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Low frames per second with a Sapphire Radeon 4870.

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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July 25, 2009 12:41:32 AM

I just recently bought my sapphire radeon 4870 off of ebay. The person said that it was lightly used and never overclocked. I installed it into my system with no problem, installed the latest dirvers. Than I try to play crysis on very high settings on a resulution of 1024x768. This video card should be able to play this game on very high with a higher resulution and easily get about 40fps. But When I play, I only get about 15fps. I have no clue what is going on here. I ran 3dmark06 on my system and only got a score of 9225. I have no clue what could be causing this. The average score for my video card is over 12000 I have heard people say that increasing the cpu multiplier could fix this problem. But since I have an amd Phenom Quad Core and 4gigs of ram I doubt this is the problem. I tried overclocking my card using the auto tune in the CCC but it went up to a 800mhrz core clock. When I tried to play crysis, bars come up across the screen and it crashes. Could you please assist me in fixing this issue? I have a 500 watt power supply. Thanks! :heink: 
July 25, 2009 1:23:44 AM

This is an extremely frustrating issue.
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July 25, 2009 2:36:14 AM

which amd cpu do u have?

and what mobo just to make sure if its an old mobo u might be bottlenecked by the chipset/pcie slots

but it doesnt seem u have outdated hardware

um really u should be getting maybe about 30-35 so like twice as much. that 3dmark score isnt THAT far off from average but it just seems that ur card is not in good condition. but plz post all ur other hardware (mobo, cpu, psu at least) maybe there is a fix.

sorry that thats happening mate
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July 25, 2009 2:50:51 AM

For starters, what Phenom X4 do you have? Stock clocks? There is a huge difference between a 65nm Phenom and a Phenom II. If it's a Phenom, you'll likely want to raise it to 3.0GHz anyway.

Second, Crysis at very high is quite demanding. Without a CPU limitation your card should be able to play 1024x768 DX10 very high, but do not expect a constant 40 fps. You'll likely still see some drops below 20 fps, lower if CPU related (with a stock Phenom).

Autotune will OC the card beyond it's maximum... that's why the crash trying to game at it's OC settings. Lower the clocks. Ideally, You'll want to individually find where the core and mem artifact, and then lower both a bit for you daily gaming. I'd suggest doing some before/after benching though as no need to OC your GPU if you are CPU limited.

If you suffer instability your PSU may not be enough. 500W is not important, brand and +12V output is important. So is the load of the system (number of drives, fan, etc. ) And again, a 65nm Phenom X4 is quite power hungry, and a weak PSU may meet it's match quickly if you try to OC it.
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July 25, 2009 3:46:34 AM

I have the amd phenom 9150 e x4 at 1.8mhz (stock clock). I just got my pc from best buy a week ago. I dont know what brand the mobo is. I have 4 gigs of ram. I am kind of new to pcs so why would I need to over clock my cpu if I am only using around 30% of my cpu while playing crysis? How do I go about overclocking my cpu?
Isnt my cpu good enough where it does not need overclocked? I just bought my power supply on ebay. Here is the link: http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&ssPageNam...

Could this be the source of my issues?
Thanks!
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July 25, 2009 4:30:29 AM

I'm going to assume your mean 1.8 ghz and yes a CPU that slow is probably a bottle neck. Since you bought your PC at best buy I'm not sure if you would have much of an option to overclock it in the Bios.
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July 25, 2009 11:34:18 AM

Ouch, I agree with jsrudd. Unfortunately that 1.8GHz Phenom is not much of a gaming CPU and is severely limiting your performance. Crysis is very demanding on the Graphics card, but also like some serious CPU muscle. It does show performance gains having more than two processor cores, but it doesn't load cores evenly. If you look at the load of individual cores, you'll likely see 1 or two being hit hard.

http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/cpus/2008/07/24/amd-ph...
Look at this link. Note they are only using an GF8800U so at high details it is limiting the higher CPU's. With your HD4870, more scaling would be seen at high details, similar to their medium details chart. Too bad they didn't crank physics to very high or use a better graphics card, but it was the best I could dig up that included a similar CPU to yours and didn't test at low details(spaces CPU's apart but provide artificially high / somewhat useless results as far as what playability level to expect)

Being an off the shelf system, your OC options will be limited if present at all. What brand is it? Likely the BIOS doesn't have options to OC, and only certain 7 series motherboards can use AMD Overdrive.

Your going to need to tune down detail levels that hammer the CPU. For starters, in Crysis you'll need to turn down Physics effects. Try not to use "low" as it negatively impacts the gameplay. It may be more realistic to play all high details, (not very high), with Physics on medium.

