Optimizing Skyrim and whether to use parallel projections



Does anyone have any advice on optimizing Pimax for Skyrim?

I’ve done some testing and realized you can see how much of a performance hit PiTool settings have by changing them, then looking at the SteamVR->Settings->Video-> Application Resolution recommendation, which changes each time you change certain settings like parallel projection (pp). PP takes a massive performance toll on the GPU, but without it, I generally see a lot of distracting artifacts in Skyrim, mostly at the corners of the screen. Anyone get Skyrim to work without needing parallel projections?

TIP: It seems that letting SteamVR to set your application resolution (super-sampling) automatically is a good strategy as it automatically sharpens the graphics on some games based on your current PiTool settings. Change the per application resolution in SteamVR only if you have performance issues.

For those interested, here’s my observations in Pitool v132 (Skyrim TAA and dynamic resolution are off), Pitool rendering=1. Smart Smoothing is always off as it trashes performance in Skyrim, especially when using Natural locomotion. (Note: I have a very high-end 2080TI rig OC and i7-8700K CPU @4700ghz, DD4 4000hz 16GB)

PP off. Recommended Application Resolution in SteamVR jumps from 86% to 130%. Basically, parallel projections cuts performance by 1/3 when on, but if I leave it off, I get too many artifacts in Skyrim, which is a shame. Love to have a fix for this!
Pitool Rendering=1. Normal FOV. Pretty solid 72FPS in Falkreach. Leaf shimmer on trees is gone (seems to be the case when super-sampling/resolution is 130% or more. Sharpness is improved. It’s not perfect as character faces far away still blur out, but it feels much more real. HOWEVER, graphical artifacts mostly on the display edges appear without PP. This happens frequently, which is a shame.

PP OFF and Small POV resolution = 150%. So FOV from normal to small makes a pretty big difference. I still get artifacts mostly at outer 25% of the screen (flickers, flashes, brief blurred areas). Trees and sharpness was very good because of the high super-sampling (best of all the settings). Characters close up are amazingly sharp and clear.

PP ON and Small POV changes resolution to 120%. Tree shimmering was minimal (but practically gone when at 150%). No PP artifacts. Random split second CPU spikes cause a couple of stutters going thru Falkreath this time. Not sure why? Mostly 72fps, but entering Falkreath drops into 60’s. FPS is mostly 70-72.

PP OFF and Small FOV re-test. Got CPU stutters again just like with PP ON. So, don’t know why those happen? Graphics were excellent and for some reason, artifacts were minimal this time with PP OFF. Maybe I forgot to reboot the HMD and PP was actually on?

For me, running PP ON and FOV at small keeps FPS near 72 and seems the best compromise, though less than perfect. However, I’d prefer to have resolution higher than 120%, but that cuts into the FPS. Anyone get better results with other settings or with Pitool 180?


@fresco plays a lot of skyrim with mods & would be a good one to ask.


I started with theses mods:

A Quality World Map
Birds of Skyrim SSE Edition
Book Covers Skyrim
Cutting Room Floor
Enhanced Blood Textures
Glowing Arrows V3 SSE - The Remaster Edition
HD Road Signs - 2K and 4K
Imersive Characters Overhaul
Lanterns of Skyrim SE
Lightweight Grass Overhaul
Obsidian Weathers and Seasons
Realistic Lighting Overhaul (RLO) SSE All-In-One Installer
Realistic Ragdolls and Force
Realistic Water Two
Reverb and Ambiance Overhaul
RS Children Overhaul
RUSTIC CLOTHING - Special Edition
Skyrim 2017 Textures by Pfuscher
Skyrim Flora Overhaul SE
SkyrimVR - USSEP Compatibility Patch
Sounds of Skyrim Complete SE
Static Mesh Improvement Mod
Unique Uniques SE
Unofficial Skyrim Special Edition Patch
WICO - Windsong Immersive Chracter Overhaul
Zim’s Immersive Artifacts V1.4

Pitool settings:
Smooth On
Normal fov
Mask On
Contrast +2
Brightness -2

SteamVR Video 138%

Launching from Mod Organizer 2

My Rig:
I5 6600K @4.5, Gigabyte GA-Z170XP mobo, Corsair H80i Liquid Cooler, MSI GTX 1080 ti Gaming X gpu (factory OC), SoundBlaster X-F1 sound card, 16 gig Corsair Vengeance ddr4 ram @ 3200 , 3 ssd hds

Pretty happy with the game and performance.


What version of PiTool are you running? For me, smart smoothing caused my Natural Locomotion app that let’s me jog in place around Skyrim to badly stutter. Or it may have just made all Skyrim movement stutter as I never tested it without Natural Locomotion.

When you run with parallel projections off (which I’d love to do as it improves performance 30%), do you not get the weird graphical artifacts randomly appearing, generally near the outside of the lenses or do you just ignore them?

I also run with Mask On and 72hz, but I have a lot more mods than you do.


I am running Ptool 180 and seems to be fine for my purposes.
I don’t see any artifacts with PP off. Maybe it’s a mod you are running that I am not or maybe I am just lest sensitive . I still play In Death in my Rift and the borders disappear once I start playing.