Recording high resolution footage with fraps. What specs are needed to have no lag?(Problem) 123 replies

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dxdiag

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#1 11 years ago

Hello, I made a forum account just for this question, it's been driving me insane and I hope you hear can help (I'm sure someone can). Please also tell me if this is in the wrong category of the forum. I have two computers. A notebook and a not as good Desktop.

These are my notebook specs: -NVIDA GeForce 9600M GT GPU -Intel Core2 Duo CPU T5800 @ 2.00GHz -4.0 GB Ram -Windows Vista home Premium -I'm on a Notebook -One hard rive with 5400RPM split into two virtual partitions (C: and D: ). C: has 87GB used and the capacity is 144GB. D: has 39GB used and the capacity is also 144GB. -If you need more info I can pull up DxDiag and give you my complete specs, I didn't want to flood the post with that though.

My Desktop Specs -Intel Pentium 4 CPU 3.00GHz CPU -1.00GB RAM -ATI RADEON X600 256MB GPU -One hardrive with one partition total space 145GB used space 141GB free space 4GB. Don't know how much RPM this one has. -Windows XP home SP2. -Same FRAPS settings exept record location.

I want to record a number of games (Hl2, CSS, Splinter Cell Conviction, GTA4, you get the picture) at a resolution of at least 1280 x 720 (YouTube viewers demand a lot). The software I am using is called FRAPS (you probably know it). Here are my FRAPS settings in the movies tab: -Fraps version 3.0.3(I bought it, no Warez) -FPS: 30, 60, 40, 29.7 (I often switch them) -Capturing location: C:/Fraps or D:/Documents/Videos(again I switch often) -Hotkey F10(is not overlapping with in game key binding) -Sound capture:Record external input: Stereo Mix(I want to record in game sound and my voice) that is working fine by the

way. -Full size -Three options at the bottom all unchecked

I don't care about file size of the videos. I have also worked out a strategy to render the videos so that is not my problem. My problem is that I cannot record any game smoothly (even hl1, the first splinter cell and CS 1.6) at lowest in game resolution and graphics settings. I know by now that my specs aren't good enough to run FRAPS smoothly, I was wondering if anyone here would know what kind of specs I need. I think it's only the processor but it might be the graphics card, that kind of sucks since I can hardly upgrade because I'm on a notebook.

I was thinking of getting an Intel core i7 processor, I'm sure that is enough to record the demanded videos, I say this because I know people who have a i7 processor and they have no problem at all recording with FRAPS at the requested resolution.

So my final questions are. 1. What specs do you need to record at the desired resolution (1280 x 720) and have NO lag at all (and saves and load screens it's ok). 2. I don't want to just get this to work at the worst quality and then have a s**t video. I'm ok to spend money on this I just don't want to overkill this. 3. How much would a new desktop computer cost that has the minimum specs of point 1. And what is this desktop computer (link please). 4. How much would it cost to upgrade my desktop to the specs I need and what do I need to do it. 5. If it's possible to upgrade my Notebook what will it cost and what do I need.

Thank you for reading, I'm sure someone has the knowledge, time and kindness to help me.




GateCrusher420 Advanced Member

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#2 11 years ago

You're going to get lag regardless UNLESS you have an ├╝ber-holy-shit-rape-your-face gaming rig (kidding). With those specs (points to the lulz to the left), you shouldn't expect much lag. On my laptop which is similar to what you have listed (it's an HP Entertainment Notebook), I use xfire's built in recording feature. It gets the job done (click the link to my YT page that's in my signature and navigate to the videos called Ratting in Null Sec). I notice a slight drop in performance, but rarely ever notice a huge drop. The one time I experience a huge lag spike was during a fleet fight (EVE-Online for those of you who don't know what game I'm talking about) of 200+ people, doomsdays, f-tons worth of sleepers, and a structure or two. I may be speaking a foreign language to some, but for those of you who understand, great. For those who don't, basically, I was playing with so many different things to be rendered it was causing a huge system crisis. Dropped to 3FPS if I remember correctly. On my main rig at home, I notice no lag whatsoever.

With the specs you have listed, you're going to get lag. I deal with it when I'm recording on my laptop. But if you're looking for no lag at all, gotta boost your stats. Screen Capture programs are power intensive as they require quite a bit of resources to work effectively. They draw as much as they need with little to no regard for anything else running.

I say give xfire a try (tinker with the settings) and see what happens. As for FRAPS (which I have never used), see if there is an option to reduce the rate at which it records. Instead of 30, try 20. May produce a choppy-ish video, but it's worth it on the performance side. I record at full-resolution at 30FPS on my laptop, and I just deal with the lag. Drop the frame record rate, and see what happens. If it doesn't help much, try xfire and see what happens.

