Running ZWIFT at 4K

Hi All,

 

I currently run Zwift on a 2016 macbook air and my laptop overheats and gives warnings when running ZWIFT at 1080p.  I was looking at buying an Intel NUC model - NUC7i3bnk and wondered if this would run Zwift at 4k? 

 

Many use this NUC to run Kodi or Plex media streams at 4k.   Based on the specs, can it run ZWIFT in 4K without overheating?

 

Thanks

Hi Kris,

Streaming at 4k and rendering 3d graphics in 4k are very different in their power requirements. Even dedicated graphics cards that cost the same price as the NUC itself have trouble rendering in 4k at acceptable frame rates.

If you wish to run Zwift at high resolutions with high frame-rates then the only real option is a dedicated gaming-oriented computer.

Kris:

You can see which graphics card and CPU other Zwift riders are using to get Ultra graphics resolution at https://zwiftalizer.com/benchmarks .

For instance, someone is getting 72 frames per second (average) with 

PC / Intel Core i5-6600K @ 3.50GHz / Nvidia GeForce GTX 980 Ti/PCIe/SSE2

6th generation (Skylake) Intel Core family processor - Unlocked frequency multiplier (overclocker)

 

I run Zwift using a gaming spec desktop PC :

  Intel i7 5930, 16GB RAM & (most importantly) Nvidia GTX 1080 Ti.

I render at 4K which is then scaled down to my 1440 line Acer Predator 27" monitor.  My frame rate is consistently above 70fps.  Hence if I connected up an actual 4K monitor this is what I’d get and it provides a fantastically smooth experience.

Windows 10 Pro 64-bit

i7-5930k @ 3.50 GHz

32-GB memory

Nvidia GTX 980 x 2 (SLI)

I get 4k at 60fps, but I usually run my system with Display Settings set to duplicate monitor 1 to monitor 3 which sets them both to 1080p. I have not tried to run dynamic super resolution (DSR) to see if I could get a scaled up 4k, because I don’t think the resolution is as important as the workout information, and really I am usually only looking at the grade of the road surface. I do plan on recording my workouts soon, so that means I will be duplicating to monitor 2 instead, so then DSR may fall into play.

Recently moved to a Corsair One Pro, which is a small pre-built gaming PC along the lines of an Alienware quality build.  Highly recommended if you don’t want to faff.

http://www.corsair.com/en-us/landing/one

My specs: i7 7700k, 16GB, GTX 1080

(there are also 1070 and 1080 Ti versions available…)

Outputting 4K resolution and ULTRA quality to a 4K TV

My framerates are …

Min: 112-120

Avg: 145-157

Max: 189-199

I mention this because Zwiftalizer grossly undervalues this configuration.

When I upload my logs, it is 3rd highest on the list in the 2160 Ultra category, just behind the more powerful GTX 1080 Ti and the Titan X.

But if you just looked up the specs above on Zwiftalizer, you would think the framerates on my computer were going to be all < 100. WRONG. I don’t know what those people are doing …  maybe they have the NVidia V-Sync turned on and their system is locked to half the framerate of their display or something.  (60fps?)  Turn that off and the framerates go through the roof.

I cannot recommend the Corsair system enough, it is quiet, fast, gorgeous…

 

I moved Zwift from an older Mac barely capable of 576 Basic getting … ELEVEN frames per second.  It was certainly functional, which is impressive enough, but once you see Zwift in 4K, make sure there are no children in the room…  

Good point Duke. Yeah, the averages are being pulled down by systems with v-sync on. Do you think Zwiftalizer should do something different?

I’ve never worried about it because 60 fps minimum is the magic number. Anything higher is hard to notice, and the vast majority of TVs can only refresh the screen 60 times a second anyway, which is why so many choose to turn on v-sync on purpose and not waste resources, or have half frames overlaps cause tearing effects. 

I’ve just done a group ride on Zwift and the average frame rate was 71, max 111.  I’m not using vertical sync.  The card outputs as fast as possible and my G-Sync monitor adjusts to match.  I haven’t seen figures as high as Duke’s above.  This is possibly due in part to my older generation processor but mainly due to the fact that I’ve played with the foliage percentage (and other settings) as follows:

res 2560x1440(0x)
sres 2048x2048
set gSSAO=1
set gFXAA=1
set gShowFPS=1
set gFoliagePercent=5
set gShowRouteInfo=1