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Suggested specs for a full speed DOSbox machine?

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First post, by senrew

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Currently, I'm using an older HP machine with a p4 3.2ghz, 1g ram, built-in intel crap video and ac 97 audio on xp sp3. For the most part, this machine runs all of the dos games I've thrown at it pretty well, except for some of the later cpu-intensive or heavy video decoding games. Those stutter and chop like a mofo no matter the cycle settings, etc I've tried. The machine itself isn't as happy as it could be with the single gig of ram just as an xp machine but still.

What would you all suggest as a good baseline for running even the most needy dos games at full speed under dosbox?

Reply 1 of 25, by Gamecollector

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More CPU raw power = better results...
The trouble is - the MIPS/GHz ratio of the current CPUs is just 20-30% better then P4... The main targets are - multicore, multimedia extensions (SSE etc) and 64-bit, not the raw power.
The second boost - several cores versus HT or single core CPU - again, just 5-10% of the performance.
So - even with the latest CPUs you still don't have smooth gameplay in demanding areas. Like Vesa/SVGA.

Asus P4P800 SE/Pentium4 3.2E/2 Gb DDR400B,
Radeon HD3850 Agp (Sapphire), Catalyst 14.4 (XpProSp3).
Voodoo2 12 MB SLI, Win2k drivers 1.02.00 (XpProSp3).

Reply 3 of 25, by DosFreak

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C2D minimum but I noticed a significant boost in late 90's games when I upgrade to a i7.

DOSBox Compilation Guides
DosBox Feature Request Thread
PC Game Compatibility List
How To Ask Questions The Smart Way
Running DRM games offline

Reply 4 of 25, by Gamecollector

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I7-i5 MIPS to GHz ratio is around 7.5. Hmm... Well, almost 2 times better then P4 Prescott (3.4) or C2D (4.2), so - even 1.66 GHz i5 is better then P4...
Dunno. The real testing is needed. Cycles=max and then measure the resulting number of the DOSBox cycles.

Asus P4P800 SE/Pentium4 3.2E/2 Gb DDR400B,
Radeon HD3850 Agp (Sapphire), Catalyst 14.4 (XpProSp3).
Voodoo2 12 MB SLI, Win2k drivers 1.02.00 (XpProSp3).

Reply 6 of 25, by Gamecollector

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Well, the easiest way is - run well known Dhrystone benchmark in the vanilla DOSBox. With the cycles=max. Non-optimized versions 1.1 and 2.1 are added to this post.
My result: P4 3.00E, 3 GHz - 36.07 VAXs. 😀
If I run the test in WinXp cmd - the result is 451 VAXs.

Attachments

  • Filename
    DOS4GW.EXE
    File size
    259.18 KiB
    Downloads
    275 downloads
    File comment
    Dos extender.
    File license
    Fair use/fair dealing exception
  • Filename
    DHRY2ND.EXE
    File size
    65.88 KiB
    Downloads
    299 downloads
    File comment
    Dhrystone 2.1 non-optimized.
    File license
    Fair use/fair dealing exception
  • Filename
    DHRY1ND.EXE
    File size
    62.08 KiB
    Downloads
    273 downloads
    File comment
    Dhrystone 1.1 non-optimized.
    File license
    Fair use/fair dealing exception
Last edited by Gamecollector on 2012-09-01, 04:59. Edited 2 times in total.

Reply 7 of 25, by senrew

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Had to find a copy of DOS4GW.EXE to run this it seems. Not sure if it matters, but found v1.97 of it to use from a quick google search.

My results for the A8:

D1:
Microseconds 1 loop: 10.72
Dhrystones / second: 93294
VAX MIPS rating: 53.10

D2:
Microseconds 1 loop: 11.23
Dhrystones / second: 89013
VAX MIPS rating: 50.66

Last edited by senrew on 2012-09-02, 03:34. Edited 1 time in total.

Reply 9 of 25, by senrew

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Finally got around to running the benchmark on my p4. It's a 3.06ghz Prescott 519J P4 for reference.

D1:
Microseconds 1 loop: 14.08
Dhrystones / second: 71032
VAX MIPS rating: 40.43

D2:
Microseconds 1 loop: 15.09
Dhrystones / second: 66253
VAX MIPS rating: 37.71

Last edited by senrew on 2012-09-02, 03:35. Edited 1 time in total.

