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Poor performance in pretty much everything

Last response: in Video Games
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October 26, 2010 3:15:12 AM

First off, hello to all of you great TH members. This is pretty much the only place I go to check out new hardware reviews and stuff, so I love it.

My problem is I'm not getting what I think I should be getting out of my system, which is as follows:

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit
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ASUS P5KPL-CM Mobo / FSB OC to 1357
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Core 2 Duo e6700 / OC to 3.4
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4GB Crucial Ballistix DDR2-800 / OC to 1020 / 6-6-6-12
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EVGA 1GB GTX 460 / OC to 900/1800/2100
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600w PSU
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Hitachi 2TB SATA
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Memorex PATA combo drive
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Creative X-Fi Titanium

So, not bleeding edge X58 triple-SLI or anything, but I only get 15 FPS in Saints Row 2, for christ sake! I know it's not the GPU, because I have fiddled with the settings and the FPS never changes (also the usage is usually less than 50%). This is a 2008 game and I have some fairly recent hardware, so there has to be some bottleneck I'm missing here. Also, things are not only a consistently low framerate, they're just jittery and stuttering as well. Again, in the games listed below I've tried display settings from low to high, no change.

Battlefield Bad Company 2 runs at 18-25 FPS
Mafia II runs at 13-20 FPS
Medal of Honor 2010 runs at around 20-25 FPS
DiRT runs at 18-25 FPS
Far Cry 2 runs at 20-30 FPS
Metro 2033 runs at 14-20 (that's a pretty demanding game, though, so no biggie there)
Just Cause 2 is a little better at 25-40, but it's more jittery than the others.

And yet I get 40-60 in games like Gears of War, FEAR, Quake Wars, HL2 and TF2 (and even they stutter on a regular basis).

Is this normal? I'm under the impression this system should be performing far better...
I thought it might be a memory problem, but memtest86+ reports no errors as does Windows 7's memory tester. Prime95 reports nothing after hours and hours on blend....I just don't get it.

If I just need to upgrade, that's fine, but if there is something I'm missing here then I'd like to solve it.

Thanks to any readers, I hope someone can help me out here.

-Dustin
October 26, 2010 7:46:12 AM

You neglected to mention how much RAM you have. 4GB is my recommended minimum for gaming in W7-64. I added 2GB after I discovered that StarCraft 2 ate up 1.2GB by itself. Added to the 800MB already being used by Windows, and BAM! Instant stuttering.
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October 26, 2010 8:34:49 AM

Oh, yea, I have 4 GB.
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October 26, 2010 12:00:16 PM

You've mentioned that your GPU utilization never goes above 50% or so. Can you perhaps monitor CPU utilization at the same time? You may be running into a CPU bottleneck.
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Best solution

October 26, 2010 12:03:57 PM

One more thing: When I first installed Win 7 Pro x64, the default power plan was set to "Power Saving" for some reason. This prevented the CPU from going to maximum clock rate and caused choppy frame rates all over the show. Check that your power plan is set to at least "Balanced".
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October 26, 2010 12:48:04 PM

I would also say that the list of games utilyze more than 2 cores. Honestly with BC2, I can't say how well a duo works though. Personal experiance, BC2 didn't give me anymore then 5fps when setting all the details and resolutions lower. I simply had to overclock my cpu and gpu to get a good performance range, I also turned vsync on and it somewhat helped actually.

Restore the gpu to it's original clock and retry some of the games?
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October 26, 2010 10:06:22 PM

What resolution are you playing at? Youve got some overclocking going on but your specs look like prebuild? Also I looked up your mobo some of the reviews stated pci-e cards overheating the NB. If youve got funds you should think about getting yourself into a mobo thats sli certified I understand 2 of those 460 1gb in sli gives nice frames.
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October 27, 2010 3:39:44 AM

Power settings did the trick. Much better performance now. I also realized my GPU didn't have enough voltage, so I pushed more to that, and re-greased it.

I just installed 64 bit not even two weeks ago, so I forgot the power plan settings. Thanks very much for all your feedback.
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October 27, 2010 7:57:19 AM

Glad it worked!
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October 27, 2010 6:55:10 PM

Best answer selected by dweitkunat.
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October 27, 2010 7:50:49 PM

This topic has been closed by Mousemonkey
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