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  #1  
Chojin Chojin is offline
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Old Dec 20th, 2005, 07:14 PM        THIS HAS GONE TOO FAR
So okay, here are my basic system specs:

CPU: AMD Athlon 64
MB: Something good i forget, it has an nVidia chipset thing too
VID: ATI Radeon x800GT (Powercolor brand, PCIex)
RAM: 2 GB Corsair value-select DDR 400
OS: Windows XP Professional x64 / Windows XP Professional

And in city of villains I still regularly get about 15-20 FPS in most areas of the game, running in 1280x960 res and medium settings (with world detail all the way down to 50%). My other games run fine but seem like they could be running way better as well. I just re-formatted and have my dual windows OSes living on their own partitions with plenty of room to grow and spread root, and I try to water them every day.

3DMark tests before I reformatted would yield about 15 FPS on the "with-graphics-card-enabled" tests and 2 FPS on the "processor-only" tests. Is my problem that I should have gone with an nVidia card since my mobo uses nForce technology as well? Is powercolor just a horribly gay brand? Will Dick Tracy make it to the burning house before it's too late?

I'm just looking for answers here. I spent a lot of money on upgrades and they don't seem to be helping as much as I think they should be.
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MetalMilitia MetalMilitia is offline
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Old Dec 20th, 2005, 08:30 PM       
Using an nforce board and an ATI graphics card will not cause a problem unless when you installed the nforce drivers you accidentally installed nvidia video drivers.

Or if you did not install the motherboard drivers at all you would be stuck in 'PCI' mode (not sure why its called that but its basically AGP 1x IIRC). Again that would make your system run like crap.

Its also entirely possible you issues are related to another part of your system. For example I used to have to use software audio in Battlefield: Vietnam because, dispite having a (then) decent sound card, EAX made the game run around 10FPS on low settings.

Powercolour aren't too shocking of a brand, they are certainly not the best but as far as I know they pretty much stick to the reference design.

Btw, which version of windows are you using for games ( I assume you are dual booting)? Did they fix the 64bit version so it does not suck yet?
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  #3  
Chojin Chojin is offline
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Old Dec 21st, 2005, 06:26 PM       
I installed the nForce drivers which as far as I'm aware are the motherboard drivers. I have the bios settings for the card set to 8x AGP. I guess I can look around to see if there are motherboard drivers? :<

I generaly use Winx64 for gaming, and get about 3-4 fps less than Win32 for some reason. :< I don't even know why I use this OS, other than I feel that it's the RIGHT THING TO DO.
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Old Dec 21st, 2005, 06:41 PM       
You know, the more i think about my card running at 1x, the more it makes sense. However, I can't get to biostar's website. It appears to be dead. (http://www.biostar.com.tw)

My mobo is a Biostar NF4UL-A9-A01, version 1.0. I could use 32-bit and 64-bit drivers but can't find em anywhere. Could someone prz help? :<
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Old Dec 21st, 2005, 06:43 PM       
I don't know what to say. I went with an nVidia card this time.

You gotta remember that CoV is an MMORPG, though, and therefore can suffer the severe effects of lag, making it seem like you're getting shitty performance when you're really not. WoW sometimes chugs on my machine, and then when I get a decent ping, it's smooth as silk.

Stuff like EAX can also fuck up your FPS.

The low test results are suspect, though... It's probably a driver problem more than hardware conflicts.
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AChimp AChimp is offline
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Old Dec 21st, 2005, 06:47 PM       
The BIOS settings for your graphics adapter should be set to PCI Express if your card is a PCIex card, too.
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Chojin Chojin is offline
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Old Dec 21st, 2005, 06:59 PM       
I meant my bios was set to PCIex, not AGP.

I found biostar's US website, which is normally hidden for no good reason from google searches. The page I get this is:

http://www.biostar-usa.com/mbdownloa...model=nf4ul-a9

Which have some bios flashing stuff that is largely useless to me because i don't have a floppy disk drive, and the drivers would appear to be the nVidia nForce shit that I definitely already have installed.

I know the difference between MMO lag and poor performance, Chimp. Give me more credit than that.
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MetalMilitia MetalMilitia is offline
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Old Dec 21st, 2005, 07:12 PM       
Just to clarify the nForce drivers are the motherboard drivers.

I take it you have done a safemode/driver cleaner uninstall of you videocard drivers then a fresh install of the latest set?

Is it possible that when you where messing with things to get the movies to work you caused the problem?
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Old Dec 21st, 2005, 08:20 PM       
I just reformatted the other day and haven't installed anything but this crap, so I don't think my tampering is the issue. Not to mention that this has been going on for forever.
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MetalMilitia MetalMilitia is offline
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Old Dec 21st, 2005, 08:32 PM       
hmm, if you have just formetted and are still getting identical issues as beforehand you may want to try other things.
For example IIRC GT GPU chips are basically XT chips which cannot reach XT speeds however as the GT is clocked so much lower than an XT chip you may still have a fair ammount of overclocking headroom.
Also i would not be in the least bit suprised if your RAM was at cas 3 latency. You should be able to get atleast 2.5.

Its not an ideal solution but it could get you a few extra FPS while you are testing other things out.
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Chojin Chojin is offline
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Old Dec 21st, 2005, 08:35 PM       
I do know that omegadrivers classify my card as a Radeon x800XT, so that might be correct. BTW, omegadrivers give me about 3-4 fps less than ATI's drivers.

