Hardware too weak? (GPU wise) Video encoding looks lame?


#1

So I just heard about this service.
Immediately signed up and started using the highest package (2 units/hour).

The good.

  • Download speed? FAST. 100M/s+ in each app/client.

  • I/O? Well, it's mixed? For some reason Steam and programs download fast, yet, when I/O is needed during a game, the game can lock up waiting for I/O. This might be a beta thing. Annoying, though.

  • Internet connection? Blazing fast downloads, but sometimes.. see below.

The bad.

  • Internet connection have micro drop outs. My connection has 0 drop outs checked with WinMTR to multiple targets and I have only 1ms fluctuation. Meaning my connection is rock solid. Yet, the feed locks up in "fast moving" games from time to time. One example of this is ArcheAge, but it happened in Squad, Just Cause 3, The Division. The feed stops for a solid few seconds randomly.

  • The input lag also seems quite high.

  • The encoding quality is horrible. Anytime you move quick, or there is a moving scene, you get artifacts, like having VLC on a slow PC playing a good video.

The Ugly.

  • The CPU/GPU performance. I see that the CPU is a strong model. But maybe the VPS is just overloaded - you can't really check this.
    But the GPU. Oh my god.
    My laptop has a GTX880M, a very weak, outdated and gimped GTX760.

So I was stoked. FINALLY I can play games on High/Ultra!
So I thought.

ArcheAge - 45-50 FPS
Just Cause 3 - 15-18 FPS on mid-high

I mean, wow. I am not making up these numbers, check yourself.
Can't tell it's a XEN issue, or just the Nvidia chip weak, but something is very wrong here.

Now I am a big fan. I was waiting for this service I ever tried OnLive.
But then I made a mistake. A big mistake.
I tried out Gaikai.

Oh my god. I will never forget.
1920x1080 full HD @ 60 FPS with NO INPUT LAG.
Can't remember the trial game it allowed me to play, it was Battlefield (BC) probably, but oh my god. I could not believe that it was streamed. There was literally no noticeable input lag, the game was maxed out, and the framerate was a rock solid 60 FPS.

So I am a bit spoiled here. I could do with OnLive level of service (stable connection, no drop outs, no artifacts - perfect picture quality, and the same level of input lag as we have now.)
But I am sad to say that LS is OnLive with a few more drawbacks.

I will keep subscribing though, because I waited for so much, and this would be the best thing since sliced bread. Just hoping that these will get fixed.


#2

So yeah. Why did I make this thread? I don't know.
Maybe to get hope? To get confirmation things will get fixed?

Also I am worried about malicious use.
The machine is a 1:1 virtual machine with a very fast connection.
I wonder what measures LS has against miners/botnet-builders/malware users.
And of course, therer are the people who just catch a virus now and then.


#3

Come Feburary / March Liquidsky will come out of Beta with better hardware where at the top end will run a 12 core cpu together with a 8g gpu and 32g ram.

also they're upgrading from win server 2012 to 2016 but latency could still remain an issue where people are far enough away where LS range is best suited.


#4

Oh I see, thank you.
I tested The Division again on DX11, and I had 30 FPS on mid @ 1920.

Once you lower details/settings, maybe go to 1600x900, the input lag decreases.
After using 1600x900 and full low settings, I was able to achieve a quite good input lag value.

@Ryuken
Do you know if the new HW will mean increased prices?
(Server 2016 already has memory compression to 16g for games should be more than enough. I only feel the GPU very weak, and the I/O wait is catastrophic. Something has to be done on the scheduler side, games cannot wait for I/O. They have to implement a system to catch bot users, torrenters and other people who violate the TOS. Maybe an I/O speed limit would help with the I/O starvation.)


#5

No in fact the prices will be lowered where the highest is $9.99 but Liquidsky still haven't released information on how much credits will be given to the paid monthly plans to which people would be paying for also though they announced a free plan where someone would watch 1 ad which is 6 minutes long and get access to a free hour of liquidsky and could also watch 2 more ads that are 6 minutes long each and get 2 more hours where the max each day is 3 hours total.


#6

Thank you!

I am fine with paying, really.
I would not mind 20$ either, if all my problems get corrected. (no artifact, faster gpu/better hw, and low input lag / no starvation)

We will see.
I will keep paying and testing though, the idea/service is great.

Again, thank you for the information!


#7

another thing the highest performance package will chew through 240 credits per hour and the next one down 120 p/hr so this is why knowing how many credits each plan will be getting is kinda a big thing lol for me anyways


#8

Regarding artifacts when moving, those occur or are significantly less visible when you disable the auto quality and just use the slider to the highest point where you don't get (or almost) no distortions.

As for freezes, these are thought to happen due to a bug or complication in the way the SSD's handle the data as they seem to randomly bottleneck the entire PC.

Input lag depends on both your ping, upload speed and local latency. Your ISP may have ways to improve the ping by lowering or even removing error correction. The upload speed doesn't need to be very high but 128kbps upload speeds from broadband can impact input lag in the first minutes or so however distance and connection quality (fiber, coax, copper - especially old, remote phone lines) will be the biggest factor.
As for local latency, it all depends on your GPU's (if you're using hardware decoder) or CPU's (if you're using software decoder) power. A 9400M like mine will have 17-20 ms local latency compared to maybe 5ms with a gpu from the last 2 years. In the end, you gotta find what works best and go with it.


#9

@Jimmy
Quality: That was my first guess, and I did that instantly. Moved the slider to far-right, and unticked Auto. But sadly, the situation did not change. It's very noticeable in Archeage for example, in far trees and such. It's not that I concentrate on trees, but the result is just a blurry image everywhere due to the tiny movements.

