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Very low FPS on a good system.Bottleneck somewhere??

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August 14, 2010 8:30:39 PM

Hey everyone, I recently upgraded my graphics card to a GeForce GTS 250, but I'm still getting VERY low FPS. Some Starcraft 2 games go as low as 1 frame per second. What makes me think that it's a graphics card problem is that my core clock, shader clock, and memory are all at capacity while playing the game. I tried overclocking it, but if I raise the settings even a little bit, then after a couple of minutes it's suddently capped at a third of its speed, and I have to restart it to get back to even a basic level of performance.

However, there are a few things that make me think there's more to the problem, or that the bottleneck is somewhere else. First, all benchmarks of the GTS 250 show that I should be hitting no less than around 25 FPS on the highest settings. However, on low graphic settings I seem to average(!!) about 12 FPS, whereas on ultra settings I average around 10 FPS. Because there's barely a difference, I think that something else is affecting my computer.

During gameplay, all four of my cores are fairly busy, but none of them seems to even pass 80% of capacity. My memory usage seems to be around 3/4s. And I've uninstalled a lot of programs, and made sure that not many are running in the background.

I ran some benchmarks and I don't think that any of my hardware should be unable to run SC2, especially just on low settings and low resolutions, when even my laptop can easily. The GTS 250 is almost universally rated as being in between ATI's 5750 and 5770.

Here are my specs:

OS: Vista 64-bit.
Processor: AMD Phenom(tm) 9500 Quad-Core Processor (4C, 2.2GHz, 1.8GHz IMC, 4x 512kB L2, 2MB L3)
Motherboard: Acer RS780HVF
Memory: 4GB DIMM DDR2 (800 MHz, 2 x Transcend JM800QLU-2G 2GB DIMM DDR2 PC2-6400U DDR2-800)
Graphics Card: eVGA GeForce GTS 250 (128 SM4.0 1.4GHz, 1GB DDR3 2x900MHz, PCIe 2.00 x16)
Hard Drive: (NTFS) @ Seagate ST3640623AS (640.1GB, SATA300, 3.5", 7200rpm, NCQ, 16MB Cache)
(SC2 doesn't require the DVD)
Sound Card: AuzenTech X-Plosion 7.1
Power Supply: Silverstone Strider Essential 500W Power Supply

And I have a lot more specifications and benchmarks, so just ask me if you need them.

I would be very grateful if you could help me find where my bottleneck is, I don't mind spending a little bit more money, but something's obviously very wrong here. Thank you very much for even reading this!! I was thinking that it could be a motherboard problem, since mine is only stock, but I just want to make sure before I start sinking in more money lol. Don't want it to be too late to return my graphics card either. I don't really know anything about motherboards though.
August 14, 2010 8:31:54 PM

More on the eVGA card:

Chipset Nvidia Geforce GTS 250
Engine clock 675MHz
Shader clock 1500MHz
Stream Processors 128
Fillrate N/A
Memory 1 GB DDR3
Memory clock 1800 MHz (effective)
Memory interface 256-bit
Memory Bandwidth 57.6 GB/s
Bus Interface PCI Express x16
SLI Capable 2-way

Cooling Dual Slot Active
Resolution & Refresh Rate Max Refresh Rate: 240Hz
2048x1536 Max Analog
2560x1600 Max Digital

It's definitely a bit less than the reference model, but most 250s seem to be, and it should still be getting a lot more than 12 FPS average on low graphics settings lol.
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