How to Improve ACC Graphics at Zero Performance Cost (RTX Tips)

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As you may have read from the title, the tips suggested in the following article apply only to RTX graphics card users using a 1080p or 1440p monitor.

I love Assetto Corsa Competizione. While I prefer classic and vintage race cars, with which I am much more skilled and competitive, I really appreciate the idea of having a simulation dedicated to a single series with all the benefits that come with it. It's more focused and I get a lot more out of my simulation time than if I was hopping costantly between wildly different vehicles. I can focus, practice, learn more about driving with the intention of improving my awareness and technique behind the wheel in real life.

Unfortunately, however, ACC really doesn't look that great unless you got a 4k monitor. Aside from scary aliasing, which has alway been a feature of all the Kunos games I have tried (NetKar Pro, Assetto Corsa/Competizione), as they never managed to properly implement efficient AA techniques into their titles, their latest sim also presents washed-out, blurry image quality at resolutions below 4k.
One way to solve this problem, if playing on a Full HD or 2K monitor, is to increase the image scaling in ACC's video options to at least 150%. This makes it much sharper, although at a significant cost in terms of performance.

It came to a point where spending consistent time with the sim was having a toll on my eyes, and I had to take some time off from ACC in order to avoid straining them excessively. I was at a loss about what to do to remedy the situation. Purely by chance, I found the solution.

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DSR (Dynamic Super Resolution)​

If you follow tech news, you may know that Nvidia introduced with the Maxwell (900 series) GPUs a new upscaling technique called DSR (Dynamic Super Resolution). In simple terms, this technique improved the resolution by a predetermined percentage that you could choose in the Nvidia control panel (henceforth referred to as NVCPL) and then scaled it according to the actual monitor output. All this was done by applying a Gaussian filter to attenuate any artifacts resulting from upscaling and subsequent downsampling of the image.

This technique has its downsides and, ultimately, is not much different from what can already be achieved in ACC using the in-game image scaling option mentioned earlier. Again, improved quality, but at a significant cost in terms of performance.

DLDSR (Deep-Learning Dynamic Super Resolution)​

What I wasn't aware of is that Nvidia recently introduced, through a driver update, a new technology called DLDSR (Deep-Learning Dynamic Super Resolution). It is still the old DSR but on artificial intelligence steroids. Taking advantage of the tensor cores on RTX cards, the upscaling process is now handled by AI, leading to massive improvements in both quality and performance cost. Applying a 2.25x filter from NVCPL now achieves the same 4k upscaling result, albeit with better results than the previous DSR, using half the GPU resources than before!

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Combine DLDSR with DLSS​

This on and by itself is already great but wait, there's more.
I learned in fact that you can combine DLDSR with DLSS, if the game supports it, to achieve better image quality at 0 performance cost. Fortunately, ACC has recently introduced DLSS support, which is now available in the video options.
What you want to do then is:
  • go into your NVCPL
  • navigate to "Manage 3d Setting" (or equivalent in your set language)
  • look for the "DSR - Factors" option and set it to "2.25x DL"
  • leave "DSR - Smoothness" to default 33% (more on that later)
  • go in game, open the ACC video options menu and change the video resolution to the new value that is gonna be now available; then navigate down to DLSS, set it on, leaving it on "Quality" with 0% "Sharpness".
That's it!
Go into a practice session and enjoy 4k quality at no performance cost.
Now, the image may look a little too sharp. No problem, this is due to the DLDSR smoothing option. This new technique actually makes the image much sharper than the old DSR, with which 0-10% smoothness was generally recommended. With DLDSR, it is recommended to use 40-60%. I personally use 40%.

I'll link a video from Digital Foundry where, as per usual, they take an in-depth look at this technology and its various options.


You don't need much "juice" to make this work; I have a simple RTX 2060, which is the stepping stone for Ray Tracing technology. However, it is damn effective, pardon the language, and has definitely solved my problems with the less-than-stellar image quality of ACC at lower resolutions. Sure, there's still some aliasing in places, but it's totally acceptable now.

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I hope this will come useful to you, and remember not to do anything out of the ordinary to avoid breaking stuff you're not supposed to touch. We do not take responsibility for it.

