R9 280X framerate drops - GPU usage down, CPU usage up

For quite a while now, when playing games, my framerate tends to drop every few minutes. These drops last for a few seconds and then jump up to normal. My card can handle these games, because even if I sit still, the framerate jumps up to normal.

I noticed that when these drops happen, my GPU usage decreases and my CPU usage shoots up to 100%. It is completely random when this happens, I cannot find a pattern. It is really irritating and I have asked in multiple places but nobody has helped.

AMD FX-8120 @ 3.1GHz
16GB DDR3 RAM @ 1600MHz
AMD R9 280X
750W PSU

Nothing is over/under clocked
20 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about 280x framerate drops gpu usage cpu usage
  1. Do you know what's causing the CPU spike? Is it the game or ???
  2. Monitor your maximum CPU and GPU temperatures while playing and report back your findings. Overheating can and will cause exactly what you are experiencing, sir.
  3. To the performance monitor / resource monitor to determine the guilty application(s)!
  4. Best answer
    Use OpenHardware Monitor. There is the option to (View > Show Plot) and you can select usage or temperatures; thus being able to find out when exactly the spike occurs. Load the program, play your game, when done go set the plot vs time and see what happens.
  5. @4745454b Not entirely sure, similar things happen if I try to livestream too

    I tried envy14tpe's solution and got this
    Yellow is the CPU temperature, and red is the GPU temperature
  6. What cpu cooler do you have?
    Sounds like your cpu is throttling. You want it to be under 62 C for your cpu.
  7. In fact, here's a better graph
    Yellow - CPU temp
    Red - GPU temp
    Purple - CPU load
    Blue - GPU load

    @Suztera I think it's just the one that came with the processor. I bought this PC over a year ago on a site where you pick parts and they build it for you. I didnt choose a cooler
  8. What is your ambient temperature?
    Consider getting another cpu cooler like the Coolermaster Hyper 212 EVO. Your cpu is throttling due to the temperatures. AMD states that the cpu temperature should be below 62C.
  9. By ambient temperature, do you mean when im not playing anything?

    Right now its at 42C, but I still have open hardware monitor, speccy and afterburner on
  10. Room temperature .
    if it is 42 at idle it is warmer than you want it to be.
  11. Alright, so a new CPU cooler it is. So the Coolermaster Hyper 212 EVO is the recommended one? Or does anyone else have a better idea?
  12. Coolermaster Hyper 212 EVO is more of good budget yet capable cpu cooler. For most people the Hyper 212 EVO is sufficient enough.There are other higher end cpu cooler like Noctua NH d14 or D15.
  13. Looking at the chart it is clear something weird is going on with your CPU. If you are using the intel cooler then definitely get rid of it and buy a Cooler Master 212 EVO. It is one of the best coolers for the price and definitely the most popular.

    In intense games like BF4 my CPU gets up to 80% usage and varies by +-5%. Seeing your CPU usage at 50% is really low.

    Can you list your system specs and is your CPU overclocked?
  14. Yup. CPU is throttling itself because it got warmer then 70C. I don't let my CPU cross 60C. The 212 is a great cooler. Fairly cheap, very capable, and runs quiet. You'll be happy with it. Make sure your case can handle it though. You need 158/160mm clearance.
  15. I was looking at the Cooler Master 212 EVO but I dont know if it would fit in my case. See my reddit thread here:

    As for my specs, they are listed above and nothing has been overclocked
  16. I don't see your case in the list of parts. From the photo I'd say you are fine. Looks like a normal size case. It only has issues fitting in small cases.
  17. Oh, sorry, didn't think about the case. Yeah, it's a normal sized case. I'm sure I can get it returned anyway if it doesn't fit, but I'd like to avoid all the trouble. Thanks for all the help, if the problem continues, I guess I should bump this
  18. Case size is important in terms of which cooler will work, but most mid towers will fit the bill. What is yours?
  19. Mine is a Aerocool StrikeX GT Black, not sure if it qualifies as a mid tower or what
  20. Muzzles56 said:
    Mine is a Aerocool StrikeX GT Black, not sure if it qualifies as a mid tower or what

    The Aerocool page says that case supports CPU coolers up to 163mm (without side fan) and the Cooler Master Evo is 159mm. So, it'll work.
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