How do I increase the size of my AGP aperture?

By groudon39
Feb 13, 2004
  1. Hi all, first time poster here!

    I have a question for anyone who's got an answer. I have recently upgraded my graphics card from a 64MB Nvidia GeForce4MX 440 to my current Radeon 9600XT/256MB. I play Flight Simulator 2004 on my computer and was noticing that there wasn't that much of an increase in performance with the new card:( So I asked one of my flying buddies who's a hardware techie to look at my system report.

    He noticed that my AGP aperture size is at 64MB instead of a larger number whatever it should be??? I have an "Asus P4SD-LA" motherboard and just updated my BIOS recently.

    Thing is, is that there's no way that I can find to "open" up the aperture to make it bigger, I couldn't do this in the original BIOS settings and can't do it in these BIOS settings either :( If anyone on here knows how to make this work so that I just didn't waste 200 bucks on a card please let me in on it? :)

    I'm not that versed in computer lingo so you may have to bear with me on some stuff. Thanks and have a great day/evening/night whichever applies. groudon39
  2. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    With that much video memory the AGP aperture should be the least of your worries. You should try other tweaks for your video performance first.
  3. groudon39

    groudon39 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 16

    I applied all the tweaks I could from the tweak guide for my card from this site. With that aperture being so small, is that hurting me when I'm playing Flight Simulator, or is it something that I'm going to have to change later on? 64MB just seems a little low to me for such a demanding game as Flight Simulator :( What else would you suggest I do? Like I said, I'm not that experienced in my tech abilities, but I'm willing to learn.
  4. Rick

    Rick TechSpot Staff Posts: 4,573   +65

    Flight Sim 2004 should run very well on your system.

    I have a 9600XT and it runs perfectly.

    Have you updated your drivers for your video card?

    Download the newest catalyst drivers. The drivers that come with your video card are often outdated and very crummy performance wise.
  5. groudon39

    groudon39 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 16

    Yes, I just got the video card about a week or so ago and had the 4.1 drivers to install for it, and I just downloaded the 4.2 drivers and going to install them right now. The card does a fairly good job, but I know that it can do a lot better and that's what I'm trying to figure out? Thanks, groudon39
  6. PreservedSwine

    PreservedSwine TS Rookie Posts: 325

    These days, AGP aperture size has virtually no affect on performance...need to look elsewhere....

    Have you run any synthetic benchmarks? Try 3dM'01 and 3dM'03 to get a handle on things....

    In your ATI Control Panel, are you running (Under Direct 3D) with "Smoothvision" on? These are your FSAA and AF settings... might want to set them to "appl. preference", and if the game menu asks (I don't have this one) choose not to run any AA..

    Be sure "Vert Sync." is set to "off" also

    The card you have is *much* faster than your old one...IS this game a resource hog?
  7. groudon39

    groudon39 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 16

    Ok, here are my card settings:

    Direct3D Settings

    Anti-Aliasing- 6X
    Anisotrophic Filtering- App. Pref
    Texture Pref- High Quality
    MipMap Detail Level- High Quality
    Vertical Sync- Always Off
    TRUFORM- App. Pref

    OpenGL Settings

    Anti-Aliasing- 6X
    Anisotrophic Filtering- App. Pref
    Texture Pref.- High Quality
    MipMap Detail Level- High Quality
    Vertical Sync- Always Off
    TRUFORM- App. Pref

    Overdrive is enabled
    Overdrive temperature monitor stays around 38* F
    Overdrive MHz level is at: 526MHz

    SMARTGART AGP Setting- 8x

    Fast Write is ON

    Catalyst Drivers: Version 04.2

    My normal viewing resolution is 1280x1024 @ 32-bit

    Flight Simulator is a demanding game, but I know that my card can handle it, even my old 64MB card handled it fairly well. I'm not saying that the Radeon card I have now it's any good or doesn't do a better job, I'm just saying that I know it can be better. I just need a point in the general direction.

    Thanks groudon39
  8. Didou

    Didou Bowtie extraordinair! Posts: 4,274

    I thought flight simulators were a lot more dependant on overall system performance rather then just the VGA card.

    If you have the same system & only changed the VGA card, don't expect performance to sky-rocket.

    Edit : I didn't see your post right before mine. Your AA is set to 6x. That's what's killing performance. Set it lower or even to 0x.
  9. groudon39

    groudon39 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 16

    Addition to previous post:

    My in game settings are as follows

    Anti-Aliasing- Off
    Filtering- Trilinear
    Render to Texture- Enabled (has to be)
    Mip Mapping Quality- Maxed
    Hardware Rendered Lights- Maxed
    Transform and Lighting- Enabled

    Sorry for the lengthy previous post, but wanted to post everything I could think of as to not leave anyone guessing.

