Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

Athlon 64 3500+ 939 and GeForce 8800GTS problem

Last response: in CPUs
Share
March 23, 2007 4:13:10 PM

I just bought a EVGA GeForce 8800GTS for my older system, thinking it would be a step up from my 7600GT. It certainly should be, but it's almost running worse! Games such as Dark Messiah and FEAR have horrible stuttering problems as bad as when I had my 7600GT.
It'll be running about 60fps and then something starts loading whenever I turn a corner and it freezes up and the sound stops for a second or two.

I run Windows Vista 32 bit, don't know what this plays into my issues either, but it didn't run so great on XP either!

Simply put, which parts do I need to upgrade for the best results? CPU? RAM? Mobo?
I just want the stuttering to stop! Any advice is appreciated.

Specs are 450W Asys PSU, Athlon 64 3500+ 939pin Venice, ASRock 939Dual-SATA2 mobo, 1GB Corsair ValueSelect PC3200, Seagate 160GB SATA2 7200rpm

More about : athlon 3500 939 geforce 8800gts problem

March 23, 2007 4:15:59 PM

I don't know what the specs are on an Asys 450w but it's quite likely that it isn't up to the task of powering your GTS.
March 23, 2007 4:18:00 PM

I would guess that the CPU is bottlenecking the video card. Also, FEAR is a very CPU hungry game. You get a slightly better CPU, and you'll notice the difference in performance. I would suggest thinking about upgrading to a Core 2 Duo or AM2 platform in April when the price cuts take place.
Related resources
March 23, 2007 4:24:30 PM

Quote:
I would suggest thinking about upgrading to a Core 2 Duo or AM2 platform in April when the price cuts take place.


I'll keep that in mind as I've been meaning to go to AM2 for a while now, it's just that to do that I'll need another mobo and then DDR2 RAM to go with it and budget's kind of slim right now.

As far as the Asys PSU, is it possible for it to kill performance? I don't even know what kind of rails it has, if at all.
March 23, 2007 4:33:14 PM

Quote:
I would suggest thinking about upgrading to a Core 2 Duo or AM2 platform in April when the price cuts take place.


I'll keep that in mind as I've been meaning to go to AM2 for a while now, it's just that to do that I'll need another mobo and then DDR2 RAM to go with it and budget's kind of slim right now.

As far as the Asys PSU, is it possible for it to kill performance? I don't even know what kind of rails it has, if at all.

I wouldn't think it would affect the performance much, since it seems sufficient. What are the 12v rails set at? Check the label on your PSU and let me know.
a c 96 à CPUs
March 23, 2007 6:34:05 PM

Actually, this is an issue that I'm curious about as well, given that I have the same board. I was looking into another hyrbid board for a question in a different forum was reminded of the ASRock VGA Compatibility lists. For our boards the list is small. I assume this is because the list hasn't been updated. I'm wondering if these newer graphic cards require a BIOS update in order for them to work on these boards...

-Wolf ponders.
March 23, 2007 6:41:27 PM

all i see on my PSU is "+12v -- 18A (yellow)"

wolf, that is a good point too. ive updated my bios a while back to the latest version and it helped with my 7600GT, it could be a matter with the 8800 as well. is your system pretty well stable though, i mean have you run into any of these stuttering issues, as i see you have double the RAM and a better CPU
a c 96 à CPUs
March 23, 2007 7:04:51 PM

Nope. No stuttering, but I did have an issue when I first dropped in the 7800GS (AGP) that I believe is due to an inferior power supply. Underclocking the graphics card by 10% remedied the "No Signal" black-out/System locks.

When I picked up the board, last July, the first thing I did was flash the BIOS to the latest version available at the time.

-Wolf sends

Edit: Since the underclock, the system's been rock solid. Recently upgraded to a 22" widescreen monitor (1680x1050) and still get 40FPS in CoH (City, not Company).
March 24, 2007 8:25:02 PM

Yep, your power supply isn't the problem. Like I said before, it's probably your CPU that is bottlenecking your card since FEAR is very CPU intensive.
March 24, 2007 9:07:06 PM

What you described makes it sound like you are running out of RAM and caching to virtual memory to me. Make sure that you close any unecessary programs before running games to free up as much memory as possible.

