3D Gaming Setup Questions

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3D Gaming Setup Questions

Postposted on Sat Sep 10, 2011 9:21 am

Hello,

I am wanting to get into some 3d gaming and have some questions.

First, this is the monitor/vision kit setup I am thinking to buy:
Asus VG236H 23Inch c/w Nvidia 3D Vision Kit
Second, this is my current hardware setup:
Motherboard:
eVGA nForce 790i Ultra SLI w/ DualDDR3
Processor:
Intel(R) Core(TM)2 Quad CPU Q9450 @ 2.66GHz (4 CPUs), ~2.7GHz
Memory:
Corsair 4GB XMS3-1600 DHX PC3-12800 TWIN3X SLI-Ready Dual Channel DDR3 Kit (2 x 2GB)
Hard Drive:
Western Digital Raptor 150 GB
Video Card:
eVGA e-GeForce 9800GTX+ SSC 512MB w/ Dual DVI, HDTV-Out
Power Supply:
Cooler Master Real Power Pro 1250 watt RS-C50-EMBA-D2

Questions
-Can my current card (9800GTX+ SSC 512MB) effectively handle 3d gaming at all? Or do I need to upgrade to a better video card for 3D gaming right off the bat? (A recent driver upgrade to the 9800 suggested that this card has 3d capabilities).

-Would a 590 Classified work with my current motherboard and power supply? Is this card the way to go if I want to have 3-3D monitors setup? Or go to some kind of cheaper solution using 2 or 3 other sli cards?

-Will my current motherboard/cpu still be adequate, or does they too need to be upgraded? I realize I should get another 4 gigs of ram too.

-A while back, I bought a 3D TV and have since then watched damn near every 3d bluray that has been released so far. 3D movies are awesome. Now I have been looking into the potential for 3D on the computer, and so far it looks very promising. There are tons of games already that support full 3D and many of the older games can be converted to 3D via the nvidia cards and graphic software by nvidia. Is 3D gaming even worth the expense and trouble at this point or would it be wise to hold off for awhile?

Thanks for any help, advice, and reality checks... :)
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Re: 3D Gaming Setup Questions

Postposted on Sat Sep 10, 2011 9:42 am

3D gaming is a bit finicky, and not too prevalent at this point. It's still in the novelty phase, imo. If you want to try, you'll need a new graphics card to start with, as your 9800 is going on four years old. A single GeForce GTX 500 series card at least is the way you want to go. Your CPU is also about three years old at this point. You might be able to get by, but a Core i5 processor would give you a nice boost in speed without costing too much. Check out the TR System Guide to get an idea of what's out there now.
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Re: 3D Gaming Setup Questions

Postposted on Sat Sep 10, 2011 10:54 am

IronDogg wrote:This is my current hardware setup:
eVGA nForce 790i Ultra SLI w/ DualDDR3
Intel(R) Core(TM)2 Quad CPU Q9450 @ 2.66GHz (4 CPUs), ~2.7GHz
Corsair 4GB XMS3-1600 DHX PC3-12800 TWIN3X SLI-Ready Dual Channel DDR3 Kit (2 x 2GB)
x eVGA e-GeForce 9800GTX+ SSC 512MB w/ Dual DVI, HDTV-Out
Western Digital Raptor 150 GB
Cooler Master Real Power Pro 1250 watt RS-C50-EMBA-D2

· Will my current motherboard/cpu still be adequate, or do they too need to be upgraded? I realize I should get another 4 gigs of ram too.

· Can my current card (9800GTX+ SSC 512MB) effectively handle 3d gaming at all? Or do I need to upgrade to a better video card for 3D gaming right off the bat?

· Would a 590 Classified work with my current motherboard and power supply?

All of your existing components are fine except for your graphics card. Any graphics card that you buy should work fine with that motherboard and power supply. I'm guessing that you'll want a GeForce GTX560Ti or better.