Have fun!
About author
Davide Nativo
Petrolhead and Simracer, passionate since the cradle about cars, motorsports and simracing. I read a lot, and I love to share what I've learned with others!

Comments

Really? Why not ultrawide? I was just about to try it.
I think Deans comment is a bit misleading.

Whilst just plugging three monitors into the back of your graphics card, booting up Windows and then launching ACC, there may not be an option in the graphics settings to display across all 3 (and there will likely not be a way to bump the resolution up to one which then displays across all three panels regardless of the native display you're running in the OS).

However, you can get it to display across all three panels. If running an Nvidia card, in the Nvidia control panel (and I presume there is a similar option in the equivelant software for AMD) you can enable screen spanning by going to: 3D settings - Configure Surround, PhysX - Span displays with Surround - Configure. Once here you can set the required resolution to display your desktop across all three displays. Once this has been done, you can go back into the games settings and change the resolution to display across all three. In addition to this, Windows atleast is intelligent enough to identify this is enable and still display applications correctly on single panels as if it wasn't enabled (along with the task bar, which can also be set to display on only a single panel by dragging it to the panel and orientation of your choice).

As for ultrawide, I also think the statement is misleading. I have two friends who don't run triples and instead run Ultrawide panels and they don't have a problem running ACC on their setup.
 
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doesnt work on ultrawide or triples unfortunately!
Not 100% sure about triples, but works fine on Ultrawide Samsung G9.
You need to disable DSC though to make it work.
Here's the instruction with some tips.
DLDSR/Better AA with Samsung G9

I disagree that "You don't need much "juice" to make this work", but it's manageable with 3080Ti 2.25 DLDSR and Quality DLSS.

EDIT: Found this instruction for triples, don't use triples myself so cannot confirm if it works or not.
 
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My NVCPL does not have DSR - Factors or DSR - Smoothness settings. Running 3090 with 4k triples.

Any ideas?
 
OK, The day I will buy an RTX card, I'll thank you properly. :D
For now thanks for the tips!
In the next days I'm going to receive my new PC... but I will keep my old GTX 980 until 4070/4060 will be out.
 
The problem is that DSR and DLDSR are global settings only.

I do other things on my machine, and play other sims that look just fine. I don't want to go into NVCP every time I boot ACC and change the DSR settings. It's bloody annoying.

This is a non-starter for me, unfortunately. Just like when this tactic was when it was making the rounds for Cyberpunk. Maybe if it could be done on a per-application basis, then I'd be interested.

EDIT: This seems to be ONLY DSR - the way DSR used to work, the entire resolution of your screen would change when applied. DLDSR apparently does NOT do this. I'll have to look into this further.
 
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The problem is that DSR and DLDSR are global settings only.

I do other things on my machine, and play other sims that look just fine. I don't want to go into NVCP every time I boot ACC and change the DSR settings. It's bloody annoying.

This is a non-starter for me, unfortunately. Just like when this tactic was when it was making the rounds for Cyberpunk. Maybe if it could be done on a per-application basis, then I'd be interested.
All it does is just adding additional resolutions you can choose in game setup. Nobody is forcing you to run all games or desktop at DSR resolution.
 
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Combine DLDSR with DLSS ?​

DLSS add input lag, DLDSR too i guess, the game will have a massive delay....
Just buy a RTX 4090, and play at 4K ultra with no DLSS.
DLDSR with DLSS requires more power but looks better than native resolution with TAA. And no, I do not see any lag with DLSS2, you probably meant DLSS3 frame insertion tech.
 
Premium
I don't want to go into NVCP every time I boot ACC and change the DSR settings. It's bloody annoying.
it's not necessary; both DSR and DLDSR add new resolution options that you may or may not choose. No one forces you to always apply them in every application. It's very convenient ;)
DLDSR with DLSS requires more power but looks better than native resolution with TAA
mm not exactly.. DLDSR requires more power, it's true, but when you combine it with DLSS (which is a performance-saving technology) you effectively recover that power. It is explained in the Digital Foundry video I linked in the article.
On my system ACC now runs, for some strange reason, using half the resources than before (while looking substantially better).
 
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Can confirm this tip DOES work with 3340 x 1440 widescreen and 3090 combination. Always stayed away from DLSS as it slightly degraded graphics. I have also played with DSR with some success, but never the two together until I saw this post. Works really well together. Many thanks for this.
 