Also, if you're willing to, try fiddling with your in-game settings. Drop the graphics a bit. It'll result in quality loss, but it'll boost the game and recording performance.

If you're willing to upgrade, go for it. But in all honesty, if it was me, I wouldn't. I'd just deal with it.




>Omen<

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#3 11 years ago

Hey Dx, welcome to the forum. I have a fair amount of experience recording with Fraps, even with pretty old spec (P4, X1950, 2GB RAM). First thing you have to realize when using Fraps is you have to be very reasonable with your settings as far as res, capture FPS, and even game settings. You basically want to balance your settings so your actual recording FPS pretty much matches the capture FPS you set Fraps to.

Keep in mind too that most that upload to YouTube don't use 1280x720. I know a guy that is currently trying to capture DiRT 2 with a pretty good i7 rig and he's averaging only 21 FPS, but then again he's trying to capture at 50 FPS. The most common mistake those new to video game capture make is trying to go too high with the capture setting.

Often times a 30 FPS setting for capture is all that's needed for adequate gameplay. It's basically whatever the game can tolerate FPS wise on down to 25 FPS. Lower than that it gets choppy just due to too few video frames upon playback. Hollywood films are done at 24 FPS though. Some games can play fairly smoothly at or below 30 FPS.

Another thing you can do once you get better at compression is slightly enlarge the res during the compression. If you use a high quality tool like VirtualDub or AutoMKV, they have very good Lanczos resize filters that if used minimally and are given enough bitrate, can result in hardly any noticeable image loss vs no resizing.

I use resizing all the time, typically 512x320 converted to 640x400, or 512x384 converted to 640x480. Fraps ALWAYS records much more smoothly at the half size setting. Where you really start getting to the sweet spot efficiency wise with YouTube is if you can play the game adequately at 1280x720 with half size capture, which ends up being the exact size of the default YouTube viewer, 640x360. This combined with proper game settings for smooth, sharp playback and ample bitrate upon compression allow the vids to be played as large as 1280x720 with very good image quality, or resized slightly larger than the original.

You never want to resize AND expect people to be able to zoom full screen though. Typically a video that's been resized shouldn't be played back any bigger than the res you size to. You'll want to turn off any effects in game that detract from image quality and FPS, esp blur. You can also use high quality codecs to compress like Xvid or x264 that will retain as best possible that sharpness.

You can even add sharpen filters in tools like VirtualDub, which has very high quality filters. AutoMKV even has a Lanczosmtplus resize filter. You have a dual core rig, so it would actually compress quicker with x264 than my old P4 desktop does. I also have many old vids made of Far Cry and FEAR done with VirtualDub, Xvid and LAME though that are 640x400 but good enough image quality to play at 1280x720, yet only about 120MB for a 7 min vid that look nearly as good as the actual game did while playing. That's playing the actual compressed clip on my system though, when you upload to YouTube you always have to account for image degradation and add bitrate and/or accept the trade-off.

It's all in the tricks you use and how much time you're willing to spend on compression. HL2 and CSS are very efficient games, however SCC and GTA IV are not. You'd be best off trying to string replays together with GTA IV using they're playback feature, but if you're capturing mp play, I'm not sure it works for that. SCC you're going to have to limit the more intense settings like shadows and shaders. Turn off ALL post processing effects if you can, even if you have to use a file edit. Things like HDR, Bloom, Blur, Ambient Occlusion Lighting, etc, will all drop FPS quite a bit.




dxdiag

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#4 11 years ago

Thank you for the long and fast replies. Respect.

1. Anyway let me comment on GateCrusher420's reply first. First of all you took a lot of you time to try to help me. But I think you might have not read my complete post, I said I was willing to spend the money to get a new system. I also said that I already tried to lower my resolution. By the way I also tried the Xfire in game recorder, fares even less then FRAPS and I have paid for FRAPS so I'd like to use that. And I have tried to drop frame rate no avail. You've got to remember that I want to make a large series of YouTube videos and I want as many people to watch them as possible. The people that go for quality will spit on my videos I have up now. Again Thanks for the good reply :)

2. Now I will comment on Omen's reply. Thank you for the good reply, but again you didn't read my question properly. I said that I had the rendering down, I can do that my problem is getting lag-less gameplay. And I am willing to spend money on it. I want to record at 1280 x 720 because of the quality not the aspect ratio. Thanks for the reply though :)

Ok now to both of you. Check out this user on youtube: YouTube - pcgamer999's Channel He told me he has an i7 processor and look at his videos. Flawless gameplay and video FPS.

Thank you for the long and good replies :) keep it up.