ATI released new drivers today which I've installed, I'll give updates on whether or not they magically fix all my problems when i reboot!
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ziggytrix ziggytrix is offline
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Old Dec 21st, 2005, 08:36 PM       
this isn't all running on some ancient-ass 5400 RPM HDD is it?
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Chojin Chojin is offline
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Old Dec 21st, 2005, 08:37 PM       
my primary is a 7200 RPM i believe (or faster), but my secondary is indeed a shitty ancient drive. However, there are no system files on that.

*or game files, it's all basically my music files.
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Chojin Chojin is offline
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Old Dec 21st, 2005, 09:33 PM       
no difference.
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Old Dec 22nd, 2005, 09:17 AM       
the only other thing i would suggest is to reinstall windows(32 bit) make sure you install the newest nforce drivers(get them from nvidia) first the order can be important!. then install the newest ati drivers. sounds like you did this though.

I dont know what speeds you should get in Cov with that card, have you tried to compare to others with the same specs? what speed procesor do you have?

unforturnatly my main motherboard died, but I have a similar spec system, with a nforce 4 board and a x800xl, I didnt notice really slowdowns unless quality was set really high and fsaa was turned on. You might want to check your ati control panel and make sure that it isnt enabled for some reason.
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Old Dec 23rd, 2005, 03:20 PM       
No FSAA is on. :<
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  #17  
Chojin Chojin is offline
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Old Dec 27th, 2005, 01:55 AM       
I'm still having problems. But, I'm going to try to just muscle out of it by overclocking shit. So far this is yielding a 10-15 framerate increase when overclocking my videocard, but I have no way to tell if I'm cooking it as there's no temperature gauge on it. Is there a way to install one?

Also, I'd like to overclock my CPU, but my CPU temp is reading at (-) 256 degrees celsius. So either my gaming problems are being caused by my CPU being at extreme sub-arctic temperatures or something is gonzo with that device's temperature gauge. How might I fix that?
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whoreable whoreable is offline
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Old Dec 27th, 2005, 09:04 AM       
what program are you using to check the temp? maybe it is set for the wrong sensor(or one doesnt exist). In the bios it should show the right temp

Usually with vidoe card over clocking you will start to get artifacts when the memory is too high and the system might crash if the core is too high. If you are really concerned read around and find the average overclock for these cards and see if you are close to it.
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MetalMilitia MetalMilitia is offline
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Old Dec 27th, 2005, 11:11 AM       
If your temperatures are completly wrong even in the bios you most probably need a bios update. Incidentally have you tried flashing your motherboard with the latest bios? (You'll have to find a floppy drive)

A good tool to use to overclock your videocard is ATI tool as it has a built in artifact scanner. Although usually you'll only start top see artifacts after about 5-10 minuits of gaming.
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Chojin Chojin is offline
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Old Dec 27th, 2005, 09:50 PM       
Quote:
Originally Posted by whoreable
what program are you using to check the temp? maybe it is set for the wrong sensor(or one doesnt exist). In the bios it should show the right temp
No, in bios it reads at -256 C. It also reads that in all 3rd party apps because it just pulls the numbers from BIOS.

Quote:
Usually with vidoe card over clocking you will start to get artifacts when the memory is too high and the system might crash if the core is too high. If you are really concerned read around and find the average overclock for these cards and see if you are close to it.
I'm using the omega overclocker and have it set to slightly below the highest i can get without getting artifacts. Before I had it set to the highest and everything was gravy until my PC crashed hard in COV. So i set it down a bit! I have it set to kick in automatically when I start 3d applications.

So basically what you're saying is that as long as I don't see artifacts and I don't crash, my 3D card is safe?

Also, recommendations on how to fix my CPU thermal sensor? I really don't think it's strictly a BIOS issue. Though I will rip out a floppy drive and install it anyway to flash it since it has some improvements. Maybe i just have a wonky BIOS that doesn't UNDERSTAND 64 bit processors and it'll magically fix everything. Wouldn't that be nice!
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MetalMilitia MetalMilitia is offline
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Old Dec 29th, 2005, 11:02 AM       
9 times out of 10 a dogey reading from the motherboard temperature sensor is down to the bios. Although I would suggest using 'Speedfan' to show temperatures as it has always worked best for me, and everyone else I know.

As for the issues of higher GFX card temps, while it *should* be fine so long as you are not seeing any artifacts or vertex corruption you should understand that it may reduce the life of your card. However, as an 'enthusiast' you'll most probably change the card long before this becomes and issue.
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  #22  
Chojin Chojin is offline
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Old Dec 29th, 2005, 11:26 AM       
I did have speedfan before the reformat and it would report the same arctic temperatures from the CPU.
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Old Jan 8th, 2006, 03:32 AM       
do you have your 2nd hard drive on the same cable as your main hard drive, i think i remember something like if you have a 2nd drive on the same cable it slows the first to the same speed, although i slept through most of my A+ classes.
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Chojin Chojin is offline
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Old Jan 8th, 2006, 04:46 AM       
I do, I'll try disconnecting the 2nd drive tomorrow and we'll see if it makes a difference! My guess is no!
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  #25  
Chojin Chojin is offline
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Old Jan 8th, 2006, 11:42 PM       
Well okay at FIRST I had at least 10 more FPS in Villains. Then the increase just sorta tapered off and eventually dropped back to normal. Dunno why!
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