: Windows 10, i7 7700k, 16 gb DDR4 RAM, Samsung Evo SSD, GTX 1050 TI OC

 

Will my graphics card handle DynDOLOD well? Is this mod GPU or CPU heavy?

 

Thanks


Edited by drift123, 13 March 2018 - 08:17 PM.

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#5 sheson

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Posted 14 March 2018 - 04:43 AM

1) DynDOLOD adds LOD for objects past the loaded cells. DynDOLOD does not change any trees in the loaded cells, their animation and everything else should stay intact.

 

2) From the manual: There is no need to generate LOD just because a new mod was added. New objects may be missing LOD, but that is only a visual problem.

Obviously it makes more sense to first install mods and then generate LOD for them.

 

3) If a setup can run Skyrim and its vanilla LOD it can also handle updated LOD. The first concern of drastically improved LODs is more system memory usage.

From the description: DynDOLOD offers a plethora of settings and options, the visual result and performance impact is fully at the hands of the enthusiast modder.

From the FAQ: Performance: Low - almost none. Medium - like SkyFalls + SDO but 1000x better visuals. High - certainly yes. RTFM to adjust every detail yourself.

See the Performance section in the manual for pointers.


Edited by sheson, 14 March 2018 - 04:44 AM.

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#6 drift123

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Posted 14 March 2018 - 05:11 AM

Thank you...I have done some more reading and am starting to understand how LOD works. At first I found it a bit confusing.


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#7 drift123

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Posted 15 March 2018 - 12:14 AM

I have successfully generated the DynDOLOD.esp . When activated in Nexus Mod Manager, should this mod overwrite all other mod files? It conflicted with 'A Quality World Map' which I have already installed. For the time being I've let DynDOLOD overwrite, as I assume its files need priority.

 

Thanks


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#8 sheson

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Posted 15 March 2018 - 03:00 AM

See the manual Load/Overwrite Orders section

 

The data in the DynDOLOD plugin can only "conflict" if the load order changed after generating. The patcher uses the highest overwrites to create records.


Edited by sheson, 15 March 2018 - 03:01 AM.

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#9 drift123

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Posted 15 March 2018 - 04:19 AM

I've read that section and I believe I've installed it correctly. I'm not sure if that was a "conflict" in the technical sense, I just meant it asked to overwrite files.

 

Specifically it was asking to overwrite meshes from 'A Quality World Map - World Objects Add-On' (which adds bridges, silos, etc to the map) with DynDOLOD meshes.

 

So if I understand it correctly: the Vanilla meshes are over written by 'A Quality World Map''s meshes (or simply have priority), which then are to be overwritten by DynDOLOD_Output's generated meshes (which DynDOLOD generates using the 'A Quality World Map' meshes in my load order).

 

Also, I've tested out the mod in-game and so far it seems to be working without any issues. However, I did not generate the Ultra Trees LOD yet which may help the stuttering. I decided I should understand the basics first...


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#10 sheson

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Posted 15 March 2018 - 06:16 AM

Yes, you understand correctly.

 

The map typically uses static object LOD Level 16 to for the map. The Add-On - New World Map Objects is simply a few old style vanilla LOD Level 16 bto files with a couple additions. Existing static object LOD *.bto files do not matter for LOD generation.

 

Generated LOD meshes and generated LOD atlas textures should always load after any other mod and not be overwritten by anything else. This will ensure the improved object LOD from DynDOLOD will also show on the map (and the far distance).

 


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#11 drift123

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Posted 15 March 2018 - 08:26 PM

So I completely uninstalled DynDOLOD and then reinstalled. This time I generated LOD with Ultra Trees, High settings. I made sure to install on a save game that was Pre-DynDOLOD to avoid any issues. I'm fairly sure I have installed it correctly.

 

Good news:

Trees and objects look great and are detailed at long distance. My system handled the performance on High no problem and I get a solid 60 FPS and it never dips even sprinting on horse.

