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High FPS but choppy graphics on gaming system please help =/

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February 27, 2012 1:55:04 PM

Hi guys, Ive had this computer almost a year now and im having a problem with mmo gaming. I have high FPS average of 100 fps but graphics are very choppy and feels like its 20 fps. Im just wondering if there is something in my system thats holding me back. Im thinking about getting another GFX card to SLI it but i dont wanna spend the money if thats not the problem.

Heres my spec and if theres any other questions im more than happy to answer them.


Case
PCS MAELSTROM T900 BLACK GAMING CASE

Processor (CPU)
Intel® Core™i7 Six Core Processor i7-980 (3.33GHz) 4.8GTs/12MB

Motherboard
ASUS® P6X58D-E: DDR3, USB 3.0, SATA 6.0GB/s, 3-Way SLI

Memory (RAM)
12GB KINGSTON HYPER-X TRI-DDR3 1600MHz, X.M.P (3 x 4GB KIT)

Graphics Card
2GB NVIDIA GEFORCE GTX 560 Ti - 2 DVI,HDMI,VGA - 3D Vision Ready

Memory - 1st Hard Disk
500GB SERIAL ATA 3-Gb/s HARD DRIVE WITH 8MB CACHE (7,200rpm)

2nd Hard Disk
80GB INTEL® 320 SERIES SSD, SATA 3 Gb/s (upto 270MB/sR | 90MB/sW)

Power Supply
CORSAIR 650W TX SERIES (TX650) 80+ ULTRA QUIET PSU

Processor Cooling
COOLIT ECO A.L.C (ADVANCED LIQUID COOLER)

Sound Card
ONBOARD 8 CHANNEL (7.1) HIGH DEF AUDIO (AS STANDARD)

USB Options
6 x USB 2.0 PORTS @ BACK PANEL (MIN 2 FRONT PORTS) AS STANDARD

Operating System
Genuine Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit - inc DVD & Licence

Any advice would be much appreciated thanks :) 

More about : high fps choppy graphics gaming system

February 27, 2012 2:36:15 PM

through testing i have noticed that turning vsync off improves it a little (however now scrren tearing occurs) and OCing my GFX card helps a little but the problems are still very evident so as i said i believe it may be my graphics card but i need verification first
February 27, 2012 2:57:04 PM

There should be no MMO you cant run at High without choppy graphics. Get driver sweeper, remove all the nvidia drivers, and ATI if you previously had an ATI card and reinstall the drivers.
Related resources
February 27, 2012 3:01:06 PM

vrumor said:
There should be no MMO you cant run at High without choppy graphics. Get driver sweeper, remove all the nvidia drivers, and ATI if you previously had an ATI card and reinstall the drivers.


i tried that a while ago and didnt work. Unless theres a driver im missing as i formatted my computer a while ago and reinstalled all my drivers... might have missed one but im sure that wouldnt make this much of an impact to the problems im having.

the game im talking about is swtor and even if i have the graphics on low it still has the same problems. I just cant understand it :s
February 27, 2012 3:04:29 PM

vrumor said:
There should be no MMO you cant run at High without choppy graphics. Get driver sweeper, remove all the nvidia drivers, and ATI if you previously had an ATI card and reinstall the drivers.


yeh i did that a while ago as i formatted my computer due to changing OS to my ssd. I might have missed a driver but i highley doubt it. And even if i did im sure it wouldnt make this much of an impact on games like this. It seems to be whenever i run around or highley populated areas but in my experience this is the kinda thing a mid to low range computer shold do =/
February 27, 2012 3:09:39 PM

High pop areas in MMOs are gonna slow you down period. I play SWTOR and when im on the Imperial fleet I get lower frames than I do elsewhere cause its a densely populated area. It has to render everyone, their clothes, custom clothes sometimes, thats normal.
February 27, 2012 3:38:56 PM

yeh well i wouldnt mind that so much but it also happens when theres nothing around and it still feels very jittery. I wouldnt mind so much but when i have the fps counter it never drops below 90fps however when looking at the screen it looks more like 20-30 fps. Its very strange and as i said previously even if i have everything on low settings it makes no positive or negative difference whatsoever.

