iRacing have released the latest build of their online only racing simulation, deploying the 2017 Season 1 update to the game and adding a variety of fixes, enhancements and changes to the title in the usual iRacing style... Build 2017 Season 1 comes with yet another monster change log, highlights of which include work on the reduction of framerate "choppiness", the inclusion of a new heat haze effect, animated support characters and additional spotter commands. Other notable changes that take place as part of the new build are the simulation of visor tear offs, new tyres on the V8 Supercar model, upgrades to the telemetry and some hand-over-hand steering animations on a small selection of cars. The new build is available now and will automatically download when members next access the service. Full details on the release are below. Website Added some more pre-race information for drivers in the Drivers’ Meeting pre-race page The Sporting Code URL has been updated. Fixed an error on the What’s Hot page that mistakenly showed Time Trial Sessions. Fixed navigation of the Quick Start Guide to allow smooth navigation transitions when viewing it after the initial required time. Simulation Several settings for an upcoming feature named “Browser Mode” have been added to the “app.ini” file. These additional settings will be fully described when Browser Mode is released, and have no effect at this time. Loading Track loading has been restructured to reduce the peak memory usage of the Simulator. Race Control Fixed a bug where cutting a course to take the checkered flag would not properly award the black flag penalty due to scoring being finalized on the car before the cut course penalty was processed. Dynamic Track The marbles texture has been updated to provide more accurate information on marble density. Fixed an issue that could allow the server to create track dust when processing client updates. World State Triple Buffering This upgrade fundamentally alters some aspects of how the Sim’s “realtime”/”BG” thread (the one that keeps the world moving) and the Sim’s “drawing”/”FG” thread (the one that paints the frames) interact with each other. Virtually every UI widget, including the “3D world” widget, uses data from the realtime world to determine what should be drawn. How this data is safely copied for the FG to draw a frame so that it doesn’t get confused should the realtime world “wake up” and start advancing the world is now different. Previously, the FG would lock-out the BG, make its copy, enable the BG, and then draw its frame. The main problem with this method is that if the BG is in the middle of updating the world when the FG is ready to start a new frame, that “lock-out” must wait until the BG finishes updating the world. Only then can the FG make its copy. But that means the FG gets stalled, preventing it from drawing frames until that world update finishes. The lower-end your machine, or the more complex the world update (mostly the more cars in the session), the longer it takes the BG to finish its world update, and the more likely the FG will get stalled, and the lengthier the stall is likely to be, leading to choppiness in the frame rate. With the new method, the “copied” state information the FG uses to draw is instead generated by the BG itself when it finishes updating the world. And to keep the BG from overwriting the state the FG is currently using to draw a frame, that copied state information is triple-buffered (in fact, some things use triple-, some use quad-, and some use quintuple-buffering, depending on their needs). The mechanism that the FG and BG use to not step on each other’s toes is now “lockless” – meaning that neither thread “locks-out” the other thread in the normal course of business. DirectX 9 Our support for the DirectX 9 version of the Simulation has essentially ended. New features, such as the graphical enhancements that are part of dirt track racing, will only be implemented in the DirectX 11 version of the Sim. We will stop shipping a DX9 version of the Sim soon. If you are having issues running the DX11 version of the Sim, please work with our support team at firstname.lastname@example.org to resolve them. DirectX 11 Improved Alt+Enter so that it now attempts to transition back to the original full-screen monitor and original full-screen mode instead of transitioning to a screen mode on the monitor where the window is located when Alt+Enter is used. Fixed several bugs with Low Res. particles for multi-views. Fixed