Speaking AMD, the article really just needed to add a single abbreviation:

FSR

Was that too difficult to mention, just as a side note? Most important setting in just a single click in Adrenaline software to add both graphical settings to ultra/extreme and level up FPS. This is really it, neglecting almost all other params! (though they definitely can help too, some depending on sim)


My story:
In order to improve VR performance of my bedated AMD RX 580, I acquired my Sapphire Nitro+ RX 6800 XT Special Edition with easy TriXX software combined with the AMD Adrenaline software settings and the SE editions hardware switch settings, besides using the dedicated USB-C3.2 port for optimizing on my curved 32" @165Hz in 1440p and everything went well, especially when swithing to my fav MX-4 cooling paste and just very few tweaks to my case speaking cooling, in all I was satisfied.

Then 3 months ago I acquired the fabulous 65" LG 4K OLED C2 for the living room, using 20m 4K 120Hz optical cable patched from office/main sim cave/main PC, and just played a bit with 2560p/4K settings "raw" and in fact went well for all tested sims even on very high settings, switching the C2's HDR facilities on

THEN I tried out FSR.
Tuning down to a mere 1080p (many years I've been there!), and booting up whatever-sim, screen indicated the FSR activation and "pseudo-elevation 1080p->2560p.

And the FPS benefit was HUGE. So in fact in most gfx demanding sims as e.g. ACC as mentioned I just switched every possible graphics marmelade to max.
And in combo with the C2's near second to none HDR I couldn't ask for more.

AMD FSR has changed my sim habits so drastically that I'm almost fully back to old-fashioned flat screener, but now in the living room, and since busy times with lots of other things going on in life, I gladly wait for the family's green light, rather than turning up the engines in my 32" curved monitor sim cave.

How much difference a single click can do. And yes other AMD Adrenaline params do difference as well, but not near what the FSR feature will do.

Now I only think of when I really turn back to VR sim, apart from via my GTX1650Ti laptop using Virtual Desktop. Haven't invested whether FSR will do any difference here too, e.g. using my dedicated USB-C3.2 port on my gfx.
 
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it's not necessary; both DSR and DLDSR add new resolution options that you may or may not choose. No one forces you to always apply them in every application. It's very convenient ;)

mm not exactly.. DLDSR requires more power, it's true, but when you combine it with DLSS (which is a performance-saving technology) you effectively recover that power. It is explained in the Digital Foundry video I linked in the article.
On my system ACC now runs, for some strange reason, using half the resources than before (while looking substantially better).
I went from 100-120 to 75-90 fps on G9 with the same settings (all Epic)
My earlier posted guide explains the math.
G9 native resolution - 5120x1440
DLDSR x 2.25 - 7680x2160
DLSS Quality preset 66.7%
This is entry from AC.log for target resolution of 7680x2160 (DLDSR 2.25) with DLSS Quality preset

[2023.01.29-03.46.50:818][ 2]LogDLSSNGXRHI: Creating NGX DLSS Feature SrcRect=[0x0->5123x1441], DestRect=[0x0->7680x2160], ScaleX=0.667057, ScaleY=0.667130, NGXPerfQuality=MaxQuality(2), bHighResolutionMotionVectors=1, bNonZeroSharpness=0, bUseAutoExposure=1

As you can see the source resolution is 5123x1441, pretty much native one. So it does all rendering at that resolution and after that scales it up using DLSS to 7680x2160, just to scale it back down to native 5120x1440 before sending to monitor. All this work is not free.
Of course if your GPU had plenty of headroom held back by CPU you are more effectively utilizing it, especially Tensor cores, but it's not ZERO.

Going down to Balanced DLSS preset or lowering DLDSR to 1.78x, which can yield better result than lower DLSS preset, can lower the performance impact.
 
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FSR works with DSR or DLDSR but it does not do AA, you still rely on TAA, so the final result is not really better than just running native, and I've had some extensive testing done comparing two, not using TAA yields the best visuals overall.
On the other hand you can use Ultra Quality FSR preset that starts at 77% of target resolution so it's lesser resolution drop than 66% Quality DLSS.
 

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