PP2014 Firefly Renders Hogging CPU - PLEASE HELP!


    I have encountered another problem which may be related, figured I'd add it here.

    I have rigged up a television to use as a display for my PC, as it is much bigger than my monitor. However, it is quite a low resolution (1280X768) and has required me to sacrifice a lot of space on the screen. I've also been experiencing 'flickering', of sorts, whereby the display momentarily cuts out and then comes back. This happens more often than not, on Facebook, upon encountering a video on my timeline (not playing), and when switching Netflix to fullscreen. It appears as though the signal is lost for a moment (less than a second). It happens a LOT! I mean for every video I scroll past on Facebook, for example, it will happen at least twice (presumably once to change a resolution somewhere to fit the video, then again once I've gone past it to reset it to its standard state... just a guess).

    Well, I'm trying out another small render while I'm online and my display driver just shut off completely and left me with a blue screen (not BSOD, just a no signal screen). It wasn't until I used the bottom right button to switch to desktop (guessing where it was and clicking blind) that it came back on and gave me error messages that the display driver had crashed and recovered, that FFRender had crashed and that Poser had crashed.

    Might this be a GPU-based issue, or is this telly screwing everything up? If it's the latter, is there a way that I can get them to work together?

    GPU drivers have been updated in the last few days, but I should reiterate that I've been having problems for a long time now.

  • The GPU would definitely not affect a Firefly render, although I definitely think you're right to suspect a driver issue. That said, I'd be starting to look for a systemic problem such as a dying hard drive, or malware of some sort. I even contemplated an overheating CPU, although that surely would not cause rendering artefacts, it could certainly account for slowdowns IHMO.

  • Poser Ambassadors

    Many tvs default to 60htz, and they are actually 59. Try changing the refresh rate in the driver.

  • @shvrdavid Unless it's in Europe ;-)

  • @Glen85

    24 hours for render,my longest render has took me 13 hours in Poser and this has been large scene from Stonemason The Streets of Asia and applied there Snarly Snow script plus there has been 3 V4,this has been rendered on older X5670 OC to 4.2GHz

    Are you using SSS on floor,walls etc or are you using SSS only at V4,Genesis or other figure are you using IDL and if its possible can you post yours render settings please I would appreciated

    Are you using how many lights,do these lights have any alpha map applied or do they have applied any image map(HDR etc)?

    I don't think you have any infection,infection will cause other issues not only in Poser and usually you will see in Task Manager suspicious processes,which you will straight away recognize

    I will try to create simple scene for Poser 10 and earlier version,I've few props which I created and you can try how fast this will render on yours and will post my render settings,I would recommend to use D3D FireFly render settings

    Hope this helps


  • Poser Ambassadors

    @matb I have no idea what TV's report there, but I would guess that if they report wrong here, they do it there as well.

    The driver will list the options available, and there is usually on that is 1 htz lower that will stop the flickering.

  • I've checked all I can on this thing. I've checked for failing hardware and for 'viruses' of all shapes and forms, yet I've found nothing. All of my drivers are up-to-date, I don't know what more I can do.

    I can't change the refresh rate anywhere, it's on the only one that exists. The 'flickering' isn't the result of a visible refreshing of the screen on each pass, as I suspect you elude to when speaking of refresh rates, but it is the cutting of the signal at certain times, when displaying certain things (precisely what would happen with a bad HDMI connection, only it's not that, I've checked that too).

    As I've said before, the scenes (projects) vary, from one light to a dozen lights or more, IDL, no IDL, SSS, no SSS, it makes no difference, hence my believing it to be something other than my scene setup. I honestly cannot be clearer with that, I don't know what you want me to say; do I tell you I'm using a complex indoor scene with twelve lights, four characters and 'x-y-z' render settings, as may be the case with one project, or do I tell you I'm using an empty scene with a backdrop, one character and one light with different render settings? The fact of the matter is that I'm trying numerous projects which I have rendered before with great success and, all of a sudden, these exact same projects, with exactly the same settings etc are resulting in problems.

    I will gladly use whatever render settings anyone can suggest and perform tests with those settings, but I don't know which settings you want to see, as I use different settings depending upon the result I wish to achieve, and I have used different projects which have different settings, which have resulted in the same issues.