As for the drivers. I just checked a few driver updater thingys and they only thing they say are out of date is the cpu. Howver i know that when u update it, it dosent recognise it therefore wether the claim its out of date or not is a mystery to me lol
February 27, 2012 3:41:02 PM

Driver updater thingys? Dont rely on a driver update program. Go to www.nvidia.com and download the newest driver for your card and OS and do a driver sweep and reinstall the newest driver. If youve done that as well, try turning on vertical sync in graphics options.
February 27, 2012 4:00:23 PM

il do it again but last time i did it, it didnt make a difference.

As for Vsync it actually makes a small improvement if i turn it off rather than on.
February 27, 2012 4:17:34 PM

If you check the SWTOR forum, you'll see that a large percentage of people are having performance issues of varying degrees and types. I would caution against upgrading your hardware just for this game. It's still in its infancy and is using an unproven engine.

I've read that some people have found a workaround for some performance issues by using a RAM drive and placing specific game files on it. Unfortunately, though, no one has found a silver bullet fix for these performance issues and Bioware is still working on it.

You have an excellent GPU that "should" run SWTOR on all high settings. There's nothing wrong with it and upgrading/SLI will have little to no impact on your issues. Everything else in your computer build looks excellent for playing SWTOR. Your hardware components are exceedingly sufficient for this game.
February 27, 2012 4:28:24 PM

yes i undertand this and i wish this was the case however i was just using that game as an example. It happens with every MMO i have played on this PC with. SWtor, Aion, Lotro even wow dosent allow me to have max settings without this silly jittering i am having =/
February 27, 2012 4:45:38 PM

mister ped said:
yes i undertand this and i wish this was the case however i was just using that game as an example. It happens with every MMO i have played on this PC with. SWtor, Aion, Lotro even wow dosent allow me to have max settings without this silly jittering i am having =/


That's definitely strange then, but I still believe there's nothing wrong with your hardware. If your GPU were failing, jittering wouldn't be the symptom.

Are you running the games off the SSD? How full is your SSD? I believe you're supposed to leave ~20 of your SSD space free for optimal performance.

What resolution are you gaming at?

Are you running an anti-virus program while you're playing?

Have you reset all settings on the nVidia control panel to default settings? Just in case you've got some crazy anti-aliasing mode going on.

I'll echo the other suggestions, use Driver Sweeper ( http://phyxion.net/Driver-Sweeper/Driver-Sweeper/ ) to uninstall your video driver, then get the latest directly from the nVidia website.

Otherwise, keep a detailed log of when it occurs and what the in-game circumstances are. Is it happening 100% of the time in every single game you play? Is it only MMOs or off-line games also?
February 27, 2012 4:56:45 PM

6 gig left on my ssd, however the symptoms were there when i had over 50gig spare.

Il do all you suggested and then report back with findings.

Also its only MMORPGs that this happened on... I play competative fpses online and i get none of these problems playing them.

Il be in touch :) 
February 27, 2012 5:08:21 PM

Have you tried turning off turbo boost on your processor? It has been noted in many games, assuming SWTOR isn't very processor based, that when you enter an area that is in between the range that turbo boost will engage, that lag can be cause by the slight increase in processing capability. So the turbo boost is engaging and disengaging constantly. You should configure your processor to run at 130 watts all the time.
February 27, 2012 5:12:51 PM

It might not make sense to you entirely, but the stall is actually the whole computer stalling as the wattage is changed.
February 27, 2012 5:15:23 PM

Basically, go into BIOS and turn off turbo boost and voltage stepping. That should solve that problem. It might make your computer run a tad hotter, but that really shouldn't be an issue with your watercooling.
February 27, 2012 6:49:34 PM

sounds very likely that something like this could be the cause however i have attempted to do what you said and it dosent seem to have made a difference. turbo boost and voltage stepping options wernt avaliable in bios unless you mean speedstep which i had disabled anyways..

Any other ideas or extra info on what you have already advised is very welcome :)  il get there in the end
February 27, 2012 8:30:38 PM

mister ped said:
sounds very likely that something like this could be the cause however i have attempted to do what you said and it dosent seem to have made a difference. turbo boost and voltage stepping options wernt avaliable in bios unless you mean speedstep which i had disabled anyways..

