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PPSSPP and AMD Legacy drivers... - Nightquaker - 03-19-2014 02:27 PM

Hello there :3
As it have been reported by some users of this forum, PPSSPP has a driver crash bug with AMD Legacy drivers for 3k and 4k GPUs.
That includes my HD4870, which crashes after ~30min of playing, dependant on a game.
So, is there any fix for it?
First of all, I want to mention that so praised 11.11a "performance" drivers are absolute farse, especially with latest and generally modern titles. Latest Thief, Saints Row 3 and IV, Dark Souls (I know, it was a bad port in a first place, but I use DSFix), run like absolute shit on them, and these are just some examples of bad performance on these drivers. So please, don't suggest me to revert to these drivers. I have done that, and it helped with an issue, but I don't want to throw away games to be able to play on PPSSPP, just to clarify.
Disabling Catalyst A.I doesn't help either.
Is there any other way to fix these crashes besides forementioned solutions? As far as I know, it's related to OpenGL part of drivers, which wouldn't surprise me. AMD are effing OpenGL up for bloody eternity.
My PC specs are:
Phenom X3 8450 ~2.3GHz
HD4870, 1GB.
4 gigs of DDR2-800 RAM
~400 gigs HDD
I have 0.9.1, 0.9.6 and 0.9.7 dev bulds (not main ones).
I'll be very grateful to anyone who'll help me resolve that issue.


RE: PPSSPP and AMD Legacy drivers... - solarmystic - 03-19-2014 09:07 PM

The 11.11a drivers are "praised" on these forums for their rock solid stability in PPSSPP with the 2xxx/3xxx/4xxx cards.

They are not praised for providing the best performance in modern 2013/2014 titles for your card. If you have a "legacy" status card to begin with, you should temper your expectations when running the latest games.

Yes, Thief (2014) runs like utter tripe with these drivers on my system, the game stutters like there's no tomorrow, especially when using the 64bit executable. But then again, performance in that game is rather horribly optimized, even on vastly superior systems considering the engine they're using (Unreal Engine 3).

Dark Souls runs acceptably however. (stable 30-35+ FPS when rendering resolution is set to 1600x900 using DSFIX 2.2 and enabling the Framerate unlocker option. No other frills.). Even then, it's a rather heavily CPU limited title that is threaded poorly, prefers higher CPU clocks to multiple cores (doesn't even max out my dual core Core 2 and lousy 4670 and yet it performs average at best.) and your low clocked AMD tri core CPU wouldn't help.

Saints Row 3 (and 4 by extension) has always had performance issues on AMD cards, especially when combined with lower end CPUs. They were acknowledged by Volition themselves, some of which remain unresolved and unpatched to this day, even after they've promised to resolve them.

You have to make a choice. I decided to stick to 11.11a because as a dedicated tester of PPSSPP, being able to run PPSSPP crash-free and problem-free is more important to me than having the absolute best performance in those titles.


RE: PPSSPP and AMD Legacy drivers... - Nightquaker - 03-20-2014 05:22 AM

(03-19-2014 09:07 PM)solarmystic Wrote:  The 11.11a drivers are "praised" on these forums for their rock solid stability in PPSSPP with the 2xxx/3xxx/4xxx cards.

They are not praised for providing the best performance in modern 2013/2014 titles for your card. If you have a "legacy" status card to begin with, you should temper your expectations when running the latest games.

Yes, Thief (2014) runs like utter tripe with these drivers on my system, the game stutters like there's no tomorrow, especially when using the 64bit executable. But then again, performance in that game is rather horribly optimized, even on vastly superior systems considering the engine they're using (Unreal Engine 3).

Dark Souls runs acceptably however. (stable 30-35+ FPS when rendering resolution is set to 1600x900 using DSFIX 2.2 and enabling the Framerate unlocker option. No other frills.). Even then, it's a rather heavily CPU limited title that is threaded poorly, prefers higher CPU clocks to multiple cores (doesn't even max out my dual core Core 2 and lousy 4670 and yet it performs average at best.) and your low clocked AMD tri core CPU wouldn't help.