    Thank you for your responses.

  • @Glen85 Well you could build a scene using only standard components, then save the scene for us to test against, but frankly it sounds to me like a total uninstall and reinstall is needed, clearing all prefs and folders. But before you do that, I suggest that you log an official support ticket with Smith Micro in case they've experienced this.

  • Hi Glen

    Please download this scene,its created with Poser 10,although I shouldn't do that,but here is it

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/q3590x7b2uu27u8/Test scene Glen B.zip?dl=0

    Its simple scene,V4 with textures included(please note textures are not mine and I shouldn't distribute and you shouldn't too),SAV Party Dress(freebie),Roxie hair(Poser 10 included),background prop(P10),BB EnvSphere with sIBL HDR

    Light setup is easy(2 Infinite lights),this has rendered on mine PC in 3 minutes with IDL enabled and render settings are here

    0_1484702354594_Render settings.jpg

    And rendered image,no postwork

    0_1484702475779_Render A resized.jpg

    Hope this helps


  • You are using a non standard render interface Jura - it makes it very hard to work out how to set the same settings without that interface.

  • @matb said in PP2014 Firefly Renders Hogging CPU - PLEASE HELP!:

    You are using a non standard render interface Jura - it makes it very hard to work out how to set the same settings without that interface.

    Hi Mat

    Its standard Poser supplied script Dimension 3D Render FireFly which you can find under Scripts->Partners->Dimension3D->Render FireFly

    Hope this helps


  • Damn, I always learn so much from you Jura!

    Glen this took me 357 seconds to render 8 threads on E5 2687 at 3.10GHz - 302s seconds 32 threads.

  • @Glen85 said in PP2014 Firefly Renders Hogging CPU - PLEASE HELP!:
    ,,,,! Queue Manager takes days to reach a lofty percentage on a single render, then freezes in the eighties. Now, I liked the eighties too, but this is ridiculous! All cores of my CPU are at 100% and not fluctuating at all. RAM is at 50% and seems stable....

    Why are you using Queue Manager? (Just curious and wondering if that might be effecting performance.)

    As you can see above, using D3D's Firefly Rendering script gives you a lot of control over your render compared to Poser's standard render tool. (Well, more control at any rate.) Try using Jura's settings in D3D's Firefly Renderer. It's going to be much easier to see where you could be having issues. But, surely, you shouldn't be having them!

    (Note: I always select "Use own process" and set my gamma to 1.8 max since I have a PC. If you have a PC, set gamma to 1.8 and 2.2 for a Mac. Shading Rate at .2 since nothing in Poser that you can load up will be set up to have a shading rate lower than .2. Poser's IDL Intensity, at least what I remember from PP2012, was always a bit high, so I usually set it below 1, sometimes far below. Bounces are usually at 3 or more, never below, and I bump the IDL Irradiance Cache up significantly, since it doesn't add that much to processing.)

    There are four things you should try:

    1. Run Poser in Admin mode, permanently. (Right-click on the EXE, Compatibiltiy, Runin Admin. "Run Once" Admin privileges won't do everything it could need.) That shouldn't effect it in the ways you're experiencing it, but it could effect extra python scripts that are trying to load, like ones you have added. (I dunno what else it could effect, within Poser.) Just let it do its thing, on it's own, with permission for whatever it wants to do and just make sure to source appropriately any scripts that run on start. :) If you're nervous about it, run it offline and then go back and de-escalate its permissions back to the default.

    2. Don't run Firefox or Chrome when you first start Poser. It's ok, later, but close them out before running Poser. Why? I dunno, but I've experienced weird issues/hangs/forced shutdowns of Poser when running Firefox. (Chrome could have issues, as well, I dunno. And, nobody should be using MS Explorer, anyway...) Firefox has since patched this problem, but ya never know. Also, exit Steam if you're using it and make it fully exit instead of staying resident. For some reason, the Steam client seems to sometimes interfere or hog up whatever resources Poser wants. It's not always, just infrequently. I usually fully exit it when doing Poser work. (Maybe it has to do with ports or port conflict, dunno?) Any other proggies/apps you have running should also be off. That includes any resident Anti-Virus you have running, which may be getting nervous or making Poser nervous, standing over its shoulder.

