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Doom 3 on Dual 2Ghz/9800


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#41 GlendaAdams

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Posted 03 March 2005 - 09:16 AM

A few other things...

The Altivec code in Doom 3 is custom, not a specific library.

5.1 audio isn't in the initial release of Doom 3 Mac.  The hardware support on the Mac is still in its infancy (so few people have a DTS decoder hooked up to their Mac that the built-in optical audio out just wasn't worth supporting initially), and we wanted to make sure we can get it working well on devices like the Griffin Firewave 5.1 box.  We're definitely planning to add 5.1 support in the future.  Right now Doom 3 is CoreAudio, although its possible it will move to OpenAL at some point.

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#42 ehuelga

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Posted 03 March 2005 - 09:38 AM

flargh, on March 3rd 2005, 09:50 AM, said:

…especially on a Cinema Display…

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Very informative article Pete, thanks. How is support for widescreen displays?
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#43 dj phat 2000

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Posted 03 March 2005 - 10:16 AM

Which would you say is better there Glenda, Core Audio or OpenAL?  And I am guessing it is not a hard thing to just add 5.1 Audio to the game, from the way you describe it.  Also, I was reading the MacWorld article on this and they said that Nvidia Cards would see a bit better performance then the ATi cards.  Same situation as is with the PC side.  Only that the PC side shows a MUCH bigger gap between the cards.   My question is, what is up with the Mac drivers and these cards?  Like are we just really behind the curve here or is the clock speed of our cards effecting the FPS of the game, like whats what about.  I'm a noob so, HELP.  LOL.  :)

Also from what else I can understand, the game code runs VERY well.  Like pretty much the same or what you would expect from what the PC side shows.  That the problem is in the graphics part on the Mac side.  I am wondering from the looks of things, there would be no improvement had this game been developed on the Mac first.  Like, the game code itself does not run much faster via SMP, in other words not even worth the time to code it.  And if our 3D rendering end is not as good as it should be, we would still run slower on the high-end hardware, compared to the PC side.  So, while we may run faster clock for clock, as the AMD chips due over intel.  A 2.5GHz G5 would still not be faster then a PIV 3.6.  Maybe a 3.0 but, the shear clock speed would end up making a difference.  

I also see that the AMD boxes run WICKEDLY faster then the Intel's due.   With a GHz deficit to boot.  Is that on chip memory controller making that much of a difference, or is there something special going on?  Questions that I know are not important.   just wondering.  :)

Can't wait to get the game.  I hope it will be in Apple stores on that date or around it.

#44 Alexandre

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Posted 03 March 2005 - 10:25 AM

GlendaAdams, on March 4th 2005, 02:16 AM, said:

A few other things...

The Altivec code in Doom 3 is custom, not a specific library.

5.1 audio isn't in the initial release of Doom 3 Mac.  The hardware support on the Mac is still in its infancy (so few people have a DTS decoder hooked up to their Mac that the built-in optical audio out just wasn't worth supporting initially), and we wanted to make sure we can get it working well on devices like the Griffin Firewave 5.1 box.  We're definitely planning to add 5.1 support in the future.  Right now Doom 3 is CoreAudio, although its possible it will move to OpenAL at some point.

Glenda

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Cool.  Thanks for the reply.

I'll get it when it comes out (already pre-ordered) and wait patiently for the sound patch from Aspyr.

It's interesting that DTS-encoded audio output is being considered.  I just thought you would be simply sending a 6-channel interleaved PCM stream to Core Audio (which is what all current Mac games I know of with 5.1 audio do, I believe).

#45 ZildjianKX

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Posted 03 March 2005 - 11:22 AM

Quick question,

I read in the article:

Quote

Aspyr has also benchmarked a Power Mac G5 1.8GHz system equipped with an ATI Radeon 9800 Pro Mac Special Edition card -- considered a "mid-range" system for this game -- operating at about 29.6 frames per second, compared to 32 frames per second for a similarly equipped Dell.

