Nvidia sharing a case with AMD cards

You would think Nvidia would want consumers to buy their video cards and use them no matter what.
If someone wants to buy and use a Nvidia graphics card as a dedicated PhysX card they should be able to? Right? WRONG!
Nvidia refuses to share space with AMD video cards in your desktop PC.

Early on this was perfectly acceptable you could install an AMD Radeon and use it as your graphics card and Nvidia card as a dedicated PhysX card.
But as of the last year or maybe 2 Nvidia put a stop to this. They don’t want you using dedicated hardware PhysX unless you have a Nvidia graphics card to.
It’s plain silly people are still using Nvidia hardware in their computers either way.

AMD created TRessFX which simulates hair and they gladly allowed it to be used with Nvidia hardware.
Do not see any reason to not allow end users to get the best of both worlds.
They want a edge to gain consumer sales and figure if you want hardware PhysX then use Nvidia. That is good thinking but also not so good they are pushing away another consumer those who want Nvidia hardware just for PhysX.
No they won’t be buying the top end  video cards even gamers that are Nvidia only camp don’t spend $800+ on their top end cards. So they are not loosing any sales on the top end hardware in that sense.

Nvidia needs to open up hardware PhysX to AMD graphics card users again.
It’s not hurting your sales Nvidia.

PC gaming Sept-October

These few months I have played more games on PC than I have in the last 2 years between PC and consoles.
Not hard to do I can seriously count how many games I’ve played in the last year previous to September on 1 hand and it wouldn’t be all 5 fingers.

But the line up has been amazing thought PC gaming may have died at some point in the last 2 years. Maybe it did?
It has inspired me to upgrade both my sons PC and my own. And even upgrades have not been anywhere on my to do list until this past few months.

I’ll start with the new DOOM this game brought me back from the land of no PC gaming.
Fast paced, great graphics plain great to play.
And allows users to use the new api known as Vulkan which gives great speed improvements over the old OpenGL option that still is usable in game.
On a gaming rig this game is on the INSANE list a must play it’s really that good.

Telltale games aren’t exactly change the gaming world with graphics or an new genre.
But they do render comic book stories great. And Telltale has some great stories to tell indeed.
The great games that hooked me are The Walking Dead :Michonne, Tales from The Borderlands, The Wolf Among Us, Game Of Thrones & Batman The Telltale series.
All of these games are a blast to play and have great stories to boot and the voice acting is top notch.

Gears Of War 4 while it departs from the badasses of the original series it is still great fun to take cover and kill baddies. Not to mention it uses the Unreal 4 engine!
Plus if you pre-ordered this game you got it for both PC and XboxOne not to mention came with map packs and digital versions of the XB360 games Gears Of War, Gears 2,Gears 3 & Gears Judgement.
Not to bad for $60 way to go Microsoft!
It looks insane running max detail 4k.

And also Battlefield 1 which releases October 21st which I did pre-order because every Battlefield has been amazing since  Bad Company 2.
If you purchase digitally in EA’s Origin the  Early Enlister Deluxe for $79.99 or the ultimate edition for $129.98 you get extra map packs and are able to play early on the 18th. Get to play 3 days earlier than when purchasing the standard edition for $59.99 is it worth the extra $20 for 3 days early with 3 extra map packs? Maybe not for everyone but for me HELL’S YEAH!
Check out these insane screenshots WWI=prepare for shell shock!

Enter November! Yet another amazing game will be up and ready to play on the 11th.
If you haven’t played Dishonored then shame on you it is one cool game.
But for those who have played the first get ready for Dishonored 2.
Abandoning the Unreal engine and now using  Arkane’s new “Void” engine.
Don’t fret the engine appears to handle Dishonored 2 with great detail.
Dishonored 2 is being developed by Arkane Studios and published by Bethesda Softworks.
Here are some screens.

Not to forget Call Of Duty Infinite Warfare which will be release on the 4th of November.
I liked the last Call Of Duty but not anticipating the new one for whatever reason I’ll wait and see and hope for the best.

Blasting it’s way to PC on 11-4-16


DirectX,OpenGL,Mantle, Vulkan

Recently the API Vulkan was fully used in the new DOOM game on PC.
Many think Vulkan is just an upgraded Mantle API from AMD it’s partially true.
AMD donated their Mantle API to the Khronos group which stated that this new API would be the new OpenGL which that name was discontinued and is now called Vulkan. Much cooler name anyhow especially for Trek fans.