Spoiler: Show

Again, Thank you all for replying

Thank you for replying both of you GateCrusher and Omen I think you both havn't read my post properly. 1. I said I could render the videos. I want to record at 1280 x 720 because it helps the quality a lot. 2. GateCrusher I said that I was willing to spend money on a new RIG if it's desktop upgrade Notebook upgrade or a new PC. I will not tolerate the lag I just can't.

You can check out this user on youtube YouTube - pcgamer999's Channel. He has high quality videos with a flawless in game FPS rate. He has about the same amount of ram as my notebook does GPU is unknown but he has an i7 processor so....

To both of you again, I need to know what rig I need to run a game flawlessly. Here are my main questions from my first post: So my final questions are: 1. What specs do you need to record at the desired resolution (1280 x 720) and have NO lag at all (and saves and load screens it's ok). 2. I don't want to just get this to work at the worst quality and then have a s**t video. I'm ok to spend money on this I just don't want to overkill this. 3. How much would a new desktop computer cost that has the minimum specs of point 1. And what is this desktop computer (link please). 4. How much would it cost to upgrade my desktop to the specs I need and what do I need to do it. 5. If it's possible to upgrade my Notebook what will it cost and what do I need. The other stuff is just info. I just need these questions answered. Thanks guys (: keep up the good work. :up:

In case you see two replies I thought that one wasn't posted. There was a message saying that the moderator needs to approve the post. For some reason this one was there right away.




Von II

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#5 11 years ago

Not just an i7 is going to get you stable record fps. You need a better gpu do make you have enough frames. This theory might not be right, but it does give you an approximate result: Your in-game fps, let's say 60. Minus the fps you record on (let's say 30), / the resolution (your in-game resolution being 1, and double the size 2, and half of in-game 0.5)

So, 60-30= 30. 30/0.5= 15fps average in-game, and you will produce a video of 30fps at 800*600, while your native is 1600*1200.

This way of calculation has been quite correct so far, only like a 5fps difference, and depending on the in-game fps drop, like sudden effects being rendered.




dxdiag

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#6 11 years ago

Thank you for this reply. That calculation you are using looks good. But I still don't have a solution to the problem.




Von II

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#7 11 years ago

You basically need to upgrade your pc. By buying a new one. That p4 system isn't upgradable to something that plays GTA4 good, and specially not with fraps recording.

Laptop isn't upgradable, only ramp and hdd, which wont make difference.

Go for an i5 setup, quite good, and worthy to i7, but cheaper. For gpu get something like a Ati 4890 with 1gig of memory or a Nvidia gtx260/275. Or better, get a Ati 5850 or dual 5770.




dxdiag

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#8 11 years ago

Thank you for the reply. Do you know where I can get a computer like this?




GateCrusher420 Advanced Member

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#9 11 years ago

If you're looking to spare the time of building one, I'd say browse a name brand manufacturer, and build yourself a system and if it looks good, post the specs here and we'll fill you in on anything that needs to be changed, added, removed, etc. If it were me, I'd build my own from scratch. Buy all the parts from newegg, clean out my room, place the parts on my bed, and go to work.




Von II

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#10 11 years ago
dxdiag;5176968Thank you for the reply. Do you know where I can get a computer like this?

Well, depends on where you are, but I'll show you an lga775 pc, AMD is an option too, but their quads are no match for i7 from i heard, -and my AMD knowledge isn't as good as my Intel.- =p,and then some pre-built OEMs, like Dell and Acer and such.

I assume you live in the USA, if not, only the price will be different.

C2Q: Newegg.com - ASUS P5QPL-AM LGA 775 Intel G41 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard - Intel Motherboards Newegg.com - Intel Core 2 Quad Q8200 2.33GHz 4MB L2 Cache LGA 775 95W Quad-Core Processor - Processors - Desktops Newegg.com - CORSAIR CMPSU-550VX 550W ATX12V V2.2 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power Supply - Power Supplies 2x Newegg.com - G.SKILL 2GB 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Desktop Memory Model F2-6400CL6S-2GBMQ - Desktop Memory Newegg.com - Antec Nine Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Computer Cases Newegg.com - Western Digital Caviar Green WD5000AADS 500GB 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Hard Drive -Bare Drive Newegg.com - SAMSUNG Black 22X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA CD/DVD Burner - CD / DVD Burners Video card, a gtx260 from Zotac (Cheap but quality brand, i use it, and so does a friend of me): Newegg.com - ZOTAC ZT-X26E3KE-FSP GeForce GTX 260 896MB 448-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card - Desktop Graphics / Video Cards Or 4850XFX: Newegg.com - XFX HD-489X-ZSFC Radeon HD 4890 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card - Desktop Graphics / Video Cards

Price (both video cards cost equal): 740.92USD (Quad, 4gb ram, gtx260/4890)

i7 should be around 200usd more.