    3. Make sure Poser has full access to the Ports it needs. On first startup, you'll get that warning and a lot of people click-thru it. If you installed it recently and clicked through a Windows Firewall notification, without actually reading what it wanted you to answer to, you'll need to manually allow Poser access to the ports it needs. (This is offered just for general troubleshooting, since it happens frequently.) You may very well have to also do this with your Anti-virus software. You'll certainly have to do this if your AV has supplanted Windows Firewall. AV firewall issues or AV watchdog/heuristic issues can certainly cause your computer to chug when something is running that your AV suspects or that you haven't told it to clear.

    4. Next, run Poser and do a "junk render." It doesn't have to be much of anything, just something that will render quickly. I always use D3D's rendering script, so I'd naturally suggest you use it. I always render in Background, so I can still work on the scene and flip, back and forth. Try whatever you wish, it shouldn't matter. Once it finishes that render, exit Poser, fully. Let the companion Chromium processes complete and exit, too. (Check Task Manager) Then, once everything has stopped, start Poser again. Now, load up your test scene or whatever scene you wish and try rendering it. There have been times when my Poser seemed "chuggish" when rendering. If I exited fully and then restarted it, it seemed to perform much better. I don't know if it's a cache issue or not, but even if it's just a "ghost story", it's worth trying.

    Whatever is happening to you should not be happening. Have you noticed any specific type of render that uses certain unique material settings rendering very slowly or do they all render that way? Often, optimizing complex material settings for special scenes is half the battle of getting them rendered in a decent amount of time. AND, knowing which settings you can turn down while still achieving your desired result is an art, itself. :)

  • Oh, heh I read his OP several times and I never noticed that he said he was using Queue Manager.

    Are you using QM for all renders? I mean, there seems to literally be nothing wrong with your system and your specs are fine... maybe it's something as simple rendering without QM. Because if that's not it, I have no clue as to what is causing your render problems. :c

  • Hi folks,

    Wow, thank you all very much for your responses. I must apologise, I've had a grand total of two hours of sleep and have a big day ahead of me (hence the insomnia, it's stupid), so I haven't really taken anything in and can't really respond coherently right now because my brain is almost as 'chugged' as my PC, lol!

    Just to clarify; I've tried Queue Manager, but I don't use it usually. In fact, I make a habit of rendering in the background to enable me to work on other things within Poser at the same time, if I wish, and to stop Poser from being the irritating little tit that it is and forcing itself maximised throughout the duration of the render (please sort that out, SM Elves!).

    That's about all I can manage right now, I'm running on empty. I'll get on with my day, come home, have a good bit of sleep and come back to all of this when I'm not a zombie.

    Thanks again folks, cheerio for now!


  • @Glen85

    I would suspect this rendering in background is not working for you,what I've tried to render in background my renders has been slower a bit,I didn't rendered for while in FireFly and render in background there

    Please try above scene which I posted and please report back if you could

    Hope this helps and best of luck


  • Hi folks,

    So I've recovered! Thank you all very much for your help and advice. Since my last post, I've had other issues unrelated to Poser, so I bit the bullet and did what I always used to do when I had PC troubles; I wiped the lot and started again with a fresh OS install.

    I've reinstalled Poser and brought in the projects I've had stacked up waiting to be rendered, only I've used Jura11's render settings and they're rendering even faster than they did when the PC was first built, lol! The most complex, demanding render so far has taken less than an hour, I'm well pleased!

    Thank you all once again! I shall continue with these settings and get back on it, it has been too long! I've almost run out of old, unreleased renders to fiddle with in Photoshop and want to make some more!

    Goodness knows what was going on, but it seems to be absolutely dandy now, so happy days!

    Oh also, lowering the threads seems to have helped a lot too; rendering hardly touches my CPU at all, and it even used to get pretty busy with rendering when it was new!


  • I'm delighted to hear that Glen!

  • Hi Glen @Glen85

    You can always tweak my settings, these settings I have used mostly in FireFly and if yours scene is darker you can change intensity to 1.2 or more or you can adjust the samples, but with 1001 I've got best results, with less samples you can get splotches

    Best way is test few settings and save as yours preset, FireFly is still great render engine

    Hope this helps

    Thanks, Jura