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Most new games stutter and lag - what's wrong?

Last response: in Video Games
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September 15, 2013 4:32:43 AM

Hello everyone,
I have a big problem with most new games i tried out so far. Is something wrong with my pc? Is it the graphics card? Is it the game developers fault?
Here is my specs: CPU: i7-3770 Ivy 3,4GHz, MoBo: MSI Z77A-G43, RAM: 2x4GB DDR3 1600MHz Kingston HyperX CL9, GPU:Gigabyte GeForce GTX 560 1GB.
What's going on:
I get stuttering, micro stuttering, lag, frame skipping, smooth animation followed by poor crackle type of animation - over and over. The only games that work ok are an oldie Call of Jarez 1 and Batman: Arkham Asylum. Though AA shows sometimes a small glitch here and there - but it's not annoying.
Batman Arkham City - stutters badly in some places - mostly when gliding through the city and in open spaces. It got better after using only one version of drivers - 301.40 as i recall - better doesn't mean stutter free.
Battlefield 3 - stuttering a lot. Disabling HT in Bios helped a bit and then editing something like 3 in-game files did some good too. But it still gets a mild hiccup sometimes.
NFS Most wanted - this thing is completely unplayable. Usually i get as much as 60 fps, but it looks terrible - stuttering, small and bigger cuts, choppy animation, slowing down and speeding up over and over again. The frame rate drops only during the crashes - so, on paper, it's smooth!
Far cry 3 - stuttering and micro stuttering, or at least frame skipping - all the time. I tried everything with this one - installing many driver versions (with pHysx, without), changing graphic options in almost every aspect (in game and nVidia control panel), patches, updates, editing in-game files, limiting frame rate - nothing! I even tried switching the router off - no stuttering here but a small glitch or freeze for 1-2 seconds every minute or so instead.
I never put any options on maximum and i play mostly with 1440x900. In Far cry 3 stuttering is still there even with details lowest possible.
What's wrong? Are all these games poorly written, coded etc.? Is it the GPU? Can i check it somehow? Please, i need some advise, i'm really tired, fed up, desperate. Thanks for reading.
a b 4 Gaming
a b U Graphics card
September 15, 2013 4:38:42 AM

what are you cpu and gpu temps whilst gaming, speedfan might help you to track these. The games are fundamentally ok. 560 at 1440x900 should be ok.
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September 15, 2013 4:47:23 AM

I agree with 13thmonkey. You are probably overheating or you may use cracked games if thats the deal this forums cant help you. Sorry. If not il be glad to :D 
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a b 4 Gaming
a b U Graphics card
September 15, 2013 4:53:30 PM

Does playing at lower settings help? The 560 is a fairly basic card.
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September 16, 2013 10:57:17 AM

13thmonkey said:
what are you cpu and gpu temps whilst gaming, speedfan might help you to track these. The games are fundamentally ok. 560 at 1440x900 should be ok.

GPU: surprisingly 65 deg. Celcius maximum. I recall it used to be more, but it got colder a bit around my place. In maximum stress with Furmark test it heats up to 85 deg. C.
CPU: 55 deg. C maximum. I ran some stress tests, no throttling here ( i don't know if that matters)
GPU memory usage: 600MB in Far Cry, around 720MB in NFS.

simon12 said:
Does playing at lower settings help? The 560 is a fairly basic card.

All these games seem to work smooth and i don't think it has something to do with card being not good enough. I mean i can make it work crappy and slow (less FPS) with higher resolution and everything maxed out. But it's a different thing. With reasonable settings and 1440x900 all games show around 60 FPS. But there is still lag, stuttering or micro stuttering. F.e. Far Cry 3 runs on 1440x900 all details set to high except 5 positions set to medium. Smooth gaming and animation with constant frame rate 55-62 and lag, micro stuttering or a gentle frame skipping every minute or so. When that happens, lowering settings to lowest possible won't change a thing.

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November 2, 2013 9:19:53 AM

Hey everyone. I decided to update a little bit. I uninstalled the graphics card drivers the way i never did before - with the safe mode on. Then i installed 320.49 version without any sound, 3D vision or PhysX. It's better right now in most games but still not satisfying. I still get glitches in NFS, Crysis and most other games. I don't know what to do. I seriously thought about buying some other card like GTX 670. But my GTX 560 is only one year old. Performance wise it's ok. I usually play on 1440x900 sometimes 1680x1050, but that's it, no 1080p. During playing the card performance never goes beyond 70% and the memory usage of the card is always below 700 MB. So i guess it's not the card being not powerful enough. Could someone give me a some advise?
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March 23, 2014 7:54:13 AM