You could also check what CPU upgrade options are possible on your motherboard/system. Not what you want to hear with a brand new system, but a Phenom II X2 550 ($100) or X3 720BE ($120) would make a HUGE difference in processor gaming muscle.
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July 25, 2009 3:25:54 PM

So I cant overclock using amd overdrive? There has got to be some way to overclock!
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July 25, 2009 4:18:03 PM

I'm surprised the system is stable at all, that PSU is only rated at 22A on the single 12v rail, if it is supplying its rated power that is.
Until you get a better PSU I'd advise against overclocking the card, but try to O/C the CPU if possible. Take a look at the Overclocking Forum before you start if you are new to the idea.
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July 25, 2009 4:44:33 PM

I dont think that I can overclock, It is locked in the bios and the amd overdrive is also locked.
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July 25, 2009 10:27:50 PM

Can you overclock with cpuz?
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July 25, 2009 11:30:07 PM

Nope. CPUz only tells you what your settings are, it doesn't let you change them.
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July 26, 2009 1:16:55 PM

So I am pretty much out of luck here and are going to have buy a new mobo and cpu on a pc I bought a little over a week ago?
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July 26, 2009 1:29:53 PM

I wouldn't buy a new mobo. Have you considered buying a Phenom II X3 720 BE or even X2 550? It is very doubtful your processor could be overclocked (on any motherboard) to out game one of these $99-129 processors at stock. It's very possible your motherboard could use a Phenom II. Likely success/fail will comes down to BIOS support. What brand PC is it? Model #?
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July 26, 2009 4:10:55 PM

Here is my computer: http://www.gateway.com/systems/product/529668220.php
This is my exact system exept I put my 500 watt power supply in. I guess that I will buy a new processer as soon as more games that need that processing power come out. Cryisis is really the only game that I have that I would really need it for so I can wait. I will probaly get one of the phenoms or the core 2 quad. Thanks!
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July 26, 2009 6:22:51 PM

Neither of those CPU's is a good option, but you'd want the highest clocked one. This is what you would really want for gaming, as they are far better than even the top 2.6GHz Phenom X4 9950.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

That Gateway uses an AMD 780G chipset motherboard. I don't see a BIOS update available. Gateway probably won't be too helpful if you ask them about Phenom II support for your system. You should do some searching and see if any success stories are floating around.

BTW, did you give the latest version of AMD Overdrive a try? Did it fail to run or just not have any ability to adjust the ref clock? There are actually quite a few CPU limited titles that would crave more than that 1.8GHz Phenom.



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July 26, 2009 8:06:52 PM

Thanks for the help everyone! I definatly be getting one of the cpus that pauldh recomended! Thanks!
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July 27, 2009 12:45:59 AM

Make sure it will work on your mobo first.
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July 27, 2009 5:07:50 PM

Actually, all Phenom II's start as quad-cores. For the X3, one core is disabled. For the X2, two cores are disabled. Those disabled cores may or may not be faulty. With the right motherboard, there is potential to unlock the disabled cores on some of these chips. I wouldn't bank on it being stable and still reaching high clocks, but the possibility is definitely there. I see it as a potential bonus, not a reason/goal to shoot for in buying the chip. The thing is, at 3.1 GHz the X2 550 is a nice gaming chip as is. OC to 3.6-3.9 GHz and it's pretty amazing. Get lucky by unlocking cores and still hitting high clocks... you got yourself a cheap Phenom II X4.

See this for more info:
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/unlock-phenom-ii,22...
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July 28, 2009 12:01:06 AM

I found out that my mobo is the AMD 780G chipset. Right now it has this processer in it: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

It has the Am2+ socket type in it. But this processer: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Has the am3 socket type in it. According to Here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Socket_AM3#Compatibility

The am3 processers work with the am2+ mobos and I belive that is what I have. So this new processer should work right? I would like someone to confirm this please. Thanks!
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July 28, 2009 1:13:19 AM

Hopefully others will pipe up here, but let me just add this. Yes, PII's can be used in many 780G motherboards, but often a BIOS update is required for the processor to be recognized. Asus, Gigabyte, MSI, etc. release BIOS updates for their boards to support new CPU's, but large OEM's like Gateway typically do not as their support/warranty/service is geared to the system as you purchased it from them. I do not see any official BIOS update available for your motherboard. Once upon a time Gateway sold CPU upgrades and you could find out from them if one was available for your system. AFAIK, they have long since stopped doing this, and will offer little assistence in your quest to upgrade processors.

It may work as an unrecognized processor, or it may not work at all. I'd hate to see you spend $100 on a CPU and have it not work, so I do recommend research & confirmation of success before buying a Phenom II CPU. Unfortunately you are encountering one of the reasons enthusiasts build their own systems rather than take what a large OEM decides to offer.
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July 28, 2009 4:24:49 AM

Well Now I officially hate gateway. If the computer I bought just over a week ago NEEDS to be upgraded but it is already TO OLD AND OBSOLETE to be upgraded they have no right to sell it. Looks like I might take it back to the store if gateway is that pitiful. Is this processer any good. The am2+ processers seem to be much more expensive and not as good. Would any of these processers be worth getting?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Oh wait!! I dont think my mobo can only support up to a 95 watt cpu. I dont know if this is correct but if it is..... look here http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/261894-28-compatible-...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

This one should work but I dont know

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

This one looks fine but I really would like to not go over $120

Ok the last one. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

This one looks good for gaming! But it is am2 not am2+ and I am not sure if it will work. I noticed that it said " Cooling device not included - Processor Only" NOOOOO
The end of a good deal. :(  This wont work with my current cooler will it? Or maybe it will :) 

Thanks everyone for your help!



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