Since these are obviously more advanced than the 3.7.2 MediaVPs (2014) I play most of my campaigns on, what would you say are the recommended specs to enjoy these at a good level (for a graphics card recommendation I'd prefer an NVIDIA model)?
monitor refresh rate
monitor response time
Here are my current specs (and have been for the last 3 years):
60hz (V-Sync on) @ 1080p
1ms response time monitor (144hz capable)
Intel i7 3770k 3.5Ghz-3.9Ghz (Ivy Bridge!)
8GB DDR3 RAM 7-8-8-24-1T
nVidia GF 1050 Ti 4GB GDDR5 (stock speed)
Even with the somewhat dated hardware, FSO x64 AVX plays flawlessly with every bell and whistle turned on (except those annoying little space debris chunks to indicate "movement") and all detail settings maxed out. This also includes all anti-aliasing and visual quality features turned up to the max in nVidia's Control Panel as well. During any mission in FS1 (Port) or FS2 series, the frame rate always stays locked at 60fps. The ONLY way I see a frame rate drop is while running a standalone mission someone created that has like 60+ capital ships from every race endlessly duking it out on screen with beams - and then my frame rate will drop to 30-45fps (still good considering all that's going on onscreen). Before I had the 1050 Ti I had an nVidia 750 Ti and the only limitation there was not being able to enable shadows or I would see some fps loss, but it still ran everything great.
Now, even though my monitor is capable of a 144hz refresh rate, I leave it at 60hz because FSO's frame rate caps out at 120hz anyway and at that refresh rate, fast motion (especially while turning quickly) can get choppy. I also experience a drop in "missile IQ" at 120hz - missiles fired will be more likely to miss, but at 60hz, they tend to score hits more often (go figure).
This is what is so nice about the current FSO engine and MediaVPs - even though they're quite detailed and beautifully rendered, they really don't require the latest and greatest (and most expensive) hardware to run well. Just some higher-end older components or budget-friendly newer components should work just fine and give excellent visuals and performance for most players.