AMD Phenom II X4 955 BE
MSI GeForce GTX 460 Fermi Hawk
G.SKILL 4GB DDR3-1333 CL7-7-7-21
XFX 750W Black Edition PSU
When I first installed everything, I ran the Just Cause 2 benchmark with all settings on high and it ran like butter, ~60 fps, and no stutter. A few days of gaming later, however, and suddenly it's running about 15 fps slower in the benchmark, at 44 fps, and tends to stutter now and then. Any ideas what could have caused this? Do I have a bad card?
I did not overclock or tamper with the GPU at all. The temps, according to MSI afterburner, never exceeded 63-64 Celsius while gaming. The only configurational difference before and after was that I tried to (1) get eSata working on my build by installing AHCI drivers, which failed miserably, so disabled AHCI again, and (2) I tried to get HybridPower/HybridSLI to work, but that also didnt work on Windows 7 so now I've reverted all changes for that too, as far as I'm aware.
Are you sure you are running the same benchmark? If I recall Just Cause 2 has several scenes to select from when benchmarking and each gave different results. I remember the one in the city was particularly intensive.
It seems I may have found the problem(s), not 100% sure but a good guess:
1) As you guys guessed, i think I actually ran PDsetup.exe in the driver install packag (sometime after running the benchmark), which I now understand installs drivers for certain video cards only (not the Hawk, as far as I read). Uninstalling all drivers and reinstalling seems to have made about a +5 fps difference.
2) This is more of a guess, but I have a feeling that it's possible I ran the original benchmark without "GPU modelling water" turned on (dont remember for sure, but i know i played with all the options on and off), but turning this off gives pretty much the performance I had seen originally. I'm guessing at some point I accidentally turned this "back on" (it's actually on by default).
Otherwise, in WEI and Kombustor i seem to be getting the same ratings as i did originally, so hopefully both these guesses combined are the solution.
Let me know if you guys have any more thoughts. Thanks for your help!