What DirectX Class is my Card?

Tech support. This is tech support. My name is Ernie.
etherdeath
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Post by etherdeath » Thu Aug 24, 2006 11:28 am

I have an Intel 82852/82855 GM/GME Graphic something. In the game, all the ships and the revolving research task show up as white ghost images. I know my laptop graphics card isn't all that great, but I was wondering if maybe there are some settings that I can use to do something about this. The laptop itself is only a year old, a pretty decent one - 2 ghz intel with 2 gigs of memory.

I haven't gotten into a battle yet, but I think that may show up with the ghost images too.

The game actually runs pretty nicely on my laptop otherwise - and even does my 1280x800 resolution!

Thanks!

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MatzeNAF
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Post by MatzeNAF » Thu Aug 24, 2006 12:42 pm

The upcoming patch could help you, it should add compatibility to older graphic cards.
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etherdeath
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Post by etherdeath » Thu Aug 24, 2006 12:45 pm

I just entered a battle and amazingly, the ships are rendered more or less ok. At first they were ghostly transparent, but then they looked fine after a minute. Thanks Matze

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MatzeNAF
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Post by MatzeNAF » Thu Aug 24, 2006 12:46 pm

Btw, it's not 100% sure if there will be a patch for the demo ;)
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etherdeath
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Post by etherdeath » Thu Aug 24, 2006 12:56 pm

Oh I spoke too soon... the ships in the battle are still somewhat ghostly. I am playing hivers right now and can see that special effect of a deployed gate though. I am playing the full version.

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MatzeNAF
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Post by MatzeNAF » Thu Aug 24, 2006 12:58 pm

If the patch isn't going to help you, then you'd need a new graphic card, but that's a bit impossible with a notebook :\
You do have DirectX 9c installed, don't you?
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etherdeath
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Post by etherdeath » Thu Aug 24, 2006 1:15 pm

Yep I do have directx 9c installed and i double checked yesterday because initially I had some DLL missing, which was odd. This is playable though so far.

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buddahcjcc
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Post by buddahcjcc » Mon Sep 25, 2006 3:00 am

Anyone know if "Runtime Error"s are graphic related? My friend keeps having the issue every so often and we cant figure out what it is... its mostly happening when we try to fight at the same location but its getting more unpredictable and frequent.
Hes running a NVIDIA 6100 on an Emachines 1.8 gig computer

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dreadmime
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Post by dreadmime » Sat Oct 07, 2006 7:46 pm

I wanted to mention something, since i've noticed in a lot of current issues, this seems to be the problem:

the Geforce "MX" Series (and in most of the lower version, the FX Series, and later, the x1xx series) Cards are not true representatives of their "Class" of card. a 6100 is not a 6800. And though they make look the same on paper, a 6100 is actually *worse* than my 5950 in truth. so is the 6200, but i'm not even sure the 6200 is even for sale anymore.

my 5950 Ultra has a higher internal clock speed, a larger bandwidth, and can process twice as many texels and pixels than a 6100 or a 6200.

In the case of Buddha, t his may very well be the case, as his Nvidia 6100 cannot support the bandwidth of SOTS and generates errors in certain situations. It could also be his Emachines. :) They're not known for great reliability (but they are an excellent and cheap way to get your basic PC guts for next to nothing. I bought my wife an Emachine 2.8Ghz upgraded the motherboard to support AGP 4x, dropped in a FX 5900, and a P4-2.8Ghz. Total cost of the computer: $499.99 + Tax. Total cost of the upgrade: $184.00. Total cost to actually build the computer including the OS purchase from New Egg: around $800.00 plus shipping. So they're good for upgrading if you're patient. :) )

I just thought I should point this out for those folks who are having problems with SotS, and think it's not their video card, because unfortunately, Manufacturers and Developers list their games in reference to a "Series" without considering that people actually use these "Low-Tech Solutions".. so putting "Geforce 4" as your minimum specs, will fool people into trying to use a Geforce4 MX 440.
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Strategia
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Post by Strategia » Sun Oct 15, 2006 7:23 pm

I just got the game yesterday (YAY!!! :D It is t3h r0xx0rz) but I'm having a bit of a graphics problem.

When I had just installed the game, no ships would show up in tactical battles. The engine burn, lights, explosions and other effects showed up, but the ships were utterly transparent. The same thing happened when designing ships; blank. So I researched Advanced CnC and controlled my ships from the sensors screen (somebody get me a Little Doctor! :P) but still I wanted the ships to show up. (Asteroids did show up, however.)

I tried updating my drivers (NVidia GeForce 2 MX400) but that didn't work. DxDiag came up clean. So then I went to the Kerberos site, found the patch and downloaded it. Now, ships do show up in combat (and ooh mama, aren't they pretty, darting about shooting everything to bits), so that problem seems to be solved - seems to be. You see, while ships now show up as they should, planets don't show up at all. (Except in the sensors screen of course.) They're not grey spheres, as I've read in another thread; they're just not there. You can look right through them. Also, explored systems in the strategic view have no accompanying planets. Everything shows up nicely; the icon when I zoom out, name, fleets, everything - except the world itself. This was also the case before I applied the patch.