Any other ideas or extra info on what you have already advised is very welcome :)  il get there in the end



Alright, what I would advise is to download a program called HWmonitor. (http://www.cpuid.com/downloads/hwmonitor/1.19-setup.exe)

This will display various numbers pertaining to voltage/temps/fan Speed/wattage. Play the game and pay attention to the wattage section below the CPU Core temps. The first column is the current wattage (Not assuming you're retarded, just outlining it so it isn't a completely alien program). If you see that number jumping around a lot and it sort of lines up with the shuttering, you have a probable cause.
February 28, 2012 7:27:16 PM

right so i had a lil mess on with that hw monitor.. awesome lil programme nice and informative.

i didnt notice the wattage jump however when i reset the values this is what it resulted in for cpu.

when i had it on windowed mode and i was running around ingame it seemed to be around 20-30W mark however when i stopped running around it showed that the min was 10.31W (probs when i stop runnin and am checking the results) and max was 52.94W

now i never personally noticed the jump in Wattage however i reset it a few times and the same findings were made. Is this normal or is this the cause that u are thinking of?

also if it makes any difference (i aint a computer wizz or owt) but in BIOS under the AI tweaker tab i noticed all he RAM and CPU voltage and almost all the rest under that section is on AUTO rather than manually set. Could this cause this kind of problem or is it safe to keep it as that setting?

Thanks a lot guys, im starting to feel that im fainally getting somewhere with my issues
February 28, 2012 7:36:16 PM

Another question:

Does the choppiness/hitching go away when you put it on low graphics settings? Do changing game setting help at all, or is it always choppy no matter what?
February 28, 2012 7:39:31 PM

always no matter what
February 28, 2012 7:41:00 PM

i change the settings, the control centre for graphics card, everything... and still just as choppy. Clearly somethings not right =/ (ive reset all to default btw and only changed the things that ive been advised to change)
February 28, 2012 7:42:59 PM

dixon6393 said:
Have you tried turning off turbo boost on your processor? It has been noted in many games, assuming SWTOR isn't very processor based, that when you enter an area that is in between the range that turbo boost will engage, that lag can be cause by the slight increase in processing capability. So the turbo boost is engaging and disengaging constantly. You should configure your processor to run at 130 watts all the time.


how do i do this? there was no turbo boost option.. so any other way to ensure the wattage dosent constantly change? through BIOS or w/e?
February 28, 2012 7:48:52 PM

mister ped said:
always no matter what


It's definitely not your GPU, then. I'm not sure where Dixon's going, but I'm curious to see if that helps.

Otherwise I'd be willing to bet it's something running in the background that's stealing resources. If you haven't already, try shutting down all non-Windows applications and utilities, including services and anti-virus.

Is it consistent hitching, like rhythmic at all times, or does it chiefly happen when you move into a new in-game area? If it's only happening when the game is loading new stuff, it could be a problem with hard-drive access.
February 28, 2012 7:57:06 PM

its constant. even if im running round in circles in a place where no1 else is about =/
February 28, 2012 7:59:53 PM

also this is a fairly fresh computer with barely anything running in background as i only have an 80 gb ssd which i have all my main games on any my 500gb drive is for storage so when i ctrl,alt,del theres nothing much else running in background that could cause this much of a problem
February 28, 2012 8:20:48 PM

mister ped said:
also this is a fairly fresh computer with barely anything running in background as i only have an 80 gb ssd which i have all my main games on any my 500gb drive is for storage so when i ctrl,alt,del theres nothing much else running in background that could cause this much of a problem


If you're certain that there's nothing stealing resources, then I'm at a loss. Sorry dude. The only other thing is wondering if the SSD is too maxed out. Or you've got something weird going on with your RAM.

Good luck!
February 28, 2012 8:23:33 PM

ok i took a screenshot but couldnt put on here so il type it all haha. When i said earlier about everything being auto i meant this in BIOS

CPU Voltage control = Manual (either that or offset)
CPU Voltage = Auto
CPU PLL Voltage = Auto
QPI /DRAM Core Voltage = Auto
IOH Voltage = Auto
IOH PCIE Voltage = Auto
ICH Voltage = Auto
ICH PCIE Voltage = Auto
DRAM Bus Voltage = Auto

the list goes on but u get the point. From what you have said it may be to do with the power so could the fact everything is on auto be the probelm?