    Thanks, groudon39
  10. groudon39

    groudon39 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 16

    If I lower my AA, won't it make my planes and stuff jagged? They are really sharp and clean right now. Like I said earlier, I'm not to familiar with video card settings so it might sound like a stupid question :eek: Thanks, groudon39
  11. PreservedSwine

    PreservedSwine TS Rookie Posts: 325

    Yes, you'll get a few jaggies, but 6x is a performance KILLER!! try 2x or don't have a top of the line card, so MAXING out FSAA will destroy performance....

    Also, your resolution is 1280x1024.... if your running 4xFSAA, you can knock that down to 1024 x 768, improve performance, and still not get any jaggies:grinthumb

    Me thinks running 6xFSAA and 1280x1024 on an R9600xt is asking too much in a new flight'll have to back off a few of those settings, which ones is really up to you:)
  12. groudon39

    groudon39 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 16

    Ok, I will keep my desktop resolution at 1280x1024 and lower my resolution to 1024x768 in game with 4x AA and see how it goes, but I really love the 1280x1024 in game. Hopefully it won't look to much more different, thanks, groudon39
  13. groudon39

    groudon39 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 16

    Well, lowering my resolution and the AA didn't help any. I'm still only getting about an average of 14 FPS. Hell, I was getting that with my 64MB card????? Granted the graphics look better, but I was hoping for smoother gameplay with this supposedly better card? I ran the Aquamark3 benchmark utility and got these scores:

    GFX- 2412
    CPU- 8004
    AquaMark Score- 20974

    I don't know if these scores are good or not cause I'm ignorant when it comes to these benchmarking programs.

    Just wanted to let you all know what's going on with it. groudon39
  14. MrGaribaldi

    MrGaribaldi TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 2,512


    Could you test the game with 6x AA, 4x AA and no AA and record the framerates you're getting?
    If FS9 doesn't support benchmarking like that, use Fraps...
    That way we'll know if it's your system that's slowing you down, or if it's the graphics card/setting...

    Are you running any programs in the background when your playing? If yes, which programs?

    You should be seeing leaps and bounds of increased performance when switching from a GF4 440MX to a 9600XT
  15. groudon39

    groudon39 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 16

    Well, that AquaMark3 program isn't very good, at least the free version isn't! As far as the FRAPS program, I'm not entirely sure as to how to use it? I tried to save a video after downloading it and it was all messed up in Windows Media Player? FPS's with it on was averaging about 14 or so, which is better than what I got with the 64MB card, but not to much better. If there's any other programs or utilities I could use to give you all a better understanding of my woes, let me know, and I'll try to get them. I have dial up internet so gigantic downloads are a no-no for me. groudon39
  16. PreservedSwine

    PreservedSwine TS Rookie Posts: 325

    fraps is ok, but don't try and record Video, your fps will become a slideshow for sure...Just use it to display current fps in the corner of the screen...

    I have a few suggestions which I hope will help...

    Since AA settings are NOT having any influence on your in-game fps, the bottlneck must not lie there, so in the interest of troubleshooting, leave AA set to "off" in BOTH the in-game menu, AND your ATI control Panel....We'll use the process of elimination here..

    Set the in game option "Hardware Rendered Lights" to something less than maxed...You may also want to set the "Transform and Light" option as low as possible...

    I'm curious to see how these settings affect gameplay.

    Anyway, fiddle w/ those, and other options, but only one at a order to find the guilty party:cool:
  17. groudon39

    groudon39 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 16

    I think that I may have found my performance hogger.

    I thought that I had all of my ethernet adapters and extra drives (like my 6-in-1 memory card reader) disabled but I didn't. I disabled those along with the secondary (ghost) video card since there's no reason to have it enabled with just one monitor :) I disabled all the extra weight that I could and updated my onboard sound drivers and I've noticed a BIG difference in smoother play. :p

    I knew it was something simple that I was overlooking, it's always like that with me.

    I used FRAPS and averaged out the Dawn, Day, Dusk and Night time FPS's in New York City which is the most FPS sucking place there is on the sim. Out of all of my averages I compiled them and ended up with a composite average of 34.125 FPS. Which is a hell of a lot better than the 64MB card did at 11.322 FPS.

    Thanks for the help everyone. I appreciate it. I will still lower the rendered lights from 8 to 6, that shouldn't make it look any worse and I might pick up another frame or two :D groudon39
  18. MrGaribaldi

    MrGaribaldi TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 2,512

    Glad to see you fixed the problem :)

    Now enjoy flying without jaggies at ok speeds :)
  19. Steg

    Steg TS Rookie Posts: 269

    I seriously hoped thats fixed your aquamark 3 scores.
    20k is about average for a 5600 non-ultra, not a new 9600XT.
    Im scoring a nice round 32k - which is more what your machine should be scoring. (see below)

  20. groudon39

    groudon39 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 16

    Well, I had my resolution and all other settings at what I play the flight sim in to see how it stacked up against that, I didn't have my settings at the default for the Aquamark3 benchmark. I will change the settings around to the configuration that is has in the benchmark and then repost the scores here. groudon39
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