an issue where high detail mirrors at night tracks could cause the car reflections in the mirror to render without car paint and with missing polygons. Weather A heat haze effect has been added to the environment. This effect aims to create the appearance of “heat shimmer”, a visible distortion in the air. This effect is tied into the ambient and track temperatures. This effect can be toggled on or off in Graphics options. Driver Visor tear-offs have been added to all drivers of vehicles that do not have a windshield. The default manual control for performing a visor tear-off is Alt+T. Automatic visor tear-offs can be toggled on or off in the Options menu, and will occur when the helmet visor becomes excessively dirty. A first-pass of the hand-over-hand steering animation has been added to some vehicles. The list of vehicles includes: Global Mazda MX-5 Cup Legends Ford ’34 Coupe McLaren MP4-30 NASCAR Camping World Chevrolet Silverado NASCAR Camping World Toyota Tundra NASCAR Sprint Cup Chevrolet SS NASCAR Sprint Cup Ford Fusion NASCAR Sprint Cup Toyota Camry Street Stock Spotter Two new options have been added to the “[SPCC]” section of the “app.ini” file that let you control how the default spotter behaves when you also have a live spotter spotting for you: reduceVerbosityIfLive=1 ; Reduce the spotter’s chattiness if you also have a live spotter spotting for you. muteSpotterIfLive=1 ; Mute your spotter if you also have a live spotter spotting for you. Pit Pit team support members that are behind the wall are now animated for the player’s car (or focus car). These characters can be seen providing support and managing the team from behind the pit wall. The “Pit Object Detail” setting in the Graphics Options menu works as follows for animated support characters: High = Fully animated pit crew characters (currently only pit support crew members) Medium = Static pit crew characters Low = No pit crew characters are displayed, only pit box objects Off = Nothing at all Many cars have stacks of tires which appear near their pit stall, placed among their other pit apparatus. These stacks were generalized and shared amongst all cars. Now, each car should have an accurate stack of tires which is appropriate to that car. Pace Car The pace car has transformed from a Ford Mustang FR500S into a Ruf RT 12R. The official iRacing skin has returned to the pace car. Replay All voice chat that you send or receive is now saved to the replay. To review it, activate the new “Replay Chat Review” control in the replay controls area on the Session screen. While active, you may continue to use the transmitter on your radio to talk, but the scanner part of your radio becomes disconnected from the radio’s speaker. Instead, the radio’s speaker is connected to the replay, and the voice chat that you hear, along with the notification of who is speaking and on what channel, comes from the replay. However, the scanner is still active, and any received messages continue to be saved to the replay. The Radio black box (F10) will also indicate that your scanner has been disconnected from the speaker by flashing the SCANNER title, and graying-out all the radio channel names. Though when watching a saved replay, or watching the replay after the server disconnects you at the end of the session, the F10 black box is not changed in this way. Voice chat review mode is automatically set to “ON” when you load a saved replay, and it is automatically set to “OFF” when you join a session. It is automatically set to “OFF” when you get into your car or when you begin “Spotting for team”. The Options/Replay settings page in the Sim can be used to adjust which radio channels have their communications saved into the replay. By default, voice chat on all radio channels is saved to the replay. You can select to exclude communications on any custom channels you add to your radio. You can also select to exclude custom channels plus the @Team channel. Or you can select to disable saving any voice chat to the replay. Changing this selection takes effect without restarting the simulation, but will not erase any voice chat already saved in the replay, or cause prior messages that were not recorded earlier to be added to the replay. Remember, these settings only affect what gets saved to your own replay. They do not impact whether what you say gets saved to replays by anyone else in the session. Video Capture The video capture API has been updated to work around an NVidia driver issue. This should fix the issue