Nvidia's "GeForce Experience" automated PC game optimizer hits beta

By on December 6, 2012, 4:30 PM

Announced earlier this year, Nvidia's "GeForce Experience" has finally hit beta -- albeit in limited scope. The service is open to the first 10,000 users who register, after which signups will be closed until Nvidia has a chance to analyze user feedback and squash major bugs. Along with being restricted to a relatively small number of users, the service currently only supports 32 games played with Fermi and Kepler GPUs, though more titles will be added in the coming weeks.

For those unfamiliar with the service, the GeForce Experience is an initiative that is intended to help folks run games with the most optimized settings for their hardware. According to a survey conducted last year, more than 80% of users play PC games with default settings -- presumably because they simply don't know any better. Nvidia notes that even enthusiasts have to spend time -- sometimes hours -- researching and tinkering to get the most out of a game.

The company aims to simplify that process with the GeForce Experience, which is installed as a local client and taps into cloud-based supercomputers to determine and download the best in-game settings for your machine. In addition to automating the configuration of quality settings, the GeForce Experience software streamlines driver updates by automatically downloading them in the background and prompting you when they're ready to be installed.

Nvidia outlined the six-step process it uses to test each game:

  1. We start with expert game testers that play through key levels of the game (indoors, outdoors, multiplayer etc.) to get a feel for the load and how different settings affect quality and performance.
  2. The game tester identifies an area for automated testing. This area will be from a demanding portion of the game. We don’t always select the absolute worst case since they tend to distort the results.
  3. As part of the game evaluation, the expert game tester will identify an appropriate FPS target. Fast paced games typically require higher FPS. Slower games lower FPS. We also define and test against a minimum FPS to minimize stuttering. The average framerate target is typically between 40-60 FPS, the minimum 25 FPS.
  4. The most difficult part of OPS is deciding which settings to turn on and which to leave off in a performance limited setting. This is done by analyzing each setting and assigning them quality and performance weights. The game tester compares how each setting (eg. shader, texture, shadow) and each quality level (eg. low, medium, high) affects image quality and performance. These are stored as weights which are fed to the automation algorithm.
  5. From here on the testing is automated. The GeForce Experience supercomputer tests the game by turning on settings until the FPS target is reached. This is done in the order of maximum bang for the buck; settings that provide the most visual benefit and least stress on the GPU (eg. texture quality) are turned on first; settings that are performance intensive but visually subtle (eg. 8xAA) are enabled last.
  6. Finally, the GeForce Experience supercomputer goes through and tests thousands of hardware configurations for the given game. Unique settings are generated for each CPU, GPU, and monitor resolution combination.



User Comments: 16

Got something to say? Post a comment
Guest said:

Awosm but I just got my 7970 ge gpu so.... But I promise when nvidia get the fastest gpu I will return to nvidia gpu

1 person liked this | 9Nails, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Better than my approach, build a new computer and throw thousands of dollars at it.

Littleczr Littleczr said:

Ummm I just tried it. I recommended I turn off some graphic features in bf3 when I run with them on perfectly fine. I uninstall it failed.

fimbles fimbles said:

Did not have to register strangely..

Dont think it works with SLI though, recommends I turn down settings in BO2 when im getting 80 to 120 fps.

cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I only have one game installed that they are currently supporting. I'm afraid I wouldn't be of much help.

Guest said:

Only works with fermi and kepler... no info for my SLI 260GTX setup. Booooo...

cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Ummm I just tried it. I recommended I turn off some graphic features in bf3 when I run with them on perfectly fine. I uninstall it failed.
Ummm, apparently you know how to optimize your own settings. If so then this app does not really have you in mind. Since the app is still in Beta, I can't see how you would so quickly label it as a failure. If the app adds anything to a default user experience, I could only see it as a win. However the final judgment should remain open until the app has at least been released for everyone.

@guest above with the SLI 260GTX, nVidia has not even fine tuned their app with newly released cards and you are booing them for not supporting antiquated hardware. Honestly why would nVidia think about creating a future app with the idea of helping people who has already been gaming 4 years without help? Especially when you think about the 260GTX not being a DX11 card, DX11 is the future. I've got an idea, when nVidia releases their app you can upgrade to a DX11 card that they will support. Maybe by then their game index will be larger as well.

1 person liked this | LNCPapa LNCPapa said:

It told me to drop the resolution of all my games to 1920x1080 Except Skyrim, it was okay with that at 2560.

misor misor said:

It told me to drop the resolution of all my games to 1920x1080 Except Skyrim, it was okay with that at 2560.

lol, self-pity: my 20" led monitor resolution = 1600x 900

1 person liked this | Adhmuz Adhmuz, TechSpot Paladin, said:

"Nvidia notes that even enthusiasts have to spend time -- sometimes hours -- researching and tinkering to get the most out of a game." Hours Man! Hours!... Seriously they need to find better researchers, most high end cards play any console port maxed out easily, and chances are the only thing that needs to be turned down is MSAA. I can't remember the last time I spent more then three times in the video settings screen and most of the time its twice or less. I know this thing isn't for me, I also run ATI hardware, but for those who buy mid range gpus default settings are usually appropriate. It just seems like a lot for very little, I can only assume it will be integrated with their drivers eventually too.

