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HD3870 Performance Issues

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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December 26, 2007 12:38:19 PM

I just upgraded to a Visiontek HD3870 from a 3 year old x700 pro and figured i'd be in for a huge difference but to my dissapointment the HD3870 is giving me almost identical framerates, sometimes more, sometimes less. The main two games I play are World of Warcraft and Hellgate London. The x700 pro gave me ~20-30 fps most of the time in WoW with all high settings, maxing at 60 when staring at walls with vertical sync on. Hellgate was almost unplayable with 5-20 fps during any kind of action with medium/low settings. I figured the 3870 would keep WoW at a constant 50+ easy and make Hellgate smooth for the most part. Unfortunately i'm getting ~10-30 fps in Hellgate with medium/high settings and still 20-30 in WoW with the same settings as before.

From what i've read this card should be kicking these games asses. 3dMark06 gave me a 5077 which from reading others scores is pretty damn low for this card. I've tried several catalyst drivers going from the 7.9 all the way up to the new 7.12. No results. Ati/amd support gave me a list of crap to do-adjusting hardware acceleration/cleaning temp files type stuff, all of which did nothing, and i'm waiting to hear back from them for more advice.

My system is nearly 3 years old this xmas but it was good for its time, built to be upgradable, but I suppose it could be bottlenecking the card. Posting specs below.

Processor: Intel Pentium 4 540 3.2 Ghz Oc'd to 3.6 Ghz
PSU: Antec 500w
Motherboard: Asus P5AD2-E Premium
RAM: 2GB Kingston DDR2/533
Hard Drives: 300GB Hitachi & 120GB Seagate
Monitor: 19" Viewsonic CRT
Video Card: Visiontek HD3870
Sound Card: Integrated 7.1 Surround
Operating System: Windows XP Home SP2 / DirectX 9c

More about : hd3870 performance issues

December 26, 2007 2:13:56 PM

Try messing with the res as strangestranger suggested.

My first thoughts is that it's a CPU bottleneck - If you decide to upgrade your CPU, DO NOT BUY A PENTIUM D 8xx or 9xx. You will see almost no difference in performance.

December 26, 2007 4:11:06 PM

That's pretty odd in all honesty. I am currently running on a Pentium D myself, a slower one (2.8 Ghz - @ Stock) and I am pushing somewhere near a constant 40+ FPS [In WoW]. The FPS drops to like 20ish in a major city, going to blame that on my processor.

Btw, I only have a 3850 @ 256 mb. Go to ATI Overdrive and take a look at the settings. Or even try re-installing your video card all together. Once again, I am running on a P4 2.8Ghz, 3850 ATI, w/ a 1680x1050 resolution and I am getting great results.
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December 26, 2007 5:33:14 PM

did u remove your old drivers before you installed the new card?

id uninstall the drivers and remove the card from the device manager and reboot, this will give u a standard drive, where u can then install the new cat 7.12 drivers, i dont have any of ur games but i get over 9500 in 3dmark06 stock and 11000 overclocked.
December 26, 2007 7:27:31 PM

Yea I removed all the previous drivers and use Driver Cleaner Pro each time i changed when i was testing the various drivers. The powersupply is the Antec True550 EPS12V. And yea that 3dMark score was the overall. The CPU only scored like a 900 something.
December 26, 2007 7:40:28 PM

900 for cpu...that's about right imo. My friend got 653 in 3dmark06 with a PD 805 and a 6800. Not good eh?
December 26, 2007 7:48:54 PM

jbsf27 said:
3dMark06 gave me a 5077 which from reading others scores is pretty damn low

Ya, that's just way too low. It's hard to beleive your CPU would cripple/bottleneck the 3870 by that much! I would expect at least 8000 (which is a 40% difference).
December 26, 2007 7:57:20 PM

Yea thats what i can't believe. Playing WoW right now and im getting about 15 fps all the time...something just isn't right but i dunno what it is. Anyone have any thoughts?
a b Ý World of Warcraft
December 26, 2007 10:28:56 PM

Any other games you can test besides Wow and HellGate? If none on hand you might try downloading some game demos and see if its something related just to WoW.
December 28, 2007 6:05:06 PM

I have the same problem.

