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CPU activity/utilization drops along with framerate

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January 3, 2014 11:12:10 AM

I am having framerate issues while playing games. I can run games on pretty high settings with good framerates (good for me is 40+) but at regular intervals the framerate drops to the single digits and then it returns to normal. I have noticed by using the resource monitor that my CPU utilization drops from where it is (anywhere from 20-80% depending on the game) to near zero when the framerate drop happens and then it goes back up again. I have looked everywhere I can think of on the internet but everyone has problems with framerate drops when their CPU usage goes up, not down.

I am using a Lenovo y510p with a 4th gen i7 (2.4ghz if I remember correctly) and two G750m graphics cards. The computer also has 16gb of ram.

This happens even if the power settings are set so that the minimum CPU is 100%. I temporarily got it to stop when I lowered the maximum CPU to 99% but it started doing it again.

Any help you could give me would be greatly appreciated. Please let me know if I left anything out that would be helpful. I have absolutely no idea what else to do. I have already defragmented my hardrive and updated my drivers.
a b 4 Gaming
a c 437 à CPUs
January 3, 2014 11:48:19 AM

There are a few things that could be happening. It could be a temperature issue that causes your CPU to throttle and therefore you're seeing the lower FPS - however it seems you've identified it as a spike and not a prolonged period of time so it might not be that. It could potentially be a program that's hogging resources other than your CPU, such as your HDD or RAM - I'm guessing you've closed all background programs when playing games, try shutting down unnecessary processes and services (you'll need to identify which are necessary). What are your full specs BTW? Also if your hard drive is full it could be running slower. In addition, it could potentially be a virus or something of the sort hogging resources - try scanning with your antivirus and an antimalware program (e.g. Malwarebytes).
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January 3, 2014 12:35:32 PM

JOOK-D said:
There are a few things that could be happening. It could be a temperature issue that causes your CPU to throttle and therefore you're seeing the lower FPS - however it seems you've identified it as a spike and not a prolonged period of time so it might not be that. It could potentially be a program that's hogging resources other than your CPU, such as your HDD or RAM - I'm guessing you've closed all background programs when playing games, try shutting down unnecessary processes and services (you'll need to identify which are necessary). What are your full specs BTW? Also if your hard drive is full it could be running slower. In addition, it could potentially be a virus or something of the sort hogging resources - try scanning with your antivirus and an antimalware program (e.g. Malwarebytes).


Specs: 2.2-GHz Intel Core i7-4702MQ; 16gb ram; 1tb 5,400rpm hard drive; dual nvidia geforce gt 750m; 2gb video memory; windows 8.1; 24gb ssd cache

I have tried shutting down all of the background processes I can as well as run a virus scan with Symantec Endpoint (its what I have access to as a student). I have also run the intel processor diagnostic tool which includes a load test and I didn't come close to max temperature. The diagnostic tool showed everything else to be normal.

My best guess is its some sort of powersaving feature or somehow the the processor thinks its done and starts to idle down.

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a b 4 Gaming
a c 437 à CPUs
January 3, 2014 12:39:24 PM

Is it every game that you get performance drops in? Which ones? Since you have dual graphics cards it could be a lack of SLI support from the game you're trying to play.

It could also be the slow 5400rpm harddrive and the CPU is waiting for the data to load from the HDD, however I can't be sure.

It seems unlikely that it's a powersaving feature causing it, they're pretty refined. You could have a look at the Windows power settings and make sure you haven't accidentally left it on power saving.

Has this problem always occurred? or have you only noticed it recently?
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January 3, 2014 12:51:46 PM

JOOK-D said:
Is it every game that you get performance drops in? Which ones? Since you have dual graphics cards it could be a lack of SLI support from the game you're trying to play.

It could also be the slow 5400rpm harddrive and the CPU is waiting for the data to load from the HDD, however I can't be sure.

It seems unlikely that it's a powersaving feature causing it, they're pretty refined. You could have a look at the Windows power settings and make sure you haven't accidentally left it on power saving.

Has this problem always occurred? or have you only noticed it recently?


This occurs to me now with every game. Most of my games are from Steam but it happens with non-Steam games as well. This only started occuring a couple of months after I got this computer. Before I was able to play the same games without and issue. The problem went away for a while and then came back (and then went away again and then came back) but I haven't noticed a pattern with it.

As far as the HDD goes, windows resource monitor (I don't know how reliable of a utility it is) shows almost no activity from the Disk. It goes between 0 and 5% active time and isn't remotely pushing its supposed read/write rate.


I don't know if it might be relevant but the fans on my computer are going pretty fast, even though as I said earlier the computer doesn't seem to have temperature problems.
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a b 4 Gaming
a c 437 à CPUs
January 3, 2014 1:09:25 PM

rx79g said:
JOOK-D said:
Is it every game that you get performance drops in? Which ones? Since you have dual graphics cards it could be a lack of SLI support from the game you're trying to play.

It could also be the slow 5400rpm harddrive and the CPU is waiting for the data to load from the HDD, however I can't be sure.

It seems unlikely that it's a powersaving feature causing it, they're pretty refined. You could have a look at the Windows power settings and make sure you haven't accidentally left it on power saving.

Has this problem always occurred? or have you only noticed it recently?


This occurs to me now with every game. Most of my games are from Steam but it happens with non-Steam games as well. This only started occuring a couple of months after I got this computer. Before I was able to play the same games without and issue. The problem went away for a while and then came back (and then went away again and then came back) but I haven't noticed a pattern with it.

As far as the HDD goes, windows resource monitor (I don't know how reliable of a utility it is) shows almost no activity from the Disk. It goes between 0 and 5% active time and isn't remotely pushing its supposed read/write rate.


I don't know if it might be relevant but the fans on my computer are going pretty fast, even though as I said earlier the computer doesn't seem to have temperature problems.


It's been a while since I've used an intel-based PC but I believe that in the BIOS there is an option called speed-step. You could try turning it off and see if it makes any difference.
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January 3, 2014 1:32:46 PM

I found no reference to anything resembling speed-step. I have disabled every power-saving feature I could find in bios, windows, lenovo, and intel utilities but the problem still persists.
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January 3, 2014 6:05:02 PM

JOOK-D said:
rx79g said:
JOOK-D said:
Is it every game that you get performance drops in? Which ones? Since you have dual graphics cards it could be a lack of SLI support from the game you're trying to play.

It could also be the slow 5400rpm harddrive and the CPU is waiting for the data to load from the HDD, however I can't be sure.

It seems unlikely that it's a powersaving feature causing it, they're pretty refined. You could have a look at the Windows power settings and make sure you haven't accidentally left it on power saving.

Has this problem always occurred? or have you only noticed it recently?


This occurs to me now with every game. Most of my games are from Steam but it happens with non-Steam games as well. This only started occuring a couple of months after I got this computer. Before I was able to play the same games without and issue. The problem went away for a while and then came back (and then went away again and then came back) but I haven't noticed a pattern with it.

As far as the HDD goes, windows resource monitor (I don't know how reliable of a utility it is) shows almost no activity from the Disk. It goes between 0 and 5% active time and isn't remotely pushing its supposed read/write rate.


I don't know if it might be relevant but the fans on my computer are going pretty fast, even though as I said earlier the computer doesn't seem to have temperature problems.


It's been a while since I've used an intel-based PC but I believe that in the BIOS there is an option called speed-step. You could try turning it off and see if it makes any difference.


I also tried clearing my registry of errors using Ccleaner but that didn't do anything either.
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