Guest said:

Installed it. It does not recognise any of my games. Even when I point to all the game directories. Same thing.... "Sorry we could not find any supported games"

I have at least 5 from the list.

Seems they have a lot of bugs to work out still.

Guest said:

Nice, what we need... Another kind of Razer's Hardware DRM. Just wait for it. Can I guess? Some ads, a lot of data mining, constant internet connection, and maybe... locking out features or even worse, GPUs without connection, later on... Good luck, Sheeple. I know, it's useful and my imagination runs wild!

_-_someone_-_ _-_someone_-_ said:

And here is a direct download link use it while it still works:

[link]

1 person liked this | technogiant said:

Visuals vs Fluidity

I'm a little late to the party here but have some thoughts on this I wanted to air.

Firstly kudos to Nvidia and their drive to enhance the gaming experience (albeit business orientated) this and there recent release of "active vsync" are all very welcome, even their much derided and proprietary physx does greatly enhance the gaming experience (at the risk of starting a flame war what ever did happen to amd's attempt to push bullet physics?)

But back to "Geforce Experience" I like the idea and see it having great value for beginners but personally would prefer to choose and adjust my own settings to get my own particular balance of visual quality vs game fluidity. Personally I prefer to go for slightly higher frame rates as I hate slow downs and stutter.

This all got me thinking about what we actually want as gamers, that is great visuals together with fluid game play experience and how difficult that is to achieve given a static set of graphical quality settings and diverse game play environments.

It struck me though how developments such as "geforce experience" and "active" settings could be brought together in a dynamic system that would give the best visuals possible and maintain smooth game play.

The gamer would simply plugin their desired frame rate, the Geforce experience aspect would set the baseline settings appropriate for the gamers hardware and during game play "active" settings would be altered dynamically dependent on the frame rate being produced, settings such as ambient occlusion level, anti-aliasing level, texture quality which affect frame rates could be actively altered to stabilize the frame rate close to the selected level.

Don't know how much of this could be possible, just my thoughts on whats needed for smooth and simple game play.

Guest said:

A lot of the games I've played in current gen will have on average about 3 to 4 options in the settings that will require a restart of the game, and in most cases these settings are the ones that are worth tinkering with if I want to see changes in the frame rates. Trying to dynamiclly alter such settings could cause the game to inexplicably shut down during game play which would be an absolute nightmare to deal with.

I dont think the idea of dynamically altering settings is a possibility just yet, unless the guys building the graphic engines want to rebuild or alter their current code on the way in-game assets such as textures and effects are loaded.

I would also assume that if such a change was to happen Nvidia and ATi would most likely have to alter the current drivers or hardware design associated with teething issues of any new software.

If they did manage to do it however it would be an absolute treat, especially for the people that are not that keen on settings and want to just play the game.

Mr_Grey_Wolf Mr_Grey_Wolf said:

Visuals vs Fluidity

I'm a little late to the party here but have some thoughts on this I wanted to air.

Firstly kudos to Nvidia and their drive to enhance the gaming experience (albeit business orientated) this and there recent release of "active vsync" are all very welcome, even their much derided and proprietary physx does greatly enhance the gaming experience (at the risk of starting a flame war what ever did happen to amd's attempt to push bullet physics?)

But back to "Geforce Experience" I like the idea and see it having great value for beginners but personally would prefer to choose and adjust my own settings to get my own particular balance of visual quality vs game fluidity. Personally I prefer to go for slightly higher frame rates as I hate slow downs and stutter.

This all got me thinking about what we actually want as gamers, that is great visuals together with fluid game play experience and how difficult that is to achieve given a static set of graphical quality settings and diverse game play environments.

It struck me though how developments such as "geforce experience" and "active" settings could be brought together in a dynamic system that would give the best visuals possible and maintain smooth game play.

The gamer would simply plugin their desired frame rate, the Geforce experience aspect would set the baseline settings appropriate for the gamers hardware and during game play "active" settings would be altered dynamically dependent on the frame rate being produced, settings such as ambient occlusion level, anti-aliasing level, texture quality which affect frame rates could be actively altered to stabilize the frame rate close to the selected level.

Don't know how much of this could be possible, just my thoughts on whats needed for smooth and simple game play.

Exactly, my toughts when I heard about this "geforce experience" could it be that good?

If Yes, then it would great, amazing.

If they gonna spend ours playing trough games, and analyze settings, why not make map over the whole game, and they will know which parts/scenarios in the game that puts much pressure on the GPU (and after that analyze what setting to dynamically tinker with in real-time to get most effective "good visuals/smooth game play", in that specific area/scenario in the game.)

Load all comments...

Add New Comment

TechSpot Members
Login or sign up for free,
it takes about 30 seconds.
You may also...
Get complete access to the TechSpot community. Join thousands of technology enthusiasts that contribute and share knowledge in our forum. Get a private inbox, upload your own photo gallery and more.