Add 2x4 GiB of PC3-12800 memory.
Edit: Your motherboard does not support 4 GiB DIMMs. :(

Do you have Windows 7?
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Re: 3D Gaming Setup Questions

Postposted on Sat Sep 10, 2011 12:25 pm

Thanks for the quick replies! :) Awesome level of service here compared to the evga forums. :)

For OS, I have 64bit Vista Ultimate. (hopefully I can utilize 12 gigs total RAM).

For upgrading my card to for example the 560Ti that has 2 DVI’s and an HDMI, can I effectively use 3 monitors on that card, or should all the monitors be on the same type, insinuating that I would need two cards to get 3 DVI connections? Would that mismatch in connection types be good for 3D gaming?
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Re: 3D Gaming Setup Questions

Postposted on Sat Sep 10, 2011 1:24 pm

Can you run 3 or more monitors on one NVidia card now, or are you still limited to a maximum of 2 per card?

P.S.: Upon further review, your motherboard doesn't support 4 GiB DIMMs. :( You can run 4x2 GiB for 8 GiB total. A 2x2 GiB kit will set you back less than $35.
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Re: 3D Gaming Setup Questions

Postposted on Sat Sep 10, 2011 4:57 pm

If you have the upgrade bug, I would strongly recommend getting a new motherboard and cpu. You could do it for ~$300, and then you can go with a 2x4 Gib memory kit with the ability to go to 16 before too long. However, if its "3D or bust, I *think* you will have enough cpu horsepower to keep up with things. I've read in a few places where it can take quite a toll on your cpu usage. But that may have been with 3D Surround configurations.
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Re: 3D Gaming Setup Questions

Postposted on Sat Sep 10, 2011 7:26 pm

I opined in another thread that having a "life-size" (or very near life-size) image is critically important when using 3D...if you want the experience that you are really seeing things around you as you normally do every waking day, that is. So with that in mind, I'd suggest you consider using either that same 3D TV (assuming it has PC connectivity, and particularly if its big and you can get up close to it)...or perhaps even a 3D capable projector for your gaming, rather than the 23" monitor. ViewSonic is one company that offers several of these with different configurations, and though probably more expensive than a 23" monitor, I don't think the costs are outlandish.

If your current 3DTV is large enough, and if you can put it CLOSE enough to you that real-world objects like guns and hand-grenades...and particularly PEOPLE...seem at or near life-size, then I think you'll get the most out of any 3D investment. But if the image is too small, so that cars seem to be not full-sized, but perhaps more like go-karts...well, then everything else will probably seem too small too. In that case I think you are likely to be somewhat "underwhelmed" with the result of your investment...and that's part of why I might shy away (myself) from a monitor that was only 23" in diagonal.

3D HD projectors are now coming onto the market (1920x1080P) at reachable prices, and require 2 x HDMI 1.4 outputs to generate the rapidly changing images (@60Hz/each eye=120Hz overall). That will almost certainly require a dual SLI setup if you go with Nvidia, just to get TWO HDMI outputs to the projector.

FWIW, this is very much in line with my own current planning, as I've just built a PC which will allow 2 card SLI (even though I only have one card in there now, since I currently race with a 2D/60Hz projector).

I believe I stumbled across a 3DHD projector the other day for $3K US or thereabout (Samsung?)...and that's getting down to a price range I'd be able to justify. Dunno about you. :D

As to video cards: The one I just bought is the best card I could get with the most memory I could find...so I shelled out for a MSI GTX580 Lightning Xtreme Edition--the 3GB card.

It's overkill in my current racing sim (rFactor), typically showing me over 200 FPS (remember that my current projector can only throw up 60 FPS anyway)...but I purchased it with potential 3D in mind even for much more demanding sims and games.

Suggest you think down the road if you do invest.

You might also want to look at MTBS3D.com for more info--that's a 3D specific site and members there will often be up on what is the literal cutting edge 3D tech (short for "Meant To Be Seen 3D")^.