If you can, while the game is running (not just in the menus, but with a level loaded and everything) minimize it and look in the task manager to see how much Page File you are using. If you are close to or over 1GB, then lack of memory is your problem.
March 25, 2007 1:29:36 AM

I may be mistaking about the bottlenecking, I just assumed that since most CPU benchmarks use FEAR as one of their games to test since it relies on the CPU mostly. Furthermore, this shows the difference from using an Athlon x2 5000+ and your Athlon 3500+:

http://tomshardware.co.uk/cpu/charts.html?modelx=33&mod...

As you can see, there's roughly a difference of 18-20 fps between the processors (take notice that the game doesn't use two cores, so it's mainly the difference of the speeds of the processors and yes, the memory also, but that's at best a 2-4% percent boost).

But yes, as stated above, check your memory usage. If you have any scans (or any other programs that are eating away your memory), they can GREATLY decrease your fps. If that's not the case, defrag (as stated above) your hard drive, and IF that's not the case either, then maybe you need to run some virus/spyware/adaware scans and check your computer. And if THAT'S not it, then I would assume that it is bottlenecking.
March 25, 2007 1:45:50 AM

The biggest difference between Vista and XP, hardware wise, is the amount of ram required.
If you are saying that the problem is a lot worse with Vista, I'd guess memory is the problem.
March 25, 2007 1:57:43 AM

Quote:
The biggest difference between Vista and XP, hardware wise, is the amount of ram required.
If you are saying that the problem is a lot worse with Vista, I'd guess memory is the problem.


Good point. Somehow I overlooked the fact that he was using Windows Vista.
Insufficient memory is almost certainly the problem. An upgrade to 2GB would almost certainly improve performance. A CPU limitation wouldn't cause sudden stuttering like that. It would just limit the maximum FPS and could bog down in heavy action/detail regions.
March 25, 2007 2:19:02 AM

have you tried turning v-sync off.

i had the same trouble with my 8800 in fear.
it ran worse than my 6800gt.

it could be a psu problem too.
March 25, 2007 3:36:16 AM

Quote:

How is a 450W PSU with a single 18A +12v rail good enough to power that system? There is no way it can support that system. At least not for very long. It will end in disaster.


You guys may be right about the PS being too weak to operate reliably for long, but I still think that the performance issue he is facing is due to too little RAM. With Vista, 1GB is definately not an overabundance.
March 25, 2007 3:49:09 AM

MPilch is right. Also, once he gets a decent PSU, he should overclock the CPU to 2.5 at least. His 3500+ Venice should overclock easily, though I don't know that motherboard's OC capabilities. Don't buy more DDR RAM, it will be wasted when you upgrade and need DDR2. If a new PSU and overclocking don't help, I'd try reloading windows with a new install of WinXP plus ONLY the necessary drivers and your game, then see if it runs smoothly (with the new PSU and overclocked CPU). If so, then add VISTA to see if that causes the problem (it may want too much RAM). If WinXP clean doesn't work, then give up and upgrade to a C2D. But personally, I'd put off the upgrade as long as possible, since prices are dropping and maybe AMD will have something worth waiting for in early '08. Maybe you could even skip over DDR2 entirely, to DDR3. (That is my dream.)
March 25, 2007 6:27:51 AM

I just purchased an Ultra infinity power supply today. It says 350 watts on the box and when I checked the 12v rail it has...18 amps. The only thing I intend to use it for is an old Athlon XP 3000 with a 9800 pro. There is no way it would power up a 8800 GTS (it's tongue wouuld be hanging) LMAO.
March 25, 2007 9:15:46 AM

would inadequate power cause decrease performance or would it cause the card to completely crash? It sounds like this guy needs to upgrade just about everything.
March 25, 2007 9:28:24 AM

That's what I'm asking. Wouldn't a struggling PSU cause more catastrophic failures than just stuttering frames?
March 25, 2007 9:48:57 AM

Pretty much. It isn't healthy to keep pushing the PSU like that. I've seen some PSU heat up very hot from simply having too many components (my early years :lol: ).