Reply 12 of 25, by Malik

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My ASUS G73Jh-1A Notebook (Core i7 720QM - Quad Core, 8 Threads @ Stock 1.6GHz) Results :

Dosbox 0.74 Core=Dynamic, Cycles=20000

D1:
Microseconds 1 Loop : 51.81
Dhrystones / second : 19300
VAX MIPS : 10.98

D2:
Microseconds 1 Loop : 51.19
Dhrystones / second : 19536
VAX MIPS : 11.12

Dosbox 0.74 Core=Dynamic, Cycles=Max

D1:
Microseconds 1 Loop : 7.55
Dhrystones / second : 132505
VAX MIPS : 75.42

D2:
Microseconds 1 Loop : 7.81
Dhrystones / second : 128000
VAX MIPS : 72.85

Dosbox 0.74 Core=Full, Cycles=Max

D1:
Microseconds 1 Loop : 7.94
Dhrystones / second : 125984
VAX MIPS : 71.70

D2:
Microseconds 1 Loop : 7.91
Dhrystones / second : 126482
VAX MIPS : 71.99

EDIT:

Tested the FPS of DOOM :

Dosbox 0.74, Core=Dynamic, Cycles=Max

DOOM v1.2

C:\DOOM>doom -timedemo demo1 [Ent]

Results :

2567 Gametics, 696 Realtics

= (2567 ÷ 696) x 35

= 129fps

5476332566_7480a12517_t.jpgSB Dos Drivers

Reply 13 of 25, by robertmo

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F2bnp wrote:

What games do you want to run that run choppily?
I played through Mechwarrior 2 at 1024x768 on my C2D 6550 (2.33GHz) and it was silky smooth.
Now, I'm on a C2Q Q9450 (OCed at 3.45GHz) and I still can't find anything that slows down on DOSBox 😜

try this one
www.vogons.org/viewtopic.php?p=266970&highlight=#266970

Reply 15 of 25, by Kreshna Aryaguna Nurzaman

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Malik wrote:

My ASUS G73Jh-1A Notebook (Core i7 720QM - Quad Core, 8 Threads @ Stock 1.6GHz) Results :

Dosbox 0.74 Core=Dynamic, Cycles=20000

D1:
Microseconds 1 Loop : 51.81
Dhrystones / second : 19300
VAX MIPS : 10.98

D2:
Microseconds 1 Loop : 51.19
Dhrystones / second : 19536
VAX MIPS : 11.12

Dosbox 0.74 Core=Dynamic, Cycles=Max

D1:
Microseconds 1 Loop : 7.55
Dhrystones / second : 132505
VAX MIPS : 75.42

D2:
Microseconds 1 Loop : 7.81
Dhrystones / second : 128000
VAX MIPS : 72.85

Dosbox 0.74 Core=Full, Cycles=Max

D1:
Microseconds 1 Loop : 7.94
Dhrystones / second : 125984
VAX MIPS : 71.70

D2:
Microseconds 1 Loop : 7.91
Dhrystones / second : 126482
VAX MIPS : 71.99

EDIT:

Tested the FPS of DOOM :

Dosbox 0.74, Core=Dynamic, Cycles=Max

DOOM v1.2

C:\DOOM>doom -timedemo demo1 [Ent]

Results :

2567 Gametics, 696 Realtics

= (2567 ÷ 696) x 35

= 129fps

But Doom is a low-res, 320x200 game, bro. What troubles me with DOSBOX is that it is still unable to run hi-res, texture mapped 3D game with adequate speed. My laptop is i5 M520 @2.4 GHz, and when running F-22 Lightning II in DOSBOX, the frame rate is choppy as hell.

Reply 16 of 25, by F2bnp

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robertmo wrote:
F2bnp wrote:

What games do you want to run that run choppily?
I played through Mechwarrior 2 at 1024x768 on my C2D 6550 (2.33GHz) and it was silky smooth.
Now, I'm on a C2Q Q9450 (OCed at 3.45GHz) and I still can't find anything that slows down on DOSBox 😜

try this one
www.vogons.org/viewtopic.php?p=266970&highlight=#266970

Sorry for the late reply, I just saw this, I can't seem to get this to run under DOSBox 0.74.
Whenever I run Pyl.exe it just gives me a black screen. But I did notice that the cycles aren't set to Max, which could be a speed problem.
I played Mechwarrior 2 at 1024x768 at Max cycles. How exactly does DOSBox figure out when to set the cycles to Max?

Reply 18 of 25, by Gamecollector

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With the cycles=auto any protected mode game/app is automatically setting the cycles to max. Theoretically.
Cycles=max - all games/apps are using the maximum (not so good for the realmode games/apps).

About "too slow in 640x480" - 4,8 times more CPU speed is needed for the drawing. So - Doom will be only 129/4.8=29 fps in 640x480 as the example.
For the good (60 fps) 640x480 we need 150 VAX in DOSBox as the minimum.