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Re: 3D Gaming Setup Questions

Postposted on Sat Sep 10, 2011 8:36 pm

A 23" diagonal screen viewed from 2 feet away takes up a 45° angle of horizontal view.
A 55" diagonal screen viewed from 8 feet away takes up a 24½° angle of view.
A 55" diagonal screen viewed from 4'2" away takes up a 45° angle of view.

The only advantage that I can see to being just over four feet away from the 55" screen compared to being two feet away from the 23" screen is that you are closer to the hyperfocal distance of your eyeball, so you might not get as much of the "magic eye" disorientation from the 3D parallax.
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Re: 3D Gaming Setup Questions

Postposted on Sun Sep 11, 2011 3:49 am

You are one of the (fairly rare still) people who start out in a 3D thread like this by saying how much you've actually enjoyed the 3D experience--via Blue Ray 3D movies, in your case--and I'm simply pointing out that it may BE because you've seen them on that (presumably large screen/large format) TV that has helped your first experiences be as good as they appear to have been thusfar.

Part of that, IMO, is, again, going to be because what images or movies you've seen may indeed have seemed near "life-size" to you...whether merely by accident or not...and that you may not get quite the same feeling if you try using 3D on a smaller monitor.

I certainly don't want to discourage you from forging ahead if you've already had a positive experience using 3D--I wish everyone did--I just want to help avoid disappointment (*by way of understanding why*) if using that smaller monitor leaves you underwhelmed. And, better yet, provide another alternative solution or two. So that you don't give up on the technology the way so many early adopters unfortunately have done, but instead forge ahead with it.

One obvious thing would be to make sure you can return the monitor after you've tried it (presumably at your own expense with regard to shipping costs). It might also behoove you in that case to purchase the monitor as a standalone...with the Nvidia shutterglasses as a separate purchase (assuming too that you might want to keep them to use with your current 3DTV, even if the monitor itself should underwhelm).

----

I don't know if you ever saw the movie Avatar in 3D or not (I didn't), but I couldn't help but note that the characters of the "blue people" were supposed to be over ten feet tall...much taller than humans.

Part of the reason for that, I suspect, is that the first theater presentations using 3D were necessarily scaled (by the size and scope of the theater itself) in such a way that the typical human 3D viewer was left feeling "small"...(whether by necessity or choice I can't say). If you did see the film yourself, then you can probably speak with more authority about it than I can...but perhaps you'd agree in principle just thinking about it? Even if it hadn't occurred to you before?

I HAVE spent quite a lot of time driving and racing under 3D conditions in the past (using life-size projection, but at lower resolution though), and I would definitely opine that if the image wasn't big enough that the surrounding scaled out close to life-size in my mind...I either felt like I was racing karts and not cars...or was left wanting in general for whatever other reason. It might just my own experience, but I've tried hard to understand why it might have been so, and I guess this is part of the rational I've come up with.

That's really all I'm pointing out, and it's possible your results may vary too, of course. Could be that I just don't have enough..."imagination"...to make up for the difference in size of objects, where you may well have enough of it and more.

Based on your expressed fondness for 3D in movies, I just wanted to point out that the relatively large viewing size (I'm speculating of course as to the size of your 3DTV and how close you've been to it) of your first experiences with it may be a big part of why you've enjoyed it so far*...so perhaps find a way to keep that same (or similar sized) image size for gaming too?

[* much more common, unfortunately, to hear first time 3D users "ho-hum" the technology after trying it. IMO it may just be because they haven't experienced it using the "big picture"]

Again, please don't let me discourage you--the more 3D the merrier, I say.

But go into it with both eyes open...
...and calibrated. :D


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Last edited by simracer on Sun Sep 11, 2011 4:36 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: 3D Gaming Setup Questions

Postposted on Sun Sep 11, 2011 4:21 am

Followup to previous: Engineer...Your numbers regarding FOV of the different monitor solutions show you do, indeed, understand the concept of FOV (but you're an engineer, so perhaps thats to be expected).