Thanks
February 29, 2012 7:16:26 AM

do u guys think my hdd with over 100gig free space would run games smoother than my ssd with 6gb free space? im desperate for a solution now lol =/
February 29, 2012 7:34:40 AM

i tested it and it was exactly the same on both drives so it aint that...

just so u guys know, this is exactly the symptoms im having. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8H-cHOtOUbc

as u can see it aint much but enough to annoy me considering my system should be able to run the game without the jerkyness. It happens all over not in populated places
February 29, 2012 3:50:52 PM

mister ped said:
i tested it and it was exactly the same on both drives so it aint that...

just so u guys know, this is exactly the symptoms im having. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8H-cHOtOUbc

as u can see it aint much but enough to annoy me considering my system should be able to run the game without the jerkyness. It happens all over not in populated places


I get that too and I've attributed it to the SWTOR engine. I've just learned to live with it. If you ever find a solution, please let me know. I think there are a LOT of SWTOR players who are looking for the same fix.
February 29, 2012 4:26:31 PM

mister ped said:
yeh but it happens with almost every mmo ive played... ive seen an interesting post about making a ram disk for the cache and apparently that cures it although it seems very complicated for me to understand.

http://www.swtor.com/community/showthread.php?t=154568


Yeah, I've seen that, but I'm reluctant to try it because you can really bork things up. Plus, it seems that the people who experience the most success with it are those with lower-end systems. Yours is definitely not a lower-end system. I've seen several people who have tried it say it hasn't helped a bit.

That said, if you decide to do it, let me know how it goes ;-)
February 29, 2012 5:06:05 PM

at this moment im willing to try anything.. itl take me a while to understand how to do it mind lol
February 29, 2012 5:55:52 PM

well i gave it a go... i dunno if i did it right however it didnt work =/ dammit i give up... its clear i aint meant to play mmo games on this pc......
a b 4 Gaming
February 29, 2012 7:32:27 PM

have you tried running the game off the HDD rather than SSD?

what are your CPU temps? Is it OCed?

I'd recommend to double check that your ram settings get auto detected properly and match whatever is on the stickers
February 29, 2012 7:44:01 PM

cpu is fine, hdd makes no diff not oced.. u think i should manually put cpu at stock rather than auto?
a b 4 Gaming
February 29, 2012 11:31:35 PM

if you've got the latest bios I doubt that would do anything
March 1, 2012 3:41:16 PM

Hi guys... Back again with a thought on my current system.

Basically i have a ssd with 90mb/ws write speed. All other ssd's on the market are around the 270ish mb

now i did a system performance check with a baseline of a computer which is very similar to mine.. It seems everything is up to speed with that one apart from my ssd which is miles below that one my ssd has a really low score..

Now as ive previously stated. My mini stuttering only occurs during MMo games when im running around and turning and i guess loading new scenery ect.. All other games work like a dream.

Taking this into consideration will a better write speed ssd like a http://www.ocztechnology.com/ocz-vertex-2-sata-ii-2-5-s... make a difference in loading times on an mmo game?

as i said i know ssd and hdd speeds dont normally make a difference however since its mmo games that im only having issues with, will this be a likely fix?
March 1, 2012 3:48:53 PM

mister ped said:
Hi guys... Back again with a thought on my current system.

Basically i have a ssd with 90mb/ws write speed. All other ssd's on the market are around the 270ish mb

now i did a system performance check with a baseline of a computer which is very similar to mine.. It seems everything is up to speed with that one apart from my ssd which is miles below that one my ssd has a really low score..

Now as ive previously stated. My mini stuttering only occurs during MMo games when im running around and turning and i guess loading new scenery ect.. All other games work like a dream.

Taking this into consideration will a better write speed ssd like a http://www.ocztechnology.com/ocz-vertex-2-sata-ii-2-5-s... make a difference in loading times on an mmo game?

as i said i know ssd and hdd speeds dont normally make a difference however since its mmo games that im only having issues with, will this be a likely fix?


Write speed doesn't really come into play in games. The game reads files that are already on disk, and typically only when the level is first loaded (think the black loading screen in SWTOR). The Intel 320 SSD you have has 270mb/s read speeds, which are still going to be faster than any 7200 rpm HDD.