Latency: I have 5ms local latency with DXVA, I think it's more about the FPS. I noticed that if it dips below 60, the lag grows exponentially. If I moved the graphics down in The Division, control became much more fluid, almost instantaneously. I could play the game like this. (Minus the IO lag, which would kill me because well, no game allows 3-6 second breaks.)

Like this is totally not scientific, but when I had 15FPS in Just Cause, I had a ~250-500ms lag. In The Division with 30-45 FPS, I had around 150-200ms. Once the graphics got lowered, the lag became very low, sometimes unnoticeable.

Try DXVA. CUDA gives me a 20ms local too, maybe that's your issue with local lag.


#10

Latency: Well I have a mac but since the mac client is a bit iffy still i prefer to use the Win client through Wine. It adds some ms, i know, but I also only play WoW on it atm. Hardware mode is my go to.

Quality: I see. Indeed some games appear to suffer from blurriness. People have said Witcher 3 is another one. I do not know if there is anything else you can do at this point but wait for the new client to be released, in the hopes the update and new server gpu's fix the issue. (AMD's, no info on model)

FPS: I think the low fps causing higher latency might be caused by the client attempting to catch up and stay synced with the stream. Do remember that the remote PC is rendering the game while compressing and sending a stream to you so ingame fps is not representative of the stream's fps. If a game struggles to reach 50fps, I think it's generally better to go down to a 30fps stream though I don't know if that will always work. It's more a case of tinker with it in the hopes it runs better. The new servers and client should improve upon this as well seeing how we'll be having more recent AMD gpu's and a cleaner client.

People have been rightfully complaining about issues and the lack of action from the team, but, following the CES presentation, it makes sense now to have the staff focus on all that is wrong and make it all work for the new client and servers instead of just putting bandaids on a client that will have disappeared in a couple of months or so. And they couldn't simply say that since they had to prepare the whole shebang for the investors at the presentation.


#11

Gaikai? I thought they were acquired by Sony years ago?


#12

Indeed, they got acquired. They only had a demo available for their technology before they got purchased. But, the technology was awesome.


#13

Nevermind, it took me a bit of Google but it's no surprise that the GPU is weak.

Check here: http://www.nvidia.com/content/cloud-computing/pdf/nvidia-grid-datasheet-k1-k2.pdf
The Ultra setup is equipped with a K280Q.

So what is K280Q really? See the document, it's a "high-end Kepler" GPU.
What is Kepler?

It is an old architecture - GTX 700 series basically.
What does this mean?
- The GPU has really, I was spot on, the strength of a GTX760 or in reality, much less.
- The GPU has no DX12 support whatsoever, because of the old architecture.

I cannot repeat it enough that I dig the service. But they have to do something about the GPUs.

Another test. Heavensward benchmark.

Ultra LS - 1280x720 - Laptop(High): Score: 6586; Average Frame Rate: 51.013
GTX760/GTX880M - same settings: Score: Score: 12402; Average Frame Rate: 103.671

This benchmark is a great GPU benchmark.
On my laptop I had 4x2.4ghz cores enabled, no HT, and no Turbo.
Meanwhile LiquidSky had 7 very strong Xeon cores.
It clearly shows how lacking the GPU performance is.

And boy, my laptop chip IS weak. I can't play Witcher 3 on 30 FPS even on lowest settings.
BF1? Hah, it runs on 50FPS roughly if I go with the lowest settings.


#14

"They have to do something about the GPU's."

They already did, mate. The new servers are powered by AMD server gpu's. We do not know which model yet but there is no mistake they will be newer and more powerful. Have some patience. The current iteration of the server was honestly cobbled together like sticks and stones to get the job done. In a couple months we'll all not only be getting better gpu's but also double the power for the lowest tier. (1gb -> 2gb)

Edit: The new GPU will also have DX12, Origin and MS Store working out of the box.


#15

K280Q cards at the moment is definitely weak, they level PS4.
Expect updates Liquid primarily due to new video card, because we want to go along with the modern PC industry. Consoles in terms of graphics behind the computer to one or two generations.


#16

All the issues you mentioned are being addressed. They will provide 3 hardware options (2 gb vram, 4gb vram and 8gb vram). They're working on the random freezes problem. Internet speed in my case never gets low (or I don't notice it). The client is getting better and better. They have a global reach (neither Gaikai, Onlive, Geforce now or PS4 now had/have).
Less than one year ago LS was running Linux because Microsoft wouldn't allow them to run windows. They offered less ram, less processor power, less storage. Upgrades were made and yesterday we got the confirmation of the new plans for 2017, including new plug and play device.
I don't know much about GPUs technically, but some people tried to use benchmarks not made for server hardware pointing out that we wouldn't be able to play GTA, and yet GTA V was one of the first games I've played through LS.
They will face competition now and they NEED to improve their service more than ever.

Malicious use: they banned some people during their beta for use of stolen credit cards, torrents, etc. Unlimited plan has a mandatory timeout feature. The new free 3 credits daily feature is concerning though.


#17

Thank you guys, I am new here, so yeah it's just a "newbie's worry". :smiley:
I am totally stoked, can't wait 'til the rollout!

(Kinda sad it will be AMD. I love PhysX and GameWorks, but yeah, I can understand Nvidia might be asking waaay too mcuh for their GPUs.)


#18

Yeah far to expensive, they were enforcing their one gpu per user licence crap on LS so that's like gpu price x 1.1m users which is stupid really


#20

Good discussion and solid points by OP. I am looking forward to seeing the new performance of LS in 2017 , and also interested to see how often they update their systems to keep up with the ever growing power demands of future game releases.


#21

Yes, yes and yes. I share your experience, but be mindful the service works damn well for a beta and all the hardware will be updated in March. I always seem to run better during non-peak times.
For what I understand they are having load balancing issues they are trying to work out. Either way I am thrilled I can play AAA games on my laptop with no graphics card.