One thing that can slip through the cracks re 3D too though is this: Particularly if you are an older person (as I am)...or if you require optical adjustments (as I do) just to get through every day tasks...

...realize that your 3D solutions might require optical adjustments too.

------

My case: I have poor vision generally...and a high level of astigmatism...so I need fairly powerful eyeglasses or contacts just to make it through each day.

If I'm driving my road-car, I would normally use those eyeglasses.

But they WON'T work at all if I'm driving my simulated road-car (or road-racing car) in front of my projector. The eyestrain is intolerable after just a minute or two.

Why? It's because I'm trying to use eyeglasses built to see objects hundreds of feet away (when driving my car)...on a projected image I must focus on...which is only THREE feet away!

So...when I drive my simulated cars with my projector (and the very large image), I also make sure I'm using my "close focus" glasses. In fact, I've gone so far as to have my eye-doctor prescribe several versions for use at varying (but all close) distances. I have reading glasses with a focal range of 18" or so...computer glasses with a focal range of about 36"...older prescription glasses with a focal distance of 42" or so (the pair I'm using to type this)...and then my normal varifocal glasses for everyday use.

I suppose this also brings up one other small point (which Nvidia appears to already have addressed): Any shutterglasses solution you buy should perhaps take into account the need to be used over (on top of) prescription eye-wear...even if you yourself don't need it. Others you might want to share it with well may need it.

They may also want to bring their reading glasses when they watch! :D


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Re: 3D Gaming Setup Questions

Postposted on Mon Sep 12, 2011 9:39 pm

Wow! This is a is a lot of info to go through. After reading some of the messages here, I realize how little I know about 3D, and that my knowledge and yearn for 3D is simply based on the visual experience I've had and not much factual information at all.

RAM - Thanks for confirming for me that I cannot utilize more than 8GB RAM on this motherboard. I do kinda remember that 8GB was max for this motherboard but was not confident enough in my knowledge to question the logical suggestion to go to 12GB's. I should also ask if the RAM that I do buy should be matched or not with the two sticks I have or does that not matter much as long as the timing and RAM type is the same? (i.e. 9-9-9-24, PC3-12800-1600).

My 3D Experience
I am not a big fan of movie theaters and have only seen two 3D movies on the big screen, one being Avatar 3D (I was sitting up in the back corner a bit and it was not the greatest 3D experience for me). I left that movie thinking, 3D is kinda cool but it sure didn't meet my high expectations at the time. I had very high expectations for this movie as I had only seen one other 3D movie before and it was awesome.

The other 3D movie I seen before Avatar was a 3D IMAX movie about 10-12 years ago when 3D IMAX's were the only 3D experience around. The movie was not even a movie per-se, but more of a "demo show" to show how cool 3D was and what it could do I think. That IMAX show absolutely blew my mind. I remember reaching out to grab some bubbles that were "floating" in front of me (I have never since experienced 3D to that degree).

Since Avatar 3D, I was not overly excited about 3D and did not give 3D in the home another thought until about 4 months ago when I was perusing through Future Shop and came across a new model Sony 3D TV that had a 3D demo of a NFL football game on it. Again, I was amazed by the 3D effect. At the time, I was standing there thinking how I need 3d sports right now. It was absolutely incredible; then the sales guy tells me that there is very little 3D sports programming available at the moment, but the 3D popularity should increase soon and ESPN 3D would be available eventually. I thought "Cool, can't wait for that...".