Saints Row 3 (and 4 by extension) has always had performance issues on AMD cards, especially when combined with lower end CPUs. They were acknowledged by Volition themselves, some of which remain unresolved and unpatched to this day, even after they've promised to resolve them.

You have to make a choice. I decided to stick to 11.11a because as a dedicated tester of PPSSPP, being able to run PPSSPP crash-free and problem-free is more important to me than having the absolute best performance in those titles.

To be honest, Legacy status has nothing to do with performance in modern games. HD4870 was a high-end gaming card when it came out and is still quite a beast to this day. It outperforms modern mid-end and media cards such as 65xx (one I had previously), 66xx and even something like 7750. In fact, it outperforms my previous card, which was HD6570 by more than 100%.
So don't rely "legacy" status on anything, frankly, it's a mere excuse for AMD to stop support for old cards.
The only issue it has with modern games is that it doesn't support DirectX11. Quite a bugger, yes.
Saints Row 3 and 4 is badly optimized for AMD cards, but runs quite well (with latest drivers) on this particular one with acceptable CPU, by the way.
Dark Souls runs on steady 30fps without any drops for me on newest drivers, despite low clocks on Phenom X3.
I run games at 720p, mind you, 'cause I have a 720p monitor and I don't need to run them in 1080p.
But yes, I got your point and I do agree on stability of 11.11 drivers, which I tested myself, but I wanted to ask for a fix 'cause PPSSPP seems to be the only OpenGL application that has issues like this (at least, from my experience).
I sincerely hope that someday, PPSSPP developers will fix the issue with Legacy drivers, so I'll not need to switch between them and performance ones every now and then, especially considering that it's such a pain in the ass sometimes and AMD doesn't even bother to fix their bloody OpenGL (except, possibly, in their 13.6+ Catalyst drivers).
Thank you for your well executed and in-depth response.


RE: PPSSPP and AMD Legacy drivers... - solarmystic - 03-20-2014 05:56 AM

Actually Nightquaker, there is a somewhat ad-hoc solution to this driver switching dilemma until the issue is "resolved".

AMD's OpenGL driver is actually just one file, called atioglxx.dll and a GL profile file for games, called atiogl.xml. Both of them are located in the C:\Windows directory. (Just search for them using the search box).

What you can do, is the following:-

1. Switch to 11.11a drivers.

2. Grab the atioglxx.dll and atiogl.xml files from the system directory.

3. Back them up, and copy them into base of the ppsspp working folder together with your ppsspp executable file.

4. Now, switch back to whatever Legacy drivers you were using before this, which will restore performance in the aforementioned DirectX game titles.

5. Launch PPSSPP. The emulator will now use the 11.11a OpenGL driver file (atioglxx.dll) located in the ppsspp folder instead of your system's default OpenGL driver.

6. If you want PPSSPP to use your system's default (Legacy) OpehGL drivers again for PPSSPP for any reason, just rename the atioglxx.dll file or move it somewhere else.

I've done this with some success using the 32bit builds of PPSSPP. 64bit builds don't look for the .dll file in its own directory, so this solution doesn't work for them, unfortunately.

Good luck, and thanks for your time.


RE: PPSSPP and AMD Legacy drivers... - Nightquaker - 03-20-2014 06:04 AM

Hmm, I know about OpenGL files, but I didn't know that such a simple solution as replacing them would work. I thought about it, but didn't try it. I'll do it now, thanks!

I just found out, it seems that OpenGL 64 bit file might be atig6axx.dll, and I'm not sure if you even need an .xml file.
Also, atigktxx.dll and atig6txx.dll might be additional files needed for some games, but I'm not really sure. Did atioglxx.dll work for all games you tested or some of them still crashed?


RE: PPSSPP and AMD Legacy drivers... - GravePaladin14 - 07-25-2014 07:44 AM

I installed amd catalyst 11.11a, what do I do next? My driver still crashes