Yes, the newer SATA III SSDs are significantly faster, and even most SATA II SSDs are faster than the Intel 320s (which Intel makes up for in far superior reliability), but I really don't think that's the problem. I believe if you were to upgrade, you would see Windows startup and game level-loading speed up, and of course faster file-copying, but that's about it.
March 1, 2012 3:57:58 PM

when i read the forums about this kinda problem a lot of people go on about the write speed which impacts on writing on the cache or some rubbish.. i dont understand it all but apparently for MMO games, you need a fast write speed. As i said i dont have a clue but as i said when i looked at a performance test on my pc, the only thing that was really low on score was my ssd.. everything else was really high.. must mean something surely
March 1, 2012 4:04:21 PM

mister ped said:
when i read the forums about this kinda problem a lot of people go on about the write speed which impacts on writing on the cache or some rubbish.. i dont understand it all but apparently for MMO games, you need a fast write speed. As i said i dont have a clue but as i said when i looked at a performance test on my pc, the only thing that was really low on score was my ssd.. everything else was really high.. must mean something surely


Yeah, I dunno about that. I'm no expert either. Keep in mind that an SSD is not part of the system requirements or even recommended settings for any MMO I'm aware of.

That said, if you decide to upgrade, SSDs are really going down in price! If you decide to do it, please let me know how it goes.
March 1, 2012 5:48:56 PM

"The First being a performance drop once DiskCacheArena starts becoming full where data needs to be flushed during gameplay, causing severe hitching* even on an SSD.
Second is for Static and Stream, simple buffers that work wonders in a RamDrive but will slow performance anytime they are on disk; the performance drop remains even if Arena is in a RamDrive.

*Hitching is caused by the engine pausing to flush data in DiskCacheArena then creating data to save there once freed up, including Atlas Texture Generation for Dynamic Models"

http://www.swtor.com/community/showthread.php?t=154568

does this mean that i need high write speeds on my hdd or ssd?
a b 4 Gaming
March 1, 2012 6:01:14 PM

Depending on your SSD having only 6 GB free might be causing issues.
March 1, 2012 6:09:47 PM

mister ped said:
"The First being a performance drop once DiskCacheArena starts becoming full where data needs to be flushed during gameplay, causing severe hitching* even on an SSD.
Second is for Static and Stream, simple buffers that work wonders in a RamDrive but will slow performance anytime they are on disk; the performance drop remains even if Arena is in a RamDrive.

*Hitching is caused by the engine pausing to flush data in DiskCacheArena then creating data to save there once freed up, including Atlas Texture Generation for Dynamic Models"

http://www.swtor.com/community/showthread.php?t=154568

does this mean that i need high write speeds on my hdd or ssd?


This is due to the uniquely bad way SWTOR handles the caching. This wouldn't apply to the other MMOs you're having problems with.
March 1, 2012 6:34:52 PM

FinneousPJ said:
Depending on your SSD having only 6 GB free might be causing issues.


nah i now have 30g spare and it still happens
March 2, 2012 4:38:44 PM

ok guys i have tried allsorts of different things to cure this problem.. I could be wrong but im gonna have to try this out... i believe that the problem lies with my ssd.. basically i did performance checks on my system and compared it with a similar system that ran swtor perfectly and the only thing the other pc beat me on was the ssd... his was far superior with write, read speeds and cache size. So i googled my ssd and typed "micro stutter" after it.. to my suprise i noticed a rather big chunk of people having these kinds of issues that had the same ssd as me... it cant be a coincidence...surely.. so im gonna buy a bigger,faster basically better ssd that is reccomended by gamers that currently play mmo games and i will report back with my
findings.. as always if anone has any new ideas not already mentioned on this post please share with me and id love to try it since i dont wanna have to fork out more pennys for this system.

What can i say... its a small issue but im a bit autistic when it comes to something that is only working 99.99% correct haha :D 
March 2, 2012 4:41:33 PM

I for one appreciate you sticking with it, Mr. Ped. I too am running SWTOR off an Intel 320 160GB, so I'm especially curious to learn from your experiment! Thanks!
March 2, 2012 5:07:28 PM

and your experiencing the same micro stuttering?
March 2, 2012 5:14:58 PM

In my experience I call it hitching. To me it seems worse in particular places. It bothered me most on Tatooine, but I don't know if it's because I've just gotten used to it since then or if it's gotten better. I wouldn't say my play experience is silky smooth all the time. But I do definitely still notice it from time to time. Another spot is coming out of any spaceport on almost any planet. That initial loading of the outside planet surface causes a major hitch.
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