Vulkan is intended to provide a variety of advantages over other APIs as well as its spiritual predecessor, OpenGL. Vulkan offers lower overhead, more direct control over the GPU, and lower CPU usage.Intended advantages include:Vulkan API is well suited for high-end graphics cards as well as for graphics solution present on mobile devices (OpenGL had a specific sub-set for mobile devices called OpenGL ES).

  • In contrast to DirectX 12, Vulkan is available on multiple modern operating systems; like OpenGL, the Vulkan API is not locked to a single OS or device form factor. As of release, Vulkan runs on Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 10, Tizen, Linux, and Android.
  • Reduced driver overhead, reducing CPU workloads.
  • Reduced load on CPUs through the use of batching, leaving the CPU free to do additional computation or rendering than otherwise.
  • Better scaling on multi-core CPUs. Direct3D 11 and OpenGL 4 were initially designed for use with single-core CPUs and only received augmentation to be executed on multi-cores. Even when application developers use the augmentations, the API regularly do not scale well on multi-cores.
  • OpenGL uses the high-level language GLSL for writing shaders which forces each OpenGL driver to implement its own compiler for GLSL that executes at application runtime to translate the program’s shaders into the GPU’s machine code. Vulkan drivers are supposed to ingest instead shaders already translated into an intermediate binary format called SPIR-V (Standard Portable Intermediate Representation), analogous to the binary format that HLSL shaders are compiled into in Direct3D. By allowing shader pre-compilation, application initialization speed is improved and a larger variety of shaders can be used per scene. A Vulkan driver only needs to do GPU specific optimization and code generation, resulting in easier driver maintenance, and smaller driver packages in theory (as GPU vendors still have to include OpenGL/CL).
  • Unified management of compute kernels and graphical shaders, eliminating the need to use a separate compute API in conjunction with a graphics API.

    The part listed above was taken directly from Wikipedia.
    Vulkan has the same things DirectX 12 is offering but is not locked into a specific OS and from what I have seen performs fantastic.
    And the API works with all flavors of graphics cards Nvidia ,AMD, Intel.
    From what I have seen at least with DOOM is Vulkan works great with AMD cards expect excellent frame rates.

    My experience with Vulkan on DOOM has been amazing I can crank it up with Nightmare settings well above 1080p with 8xAA and it never even gets a hiccup.
    Hoping the new Battlefield 1 will be implementing the Vulkan api I look forward to many, many games supporting it.
    Mantle was good but from what I see with Vulkan it’s many jumps ahead of what Mantle was doing.

    Nvidia was always the better card for OpenGL. AMD finally has a API that favors them.
    AMD’s Crimson drivers  are excellent and in the next year things will get even better.
    The new drivers have already shown great improvements in AMD cards they are performing above similar Nvidia cards that at one point were faster than AMD cards.

    Hopefully AMD will keep pace and do something huge in the CPU department for desktops very soon. Like a 5.0ghz 16 core or more CPU;-) We can hope. Or I can anyhow.

AMD Video cards

I like to keep my options open so I never limit myself to 1 specific brand and say I am a die hard.
But the last few years AMD has been the brand I generally purchase CPU or Video cards.
Main reason for this is bang for the buck.
As far as CPU’s go I have only purchased AMD since they broke the 1ghz barrier back in 2000.
Sure I’ve purchased a few Intel CPU’s for HTPC builds but for my every day use Computer I choose AMD CPU’s.
Intel CPU’s are great but a top tier Intel CPU will cost you more than your mainboard ,Ram,Bluray drive & SDD or plain HDD put together.
Want to game well Intel plays best with Nvidia and like Intel Nvidia charges top dollar for their top tier graphics cards $700+ so for a Intel CPU and Nvidia card alone will cost you $2 grand for the 2 parts.
2 grand will build you one kick ass AMD PC.

The biggest issue I’ve had with AMD graphics cards is since they decided on Dual Bios cards.
Don’t get me wrong it’s great being able to flash your vcard to test other FW or even unlock you $200 card to the $350 card is great.
The dual Bios comes with different settings depending on which way the switch or button are.
1 will be a lower clock speed the 2nd will be a higher clock speed which means louder fans and more heat.
I have owned the HIS 290x and Now the Sapphire Radeon Fury Tri-x Nitro the HIS has the switch and the Sapphire has a button to switch bios versions.
And neither of them had any info on which bios version was attached to the switch so it’s just try and fly.
I went through the instruction booklets on both brands and not even a mention of the Dual Bios or what the switches are and do. There is not even a mention of the switch or button on the cards.
So it’s contact the manufacturers or search the nets and hope you get accurate info from forums.

