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Performance Issues, maybe?

Last response: in Systems
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November 27, 2012 2:36:31 AM

I'm not sure if this is the right specific category and if so, let me know please.

Since I've had my machine I've had issues with it. I've worked out a lot of the kinks and have learned from my mistakes.

I'm just going to start out with the current issue that I'm having with my rig, it could just be me.

I recently started playing Planetside 2 and Saints Row The Third. Both games have been having performance issues and I'm not sure if it's my hardware not being up to par, defective, driver issues or just me thinking it should be performing a lot better than it is.

Here's my setup (if there's a better way to submit/gather this information let me know):

Windows 7 x64 Home Premium
AMD FX 8150 8 core 3.6ghz liquid cooled
16gb DDR3-1600
AMD Radeon HD 7770 Crossfire
Gigabyte GA-970A-D3
1000 Watt power supply
killer 2100 network card

I currently have both video cards overclocked through the AMD Vision Control Center:
GPU Clock upped to 1185 MHz from 1000 MHz
Memory Clock upped to 1150 MHz from 1125 MHz

My CPU is also overclocked through Overdrive with what auto clock belted out. I don't know/remember the default clock settings but according to CPU-world default frequency is 3600 MHz which is now set to 3926, multiplier is set to 19.50 and the voltage is set to 1.387.

In the Vision Control Center I have enabled a DVI setting :Reduce DVI frequency on high-resolution displays (which seems to have helped Saints Row at least). Alternate DVI operational mode was pre-enabled.

I don't know what to say other than it feels like it's not performing at its peak. When I have the Graphics OverDrive window open while playing Plansetside 2 and Saints Row my master video card doesn't hit 90%, not even 80% and when I switch to the secondary card it's sitting at 30-40%. Many of the games that I play have tearing and performance issues. I mess with v sync and every video settings there and, pairing some settings with other, disabling some, and editing the .ini files to remove motion blurs and other minor things that I don't even like but the performance hardly changes.

I've looked around for help but I've decided to post the issues I'm having here hoping they're unique enough as to where I won't be sent to another thread or website to read about another persons issues.

Last tid bit: I looked on YouTube and someone with a lesser rig is able to run Saints Row The Third on ultra settings with A LOT less problems than I'm having (if any). http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b9Gat06ZkqQ

Mind you, it's not just Saints Row and Planetside 2 that are having issues, these two titles were the last straw. I have a couple other questions regarding different subjects which would be appreciated if someone could answer them at a later date, perhaps in a PM or something.

Thank you.

More about : performance issues

a b B Homebuilt system
November 27, 2012 2:46:20 AM

Try reinstalling drivers. What is your framerate. I'm sure this will be an "of course" but do you have a crossfire bridge?
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a b B Homebuilt system
November 27, 2012 2:55:35 AM

Oh god, of course you're having issues... what made you crossfire two 7770s?

Crossfiring low-end cards is pointless, because it's more expensive than getting a single GPU that performs better AND doesn't have to worry about microstuttering, drivers, games that don't support it (which are about half out there.)

Your issue is coming from the crossfire. Sell the 7770s and get a 7870 or better.
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Related resources
November 27, 2012 1:41:01 PM

I wasn't aware the 7770's were so low end when I purchased my rig back in May. I guess the spec reports were wrong with the machine. Another reason why I will never purchase another product from IBuyPower.

How much do you propose I sell my cards for?

I'm also planning on getting 7950's

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

lt_dan_zsu said:
Try reinstalling drivers. What is your framerate. I'm sure this will be an "of course" but do you have a crossfire bridge?


I've got a bridge and I've removed the Vision Control Center, uninstalled and swept the drivers then installed the latest from AMD (explorer.exe kept crashing due to an old dll that wasn't removed with the update).

In Saints Row (Ultra settings, motion blur disabled through .ini file) I get 29-45 frames which jitters (doesn't tare anymore) and when I get in to a vehicle it all goes downhill. Planetside 2 I get 30-45 frames (also jitters) with the overall settings set to Medium, vsync enabled with motion blur, ambient occlusion and fog shadows disabled. I just feel I should be getting more out of this setup than I am
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a b B Homebuilt system
November 27, 2012 7:34:43 PM

You're playing on a single monitor? Your money would be better spent on a single 7970 GHz VaporX. It's stupidly powerful, overclocks like a beast, and will give a lot less issues than a crossfire setup would.
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November 27, 2012 7:58:44 PM

DarkSable said:
You're playing on a single monitor? Your money would be better spent on a single 7970 GHz VaporX. It's stupidly powerful, overclocks like a beast, and will give a lot less issues than a crossfire setup would.


Damn. Ok. That's upsetting.

100% of my concern is about performance, I want this machine to run like a beast and if downgrading from crossfire to a single card is what needs to be done, so be it. I just need to be 100% certain about this decision because I don't want to have to pick up another $430 video card to help pull the weight since the 7950 is $100 cheaper.

I do use two monitors only one for gaming though. Just from a quick look on newegg about the xfx hd radeon 7970's a lot of people are having cooling problems with the cards but not the sapphire vapor-x cards.

this one? http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Please convince me
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Best solution

a b B Homebuilt system
November 27, 2012 8:20:29 PM

Why's it upsetting?

And keep in mind two things. First of all, a 7950 can crossfire with a 7970 if you decide you really want it - see AMD's chart: Http://sites.amd.com/PublishingImages/Public/Graphic_Il...