Is that running at "standard settings" with the timedemo?  And I guess the special edition card would make no difference since the extra video memory wouldn't be utilized with the compressed textures.

Any word on porting the new Doom 3 expansion pack to the mac?

#46 Alexandre

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Posted 03 March 2005 - 11:23 AM

dj phat 2000, on March 4th 2005, 03:16 AM, said:

Which would you say is better there Glenda, Core Audio or OpenAL?  And I am guessing it is not a hard thing to just add 5.1 Audio to the game, from the way you describe it.

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I hope you don't mind me taking a crack at that question.
OpenAL currently sits on top of Core Audio.  That means you're using Core Audio either way.

From what I've heard (although I could be wrong), id's sound engine has been written with the built-in ability to produce 6 channel audio, which is why I thought it wouldn't be hard to just send those 6 channels to Core Audio (and at least it shouldn't be much harder than handling 2 channels).  Sounds like OpenAL isn't really needed here since id's code already does most of OpenAL's job (for 5.1 audio at least).

You have more intimate control of the sound processing if you do it yourself rather than delegating it to OpenAL.  Also, OpenAL might have a little bit of overhead, but it's probably not noticeable.

OpenAL does have advantages.  OpenAL may change over time to take advantage of things like hardware acceleration (sometime in the far future) or enhancements to Core Audio.  Also, OpenAL implementations can be written to adapt to your multichannel speaker setup (5.1, 6.1, or 7.1 for example) or new more advanced audio hardware as they become available.  Currently, the Mac OS X version of OpenAL just sits on top of Core Audio and does everything in software.

#47 flargh

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Posted 03 March 2005 - 12:18 PM

ehuelga, on March 3rd 2005, 10:38 AM, said:

Very informative article Pete, thanks. How is support for widescreen displays?

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Video support in this game is, in a word, awesome, thanks to Aspyr.

All you do is hold down the command key when you launch the game and you can specify custom resolutions not built-in to the game's video settings. You can also specify which screen you want to use, if you're running multiple displays, and even set specific refresh rates. And although there's a setting for this in the game's setup as well, that command screen offers you a choice of full-screen or windowed modes.
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#48 ehuelga

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Posted 03 March 2005 - 12:32 PM

flargh, on March 3rd 2005, 01:18 PM, said:

Video support in this game is, in a word, awesome, thanks to Aspyr.

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Bless those busy little Texans! :thumbsup:
The commute from Mill Valley to Cupertino is a real bitch.

#49 WSTE_M

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Posted 03 March 2005 - 12:41 PM

flargh, on March 3rd 2005, 07:18 PM, said:

Video support in this game is, in a word, awesome, thanks to Aspyr.

All you do is hold down the command key when you launch the game and you can specify custom resolutions not built-in to the game's video settings. You can also specify which screen you want to use, if you're running multiple displays, and even set specific refresh rates. And although there's a setting for this in the game's setup as well, that command screen offers you a choice of full-screen or windowed modes.

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Woohoo!!!!  :D  :D

if only I could get a Radeon x800 this month...

W
blowing stuff up in the virtual world since 1994

#50 dj phat 2000

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Posted 03 March 2005 - 01:00 PM

All great news.  I can't wait to see this game on the 20" Cinema I have at home.  WoHHhoOOo.  Even thought it is only a loner.  :)  I have a 19" LCD as well, that I will use once that 20" goes back to the owner.  1280x1024 should be just fine then I hope.  I am also hoping that ATi and Apple (Nvidia too) can squeeze out about 10FPS more from there drivers in coming updates.  Maybe a X.3.9 update will have some more improvements to get our Frames up to more respectable levels.   If we could be within about 10 or 15 FPS of the PC side, that would be pretty damn good.  Great really, considering the clock difference.