The HIS 290x the switch clicked towards back of the case is the Turbo/Nitro Bios. Switch clicked towards front of the case is lower clock speeds better temps and quiet fans.

The Sapphire Fury Tri-X Nitro The button Clicked so light is on is Nitro setting this is max clock speeds lots of heat fans can get noisy. Button clicked Light off basic clock speeds less heat quiet fans.

These settings aren’t something you can see as you use your PC unless you have a setup that gives real time temps of the GPU as you use it.
This is something that should be explained some peoples setups are not good with heat dispersion so a max clock may just ruin the graphics card or the PC.
These manufacturers really need to include something in the paperwork to explain this.

Radeon Fury X or Geforce GTX 1070

Decided I am going to buy a new video card for my computer so I can give my son my old card which is still a great gaming card.

Just can’t decide if I want the Radeon Fury X or the Geforce GTX 1070.

I love my 290x and is one of the reasons I want to stay with AMD and just get the Fury X. It only has 4gb of memory but the memory is super fast HBM.

But the GeForce has 8gb of dedicated video memory. Just the standard GDDR5.
Will have to wait and see will make purchase tomorrow or maybe Friday.

Pre-ordered Gears Of War 4 would like to see if I can get it running in full detail @4k resolution.

Update: Went with the Sapphire Fury Tri-x graphics card. Put the order in this morning was waiting to see if it dropped a few more dollars but it did not.
Still got a really good deal on it. Was selling for $787 @ newegg but had a sick sale and was a little over 50% off. I did not want the water cooled version I wanted one using fan cooling which I got.
The card is huge! need a full size case to fit it.

It’s a good thing because now I can give my son my Radeon 290x which still can play any games I throw at it.
My only concern putting in my sons PC is if his power supply can handle the 2-8 pin GPU requirement. Most 290x cards are 8 and 6 pin go figure the one I have is the rare type 2-8 pin.


I haven’t thought about upgrading my PC at all until I got the gaming bug back from playing the new DOOM. The card I have now plays it fully at max resolution higher than 1080p.
But whenever I get the PC bug I start looking at upgrades oldest thing in my PC was the Vcard so it went 1st.
Now I patiently wait for AMD’s 12+ core CPU’s before I upgrade that;-)
Would love 32gb of high speed memory but that is more costly than a CPU or GPU right now.
I moved to SSD about a year ago that is an upgrade I suggest everyone does on their PC it is not expensive and is a major performance booster for PC’s that still use the old platter based HDD’s.
480gb SSD can be purchased for around $100 and it is a solid upgrade for low cost.

Mushkin Enhanced ECO3 2.5″ 480GB SATA III TLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)

One of my friends wasn’t so sure about buying the SSD as an upgrade on his desktop. After I installed I get a text following day saying that it made a huge difference and was a great upgrade.
It is one of those upgrades that you see such a huge change in performance. Unlike other upgrades where you can’t really see it. The SSD upgrade is the best upgrade to this day that I have done on my PC.
Love getting a new GPU but I won’t see performance gains like I did with the SSD.

Update 2: Now I have decided to upgrade my HTPC video card as well.
I now use the Radeon HD6570 which has been great but can only do a max resolution of 2560×1440 my tv does UHD so need one that supports higher resolution HDCP 2.2 and HDMI 2.0 for 4k/60hz. It also supports HDR but very small concern about that right now.

Again was looking at Nvidia or AMD. It was a much easier decision with the HTPC AMD won hands down. For one it’s the only lower end models that support HDCP 2.2 and Nvidia cards are about $25-$30 more for cards in same range but lack the higher version of HDCP.
The Radeon RX460 is the card I like it can handle everything I need at a price point under $100.

The Powercolor Radeon RX460 2gb Vmem.


Added smooth running game to Kodi

Found an older game on my smart TV in Gamefly application called Inversion from 2012.
Did the 10 minute test run on TV through Gamefly and liked it.