A few days later, karma steps in and our 950 pound 32 inch flat screen crt tube went on the fritz and started to show no reds and blotches of green... Back to Future Shop... Even though that Sony sure impressed me enough to buy it, the sales guy convinced me that the Panasonic VT Series was way better and they had a bunch of 2010 models in a neat package that included a Panasonic 3D Bluray player, and Avatar 3D (Avatar 3D Bluray is only available when you buy a Panasonic TV, not available in stores until likely spring 2012). I thought what the heck, even though the package was with the 50 inch, and not something bigger. (our tv viewing room is not that big anyway). Watching Avatar 3D on a 50 inch from my couch was an infinitely better 3D experience than the theater experience (like I said above, I was in the back corner a bit in the theater and my viewing angle may have had an affect on the 3D effect; also my bias against the theater may have played a role too). Anyway, my 3D experience at home so far on my Panasonic 50 inch has been great so far, and I can't get enough of it. When 3D sports programming becomes available in my area, I will be very happy.

Simracer, I sure appreciate your thoughts and advice here; I can tell you have put a lot of thought and time into the 3D arena, and your "ramblings" (positive term here) are very informative and thought provoking as you bring up items I never considered until now.
I don't wear glasses and have pretty good vision, so I don’t have those inconveniences you have to deal with in that regard. Thankfully, my wife does not need to wear glasses either. As far as when friends come over, I was wondering if the active shutter glasses I have for the Panasonic might work with nvidia too?

You mention the "life-size" perspective and how that may skew the experience... I do know it is important to fill your field of view with the 3D effect and may be why that initial 3D IMAX was such a mindblower as I was sitting right in the middle a little front OF center, and the IMAX screen was like 30 feet tall and was horizontally curved so it “wrapped” wide, past my peripheral vision, so that the FOV was total and complete. Avatar 3D in the theater on the other hand where I was in the upper corner seemed like a little screen off in the distance in comparison and the FOV had too many other bobble heads and aisle wanderers and other FOV distractions in the FOV.

The Panasonic experience at home is really good I guess because we watch the plasma in our TV/computer room in the basement “family room” where we can make it really dark when we watch movies and we sit about 8-10 feet away or so. Watching 3D at home in the dark is important I learned quickly as side objects/lights are distracting from the 3D experience. As well, the Panasonic 3D glasses are not the best for comfort and are not “wrap-around” (enough) style glasses and allow lights in the background behind you to reflect off the inside of the glasses and drive you crazy, so when I start up a 3D movie, I go around and shut off all lights to make it as dark as possible. So even though the FOV is not total and complete with the 50 inch screen; there are no distractions in the FOV.
So on Avatar with the blue people supposed to be 10 feet tall and does that large scale translate to the viewer…
To be honest, I don’t recall or I never even noticed or thought much about it on the big screen or on the TV until now, so next time I watch it, I will keep that in mind to see if I “feel small” so to speak. Maybe I didn’t notice because the TV is only 50 inch and we sit that far away. It does feel small sometimes, but the 3D is great. Of course some movies have much better 3D effect than others too.

All your talk regarding the size and FOV perspective however has made me think twice about jumping into the triple monitor arena at only 23 inch though. I will likely try and consider the feasibility of 27 inch monitors. Especially the new Asus 27 inch. It looks sweet but no doubt out of price range. I really like your idea of using the 50 inch TV as a monitor, although that would be expensive to have three of those side by side… heheheh,  j/k. I do use a laptop hooked up to the tv to play some movies and other videos though, and it looks pretty sharp. I will continue to consider/dream of using 50inch plus for a computer monitor…

You mention ensuring that I could take back the 3D monitor if I wasn’t happy with the 3D aspects. I did think down this route a bit and decided that even if I gave up on the 3D aspect, the 120hz refresh would be better for fps multiplayer gaming and help me justify the monitor without 3D...

Some new questions

What about playing multiplayer games like Call of Duty, Battlefield, or Crysis? Can you play the multiplayer aspects in 3D? Is there extra lag involved with 3D multiplayer gaming?

Do I need a Vision kit for each monitor or just one kit for the machine that puts 3D on 3 monitors? (sorry for that newbie question).

Wow, there has been so much info since I was last on here, so I may have missed a question or concern somewhere. I'd also like to learn more about the racing sims too, but I'll save that for another thread.
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