Collected FSX tweaks, and some GPU benchmarks
Some collected installation and performance tips on FSX SP1 can now be found in one FSInsider article. Scroll a fair ways down (like 75% of the way through) to get to the tips; the first part covers upgrading to SP1, change list for SP1 and notes about performance.
Tips covered there:
ForceFullScreenVSync, default is TRUE
ForceVSync, default is FALSE
For some reason the article does not mention these tweaks:
Phil also suggests taking a look at Tom’s Hardware, where they run some graphics hardware benchmarks for FSX. I’d look at these with caution, they measure frame rates only: stutters/smoothness and scenery refresh are more important. My 7900GT ranks a close second on the chart to the 8800GTX but in the reality the performance is world’s apart. You’ll get a much better experience from the 8800GTX, with smooth flight, ground texture resolution will keep up better, etc. I think if you’re serious about upgrading, you should get an 8800GTS as a minimum. It has 15 times the shader ops of the 7900GT, but has that critical extra video RAM which will reduce the probability of graphics overload blurries. If you drop to 256Mb RAm in the 8xxx series, you can save a bundle, and if that’s important you may want to wait a while until the prices become more reasonable. In Canada you’ll pay $450 for the 8800GTS (640 or 320Mb), while the tempting 8600GT (256Mb) is only $164. If you really want to impress your friends and go broke, the 8800 Ultra is close to $900. Ouch.