Poor performance

I've been experiencing some poor gaming performance with my system. I have a feeling it might be my power supply, but I just need some second opinions on if it truly is my power supply.

I recently upgraded my graphics card from a 9800Pro to hold out a little bit longer before coughing out some money to rebuild with PCI-E. The reason I upgraded was because I wanted to play BF2 with a little more eye candy and i had experienced a little bit of choppiness in WoW. After upgrading, I'm still experiencing the same problems.

Here are my specs:

AMD 64 3000+ OC to 2.2GHz (FSB=220)
MSI K8T800 Mobo
1GB DDR400
3 Seagate HDDs
BFG GeForce 6800GT OC (AGP)
Audigy2 ZS
WinFast TV tuner
Raidmax Scorpio case w/ 420W PSU

Any thoughts or suggestions?
15 answers Last reply
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  1. not sure if it would be your psu, unless youre having stability problems, applications crashing, etc... ...do you still have the same choppiness when you lower the resolution and details?... also, 1GB ram 'might' not be quite enough, especially if youre running at higher detail settings/resolutions... WoW seems to be memory intensive from what ive heard... and BF2 i know is...

    try lowering the settings and see if things improve
  2. Thanks for the reply.

    OK, here is now my dilemma. My motherboard sucks when it comes to memory configurations; It supports how many sides, rather than modules. It can support a maximum of two sides if the full 400MHz is to be realized - meaning one double sided module or two single sided modules. Every "side" after that will result in the operation of the next memory speed down the ladder. So if I add another module to my existing double sided 1GB module, the effective speed will only be 333MHz - at least that is what is to be shown at the startup screen.

    So now my question is will it be more beneficial to have 2GB of DDR333 or 1GB of DDR400?

    The only reason why I questioned my power supply was because I took a look at the ratings on the PSU and it only has one 12V rail at 13A...total! I'm ashamed as I write that number :cry: . But when it was mentioned it would be difficult to even run windows and there would be lots of power downs, I think differently now and see the memory limitation.
  3. im not even sure how many amps a 6800GT requires, but im willing to bet its more than 13amps... so a new psu is definetly in your future... the psu section is worth asking in for more detailed information of what kind of psu you would need... around 25amps combined (or more) on the +12v rails is more ideal though

    as far as 2GB of ddr333 or 1GB of ddr400... go for the 2GBs, it may be a few MHz slower, but its certainly faster than relying on the pagefile from your hard drive
  4. Check how much memory you're actually using before you spend money on more memory. 1GB is pretty decent for an old system, and your DDR will probably be useless when you rebuild. Check how much memory is being used when you play games before buying more memory. I played WoW fine on my old P4+1GB+5700LE. What a lame graphics card that was.

    Could be your PSU, but I would expect it to either work ok or crash, not just suffer. Maybe overheating and throttling, is your case airflow blocked?
  5. I'm running a 7900GTO with a 1.86 @ 3Ghz Dual Core on an Enermax 380W* with no problem. Maybe that's pushing it, but you've got 40W more than me on older hardware, so I'd be surprised it your PSU is too small, although it might be going bad.

    *UPDATE - it's actually 485W, sorry.
  6. Quote:
    ... you've got 40W more than me on older hardware, so I'd be surprised it your PSU is too small, although it might be going bad.

    The problem is that for modern CPUs and video cards, the total wattage doesn't matter, rather it's the +12V amperage that is key. Your PS may very well have more +12V amps than his.
  7. tht psu is bad as a psu can be change it man it will make a huge diference, just make sure ur new psu has more than 30amp in the combined v12 rails, read the stick psu in Power Supplies, PC Cases & Case Mods forum
  8. I run WoW with 512mb and an old card. Yes it is choppy if this is a long term upgrade, buying more DDr RAM is ok.
    With the new card and all the drives, a new PSU would be a good idea. Even a good 500W should power the system, since a good 420W would of been fine. True 13A is nothing.
  9. thanks for all the suggestions.

    I will take a look at how much memory I'm using when playing those two games.

    I checked out HL2 and I maxed out all the settings with 4xAA and 16xAF and it ran smooth as butter at my max res of 1440x900. WoW also ran decently at 50-60 Fps maxed out at the same resolution, it still got slightly choppy with Fps dropping to around 30 in a highly populated city, but it wasn't as bad as before.

    The game I'm having lots of problems with is just BF2 now, it seems as if there was no difference between my 9800pro and the 6800gt. I tried lowering the resolution all the way down to 1024x768 with everything set to high with no AA and it still only gave me about 28-35 Fps, but it was a very choppy 28-35 as in i would fire a weapon and it would be delayed. BTW, with the 9800pro I was able to play in a 64 player server at the 1280x960 resolution with lighting/shadows low, textures and effects at medium, and everything else on high (able to play as in bearable).