Clearly the PSU can't give the power needed when the system is under load. That card does need 26 amps on the rail it is on, from what I remember reading on requirments for a GTS card. If it is in SLI mode, if memory serves, the amps should be around 32.

I pretty much agree with mpilchfamily. It is very likely, when that PSU goes, it may take out other components.
March 25, 2007 9:53:27 AM

Gah... 50 amps?? holy mother of god!! :lol: 

Ya, I guess I had the GTX mixed up in my mind (7900?). I didn't look it up, due to my laziness and well.. it's 4:53 am. :lol: 
March 25, 2007 11:27:27 AM

I recommend either getting a faster processor or over clock the 3500.Either way you'll get a performance boost.You really should also consider purchasing another power supply.The 450watt might do it,but I somehow don't think it's good enough for the 8800gts.I would go with nothing less than a 550watt w/30amps on the 12v rail.Just to be safe.Goodluck.Oh ya,Vista sucks for games right now.You should re-install XP,and that stuttering should go away.And try installing another gig of ram.Some games do like to use a gig of system memory.

Dahak

AMD X2-4400+@2.6 TOLEDO
EVGA NF4 SLI MB
2X EVGA 7950GT KO IN SLI
4X 512MB CRUCIAL BALLISTIX DDR500
WD300GIG HD/SAMSUNG 250GIG HD
ACER 22IN WIDESCREEN LCD 1600X1200
THERMALTAKE TOUGHPOWER 850WATT PSU
COOLERMASTER MINI R120
3DMARK05 13,471
March 25, 2007 12:40:21 PM

I'm not that great in teaching PSU ratings. But I'd like to try to understand the situation better, for myself, and perhaps others. Correct me if I'm wrong, plz. :D 

Using the PSU Cal - I only put in (what was on the 1st post, plus DVD recorder) the CPU/RAM/1HD/2-512MB RAM/DVD recorder

At 100% TDP that is 172Watts

Now if the 8800GTS is wanting 26A, that would be 26x12=312 watts?

If I understand, the PSU wants to balance that out, so its kinda like balancing things on a seesaw.

Adding 172+312=484Watts

But since is 12v is at 18amps, which is 216watts plus 172, is it only capable of 388 watts? which would indicate that it is not sufficient, since it is short of 400? And would also mean he is really pushing that PSU beyond it's limit?
March 25, 2007 12:55:57 PM

It is an old psu. Its crap, throwing that much at the 5 volt. Im running a 420 watt enermax, 18 amps PER rail, duo rail, at 29 amps peak for both. Im also running a 1900 xt 512 mb. My system BARELY covers this. Tho its very similar to his. I agree with you. The 8800 gts draws more than my 1900xt. His psu is severly inferrior to my enermax, which like I said barely covers my system. His system draws more simply BECAUSE of the 8800. The going around corner thing I dont know about, but I do know that there have been posts recently discribing this same thing happening with a 8800. The OP was finally convinced to go and get a new psu. IT WORKED. And btw, he also had a very similar setup nuff said
March 25, 2007 1:11:48 PM

Check this out if anyone wants to read it : http://forumz.tomshardware.com/hardware/PSU-graphic-car... Same problem, and he even had a supposedly higher wattage psu. I wish theyd crack down on this psu crap, just because it can hit 450 watts for 2 seconds doesnt mean itll handle a constant 300+ watt load
March 25, 2007 1:38:11 PM

From what I understand the 12v amp rating is the most important thing to look at.

I found that even the 7600GT wants 22amps, which is 264 watts.

The PSU can't supply that amount on the 12v rail at 18amps. (216watts)

Oh... I dunno. :?. o O (I give up)
March 25, 2007 3:48:42 PM

stranger is right on this one. It is NOT a CPU bottleneck. A 7600gt won't max out FEAR at gaming res. And he's having the same problem now. IMO, it is also NOT a psu problem, as he was having the same problem with a 7600gt, which draws very little power.