Second, crossfire isn't as amazing as you think - it gives about an 80% bonus at best (not doubling performance), and ONLY works in games that support it. That means if you have a game that doesn't, it'll run faster if you disable crossfire and use one card than if you try to use it. (Which is why a single card is better - no microstuttering or driver issues, and it works amazingly over every game.)

Trust me, the 7970 GHz will max out every single game out there on ultra at 1080p, 60hz, and when it begins to not be able to, it has huge overclocking headroom. My 670 can max out most games at 120 frames a second, and of the ones it can, plays 90% of them at a solid 60. You don't really need SLI or Crossfire unless you're gaming on three monitors.

The reason XFX cards have cooling issues is because, well... they're XFX cards. The Sapphire VaporX is the best cooling solution on the market, unless you do a custom watercooling loop.
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November 27, 2012 8:43:27 PM

DarkSable said:
Why's it upsetting?

And keep in mind two things. First of all, a 7950 can crossfire with a 7970 if you decide you really want it - see AMD's chart: Http://sites.amd.com/PublishingImages/Public/Graphic_Il...

Second, crossfire isn't as amazing as you think - it gives about an 80% bonus at best (not doubling performance), and ONLY works in games that support it. That means if you have a game that doesn't, it'll run faster if you disable crossfire and use one card than if you try to use it. (Which is why a single card is better - no microstuttering or driver issues, and it works amazingly over every game.)

Trust me, the 7970 GHz will max out every single game out there on ultra at 1080p, 60hz, and when it begins to not be able to, it has huge overclocking headroom. My 670 can max out most games at 120 frames a second, and of the ones it can, plays 90% of them at a solid 60. You don't really need SLI or Crossfire unless you're gaming on three monitors.

The reason XFX cards have cooling issues is because, well... they're XFX cards. The Sapphire VaporX is the best cooling solution on the market, unless you do a custom watercooling loop.


I knew that not all games, especially new releases, don't have crossfire support but I didn't know that crossfire and sli don't double the performance. Thank you for that.

I like to believe that I'm pretty knowledgeable when it comes to hardware and I most certainly don't consider myself an expert but you do learn something new every day. You have convinced me to purchase the 7970 especially knowing I can crossfire with a 7950 is I so chose but I hope I won't need to because $470 is already a lot of money.

Thank you for the help, I really appreciate it. This is my second post and I was quite leery about this forum at the beginning but that feeling has dissipated.
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a b B Homebuilt system
November 27, 2012 8:56:25 PM

^Yup. They can get very close, but will never be as simple as adding the power of each card together.

I can pretty much guarantee you that you're going to be happy with that 7970 - it's a crazy powerful card. (And does very well on high resolutions / with high levels of AA.) What I'd do it you aren't satisfied with the card, for whatever reason, is this: For the first 10 days, don't overclock, and play as much as you can. If you dislike the performance, you have two options:

1) if it's not a big performance letdown, just overclock it.

2) If it is a big letdown, RMA it for a refund, and go with 7950s. You should be very happy with the card, though - 7770s in crossfire are about as potent as a single 7850, and a 7970 is a huge upgrade from that.

As for these forums, welcome. :) 
They can be hit and miss, because of how popular they are - you get a lot of people who know their stuff, and a lot who don't. (I had a guy who was arguing that VRAM stacks in crossfire, AND that more VRAM made a graphics card go faster, when I was giving clear proof that it did neither.)

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a b B Homebuilt system
November 27, 2012 10:23:22 PM

I would sell each 7770 for 80-100.
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a b B Homebuilt system
November 27, 2012 10:35:15 PM

I think he can return them, but if not, then that's what to do.
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a b B Homebuilt system
November 27, 2012 11:51:10 PM

why would he be able to return them? I mean if he can that's definitely the way to go.
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a b B Homebuilt system
November 28, 2012 1:09:09 AM

I dunno. For some reason I thought he had just bought the rig - guess not. My bad.
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November 28, 2012 4:47:17 PM

I bought it in May. I actually tried to return my rig after a week of use because of how screwed up it was when I received it.

My motherboard isn't 100% compatible with the amd fx 8150 right off the bat it needs an update to the bios (which they didn't do) not to mention because of that the video cards didn't want to work correctly either and whenever I would try to launch a game it would crash instantaneously due to the cpu. I had to completely reinstall twice the first time I installed the device software with the discs that were from the packaging for the hardware and the second time I just grabbed everything from their websites. I always heard amazing reviews about IBuyPower and I loved how easy it was to setup a machine without having to part everything myself (which I would love to do some day) but the service they offer isn't reliable and don't reply to customer support in a timely fashion.

On Ebay 7770's sell for 80-130 I think I'm going to try somewhere in the middle.

Thanks for all of the support guys.
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a b B Homebuilt system
November 28, 2012 6:09:16 PM

Wait, you tried to return it, but they didn't let you? Not cool.

And yeah, it's almost always worth it to put everything together yourself. Planning out the build is a fun way to spend a Saturday, and actually building it is better. (Plus you don't have to worry about messing up - both Newegg and NCIX make wonderful youtube guides.)
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November 28, 2012 6:40:59 PM

I'd look at the crappy processor too. Its not exactly a speed demon in games. You should definitely get a single 7970 over those crossfired 77's.
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Anonymous
a b B Homebuilt system
November 28, 2012 7:14:07 PM

Download fraps and check youre fps on hi settings... If its not playable reduce settings or by a better video card :D 
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December 10, 2012 10:23:26 PM

Best answer selected by chaos_jockey.
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