#51 Neanderphil

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Posted 03 March 2005 - 01:05 PM

The game is running with 8x antistropic filtering switched on, this usually gives a massive hit in performance, looking at PC benchmarks by as much as 20 frames per second. Due to the small environments of doom 3 as well i doubt turning this off would create a ridiculous drop in graphcal quality.

#52 Robo-X

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Posted 03 March 2005 - 01:43 PM

Will there be a demo of Doom 3?

//Rob

#53 Algol

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Posted 03 March 2005 - 02:07 PM

ZildjianKX, on March 3rd 2005, 11:22 AM, said:

Quick question,

I read in the article:
Is that running at "standard settings" with the timedemo?  And I guess the special edition card would make no difference since the extra video memory wouldn't be utilized with the compressed textures.

Any word on porting the new Doom 3 expansion pack to the mac?

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I second that... does anyone know? And what advantage would a 9800XT have over a 9800 Pro... I would think a good difference because of the 256MB of VRAM.

How much better will the real game run when compared to the demo that was tested.

#54 flargh

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Posted 03 March 2005 - 02:31 PM

Algol, on March 3rd 2005, 03:07 PM, said:

How much better will the real game run when compared to the demo that was tested.

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I actually answered this in the article. To save you the clickthrough, what I said was that the demo really tasks the computer, and it returned frame rates pretty consistently lower than what I experienced actually playing the game.

I spent most of my time playtesting Doom 3 at 10 x 7 or 12 x 10, and saw very playable framerates. There were slowdowns here and there -- particularly when I'd hit new parts of maps and the game had to hit the disk for more info -- but most of the time it rarely dipped out of the 40s.
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#55 flargh

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Posted 03 March 2005 - 02:37 PM

Neanderphil, on March 3rd 2005, 02:05 PM, said:

The game is running with 8x antistropic filtering switched on, this usually gives a massive hit in performance, looking at PC benchmarks by as much as 20 frames per second. Due to the small environments of doom 3 as well i doubt turning this off would create a ridiculous drop in graphcal quality.

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I actually tested with aniso set to 1 at a few resolutions, and didn't notice a marked difference. So I left it on. Frankly I didn't want to go mucking about either with the advanced options (outside of FSAA) or the built-in stuff like aniso because the game optimizes itself when it first launches, and I figured a lot of players are bound to keep those settings.

There was a practical reason I kept aniso at 8x too -- the most authoritative numbers I saw on the PC side tested at the same resolutions (at least on the high end) and same quality settings I did -- keeping aniso set to 8x, testing with FSAA on and off.
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#56 dj phat 2000

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Posted 03 March 2005 - 03:00 PM

How much does ram play in this?  As I think you tested with 2+GB right?  Would more make a difference?   As, the loading of maps hits the HD, is there a way to tweek that as to push more of the game to load up in ram (if you have it) then to load from the HD.  

Something like a Ram disk, would that help?  

And I know this is most likely too early to ask for. But, if your free enough to maybe tweek it (in game settings).  Maybe there is something specific that slows up the game on the Mac.  Like one of the eye candy options that hit the FPS the most.  If turned off or lowered gives you a good difference in performance.  

Thanks for your input in all this.  You have the ears of many a Mac gamers.  :)

Also, sorry...  Wonder if over clocking the video card is a bad thing like on the PC for this game.  I currently have my X800 clocked at 520MHz CPU and 520MHz Memory.  however, I think I'll wait for the barefeets site to show those results.  :)

#57 mattw

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Posted 03 March 2005 - 03:01 PM

GlendaAdams, on March 3rd 2005, 03:16 PM, said:

A few other things...

The Altivec code in Doom 3 is custom, not a specific library.

5.1 audio isn't in the initial release of Doom 3 Mac.  The hardware support on the Mac is still in its infancy (so few people have a DTS decoder hooked up to their Mac that the built-in optical audio out just wasn't worth supporting initially), and we wanted to make sure we can get it working well on devices like the Griffin Firewave 5.1 box.  We're definitely planning to add 5.1 support in the future.  Right now Doom 3 is CoreAudio, although its possible it will move to OpenAL at some point.