    My psu gives only 13A which is only 156W on the 12V rail. If 3 HDDs take up 20W each, that only leaves 96W to my CPU, 2 optical drives, Mobo which has an 3 more PCI slots, and 5 case fans.

    What I don't understand is that it if it's not getting enough power, why am I able to play HL2 with everything maxed out. Also my 3dmark03 score came in at 11k if that helps any. And also why doesn't it shut down since the 12V rail should be overloaded and I only shut my PC down maybe twice a week.

    Also, true, I don't want to waste DDR RAM, I only got the 6800GT to hold out until about summer or so when the DX10 cards become cheaper and the driver issues for them get all sorted out.

    The PSU i'm looking into getting is the Silverstone Olympia 650W which should suffice for a few years. I believe it has over 50A or so to the 12V rail.
  10. TBH, it seems that everything is playing okay, with performance thats expected anyhow...

    WoW is heavily dependant on the amount of interaction thats going on, so you may have had an instance where not much was happening, so the game as a result wasnt choppy

    you can compare your 3Dmark03 score at http://www.futuremark.com using their ORB database, and see if your score of 11k is close to other systems with similar specs

    BF2 however seems to be isolated as offering poor performance for you in general (more so than any other game you play, it seems)... playing single player consumes less memory in general then playing online (and thus offers better performance)... also try downloading the v1.41 update patch if you havent already...

    as far as checking memory usage in task manager which in game, that would definetly help... i get occasional choppiness in BF2 on my 7800GT (even with the 2GB of memory i just installed a couple days ago), then again, the details and settings are maxed out for what my monitor supports too (1280x1024)... ...with only 1GB of memory though gameplay was definetly worse... and there was even still stuttering at 1.5GB, though less so
  11. I checked with the ORB system and it seems that the majority with single cards score about 12k which isn't too off from where I'm at. There are a few closing in on 14k and some that are in the 9k range. So I think I'm ok there.

    In BF2, i'm experiencing the same performance both in single player and multiplayer. I'll run it later to check the amount of memory usage with it and update everyone.

    If it looks as if I need to add another gig, I'll look around in the local FS ads and get something cheap. I would go ahead and buy the PSU immediately, but I'd rather buy everything at the same time when I do my upgrade to make sure I'm current (at least in that point in time) with new technology.

    Again, I appreciate all of the responses.
  12. OK, so i went ahead and bought a new power supply yesterday. I got the Thermaltake Toughpower 700W instead of the Silverstone Olympia 650W I originally intended on buying because I got a great deal for it while being just a hair under par with the Olympia.

    This thing puts out 4 12V rails rated at 18A each. So the concern for giving my components enough juice is surely satisfied now.

    I also upgraded my ram and I'm now running 1.75GB of it (although only rated at 200MHz effective now because of my Mobo - 3 sticks).

    Problem is, I'm still getting choppiness while playing WoW. When I checked the task manager, it said I was only using about 1.1GB and had almost 700MB still free.

    Does any one else have any other suggestions? Or is this the performance I should expect from my system? My bro in law has a similar system (only in PCIe) running 2GB of RAM and a 6800GT also. His gameplay is all very smooth.
  13. OK only other suggestion I can think of is that you really aren't getting full AGP speed, can you check and confirm this in drivers / control panel (and check motherboard also).

    I was happily playing all kinds of things I shouldn't have expected to on an old x800pro, simply because a new processor and RAM lets it fly.

    I had a problem with my PCI-E only working at x1 instead of x8, simply because I hadn't inserted it in right (DOH!)

    Tell us how you get on with this?!
  14. Hmmm...I went to reinsert the card after reading your post. I double checked the setting in the nVidia control panel just now - surely enough, it's at 8x for the AGP speed.

    The only thing i can think of is maybe my driver is bad. I have the newest driver from nVidia currently. I was already having a problem with that driver - the way it lists th clock speed for the memory is doubled in scale (at 1GHz effective, the control panel shows 2GHz as stock).

    I'll roll back the driver to the previous one and let everyone know if this improves my performance. I'm hoping so as I'm running out of ideas.

    If anyone else has any other suggestions, please let me hear 'em. Thanks
  15. But was it 8x before you reinsterted the card?
    What are the results now?
    Maybe you've got some weird system instability with .net or whatever they're using now, so previous drivers are a good idea, I'm using old ones becuse the results are better for me.
    Alternatively, if you can get it to work, try the omega drivers?
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