You'd think Blender would run better...

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  09 September 2013
You'd think Blender would run better...

I finally did some upgrades to "ye olde graphics machine." I upgraded the G41T-M5 to 4Gb RAM and added a Galaxy GT620 2Gb RAM graphics card. The system still takes its chunk of RAM up front, but I'm left with over 3 Gb RAM to actually work with. I'm having difficulties getting it to work in dual monitor mode. In fact XP pro 32 bit says I don't have that capability and refuses to force detection of the monitor hooked to the motherboard.

Blender performance hasn't improved a bit. Maybe some of you more seasoned CG'ers could offer some suggestions to solve these dilemmas?
 
  09 September 2013
You might be experiencing a bottleneck besides the graphics, for example the CPU. Also why Windows XP? If you're using Blender you'd be better off with Linux these days than Windows XP.
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  09 September 2013
You should upgrade that 32 bit XP to something from this past decade.
 
  09 September 2013
I'll upgrade to W7 64bit in January. The CPU's a Celeron E3300; 2.5Ghz. It's a 64 bit CPU. I was wondering if I may need to change some settings in Blender. I doubt if I'd ever go Linux. I do too much work in Windows to go changing OS's now. It would mean I'd been learning Windows API for nothing.
 
  09 September 2013
Regarding the dual monitors; could you describe how your monitors are connected?
 
  09 September 2013
One 19" monitor for the graphics is connected to the Galaxy card svga port. One is connected to the original motherboard onboard svga port. It is the onboard connection that is not being recognized.
 
  09 September 2013
Connecting a gfx card will very likely disable the onboard connector, plug both monitors into the new gfx card instead.
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  09 September 2013
It only has one svga port. There is a second port that appears to be for a television. I've read in other discussions that the on board port should be able to be re-enabled.
 
  09 September 2013
Much easier to use your graphic cards for both monitor you know.

Your card comes with VGA, HDMI and DVI ports. They're not specific to TV in anyway - computer monitors these days also have those 3 ports.

http://www.gpuzoo.com/GPU-Galaxy/GeForce_GT620_2GB.html

DVI <-> VGA adapter is fairly easy to find too if your monitor really doesn't have matching ports.
 
  09 September 2013
Originally Posted by DrCharbonneau: It only has one svga port. There is a second port that appears to be for a television. I've read in other discussions that the on board port should be able to be re-enabled.


It depends on the motherboard. With some the integrated graphics and the discrete graphics are mutually exclusive because the PCI Express lanes get repurposed for the discrete graphics. Either way I wouldn't bother with the integrated graphics anymore because they're slow and eat up more of the already scarce 32-bit memory address space. The best option would be just to get an adapter for the other output on the discrete graphics like Panupat suggested.
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  09 September 2013
Adapter, as in HDMI to VGA? I'm in no running-down-the-street-on-fire rush to get the dual mode working. If Wally World has an adapter cheap, I'm going there tomorrow, but otherwise I'd just wait till my next order to OutletPC. By dual monitors, though, you guys are referring to using one for my work while using the other for some other things? I'm not simply wanting a splitter where I have the same thing on both monitors.

I'm going to guess I'd need to bring up the Blender issues in another forum? It seems there are settings in the software that use particular system drivers, as in GPU or NDIVIA. Does anyone know where those might be right off hand?

As for the monitors, I'm getting the other half a 39" HDTV for Xmas, so I plan to start using the 32" for my graphics monitor then and a standard CRT for the utility stuff. Does that sound like it will be a problem? January is OS upgrade month.
 
  09 September 2013
Originally Posted by DrCharbonneau: Adapter, as in HDMI to VGA? I'm in no running-down-the-street-on-fire rush to get the dual mode working. If Wally World has an adapter cheap, I'm going there tomorrow, but otherwise I'd just wait till my next order to OutletPC. By dual monitors, though, you guys are referring to using one for my work while using the other for some other things? I'm not simply wanting a splitter where I have the same thing on both monitors.


It might be DVI to VGA depending on the model of graphics card. They are common, not sure if Walmart would have one (maybe a big Walmart?) but Radio Shack or Best Buy would. Yes, it would allow you to have different content on each monitor, not just a mirror.

Originally Posted by DrCharbonneau: I'm going to guess I'd need to bring up the Blender issues in another forum? It seems there are settings in the software that use particular system drivers, as in GPU or NDIVIA. Does anyone know where those might be right off hand?


You're barking up the wrong tree in my opinion. The processor is more likely the bottleneck in this scenario. Blender is already using the graphics card by default since the viewport is OpenGL and the Nvidia drivers and graphics card handle that. You installed the Nvidia drivers, yes?

Originally Posted by DrCharbonneau: As for the monitors, I'm getting the other half a 39" HDTV for Xmas, so I plan to start using the 32" for my graphics monitor then and a standard CRT for the utility stuff. Does that sound like it will be a problem? January is OS upgrade month.


Televisions make very poor monitors. They mess with the colors, sharpness, and usually overscan. I'd suggest getting a computer monitor instead of a television if the primary purpose is using it with the computer. A monitor with 1920x1080 resolution can be had for around $100.
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  09 September 2013
The particular TV has a PC choice in its menu. $100 doesn't get much screen real estate that I've seen. I suppose trying it to see if it is a solution is the only way I'll know for certain.

Yes, I installed the NVIDIA drivers that came with the card. It gives me resolutions up to 2400+ x 2000+, but I'd have to strap on a magnifier to read anything at my age.

How is the CPU the bottleneck? I realize a 2 core is not the state-of-the-art processor. I realize XP 32 bit does not allow for the optimum system. The MoBo won't take a 4 core. It's a shame we can't use an extra PCI slot for another processor... Back in the day, a 386 SX had a separate socket for a math coprocessor. Also we could install RISK processors. I have an extra PCI Express (x1) slot and a 32 bit v2.3 PCI slot doing nothing.
 
  09 September 2013
Originally Posted by DrCharbonneau: How is the CPU the bottleneck?


Let's take a step back. What specifically were you hoping the graphics card upgrade would do? Are you trying to improve the performance of the viewport, like when you navigate around the scene and tumble around objects? Or are you trying to improve the performance of the rendering of the final images and videos? Or something else entirely?
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  09 September 2013
Probably what you are calling "tumbling about." An example is when I get a lot of verts in the object I'm creating, or particle systems, I can grow a beard waiting for the pointer to catch up with my mouse movement. Hair, for example, would likely take me a few hours to get it combed into place.

It's tough to have a memorable bench mark of performance, though, because I haven't been using the program for a few months with a load of other works, and now some annoyances, take up my time. It may have improved slightly, if I recall correctly the lag from before, but nothing to write home about. (Oh yeah... I AM home )
 
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