where videos are coming out black using the most recent NVidia drivers. Telemetry New telemetry variables, “PlayerTrackSurfaceMaterial” and “CarIdxTrackSurfaceMaterial” are now available that indicate what type of surface is under the car (concrete, sand, grass, etc.). Surface materials are defined in new “irsdk_TrkSurf enum.” This is measured relative to the center of the car, just as with the “PlayerTrackSurface enum” that indicates how the surface is scored (race, pit, offtrack, etc.). New telemetry variables, “TireLF_RumblePitch”, “TireLR_RumblePitch”, “TireRF_RumblePitch”, and “TireRR_RumblePitch” are now available. These represent the pitch in Hz produced by the tire going over a rumble strip, or 0 if the tire is currently not on a rumble strip. A new telemetry variable, “PushToPass” has been added which reports the state of the Push to Pass button. A new telemetry variable, “dcMGUKDeployModeToggle” has been added that indicates if the in-car MGU-K deploy mode is set to fixed(0) or adaptive(1). New 360 Hz telemetry output has been implemented! 360 Hz telemetry logging is disabled by default. The option for enabling 360 Hz telemetry logging has been added to the “app.ini” file here:– – – [misc] irsdkLog360Hz=0 ; 0 = 360 Hz logging is disabled, 1 = 360 Hz logging is enabled.– – The XXshockDefl, XXshockVel and SteeringWheelTorque variables will now log out at 360 Hz, if enabled.– – 3 new (memory mapped file) variables have also been added that always log at the rate of 360 Hz, but not to disk. This is for use by motion platforms and base shaker plugins:– – – XXshockDefl_ST = Shock Position– – – XXshockVel_ST = Shock Velocity– – – SteeringWheelTorque_ST = Steering Wheel Torque– – This data is output as a 6 element array, with a new flag variable header indicating that ist should be treated as a subdivision of time. You will need a new version of the ATLAS plugin to properly view the data, however the old plugin, and any older telemetry tool, should continue to read the data just fine. A new McLaren ATLAS importer version 1.05 is available for download from the member site. This adds some new unit conversion parameters and adds support for properly viewing 360 Hz telemetry. EasyAntiCheat This build uses an updated version of EasyAntiCheat that should reduce the likelihood of encountering EAC alerts that are caused by internet infrastructure issues. Peripherals Support has been added for controlling backlights of all Razer devices, Logitech mice, and single color keyboards. Code has been added to indicate the current flag. Added several new options the [External Displays] section of the “app.ini” file: – enableLEDFlags=1, Set to 0 to turn off LED backlight flags animations.– – enableLEDShiftLights=1, Set to 0 to turn off LED backlight shift indicator animations.– – enableLEDHotKeys=1, Set to 0 to turn off LED backlight hotkey indicators.– – colorLEDHotKeysByType=1, Set to 0 to set all hotkeys to the same color.– Fixed a bug with keyboard LED shift indicators on Logitech keyboards. CARS Aston Martin DBR9 GT1 Weight has been increased by 70 kg to bring it closer to the minimum weight under which we understand it competed circa 2008. Minor adjustments have been made to the aero to bring overall performance back in line with the Chevrolet Corvette C6.R GT1. Downforce sensitivities of the rear wing have been modified to ensure the car does not reward minimum rear wing settings at all circuits. Fuel economy has been slightly increased. The external engine sound transitions between close and distant sounds for this vehicle have been improved. Fixed a bug that caused headlight flashing of opponent cars to be invisible. Season setups have been updated. Audi R8 LMS GT3 Fuel consumption has been slightly increased for GT3 BoP. BMW Z4 GT3 Slightly increased aero drag for GT3 BoP. Fuel consumption has been slightly reduced for GT3 BoP. Realigned the external mirrors with the appropriate bezel. Fixed an issue where a driver could not see all of the digits on the blue backlit display. Chevrolet Corvette C6.R GT1 Downforce sensitivities of the rear wing has been modified to ensure the car does not reward minimum rear wing settings at all circuits. Inner headlights are now enabled during the daytime. Season setups have been updated. Chevrolet Corvette C7 Daytona Prototype The external engine sound transitions between close and distant sounds for this vehicle have been improved. The driver’s seatbelt has been fixed so it no longer protrudes out the bottom of the vehicle. Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS Season setups have been updated. Dallara DW12 Increased tire wear for oval tracks to increase degradation and prevent running tires for multiple stints. Also, Indy tires are now used at Motegi to improve quality of racing. A pitboard has been added for this vehicle. The custom paint template has been updated to reflect this. Season setups have been update Ford Falcon FG V8 Construction and compound changes have been made to the vehicle tires. These changes should produce more realistic grip levels, improve drive-ability around the limit, increase degradation, and improve out lap grip in cold ambient conditions. Power steering has been increased to help balance this vehicle with similar cars in the Sim. Ford GT GT3 Season setups have been updated. Ford Mustang FR500S Driver viewpoint has been adjusted to better suit VR. Holden Commodore VF V8 Construction and compound changes have been made to the vehicle tires. These changes should produce more realistic grip levels, improve drive-ability around the limit, increase degradation, and improve out lap grip in cold ambient conditions. Power steering has been increased to help balance this vehicle with similar cars in the Sim. HPD ARX-01c This vehicle now uses PBR shaders. The color of the wheel rims for this vehicle can now be changed. Fixed an issue with the pivot of the right-front wheel. Kia Optima Mirror quality has been improved. Lotus 79 This vehicle now uses PBR shaders. Fixed a corruption issue with the rear rim textures. McLaren MP4-30 We’ve implemented an alternative MGU-K deployment strategy. The internal combustion engine reaches full output at less than full throttle, and the MGU-K supplements smoothly between full engine output and full throttle at the pedal. The goal is to have smoother power delivery, and the hope is that the cost to efficiency of deployment is minimal. The throttle pedal position at which the engine reaches full output and the MGU-K begins to deploy is configurable by the user, and varies from 67.5% to 90% in 2.5% increments. Note that the old deployment smoothing strategy has been disabled. Mercedes-AMG GT3 Fixed a minor bug with the definition of the drivetrain components that was causing the portion of the drivetrain between the engine and clutch to have too much rotational inertia. This would cause the drivetrain to spin up the engine under very specific conditions.– For more information, see: http://members.iracing.com/jforum/posts/list/0/3509108.page#10177419 Modified – SK Season setups have been updated. NASCAR K&N Pro Chevrolet Impala Season setups have been updated. NASCAR Nationwide Chevrolet Impala circa 2011 Season setups have been updated. NASCAR Sprint Cup Chevrolet SS Season setups have been updated. NASCAR Sprint Cup Ford Fusion Season setups have been updated. NASCAR Sprint Cup Toyota Camry Season setups have been updated. NASCAR XFINITY Chevrolet Camaro Season setups have been updated. NASCAR XFINITY Ford Mustang Season setups have been updated. NASCAR XFINITY Toyota Camry Season setups have been updated. Pontiac Solstice Fixed an issue where the fuel gauge needle would rotate incorrectly on opponents’ cars. Pro Mazda Star Mazda has been officially renamed Pro Mazda! Star Mazda wing decal has been replaced with the Pro Mazda decal. Ruf RT 12R Track Season setups have been updated. SCCA Spec Racer Ford This vehicle now uses PBR shaders. Silver Crown Season setups have been updated. Skip Barber Formula 2000 This vehicle now uses PBR shaders. Street Stock Season setups have been updated. Super Late Model Season setups have been updated. V8 Supercar Ford Falcon circa 2012 Construction and compound changes have been made to the vehicle tires. These changes should produce more realistic grip levels, improve drive-ability around the limit, increase degradation, and improve out lap grip in cold ambient conditions. Power steering has been increased to help balance this vehicle with similar cars in the Sim. TRACKS Circuit des 24 Heures du Mans Additional tweaks to checkpoint placement and added one additional checkpoint. Check out the iRacing sub forum here at RaceDepartment to keep in touch with your fellow iRacing fans. Join in the conversation, download a setup or simply catch up on the latest news regarding the simulation. Head over to the sub forum and join in the discussion today! Have you tried the latest build yet? Do you think the simulation has been improved? Let us know in the comments section below!