Wow fps is 60 when i stand and drops when i move around. Last card was 7800GT and the fps was the same. UT 3 laags like hell. I have the latest drivers and runed wow repair utility with no help.

Bioshock and Oblivion both run with max quality. 3d mark 2006, basic settings around 9k.


CPU: AMD X2 5600+
Ram: 2gb
VGA: Club 3D HD 3870 512mb
Mob: Asus M2N-E SLI
Power: Antec 450w
Monitor: Samsung 20''
December 29, 2007 1:47:01 PM

With that MB and cpu .... you'll never get the potential from a 3870 or an nvidia g92 .
December 30, 2007 9:36:20 AM

Ok i don't have the best mob and cpu. But the HD3870 has been downgrade in wow. I start moving around and the fps drops to 20 and even less. The screen laags and freezes. I didn't have that problem with 7800gt. 7800 freezed when it was a lot of action. It seems like the HD3870 have no memory. When i reach new palce it starts loading the scenery and fps drops like hell( didn't have that problem before). The HD3870 has been downgrade when playing WoW, a big one.


H2: Episode 2 runs great
December 31, 2007 2:52:27 PM

Truthfully I don't know .... the 3870 in my system skyrocketed my stats and helped alot on video quality settings . I was running an 800 pro and it was a huge difference in video perfrmance all around .
January 3, 2008 1:02:17 PM

You see the thing is I have the same exact card as you and I am running everything at maxx with no lag at 1280x1024.
Here are the benchmarks

http://service.futuremark.com/compare?3dm06=4414349

You have a lifetime warranty give them a call. I think its your mobo and cpu and hell even your ram. This card is prolly to badass/fast for the rest of your pc to handle.

Its not the card because if it was hardware problem then it would not work rather then get slow FPS.
If it was software then yes you would get lag from the card but they have put out updates and I have the same card and get no problems.
What does that leave left?
You other PC components.
Upgrade bro!
January 3, 2008 1:03:15 PM

Oh BTW
I have gone from x800pro< 2600xt< 3870

Huge improvement everytime.
January 3, 2008 1:04:37 PM

I just figured it out you need a AMD bridge instead of that sli crap.
January 3, 2008 1:38:26 PM

I went from playing COD4 a e-VGA nvidia 7600gt 256m ddr3 getting 50-70FPS on low settings to a sapphire 3870 getting 75FPS plus on high settings. I sync at 75 due to my monitor. Without sync i get 80-100fps. The 3870 has fan issues, but i love what it has done for my graphics.

my specs: pentium d 920 2.8, Asus P5LP-LE. 4G p2-6400, sapphire 3870, antec basiq 500w, 250G sata150, Samsung syncmaster 220wm, windows xp sp2, nothing overclocked, stock fans and fan speeds.
January 3, 2008 1:40:10 PM

Fixed the problem! :bounce: 

I turned off 2 things in ATI Ctalyst Control Center

1) Adaptive Anti-Aliasing
2) Catalyst A.I


Wow fps turned to normal and even better.

Conclusion: ATI Catalyst CC still sucks!! :fou: 
January 3, 2008 2:15:20 PM

yeah, nvidia drivers are idiot proof, but ATI/CCC are very touchy. ATI needs to add fan controls to CCC. NOW!

I have wondered what Adaptive Anti-Aliasing and Catalyst A.I does.
a b Ý World of Warcraft
January 3, 2008 3:11:05 PM

They slow down your GPU by one generation for each option.
January 3, 2008 3:31:26 PM

yea leave everything in CCC turned off and application settings.
Except the slidebar that you cannot turn off what you want to do it maxx that one out.
January 3, 2008 6:15:50 PM

Adjustable settings which ment to improve but really **** all things up. Took me some days to figure that out.


Let me think how meny times i had to Uninstall, install, reinstall, Detonator, install aso.

I read an magazin article: "I Detonated all the Nvidia drivers, installed drivers which were on the CD and then Install said that you don't have a ATI card. Unistall, reinstall ...... aso. Finally I caved up and called technical support. They said that there is out a new CCC. Downloaded it and installed. Finally i got it running"

Atm the HD3870 runs great. I love it. It's a very good card!


Btw. It has onboard sound card. I din't know that and when i installed the ATI, all the sounds were gone. So i had to disable it.
!