X1950xt Poor Performance. Please Help

OK, I recently built a new PC (for the first time), the specs are

Mobo - MSI K9A Platinum
CPU - Athlon X2 6000+ (Stock)
Memory - 2x512MB OCZ Platinum Rev 2 6400 (800MHz) (4-4-4-15), 2x512MB OCZ Platinum 6400 (800MHz) (4-5-4-15) (Stock)
GPU - Sapphire X1950XT 256MB (OC - 682/945)
Hard Drives - 1x WD 80GB 7200, 1x WD 160GB 7200, 1x Maxtor 120GB 7200 (Each Have 8mb Buffer)
DVD Writer - Pioneer 112d
PSU - Enermax 535W (Dual 12v rails at 18a each)
PSU – Thermaltake Power Express 250W

My 3Dmark06 Score was 4917, this is too low for this card. I have read many posts and 99% of people with an x1950xt had got around 5800 at stock and most of them had a CPU which is inferior to mine.

Also my in game performance (which is what prompted me to test using 3dmark06) is very disappointing. For instance in the game Dirt I am getting 12-16fps on 100% medium settings, where I have read most people get 18-21 on HIGH settings.

I have tried all of the catalyst drivers I can get my hands on (6.9 – 7.6) and various tools along side each (Rivatuner, ATI Tray Tools and ATI Tool), the card is switching from 2d to 3d clocks as Rivatuner reports the clocks at 621/900 during gaming.

I posted this thread on other forums and on one they suggested that my PSU may be the culprit, so I bought the Thermaltake Power Express 250W (See Here) and I get the same score.

What could the problem be, something is not right here and I have run out of ideas, do you think my GPU or Mobo could be faulty or is there something I am missing.
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  1. Power suplies are not my area really but i think it could still be the problem from what i can remember other threads on the 1950xt have it drawing 30+ amps from the 12v rail and if i read the link right your new add on psu supplies 25.
    I seem to recal that you can check the draw using ATI tray tools or tool so try checking it to see what it says.
    hopefully one of the guys who are upon psu`s will drop on this thread and yay or nay me but thats what i would check first.
    Sorry i cant help more Mactronix
  2. Actually, I heard that the amperage pull is the total from the system...but I'm not a PSU expert either.

    BTW, it MIGHT NOT BE your PSU. According to a review on Newegg (ya, I know, not that reliable but hey), a user managed to use this card with an Antec SP 500W PSU, which only provides 12V1 at 17A and 12V2 at 19A.
  3. It is NOT the PSU as I get the same performance with my Enermax 535W alone as I do with the 535W and the dedicated 250W VGA PSU installed. The 250W has been specifically designed to run Crossfire/SLI so I know the card is getting the power it needs.
  4. CrackEdd2 said:
    It is NOT the PSU as I get the same performance with my Enermax 535W alone as I do with the 535W and the dedicated 250W VGA PSU installed. The 250W has been specifically designed to run Crossfire/SLI so I know the card is getting the power it needs.

    Sorry not trying to upset you said it wasnt my thing just trying to help oh and by the way yes it was designed to run sli in 2002!
  5. What is the temp of the air inside the case? I would investigate your cooling first as the 1950xt is one hot card.

    Did you completely wipe Catalyst? I mean registry and everything! Also, go back to stock until you get your problem figured it out. The OC is just complicating your troubleshooting.

    Others may be achieving higher overclocks as I can do quite a bit better than 682/945 but I have the card watercooled.
  6. mactronix - I wasn't saying that in a sour tone, I was just trying to get away from the PSU as an issue. Sorry if it came across that way.

    khaz - My temps are good, at time of writing this -

    CPU - 27
    VGA - 50 (idle) 73 (fully loaded)
    HDD 1 - 31
    HDD 2 - 33

    I completely cleaned Catalyst off my system, I used Driver Cleaner PE, CCleaner then Registry Mechanic every time.

    I have removed the OC already I didn’t notice that it was still listed (I copied the message from another post I made on a different forum and altered it).

    On the other forum I posted this on someone with a single core Pentium @ 2.8 got 5800 at stock (the card was stock). That to me means OC is not really an issue.
  7. Are you using 4 sticks of RAM? Have you tried with just 2 sticks? Have you verified the speeds under CPUZ? Also, disable Cool 'N' Quiet to see if its affecting performance (most likely isn't but hey, that's what troubleshooting is...).

    Also, make sure you've installed the AMD Dual Core Driver and Dual Core Optimizer and then run 3dMark06.
  8. Are you forcing AA in the ATI Control Panel?
  9. PCKid777 - I have tried with 2 sticks and I get the same. The speeds under CPUZ are 376 (this is because of the AMD 6000+). Cool'n'quiet is already disabled. My CPU scores are exactly what I should be getting 2200.

    ethel - No I don%u2019t have AA forced in the ATI Control Panel. Everything is set to 'Optimal Performance'

    Could it be that my Mobo is faulty?
  10. Well, if it helps I've got a 6600 and my 3dmark06 is 6410 with cpu and gpu/vram at stock, 6779 with an overclock to 3.2 on cpu and 695/1000 on the Sapphire x1950xt.

    Can you try the card in a buddy's system? Could be luck of the draw on the vid card.
  11. Hmm. How about taking away all the overclocking and trying it? It is possible that all the tools are conflicting with each other, might be best to go back to basics - uninstall all the tools you have, then see what happens.
  12. khaz - Unfortunately all of my friends are still on AGP systems, you’re not in the Romford area are you? Lol.

    ethel - As I mentioned above I have removed the OC, I only accidentally posted the OC because I copied the initial post from the other forum I posted this on about 2 weeks ago. As for the OC tools, I have tried 20-30 driver and tool combinations since the problem started occurring. There is something else going on here.
  13. please use cpu-z to verify pci-x link is set on 16*, not 1*. it happened on most overclock system. also you should try disable any program runing on back ground.
  14. Is it possible to do a reformat of your system and start from a clean install? Can you perhaps post a pic of any background processes in Task Manager? Have you run any anti-virus/anti-spyware programs?

    Also, its quite doubtful that this would decrease your score, but perhaps try MemTest86 and then Orthos. If Orthos were to fail, and you know that your RAM is fine, then it would most likely be a MB problem seeing as your CPU performs on par with comparable CPUs (in 3dMark06 that is).

    (Just ideas, don't know if they'll help...)
  15. I fixed it. I was about to RMA my VGA and Mobo when I thought I would try one more thing, and that was to flash my BIOS back to v.1.5 from v.1.6 and it actually worked. I just run 3Dmark06 and got 5880 with the catalyst control center set to balanced not even performance. I am so happy.

    Thank you everyone for your help.
  16. Glad that you fixed it! Dang, a BIOS update I may have considered, but a BIOS downgrade? I'll have to add that to my knowledge book....
  17. CrackEdd2 said:

    PSU - Enermax 535W (Dual 12v rails at 18a each)

    this Should be plenty for your system. My sapphire x1950xt only pulls 27-28 amps at load. I think it will pull allot more if you try to OC it though.
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