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AMD Radeon HD 7950 - Juddery Framerates in SWTOR

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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February 16, 2012 3:10:26 PM

Good morning,

First off here is my system:

Intel Core I-7 960, OC 4.0Ghz
12GB Corsair Dominator RAM
Gigabyte AMD Radeon HD 7950
Gskill Pheonix SSD 120GB
1TB WD Slave HDD
ASUS P6T Deluxe V2 mobo

I have more of a concern/dissapointment more then anything, and I am actually hoping that maybe I am having bad card/driver issues.

First let me lay the groundwork - I did a driver sweep in safemode to clear any underlying drivers from my previous GFX Card, after install it gave me a yellow caution, installation was successful but with possible errors. So I check the log, and I don't see any errors.

So I immediately test it via 3DMark 11, and I gotta say this is where my dissapointment starts, in performance I was averaging as low as 20FPS with the same "Judder" that I am about to explain to you at all times during testing.

under extreme I was getting 7-8fps during testing.

After testing I viewed my scores online and it stated that "Unable to verify graphics card, unable to verify drivers, scores will not be posted" something along those lines..

At this point I start messing with AMD Catalyst and adjusting the performance settings, give it a slight OC (It came factory OC'd at 925) and bumped it up to 1050 after slow increases of 10MHZ at a time. it felt like it should be solid, especially after seeing other performance rates online, and my temps never went above 40c.

Clock rates were: GPU clock: 1050
Mem Clock: 1575

After awhile I start getting slight artifacting and even display driver Stopped responding, I bumped it back down a few notches eventually becoming solid at 1010gpu and 1500 memory clock.

while overall I am "Happy" with these clock rates my problem lies with performance.

While playing SWTOR with all settings on max it's FPS is 110, but the problem is the framerates are juddered not smooth Almost like it isn't able to compute it smoothly, it is really choppy/jerky and even though it states it is displaying 110 fps it feels like somewhere in the 20-25fps range.

I eventually turned shadows on low and turned off AA - while this improved it, I noticed it was still displaying with judders/jerky framerates, not the smooth 110 frames I was expecting. And honestly I dont feel I should "NEED" to turn graphics down with my setup.

Furthermore and lastly, coming from my ATI Radeon HD 5870, I felt like at times, it was running it just as well if not better at moments. I literally see no improvement.
February 17, 2012 12:33:24 PM

Okay it's obvious you all don't want to read that book so TL;DR Version.

Is it wrong of me with my system to expect to play a game such as SWTOR with no framerate issues? could it just be that I need to give drivers more time? Thanks.

Intel Core I-7 960, OC 4.0Ghz
12GB Corsair Dominator RAM
Gigabyte AMD Radeon HD 7950
Gskill Pheonix SSD 120GB
1TB WD Slave HDD
ASUS P6T Deluxe V2 mobo
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February 17, 2012 5:42:57 PM

I just recently bought a sapphire 7970 and was having some serious BSOD issues with the driver before the last one came out. Now it seems to be running like a champ and runs SWTOR with 110fps with no issues with it what so ever. Barely even hear the fan kick on and i haven't even o/ced it all the much. What driver version are you using?
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February 17, 2012 7:09:09 PM

johnsonma said:
I just recently bought a sapphire 7970 and was having some serious BSOD issues with the driver before the last one came out. Now it seems to be running like a champ and runs SWTOR with 110fps with no issues with it what so ever. Barely even hear the fan kick on and i haven't even o/ced it all the much. What driver version are you using?


I haven't had a chance to test the new drivers out, but I just downloaded the pre release 12.2 drivers today on my lunch... as I am writing this im going to log in and try it.
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February 22, 2012 1:47:04 PM

Just an update on my situation as I have been playing with it and testing it the last couple of days.

After updating to 12.2 pre certified drivers, I am now having random BSOD's. From what I can tell it seems like this may be caused by the drivers.

Secondly, I did play with some settings in SWTOR, and from what I have noticed is that if I switch from Full screen to Full screen Windowed is when it really drops for me.

The problem is it is saying that it's running at 110 FPS but the game studders and is not crisp in Full screen windowed. While I do realize that I could lose performance in Full screen windowed, it doesn't reflect it in my FPS when I monitor my FPS. it just looks worse.

secondly, any other game I have played doesn't lose the quality/performance from switching to full screen windowed like SWTOR does. it's rather frustrating honestly.

After reading on the AMD forums some people suggested uninstalling Catalyst and using a 3rd party program such as MSI Afterburner to adjust the card settings. anyone have any info on if this is a good call or not?
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February 23, 2012 2:34:13 PM

Bump/status update again.

Last night I uninstalled Catalyst and installed MSI Afterburner 2.2 beta 14 - not only was I able to get a better more stable OC at 1030GPU clock and 1575Mem Clock after playing and stress testing all last night - but SWTOR runs EXTREMELY Better I was able to leave it in Full Screen Windowed without any framerate issues. Atleast nothing that wasn't to be expected, the fleet and busy NPC areas would drop for a few seconds, but with VSYNC on I was running at an average of 55FPS all night long.
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February 24, 2012 4:19:49 PM

perkynips said:
Bump/status update again.

Last night I uninstalled Catalyst and installed MSI Afterburner 2.2 beta 14 - not only was I able to get a better more stable OC at 1030GPU clock and 1575Mem Clock after playing and stress testing all last night - but SWTOR runs EXTREMELY Better I was able to leave it in Full Screen Windowed without any framerate issues. Atleast nothing that wasn't to be expected, the fleet and busy NPC areas would drop for a few seconds, but with VSYNC on I was running at an average of 55FPS all night long.



I might have to try that as well, I have been getting mixed results with CCC and I hear MSI afterburner is a solid program. I have been running into issues with witcher 2 being a little choppy and crashing on me so I might use that game as a benchmarking tool with the switch from CCC to MSI. It could just be the drivers but i also have it slightly o/ced with CCC.
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February 24, 2012 6:44:00 PM

I suggest it. I am a lot happier with my performance. Not to mention it has alot more accurate card diagnostic readings such as GPU Performance, temps, and fan settings.
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February 24, 2012 6:47:04 PM

try turning off hyperthreading as well. Might help in busy areas.
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