1 gig on xp is fine for FEAR, don't know about vista, but the OP said he also had problems with XP.

Sounds to me like there's simply too much running in the background, the disk needs defragged (depending on where the problems are), or, possibly too much pagefiling because of too much memory usage (probably due to too many background programs).

It is frustrating when people always throw out CPU bottleneck for just about everything. It simply wouldn't cause the problem the OP has. The 3500+ is a fine proc for just about any game out there. As has been stated on here, many, many times, a CPU upgrade would result in a few frames difference.

And remember, the 3500+ is FASTER than an X2 3800+, unless games actually utilize dual cores. Even if they do, its only likely to be a 5-15% difference anyway. In fear, the 3800+ might give you 3 or 4 frames more at most.
March 25, 2007 7:23:32 PM

Yes, his/your/my Venice 3500+ is a great single core CPU. If his/your motherboard allows basic overclocking options such as setting the divider to 5:6, it should easily get to 2.5GHz with any old memory, since you don't have to increase the memory speed if you don't want to. My settings (10x, 250 HTT, 4x HT, Divider 5:6) run my RAM at 208MHz and my CPU at 2.5GHz.
It seems his first priority is to get a decent PSU to avoid harming his other components. This might solve his problem, but I suspect his RAM is also a problem due to VISTA's RAM demands. But I can't suggest spending money on another Gig of old DDR memory, as it will be wasted when he finally upgrades to dual core. Thus, I suggested going back to WinXP. If that works, you know the problem was either not enough RAM, or VISTA doesn't play well with that game and/or his drivers.
March 25, 2007 7:46:43 PM

Question...

How different is Vista 32bit from XP?

Also, can the OP run the game windowed, so he can bring up the task manager to see if his memory is being used up, which would cause paging to occur on the HD?
March 25, 2007 9:18:11 PM

1 Gig of memory is positively not enough system memory to run any graphics-intensive game at 1600X1200, or even 1280 X 960. And having a fast card like the 8800GTS exacerbates the problem. I know, I've had the same issues until doubling the system memory to 2 gigs. That is the problem with the "stuttering."
March 25, 2007 9:33:58 PM

Quote:
VISTA is a LOT different. I've seen several articles that recommend gamers stay away from VISTA for a while. The most relevant differences concerning this post are memory usage and GPU driver maturity. VISTA requires more RAM, and GPUs don't perform as well yet.
Here are a couple of links.
http://www.tomshardware.com/2007/01/17/gameplay-only-ge...
http://www.anandtech.com/showdoc.aspx?i=2917&p=3
http://www.anandtech.com/showdoc.aspx?i=2917&p=19


Umm... that shows the 64bit Vista. I can understand the 64bit version will cause allot of headaches, but the 32bit version should be more similar to XP, isn't it?

I'm finding it confusing to understand. I know perhaps the 32bit version may have more services running in the background, but surely the Vista 32bit should be less hard on a user then the 64bit Vista.

And the OP is on the 32bit version of Vista, not 64bit... so that is why I asked.
March 25, 2007 9:53:13 PM

One question about the power hook up.

On those 8800GTS cards, it has 6 pin, but comes with an adapter that allows 2 4 pin molex connectors.

Would this guy have to have 1 molex connector from 2 different rails, or would it matter if it was off the same rail that had 2 molex plugs?

And how would you determine the amps or wattage when you hook it up?
March 25, 2007 11:42:16 PM

I have the "infinity" not the "x-finity". The unit i purchased only has 1 rail. Also, I would not run a PS anywhere near a peak rating unless you want to ask for trouble.

Here is a link to the closest thing I could find (I am at work, not much time)

http://www.ultraproducts.com/product_details.php?cPath=...
March 26, 2007 12:23:24 AM

I say again, the problem is inadequate system memory, especially if the OP is running Vista. If there is a power supply problem then the system will crash, bluescreen, freeze, etc, not just "play Jerky." If the card or PC are getting poor power then they will crash. period. No it's not a good power supply, but there can't be a "slight" problem if it's inadequate. It's all or nothing. That's the nature of digital electronics.
March 26, 2007 12:42:35 AM

Well, after reading all this, i think the OP needs a recap.