So went ahead and did a install on my HTPC and made menu logos to launch directly through Kodi. Using Advanced LAUNCHER app in Kodi to integrate Inversion into Kodi smoothly.
Using a Xbox 360 controller to play it. Can also use a XBone or PS3 or 4 controller as well or a standard PC gaming pad will do.
I have 6gb system ram 6 core 3.5ghz cpu and a AMD 6530 2gb Video card not exactly a gaming card but plays this game great and the game has some pretty sweet graphics!

Was only able to get screen shots using my Windows 10 phone taking shots at a TV screen is never the best way to show anything but it is better than notta.
Don’t know what’s up lately but all of a sudden I have been binge playing video games:-)

Kodi Home:

Kodi Main Menu Inversion highlighted

Inversion In game launched from Kodi

Inversion Main Menu
Inversion in game running maximum detail @ 1920×1080 no Anti-Aliasing.

I am very impressed how well this game runs on my media center will be great for 2 people playing in living room. No consoles needed PC game, Wii, PlayStation 2, Super Nintendo all on 1 box and can use Wiimote as well:-)

Old games have been revamped and are free

There are quite a few old games that have become unbearable to play due to either dated raphics or clunky menus and controls.
Sure you can get them on console but they won’t allow free graphical upgrades!

PC games can become dated in just 3-5 years because PC hardware changes rapidly . This is something consoles at this time don’t worry about their hardware cycle is anywhere from 5-8 years before a new console releases.
So this will leave some great older games in the dust. There is hope not all games have been revamped or remade but there are some good ones out there and most mods are free.
If you already own a PC game that is dated chances are it may be upgradable with community mods to improve graphics & gameplay.
I’ve done some internet lurking to find some worth while games that got solid upgrades.
The first one that comes to mind is Black Mesa. I have played this back in 2012 or 2013 and it really is a great game to play through.

The first part of Black Mesa, which included remakes of chapters “Black Mesa Inbound” to “Lambda Core”, was released as a standalone download on September 14, 2012. Valve Corporation, through public voting on the Steam Greenlight  program, approved Black Mesa for distribution on Steam, where it was released as early access on May 5, 2015.
Before Valve took over it was free unfortunately it is now $19.99 on Steam wait for a summer sale to get this. Although it is worth the $20.

Gameplay: Black Mesa is a first-person shooter that requires the player to perform combat tasks and puzzle solving to advance through the game. The core gameplay remains unchanged from the original Half-Life; the player can carry a number of weapons that they find through the course of the game, though they must also locate ammunition for most weapons. The player’s character is protected by a hazard suit that monitors the player’s health and can be charged as a shield, absorbing a limited amount of damage. Health and battery packs can be found scattered through the game, as well as stations that can recharge both.

Half-Life original comparison to Overhaul Mod Black Mesa AKA: Half-Life overhaul “This is showing the 2012 comparison it’s been improved since then”

Original Quake
This game is pretty damn old but was great fun in 1996 or 97 if you still own this like I do get ready for some MODDING! If you don’t own it grab it on Steam for $4.99 yes it can still be modded:-)
Honestly this game is hard to look at today in it’s day though it was a graphical master piece. Hard to see that now but after some mods you will be able to look at it much easier and play it without pixilation hell and working modern controls.
Go to  http://www.moddb.com/ and find quake then download the mod named Quake Definitive.
You will need broadband internet this mod is almost 4gb in size. Funny considering original Quake fit on a 600mb CD.
Once you download the mod just unzip with WinRAR and extract to the Quake install directory which will be directly on C:/ if you have the CD if you have the Steam version then will be located in the Steam folder on C drive in Program Files in the Steamapps folder then in the Common Folder.
This mod allows for Ultra wide resolutions as well and will fix controls so it controls like modern FPS games.

It doesn’t bring the graphics to todays level but makes the game much more tolerable especially with the control fixes. It’s worth revisiting or even better if this was before your time and you never played it.
This was a great game in it’s day.

Quake Unmodded
Quake Classic unmodded


Quake Modded
Quake modded @ Ultrawide resolution 2560×1080. ills the whole monitor unlike the un-modded original version.