Glenda

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I'm buying the game whatever but I do hope you do get the chance to add support for DTS or Dolby Digital 5.1 via the G5 optical out. Now Apple have added digital out it needs developer support to make surround sound a standard feature on the Mac.

I think the FireWire and USB solutions are great for upgrading but why have digital out yet be force to get a separate PCI card or device for surround in games? After hearing a DVD with DTS 96/24 material on my Logitech Z-5500 speakers I don't want to go back to stereo!
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#58 flargh

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Posted 03 March 2005 - 05:37 PM

dj phat 2000, on March 3rd 2005, 04:00 PM, said:

And I know this is most likely too early to ask for. But, if your free enough to maybe tweek it (in game settings).  Maybe there is something specific that slows up the game on the Mac.  Like one of the eye candy options that hit the FPS the most.  If turned off or lowered gives you a good difference in performance. 

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Right off hand I can tell you that turning off shadows can help, at least if you're running on a Mac that's marginal. The game might turn shadows off completely by default if your configuration is low enough, but if you have a mid-range system, that can help grab a few frames per second here and there.

The benchmarking numbers are there to give you as objective an idea as you really can, under the circumstances, to compare the performance of a high-end Mac and high-end PCs, so I've kept the numbers where the PC guys keep theirs -- I won't be tweaking those extensively, because I don't want to cast any doubt on what I'm seeing.

But you're right -- there's a lot of room for tweaking with this game; there are a ton of options you can modify in game, in its .ini file, etc. to maximize performance. I'm sure you'll be reading a lot more about that in the weeks to come. :)
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#59 Abecedaria

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Posted 03 March 2005 - 06:41 PM

flargh, on March 3rd 2005, 04:37 PM, said:

The benchmarking numbers are there to give you as objective an idea as you really can, under the circumstances, to compare the performance of a high-end Mac and high-end PCs, so I've kept the numbers where the PC guys keep theirs -- I won't be tweaking those extensively, because I don't want to cast any doubt on what I'm seeing.

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I took Peter's numbers and put them into some excel charts. The results are pretty clear: On a DP2.5 G5 with an x800, Doom 3 appears to be GPU bound. This is actually rather good news for several reasons.

First, it means that Aspyr did a great job with CPU optimization, but Apple and ATI probably need to do a LOT of work with OpenGL optimizations. I would hope that with updated drivers, we'll be able to wring much better performance out of Doom 3; perhaps even close to what they have on the PC. If there is any game that Apple should care about performing well on the Mac, it's Doom 3.

I would also bet that this means that we should be seeing much better numbers from GeForce cards as long as nVidia has put some of their Doom 3 optimizations into their Mac drivers. This should make 6800 GT and Ultra owners very happy with their investments.

I have to say that I am VERY disappointed with these benchmarks, but I think it shows that a lot of the performance issues we run into on the Mac is more of a driver/OS issue than a hardware issue. At least with G5's. This does give me some hope that at least it's a problem that's fixable if Apple cares to address it.

Don't hold your breath.

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#60 dj phat 2000

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Posted 03 March 2005 - 10:11 PM

I agree, Aspyr did a great job and given the amount of time from what November, till now.  Great job guys.  Having not played every one of your games, I want to say this maybe the best job on a Port yet.  Having not even played this game.  :lol:  Well, from the looks of these posts here, I'm pretty confident that it is a really good port.  As good as it could get.  Now, we wait for Apple and the hardware/software guys from ATi and Nvidia to get cracking on this.  Cause the future of this engine and games like this is depending on it.  I sure as hell want to play Quake IV on the Mac.  I also hope to do that with the same graphics card I have now, :lol:  

Another note.  Is this game NOT playable on anything other then 10.3.8+?  Cause I remember Apple posting a driver update for ATi X800 cards for this game to improve performance, and it was for 10.3.6.

Thanks for the reply Flargh