Hey guys, I'm still on this. I'm able to run FC 3 pretty good right now - way better than before. But still almost every game i tried works with micro stuttering - very subtle, short frame stop or skipping. It's horrible. I tried some older games and some work worse than on my old PC. I tried my friends CoD:MW2 - not a very demanding game. Nice framerate and graet micro stuttering making me want cut my own head off.
One thing i hoped would work was core parking in windows 7 64bit. I have the core i7 and read, that some people get very similar problems. And i did this: http://steamcommunity.com/app/72850/discussions/0/84694... - nothing changed, no improvement!
I'm desperate - could anyone help me???
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a b 4 Gaming
a b U Graphics card
March 23, 2014 11:19:24 AM

try turning hyperthreading off. long shot.
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March 24, 2014 9:08:27 AM

I heard about it and set it to off few months ago. It's better than before, but it doesn't solve everything, unfortunately.
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April 13, 2014 6:32:01 AM

Here are some more things i did that don't really work:
-re-install the drivers again
-pull the card out of the PCI slot, check for dirt, re-plug the power connectors and so on
-tried the onboard Intel HD4000 - very poor performance, but i think there was no stuttering
-change monitor's refresh rate to 59 Hz (some people say it helped them) - way better in Far Cry3 and NFS MW, but not buttery smooth
-various settings - FPS cap on 59, forced V-sync in nVidia panel, adaptive v-sync
Once Crysis 1 run extremely smooth. Once! And then it came back to stuttering at some points.
Fifa 07 looks really poor and FEAR 1 used to run smoother on my old (2007) PC.
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a b 4 Gaming
a c 253 U Graphics card
a c 130 å Intel
a c 91 Î Nvidia
April 13, 2014 9:29:37 AM

The thing that I notice about your setup is that you have an i7-3770 CPU which is a top quality processor and your matching it with an average video card (GTX-560) which leads me to think about bottlenecking. The flow of data needs to be smooth and at the same speed , think of connecting a garden hose to a fire hose. With the 3770 a 570 or 580 would have been better, with the 560 a 3570 would have been better.
One thing you can try is to download MSI's Afterburner and overclock the video card a bit to see if you can get rid of the lag/stutter. You don't have to go far with the overclock but just enough to see if it makes an improvement.

The other thing to consider is the power supply, is the power supply giving the video card the correct and enough power. What is the brand and size of the PSU.
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April 13, 2014 12:13:12 PM

I haven't really thought about it this way. Would that also be the case with older games? I'll try overclocking the card then. Should i try to reach the 580 specs when setting the values?
My PSU is OCZ ZT 550W.
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a b 4 Gaming
a c 253 U Graphics card
a c 130 å Intel
a c 91 Î Nvidia
April 13, 2014 4:28:57 PM

It's not necessary to go to high right away , just enough to see if it's going to change anything. If it does then you can go a bit higher to get to the point where the lag and/or stutter is eliminated. Take it slow so as to not go too high and heat up the GPU to the point where the GPU fan is blasting all the time.
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a b 4 Gaming
a b U Graphics card
April 13, 2014 10:59:15 PM

inzone said:
The thing that I notice about your setup is that you have an i7-3770 CPU which is a top quality processor and your matching it with an average video card (GTX-560) which leads me to think about bottlenecking. The flow of data needs to be smooth and at the same speed , think of connecting a garden hose to a fire hose. With the 3770 a 570 or 580 would have been better, with the 560 a 3570 would have been better.
One thing you can try is to download MSI's Afterburner and overclock the video card a bit to see if you can get rid of the lag/stutter. You don't have to go far with the overclock but just enough to see if it makes an improvement.

The other thing to consider is the power supply, is the power supply giving the video card the correct and enough power. What is the brand and size of the PSU.


for what it is worth, I think the answer of too much cpu power causes poor gpu performance is rubbish. Show me a graph where increasing cpu speed equals decreasing fps for a constant gpu. All of the graphs are flat or rising depending on where the bottleneck is.
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April 24, 2014 1:31:14 PM

I did some overclocking, but the results seem uneven. It got better in some cases. Not significantly, but better. I still need to use a combination of different solutions for almost every game separately. Sometimes a cap on 59 Fps is needed, sometimes it ruins the good effect. Sometimes V-sync must be forced in control panel, sometimes it needs to be turned off, or turned on in the game menu. Old F.E.A.R. still has problems which, at this configuration seems like a joke. MF 2 is way better now - but a key factor here is reducing the refresh rate to 59Hz, and still there are hiccups during the game. Fifa 07 still works worse than on my old PC (core 2 duo 1,86Ghz and GF 7900GS). I could even try to think about getting a new, more powerful card, but i'm seriously afraid i'll spend money and get in trouble again, since threre is no clear diagnosis.
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May 14, 2014 3:08:09 PM

So changing the refresh rate within the screen resolution in nVidia control panel to 59Hz works with some games. Makes the biggest difference - but doesn't fix everything in every game, there are exceptions. Could it be the monitor? Drivers, co-working with GPU? Anything? The monitor is Iiyama ProLite 2202W and in the menu i can see it shows 60.1 Hz refresh rate, not 60.0 as i'd expect. Does it matter? I'm desperate and could really use some help.
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