Half -Life 2: The game is now 12 years old and at it’s time was graphically amazing with Physics and character facial expressions never seen before in a video game.
If you missed this game that is a shame! But it has been graphically updated with an almost complete overhaul.
The mod is free if you own the game just install on Steam and download the free mod  in Steam called Half-Life 2:update.
If you do not own this it can be purchased on Steam for $9.99
Here’s a video for you to check out.
Half:life 2 update Introduction video:

Or you can go with the Cinematic Half-Life 2 MOD located here: http://cinematicmod.com/
The Cinematic MOD is insane and requires all 3 Half-Life 2 game Half-Life 2, Ep1 & Ep2 and a beefy computer to run it. Just take a look at the comparison screens on the web page to see.
Check out the comparison video

I haven’t tried this MOD but after seeing the vast improvement makes me want to install the MOD and replay HL2 and both episodes.

I did not like Elder Scrolls third chapter known as Morrowind but it got a whole lot of praise from the RPG community in it’s day.
Released in 2002 to PC and original Xbox it was a hit and a beautiful sight to be seen  then…
Fast forward 14 years it looks clunky.
Thanks to the vast modding community it has been overhauled.
If you already own it the upgrade is free if you do not Steam has gold edition for $14.99 that will have everything needed for the mod.
The Mod is named Morrowind: Overhaul 3.0 it does improve more than the graphics.
Go to this webpage to download the mod: http://www.ornitocopter.net/morrowind-overhaul/mgso-release/

It’s very simple to install unzip its contents into your Morrowind directory, and run the “MO Installer” executable. If you’ve acquired Morrowind by way of Steam, the game will be in the Steam folder, under steamapps/common/Morrowind.

It is 2gb in size or a bit more.
Here is a video  to take a look-see at the game after mod.

Thief: The Dark Project is a game I have praised just recently it is an old game but some mods have done a total remake of this game using the Doom 3 engine.
Once a Mod that required Doom 3 to be installed it is now open source and a stand alone game.
The game is called the Dark Mod download here: http://www.thedarkmod.com/main/
If you can’t bare the old 1998 graphics of the original then this will be the answer to try this game.
The Doom 3 engine is now considered dated but it’s graphics are easy on the eyes compared to the original. And since Thief is based on hiding in darkness the Doom 3 engine handles this fantastic. It’s the one thing Doom 3 was made to do handle lighting very well.
I have played this and it is damn good!

The Dark MOD Video Preview

DOOM 3 released to PC in August of 2004 this game was the game you showed people why PC gaming was the best.
2016 not so stellar Doom3 was re-released again with improvements but named BFG Edition.
If you already own the original non-BFG like I do don’t bother buying it because the mods available are a much better graphical overhaul than the BFG Edition.
If you don’t own either you can get the Original Doom 3 on Steam for $4.99 or the BFG Edition for $19.99 seriously don’t bother with the $20 version get the $5 one and do the graphical Mods.

This version of Doom is not fast paced like previous games or like the latest 2016 version it’s more about atmosphere you move through very dark areas so baddies can pop out when you least expect it. Switching between weapon and flash light was a big complaint people made you can add a mod that connects a flash light to your weapons.
I wouldn’t personally because it ruins the suspense it was made to give you.
The MOD to download is called DOOM 3 AbsoluteHD it has graphics adjustments galore to improve it’s looks. This is a seriously awesome MOD. Download it from Here: http://www.moddb.com/mods/absolutehd

DOOM 3 Absolute HD screenshots Click to enlarge
If you own DOOM 3 BFG version it also has an HD MOD upgrade can be located here: http://www.moddb.com/mods/doom-3-bfg-hi-def

Brothers In Arms: Hells Highway This game is just awesome released to Windows on Oct 2008 at that time using the latest and greatest Unreal engine 3 now that Unreal 4 engine is out this makes U3 engine dated. Is a WWII shooter but not a run n gun this game requires tactical thinking.
It is different than you are most likely thinking if you did not play this game you should!
The graphics were great back then and still decent today but with the BiAH Reshade mod it improves the graphics quite a bit.
Grab the MOD here: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/3116735/BiAHH%20ReShade.zip
Very easy to install just extract to the Brothers in Arms Hells Highway directory should be located in C:/Program files (x86) if on Windows 7 C:/program files.

Brothers In Arms: Hell’s Highway comparison Video

Took me a few days to decide which games I wanted to put up on my blog.
Decided on the 7 games I thought are well worth playing again with mods or playing with mods if you never had the opportunity to play these great titles on PC.


Keep in mind all the modifications were NOT created by myself these were created by many of the talented people in the PC community who are kind enough to share their hard work with everyone.