 

Bad news:

The stuttering problem still remains when crossing cell borders, even though my FPS does not dip below 60. The only thing that seems to help this is to turn 'Distant Object Detail' down. The lower the setting the lesser the stuttering. However, I noticed that even on Vanilla unmodded Skyrim (oldrim) with all graphics settings lowest, the stutter is still there. Its just that when Distant object detail is on 'Low' the stutter is so brief as to be generally unnoticeable, unless I purposely run in circles around a cell border intersection while panning camera in third person. If I turn 'Distant Object Detail' to Ultra with all other settings low, the stutter becomes quite noticeable.

 

I noticed that in first person the stutters are still there, but much less and so quick as to be generally unnoticeable. I've run tests and my system has no CPU/GPU/VRAM/RAM bottlenecks and temps are good. I do notice the stutters correspond with a slight spike in I/O disk usage, but this could simply be due to the game loading in new cells.

 

I've seen many threads with others describing this same issue with better rigs and GPU's than mine, such as this one:

http://forum.step-pr...good-rig/page-5

 

It seems to me like this is a game engine issue, since many others with high-end rigs have the same issue. My confusion is that if fTreeLoadDistance is what causes this, then why would the stutter remain using Ultra Trees workaround?

 

I set TreeLOD=0 and TreeFullFallBack=1. I used High settings and 'Generate Tree LOD' was grayed out. 'Tree' mesh rules were the default: Static LOD4 for LOD4, Billboard for LOD 8 and LOD 16. With DynDOLOD Ultra Trees installed I see trees in the distance regardless of how low I set fTreeLoadDistance. Why would the stutter still persist? Is the cell border issue strictly related to trees or does the game engine have an issue with loading object LOD too?

 

Another thing I tried was setting fBlockLevel0Distance, fBlockLevel1Distance, fBlockMaximumDistance, fSplitDistanceMult, and fTreeLoadDistance all to 0. I then toggled off all LOD using tll. Even then, there was a cell border stutter, although greatly reduced. I tried this after installing Skymills + SkyFalls and Ultra Trees DynDOLOD though, so I don't know if the LOD was truly disabled or not.

 

This problem is quite annoying because my PC should be able to run this game well. If I can resolve this specific stutter issue then my performance otherwise is great. Turning down Distant Object Detail helps but isn't a true solution...hoping that there is one.


Edited by drift123, 15 March 2018 - 08:32 PM.

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#12 sheson

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Posted 16 March 2018 - 03:17 AM

Do not useTreeFullFallBack=1.

Do not use SkyFalls/Mills.

Use and setup ENBoost correctly.

Read the Performance section in the manual.

 

If there is cell border stutter with LOD disabled it usually means there is a lot of stuff happening in the loaded cells, e.g. many full models, large textures need to be loaded.


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#13 drift123

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Posted 16 March 2018 - 07:00 AM

Alright I'll try those. I already have ENBoost working as well as the memory patch. I've tried changing ReservedMemoryMB to 64 - 1024 MB in enblocal.ini and saw no difference. My VRAM has lots of headroom as I only have a few mods loaded the only added textures being Realistic Water Two and SMIM meshes.

 

When LOD was disabled the Sky Falls/Mills objects were still visible, so maybe that adds to the stutter.

 

Have you or others entirely eliminated the stuttering in your experience or is it really a matter of reducing the stutter so much that it is not bothersome? In other words, is this an engine limitation that can only be largely mitigated but not resolved? I'm thinking my expectations of complete smoothness may be too high for this old game engine.


Edited by drift123, 16 March 2018 - 07:02 AM.

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#14 sheson

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Posted 16 March 2018 - 08:15 AM

Use Medium preset. Use Billboards for LOD4 insead of 3D tree LOD
 
Skyim can run without loading stutter. I find it best to set ReservedMemoryMB to any value with the mouse rotator thingy while using cursor keys to move to find the sweet spot.
Test with CrashFixes UseOsAllocators=1. Use BethINIs.

Best to find a recent guide for best performance for whatever OS you are using.
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#15 drift123

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Posted 16 March 2018 - 05:46 PM

Okay well I'll keep tweaking until I hopefully find what works. Thanks for your assistance and an epic mod.


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