My PC meets every requirement except the RAM (512MB, but no problems so far), and like I said, I have a GeForce 2 MX400 with the latest drivers, and of course DX9, which came with the game. So - does anyone know what is going on and/or what I might do about it?

Oh, and the voice acting - well, rocks, for lack of a better term :)

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dreadmime
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Post by dreadmime » Sun Oct 15, 2006 8:00 pm

Look. Up. One. Post. :)

a Geforce 2 Ti series card has a 128 bit interface, and handles 1 Billion Pixels per second, a memory bandwidth of 6.4GB/s and up to 31 Million Triangles.

a Geforce 2 MX Series at best, has a 64-bit interface, handles 800 million pixels per second, 15 million triangles, and a bandwidth of 2.3 GB/s.

For comparison, a Geforce 256 (the first card) handled 15 Million Triangles, 480 million pixels, a 64-bit interface and a bandwidth of 2.3GB/s.

You're not seeing the planets and stuff simply because the card is unable to draw that much info on the screen at one time.

Additionally, if you look Here. you'll note that the Geforce2 MX Series of cards are only DirectX 7 Certified, and i believe only up to a maximum of 64 MB loadout (though i believe they made a few 128MB Versions.) where as the minimum system requirements for SotS is a DirectX 8 Certified Card, and 128mb of onboard memory.

Ultimately, i'd say that your card does not support the requirements of Sword of the Stars, and as such, should be upgraded at a bare minimum to a non-legacy product such as a Geforce FX Video Card (i think they still make PCI Versions of this in case you don't have AGP) in which case you'll have full DirectX 8.0 Support as well as 128MB of Video Memory.
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Strategia
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Post by Strategia » Sun Oct 15, 2006 8:05 pm

Oookay, thanks..... So it's really my video card? Ah. I'm sorry, I'm not that well-versed in the schematics of my computer's vital organs. Now I see, thanks.

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dreadmime
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Post by dreadmime » Sun Oct 15, 2006 8:45 pm

That's what I would say.

an easy way to find out would be to right click on your desktop in a blank space, and go to "Properties", now go to Settings, and click "Advanced". You should see the top right tab should say "Geforce2 MX400"

click it, and you should see

Something like:

System Information:
Processor:
Operating System:
Direct X Version:

Please note, this direct X version is what's installed, not what the card supports.

Then it should say Graphics Card Information.

Where it says "Memory", if that number is 128MB, you may have a newer GeForce2 MX400, in which it may very well be able to generate enough polys. but likely, it'll read 64MB, in which case, it won't.

What i would suggest, again, is heading out to some place near you (Depending on where you live) like WalMart or BestBuy, etc. Odds are you'll find one of these cards dirt cheap. if you live in the US, and have a Credit Card, i'd personally suggest something like:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6814125191

It's dirt cheap in comparison... it's not the BEST video card by far, but it's certainly more than capable of running SotS.

Alternatively, if your Video Card is PCI, and not AGP, then i'd suggest:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6814145136

Pretty much the card, a few bucks more for the PCI Version.

If you wanted my recommendation, then i'd say the 5700LE AGP Geforce, or simply moving up tot he Geforce 6 Series, but then you'll find your PCI/AGP options extremely Slim as the majority of Geforce 6 Cards are PCI-express.

Eitherway, you're looking at a range between $30-60 for a new card t hat will more than suffice for a few more years. $100 or more and you invest in the future as well. :)
Arguing with some people is like ringing a bell. It just causes the dog to salivate.

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Strategia
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Post by Strategia » Mon Oct 16, 2006 8:33 am

Well, I live in the Old World and I don´t have a credit card, so I´ll have to find another way :P thanks anyway.

I didn´t use the way you mentioned, I went into - what´s it called again? Ah, damn. My PC puts everything up in Dutch, so I have no idea what some things are called. Never mind.

But I do believe that we ended up at the same point.

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Nspace
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Post by Nspace » Tue Oct 17, 2006 9:21 pm

It's not the memory, clock speed, interface, Pixels, Triangles or memory bandwidth that makes a card work with this game, it is the Shader support. A card must have both a vertex and pixel shader (both at version 1.0 or later) to work correctly. As you've already seen, your video card is a little on the low end. :) The minmum nVidia cards that can be expected to work are:

nVidia: GeForce 3Ti, GeForce 4Ti (4MX does not have the needed shaders)

Older cards might work to a degree (as yours seems to), but it won't be until you get at least the GeForce FX series or the GeForce 6 series that you will be able to run SotS at full graphical tilt. You can check the first two posts in this thread for other card minimums and links to comparisons of all the ATI and nVidia cards.
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SotS 1 wiki: http://wiki.swordofthestars.com/sots1/Main_Page
SotS 2 wiki: http://wiki.swordofthestars.com/sots2/SotS2_Codex

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