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AMD Freesync, Exclusive Fullscreen for Stutter-free playing

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  01:11:51  3 March 2017
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On forum: 05/26/2013

Message edited by:
03/03/2017 1:38:02
Messages: 136
AMD Freesync & Exclusive Fullscreen for Stutter-free playing

As some of you heard, new technology from AMD called Freesync is developed last year.
It offers stutter-free gameplay because it will sync frame rate of a game with refresh rate of your monitor.
That means if you have Freesync compatible monitor with Freesync compatible GPU,
the inconsistent frame rate will always be synced with refresh rate of your monitor and you will have (according to AMD, and other people)
smooth experience even on 40, 35 or 55 fps (down to 33fps) like you would have on 60fps.

This is especially helpful for Engine like XRay because it has bad optimization on DX10 and DX11,
and we all know that frame rate of stalker can be rarely tamed because it's a real wild beast with all those graphic and other AI mods, or just populated areas.

BUT there is always a but..

According to AMD official site about setting a Freesync option to work, there is a special note at the bottom of instructions saying:
"Note! AMD FreeSync™ requires DirectX® 9, 10, 11 and 12 applications to be run in exclusive fullscreen mode in order to function correctly."

After searching on the google I found out that some new games have under video options Exclusive Fullscreen mode.
But as we know stalker series doesn't have that option.

So the main question is:

Does someone of you have Freesync setup and does it work with stalker?
Has anyone tried that setup?
Or could it be that somehow it's possible to mod the game or code Xray engine,
with feature that forces or enables or even imitates Exclusive fullscreen option?

I have recently purchased RX480 which is capable of Freesync and I am really interested will the buying of a freesync monitor be a good investment and finally offer stutter (screen tearing) free gameplay for stalker once and for all.

If nobody have working setup with Freeync maybe some good discussion here leads us to some information or fix for that, maybe Don Reba (wink wink) could pull some strings over to clever people from GSC that maybe have an opinion on this and help us on a quest to play a forever stutter free stalker on DX11!

Sorry for a wall of text.
  14:37:12  3 March 2017
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Senior Resident

On forum: 01/31/2011
Messages: 8353
Unfortunately some of the stutter in S.T.A.L.K.E.R. is a game engine weakness exposed when a lot of things go online like when you approach a base or anywhere that has a lot going on, That can't be fixed by using Freesync but it can lessen the effect if you get a monitor that supports LFC.

From what I've read it seems the most important point when looking to adopt Free-sync is choosing the right monitor as there are good and bad ones.
Some only have a small working range which it's not easy to stay in and one of the most important features you want is LFC which stands for Low Framerate Compensator (I think that's right).

A lot of models do not have LFC, it works in a similar way to how G-sync deals with sub 30 fps gameplay, in fact I think the technique was copied from G-sync.

This does help a bit with Stalkers stutter but it can't completely remove it, just lessen the effect, It is still there though. Overall I do get a better experience now I have Freesync.

The exclusive fullscreen modes only condition is no longer the case? Some titles need it too work but it's no longer a blanket requirement for Freesync. It'll need double checking for the details though.

I went through 3 Freesync monitors before finding a good one.

The first was a 34" Acer 144hz VA ultrawide 2560x1080 monitor which was okay but it had a bug where it kept dropping the refresh rate and becoming a 60hz model so I sent it back.
Next I tried the 27" Asus Dominator which is a 144hz IPS 2560x1440 monitor but the working range was only from 40 to 90 and along with massive dollops of back bleed back it went.
Then on a local forum a member got hold of an at that time unreleased review model of the 38" ultrawide from LG and he sold me his Acer ultrawide which was a 34" 3440x1440 75hz IPS model with a working range of 30 to 75 hz with LFC, In comparison it stands head and shoulders above the other two.

So if you are looking at getting Freesync make sure the monitor has a wide working range and LFC which will improve your Stalker experience.

A good place to confirm a monitors freesync stats, scroll down and pick the monitors option:

Info on LFC:

This is the one I ended up with:
  22:10:53  3 March 2017
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On forum: 05/26/2013

Message edited by:
03/03/2017 23:08:03
Messages: 136
So you really have working Freesync setup with stalker, that seems very promising then.
I cant find the link now but I swear I saw on AMD page after a info on Freesync there was a note that you need exclusive fullscreen.
But yet there are no objective and well explained articles on google that says what works with it and what does not.

Thanks for comprehensive respond.
That seems strange that you cycled between so much monitors until you had the right one.
I mean, I thought it will be just easy plug it, install drivers and magic happens.

Now I am more concerned because I wont jump into 1000$ budget, because I aim at 27 inch or more monitor that will fit into 500$ budget.

So do you think that there is any valuable for 27 inch that have real deal LFC and Freesync working?

Not that I am lazy, but as I can see you have undertook some large research before buying your, so maybe you can give some input about available options and what to stay from (like TN panels, no LFC and so).


Edit: That list is really helpful under the article, it even has column LFC so i cant go wrong with any picks with LFC.
But I am still wondering why you cycled between 3 monitor until the real deal. In other words I cant really understand what bothered and how did first monitor manage to have 60 even thought it was freesync compatible.
  23:40:30  3 March 2017
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Senior Resident

On forum: 01/31/2011
Messages: 8353

I mean, I thought it will be just easy plug it, install drivers and magic happens.

No, Because freesync is AMD implementation of adaptive sync how well a monitor supports it depend on the monitor manufacturer not AMD, With G-sync it's different because Nvidia provide the gizmo (for want of a better word) that is put in G-sync monitors and therefore it simple offers G-sync across the full range of the monitors hz, That's from 30 to the monitors max and it then does a doubling up of frames when the fps goes under 30 which is what Freesync's LFC does and why it is an important feature to have on a Freesync monitor.

As for what monitor to buy it'll depend on what's available in your country and your budget, If you want to pick a few possibilities you can get locally I can give an opinion if that helps but the best thing you can do is look into a particular monitors specs yourself. Bu tas I said I don't mind helping, You've got a decent graphics card now so Freesync's definitely something that'll help improve your gaming experience. Have a look at which models are available to you and write them down here with links preferably.
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