Phoenix Viewer 1.5.2.908 Released Review

Phoenix Viewer

Phoenix Viewer 908

Today a new Phoenix Viewer version is out. Yay! This version has lots of bug fixes and should be way more stable than even 818. (Download) This may be the last upgrade and is certainly one of the last upgrades for the Phoenix Viewer. Get your copy now.

Also the Firestorm Viewer Preview 2 was released today. I’ll get to it in a separate review(Firestorm Viewer Review). OOPS… My mistake. I saw a new Preview Announcement and did not realize it was a RESEND. Only Preview 1 is out.

Update: Listening in on the Group Chat, several people are having problems with version 908 and uninstalling it. No word from the Phoenix Team as to how pervasive problems are or aren’t. Be sure you get the correct Windows version, SSE or not. Be sure you clear your cache before starting the viewer. After the install and before starting the viewer reboot the computer. And any time you have a viewer problem or viewer crash, reboot the computer.

Install

There are several versions of the 908 viewer available. Those Windows users with newer computers (3 years old or newer) should use the SSE2 version. Mac and Linux versions are available too.

The Phoenix team has provided what may be the best installer going. The download (29.4mb) is a bit larger than previous downloads as more third party files are included, i.e., voice, etc. Rather than having the viewer download the files on first run. As you install you have a few options.

  • Install location – use the default unless you have a good reason not to.
  • Skins – the default is to install additional skins. There is no reason not to.
  • Shortcuts Folder – This is about where the Windows Start Menu items appear. The default is fine.
  • Create a Desktop Icon – typical for SL Viewers.

The install is a fast run. Nothing complicated.

The Phoenix Viewer Wiki suggests that one clear the cache before starting the new viewer. I clear mine manually. The cache is in: C:\Users\[user_name]\AppsData\Local\Phoenix

Experience

When installing over a previous install all the settings from the previous install are retained.

My initial login was fast. Things downloaded and rezzed quickly. My clothes changes made in SLV2.6 were correct, so this viewer is compatible with the new clothing and attachments stuff. My FPS on High settings in my little cottage was in the 25 to 33 FPS range. I went to Celtic Myst Magick Jewelry to see how it runs in a high sculpty and texture area. It is also a good place to test for LoD problems. Plus I just like the Jewelry.

More support for Display Names has been added and there are fixes too. I am, however, wondering of there are more Arabic players in game than I thought… or are people just using Arabic characters for their Display Name?

The clothes and attachments in series 1 and series 2 viewers are not completely compatible. Looking at the avatar things look ok. I seem to be wearing all the right stuff. Considering that I got dressed using SLV2.6 Dev 220434 that seems a good sign. Looking in inventory/worn I start to see problems. Not everything I’m wearing shows up. Plus I am wearing 512 scripts and using 15,152K of memory, which is way high for me. I’m amazed I can TP at all. Some checking and I find that I have the wrong copy of my resizing ear rings on, 450 scripts.

But shoes and other attachments are not showing up as I would expect. A change back to SLV2.6, strip and return to Phoenix 908 and everything looks ok. I dress using Phoenix and go back to SLV2.6. All is ok. I do notice that in the back and forth that when taking off things by selecting the folder and using ‘Take Off Items’ that some oddities show up. So 908 and 2.6 are still not perfect matches. But they are so close you shouldn’t have many problems. I still recommend that one decide on a primary viewer and use it and only it for changing clothes and making outfits.

Outfits

This is still wacky. Copying a clothing item and pasting it into an outfit puts it there as a copy rather than a link. One can, however, make folders in Outfits using Phoenix. Something that is not possible in SLV2. From my perspective not being able to make folders in Outfits makes Outfits pretty much useless. Obviously Outfits was figured out by guys that are still wondering what the big deal is on walk-in closets.

Building

The right-click pie menu is not all that great in this version. Too many empty slots. Build is labeled Create. All minor stuff. Once in the build dialog all the best building tools are there. Build Math, Prim dimension, position, and rotation copy, prim alignment, and texture alignment are all there.

So, for now this is the most up to date viewer for builders in SL.

OpenSim/OSGrid

The Phoenix viewer has not been working well with OpenSim grids. The Phoenix Team is stretched a bit and is focusing on the SL grid and getting everything working in SL.  My tests of 908 on OSGrid have to wait until I get my server software updated, as OSGrid has had some problems and I’m behind on updates.

Summary

The viewer is an improvement over 818. I got some chat stutters here and there but, I couldn’t tell if that was mini-freezes or chat spazzing out. I lost some FPS while things were downloading by I did NOT run into any major lags in the shopping malls. My FPS stayed up. Things rez better in Phoenix than they do in several other viewers. The SLV2’s and some TPV’s without the speed-rez are busy rendering and downloading far off things and leaving nearby stuff until last. Phoenix’s speed-rez eliminates that problem.

My opinion is this is the best overall power users viewer for SL right now. It is not the end-all-be-all viewer for everyone. But, it is a nice SLV1 interface viewer with lots of updated code and features.

3 thoughts on “Phoenix Viewer 1.5.2.908 Released Review

  1. I’m sorry, but the notice that was sent out was a resent of an earlier notice in the firestorm preview group. there is no 2nd preview yet.

  2. Also .. there’s a recent server bug on the main channel having to do with attachments not properly being reflected in the Worn Tab, can mean you cannot remove attachments, at times, including HUDs. And, from what I’ve seen, can also mean that some HUDs don’t operate properly. Seems that a jump to an RC region and relogging into that location is a temporary remedy, so seriously hoping that the issue is resolved with the next roll-out.

  3. I don’t know how to get the voice working, or to hear at Auctions, on Second Life. Can anyone help me??

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