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Old 01-21-2020, 09:13 PM   #1
AlpineGTA
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Default I'm new here.

Hi,

I'm new to DCS and flight sims in general (apart from playing Apache Gunship on a Commodore-64 back in the eighties and Ace Combat 7 in PSVR - which don't really count, obviously! ), but I've always been into aviation (I was an air cadet as a teenager) and having recently acquired a couple of old work PCs - one broken, one redundant, I decided to scrape something together from both and give DCS a try, after watching lots of YouTube vids over the past year or so.

I've not had a home PC for years, since I sit in front of one at work all day (I've always been a Playstation console gamer), so I'm not fully up to speed on what the latest PC tech is.

Anyway, I've cobbled together something running an i7 - not sure what version, 8GB DDR3 RAM; I don't know what the motherboard is but it's a 2012 Dell XPS PC upgraded from Windows 7 to 10. I didn't want to spend extravagant amounts of cash on it since I was just trying it out to see if I got the taste for it, but I've upgraded the power supply to 700W, added a 500GB SSD and upgraded the graphics card with a XFX - AMD Radeon RX 580 GTS Black Edition 8GB GDDR5, which is I believe a reasonable mid-range card.

At the moment I'm using a Thrustmaster T.Flight Hotas that I bought for Ace Combat 7, which feels a bit imprecise and tricky to use in DCS. I'm thinking of upgrading to a T16000M.

And to my surprise it runs smoothly with the game set to the default High setting, with only the occasional very minor stutter, mostly when I'm on the ground taxiing. However, when I try any training missions with more going on, like other aircraft, then I'm getting some freezing and putting the settings down to the default Medium seems to cure this. I've ordered more RAM to upgrade it to 16GB, hoping this will allow me to run it on high without stutter or freezing. Also, I should say, I'm running it plugged into my 55" Highsense 4K TV and have DCS running set at the same resolution, which is probably rather too high! But otherwise I have to run DCS within a window, if I want the mouse to line up when in full screen mode, which spoils the immersion for me.

Speaking of immersion, I'm curious, has anyone played Ace Combat 7 in PSVR and DCS in VR? I know Ace Combat is arcade (I'm not comparing) but I was curious how the resolution compares? Just to give me an idea of what I can expect, because I'm thinking of maybe investing in an Oculus Rift S at some point in the future.

Thanks for reading my long and rambling post!
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Old 01-22-2020, 05:55 AM   #2
Lange_666
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There's a VR section in this forum, to be found here: https://forums.eagle.ru/forumdisplay.php?f=497 (lot's of stuff to read for the next couple of days).
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Old 01-22-2020, 11:34 AM   #3
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Welcome to the Forum... The people here are really very helpful. As a noob myself, I've spent a lot of time reading various threads as well.

Good luck
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Old 01-22-2020, 03:35 PM   #4
AlpineGTA
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Thanks for the welcome guys. I look forward to finding my way around. There's lots to learn!

One thing I am struggling with is the SU25-T training missions, particularly the bombing runs. I'm having a nightmare seeing the green hoops that it makes you fly though because of the terrible reflections in the HUD and canopy. I can't see the final hoop, even following the way point and without that I can't even start the bombing run!
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Old 01-22-2020, 09:21 PM   #5
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Welcome to the forum!
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Old 01-22-2020, 09:25 PM   #6
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Hey Alpine!


I think you'll find, that in general, most people will gladly help you with any question you have. Of course, always try to find the answers first.
I find that YouTube almost always has a video explaining exactly what you need to know... tutorials on basic setup, VR examples, etc...
Its funny to see the new guys get in a jet, cold and dark, and say... "now what"? What key to you hit for auto-start? Sure, auto-start may exist, but you really shouldn't use it. Go to YouTube and lookup the startup sequence for the plane you plan on flying.... you'll learn them in no time. Having a clickable cockpit is really amazing, some models don't have them, but most do.


I then usually try to fly the tutorials (launched from the DCS menu) that come with the plane I'm flying... then, as the instructor walks you through the tutorial, you'll find there are certain things you might want to have mapped to your joystick (or HOTAS).... its at this point that I often stop and map those keys to my equipment. Try to map your HOTAS buttons to items that the pilot would normally have only on their HOTAS. The reason for this is, when you are in combat, the ability to quickly change a weapon for example, is something you don't want to be clicking the cockpit buttons for... while, something like lowering your landing gear might be something you can do leisurely.. if you get my meaning. The point is... as you go through the tutorials, you'll find that you learn which keys you need to map. Then from there, you'll try to keep consistent in how you map things with other aircraft (I do typically map gear, brakes, speed brakes, flaps and canopy to the same set of buttons in almost every aircraft).


So, I do fly in VR exclusively. Hopefully your specs will get in in the air with minimal graphics settings. as Lange_666 mentioned, you should be able to learn more about that in the VR forum. I've used the Oculus Rift and now I use the Oculus Rift S, and its amazing. I'll never go back to 2D. Eagle Dynamics has announced they will be implementing a new VR API (Vulkan)... I'm looking forward to that for sure.


As for your issue with seeing the green hoops... perhaps try going into 'active pause', I think its (LShift + LWin + Pause). Then go into external view (F2) and pan around to find it? Other than that, I'm not sure.


Anywho, I hope you enjoy it... give the multiplayer servers a visit, like Aerobatics Online... it will give you the experience without the stress of combat... If you move to a combat server, take a look at getting SRS Radio installed... there are many tutorials out there...

Keep the burners lit!

-Cru
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Old 01-23-2020, 03:34 AM   #7
AlpineGTA
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All great advice, thanks very much for the tips. I've already found some good YouTube tutorials that explain the SU-25 training missions in a bit more depth than those in the game. Really useful.
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Old 01-23-2020, 12:51 PM   #8
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For your Hardware: upgrading to 16GB should increase overall performance, though I would try to set the resolution to FullHD ( 1920x1080p ) and check the Fullscreen option.
Worst case reduce water and shadows.
Maybe try this thread/guide as a starting point:
https://forums.eagle.ru/showthread.php?t=201600
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Old 01-23-2020, 02:45 PM   #9
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Keep in mind that adding more RAM can only help with load times and smoother game play in situations where 8GB was not enough and system stuttered or freezed. It won't give higher fps per se.
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Old 01-23-2020, 03:36 PM   #10
AlpineGTA
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I replaced my 8GB RAM with 16GB yesterday and I couldn't believe the difference it made. Loading times are vastly improved and I'm no longer getting any stutter. I can even have cockpit mirrors on. I'm guessing it's probably one of the biggest, relatively cheap changes you can make to get a good performance improvement to your system. I've no idea what my frame rate is though.

I did have my resolution set to something crazy, like 4096 x 2160 or somethin to match the resolution of my TV because I was finding, if I set DCS to a lower resolution but ran it in full screen mode, the cursor wasn't lining up with the menus and switches on screen. However, I've set it to, I think, 2160 x 1080 (I'm not at home now, I need to check later) and am running it in full screen mode. I've found that if I briefly go into Windows 10 settings and close it again, without doing anything, but then go back in to full screen DCS, the cursor lines up. I don't know why - some weird quirk. But at least I can run it at a more sensible resolution and in full screen mode now.

I should put my PC specs and settings in my sig. when I get a minute, in case it helps other noobs.

Cheers again for all the advice.
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