Your psu has been confirmed insufficient for your system, however probably is not the source of your studdering as you had that problem with the old card. This leaves you with RAM as the culprit, and therefore you should buy another gig of your ram and perhaps even consider going back to xp until you do an overhall of your complete system.

I think your prioity should be your psu though, as even though having studders is annoying, having a flaming comp is not as much fun. I'd even get something like my enermax liberty 620w as to make your psu futureproof a bit, and be able to go into a newer system.
March 26, 2007 12:53:24 AM

Quote:
I say again, the problem is inadequate system memory, especially if the OP is running Vista.


Okay... again, how much does Vista 32Bit typically use?

Not the 64 Bit, the 32Bit version? :lol: 

When I look up how much ram Vista 32bit, it has the same limitations of XP... it can't see 4GB, but maybe 3.5Gigs at the most.

Typically, my XP home uses a lil over 300 MB.

So far I've read some info, that it acts more like linux, and does more background caching. And that by adding more ram, the usage will still go up. From what I saw, if you have a gig of ram, it would use around 500MB. Is that true?

And if it acts more like linux, wouldn't it free up what it needs for that game Fear?

Or does it act worse? :lol: 
March 26, 2007 1:52:29 AM

I went looking for the specs for the 8800GTS (required PS amperage) and had troubles findng it. If someone can locate it please post it. The required amperage for my X1900XTX was 26 amps at the 12 volt rail (for complete system-not just the card) and I am pretty sure the amperage requirements for the 8800 GTS are higher than the X1900XTX. He will need at least 30 amps or so on the 12v rail. Since this PS he has is not sufficient and he is having problems with his system he should eliminate this issue first before chasing other items.
March 26, 2007 2:31:58 AM

Nice find grimmy, both of those indicate the requirements exceed his power supply. I would definitely look at the PS first.
March 26, 2007 2:32:35 AM

Regardless of whether or not his power supply is sufficient, if his system was underpowered he'd have flat out crashes, full on restarts. Stuttering of this nature is indicative of not having enough RAM. This type of stuttering occurs when you've hit the limit on your physical memory and Windows is moving unused items to your hard drives virtual memory to free up more physical RAM. This is the same issue that plagues the Battlefield series of games. 1GB of RAM is not enough because the game itself uses 800-950MB on its own which leaves very little for Windows. An additional 1GB of RAM would make this problem go away entirely, I'm fairly sure of that. Evidence of this is his stating that he had the same problems whilst using his Geforce 7600GT. Sure the GT takes less power to run but if his graphics card were underpowered the whole system would be restarting itself; he wouldn't just have stuttering when going around a corner.
March 26, 2007 3:23:39 AM

Quote:
VISTA is a LOT different. I've seen several articles that recommend gamers stay away from VISTA for a while. The most relevant differences concerning this post are memory usage and GPU driver maturity. VISTA requires more RAM, and GPUs don't perform as well yet.
Here are a couple of links.
http://www.tomshardware.com/2007/01/17/gameplay-only-ge...
http://www.anandtech.com/showdoc.aspx?i=2917&p=3
http://www.anandtech.com/showdoc.aspx?i=2917&p=19


Umm... that shows the 64bit Vista. I can understand the 64bit version will cause allot of headaches, but the 32bit version should be more similar to XP, isn't it?

I'm finding it confusing to understand. I know perhaps the 32bit version may have more services running in the background, but surely the Vista 32bit should be less hard on a user then the 64bit Vista.

And the OP is on the 32bit version of Vista, not 64bit... so that is why I asked.

Actually, if you read the article, you'll see that they test XP 32 bit vs. VISTA 32 bit and vs. VISTA 64 bit. They refer to 32 bit as "86".

I believe the memory section (my second link) is talking about 32 bit VISTA. In it, the author states "Vista's heightened memory requirements took a stressful situation that worked reasonably well under XP and made it far more painful with the same amount of memory... If you thought that 2GB was the sweet spot for Windows XP, chances are 3GB will be the new minimum for you under Vista. ... Vista uses more memory and in turn, you'll need a bit more memory to get a similar experience to what you had under XP."

I conclude that people with 1 Gig of RAM (like me and like phreakindee who started this post) can run most games under XP OK, but might need all of their Gig of RAM to do it (BF2). VISTA uses up more of the RAM, so when a Gig was barely enough under XP, it isn't enough under VISTA.
March 26, 2007 3:42:06 AM

ya'll have diagnosed this one quite well I think. The idea the 8800GTS is too much for the 3500 is just a kind of prejudice which wants the cpu to be newer. Of course a dual core and/or faster cpu will do something with some games, and more and more in time, etc. But...upgrading piecemeal isn't a crime! At the worst when the 3500 isn't enough anymore for him, he'll just up the cpu. In the meanwhile, his current problems have been diagnosed, power supply and ram. After which his 8800GTS will be pleasant, no doubt.
March 26, 2007 11:57:29 AM

Quote:
Yep, your power supply isn't the problem. Like I said before, it's probably your CPU that is bottlenecking your card since FEAR is very CPU intensive.

Even if his processor was a bottleneck, adding a faster video card would not make it any worse of a bottleneck... thus, performance should not decrease as the OP has stated. I believe you have a problem... just not sure what sort of problem.
March 26, 2007 1:35:19 PM

It's more then likely the memory is causing the studdering of the game he was playing.

I guess the main reason for concern of his PSU, is that if it does blow, it could potentially take out other things with it. Adding more ram, which will take up all 4 dimm slots, will just cause more strain on the PSU.

Any dedicated gamer, should admit that sometimes it feels like 15 mins went by playing a game, but actually 3 hours flew by. :lol: . o O (at least I recall those times when I said, okay, another 5 mins then I'm off)

But anyhoo... GL to the OP. I'd say the ram upgrade would prolly cure the studdering, but how long the PSU can limp away with that 8800GTS, is hard to say.

I did buy a P3 Kill A Watt meter. Perhaps I'll start a thread on what my old PC does, and compare it to the PSU calculator. :D 
March 26, 2007 9:04:02 PM

I might be coming in a little late here with this post, but this is not a CPU bottlebeck issues. It is a PSU issue. The 8800 GTS needs at least 26A on the 12 volts rails (combined). If you only have 18A that an issue. Plain as day.
I have a friend that has an AMD 3700+ with an 8800GTS and he has no issues playing all of today's latest games with full setting and high res. There is no bottlebeck issue with FEAR.
March 26, 2007 9:09:59 PM

Quote:
I might be coming in a little late here with this post, but this is not a CPU bottlebeck issues. It is a PSU issue. The 8800 GTS needs at least 26A on the 12 volts rails (combined). If you only have 18A that an issue. Plain as day.
I have a friend that has an AMD 3700+ with an 8800GTS and he has no issues playing all of today's latest games with full setting and high res. There is no bottlebeck issue with FEAR.


Heh..

Quick Question... How much RAM does your friend have installed & OS?

And BTW, welcome to the forumz.
March 26, 2007 10:23:19 PM

Quote:
I might be coming in a little late here with this post, but this is not a CPU bottlebeck issues. It is a PSU issue. The 8800 GTS needs at least 26A on the 12 volts rails (combined). If you only have 18A that an issue. Plain as day.
I have a friend that has an AMD 3700+ with an 8800GTS and he has no issues playing all of today's latest games with full setting and high res. There is no bottlebeck issue with FEAR.


yeah, sounds about right. We had a good discussion on this recently, in a thread some title like "X2 3800 shines with 8800GTS" or something like that, which should be under my post list or in page 2-3 of the forum perhaps. There are a couple of games where you'd want more cpu.....*if* you have the money for it...., or just play a little reduced, and still works ok. An air combat game and a new game that can scale up with more cpu and gpu, if you have them. But most games for now are still great with cpus like a 3700, and a 8800GTS works great with these lower mid range cpus for budget situations where someone needs to upgrade piecemeal over time.
!