TechSpot

Hunk of junk up for sale

By absinthe
Aug 19, 2002
  1. Well, I've finally had it with my computer. After about $2000 spent, I've decided I'm putting it up for sale. I don't know what the problem is, but short of buying a whole new system, I think I'm out of luck, and I'm fed up with it. Here it is:

    Shuttle Ak31A motherboard
    512MB DDR RAM
    AMD Athlon 1700+ (1.47 Ghz)
    Maxtor 40GB HD
    VisionTek GeForce4 Ti 4400 128MB DDR
    Sound Blaster Live! 5.1 Platinum

    I've got all the latest drivers, nothing RAM-consuming running in the background, and a (supposedly) pretty good rig, and I get around 55 fps average in games, maxing out at 96 fps. I CANNOT get any more, under any circumstances, than that. Even when I turn all the settings to the lowest levels, I get 96 fps max.
    This is at 1152x864 with everything maxed out, mind you, but this isn't DOOM III I'm playing. I'm talking about Medal of Honor and Jedi Knight II. According to what people have said, I should be getting more than 100 fps when there's not much on the screen and even when the screen is very cluttered, maybe 80 or 90 solid. That's the performance I expected when I bought my card, but it sure ain't what I'm getting.

    I don't understand why I'm getting such budget performance on a system that cost me quite a bit of money. I've heard from numerous sources that I should be getting at least 90 fps SOLID in games even at the worst of times on my video card. I don't really care about the number, in fact, to avoid frustration I've turned off the FPS counter in most of my games but even at that, it gets so bad sometimes that it's noticeably sluggish. And to top it all off, as a last straw I updated my BIOS to the latest version today, and SOMEHOW my performance is even worse now. I am fed up with my computer, and seeing as how when school starts again I'm going to be using it basically for word processing and internet anyway, not heavy gaming, I'm thinking maybe I should just give up the idea, sell my machine, and use the money toward a good laptop...because gaming on this system is NOT going to work, ever.

    What do you guys think? :D :mad:
     
  2. JAV

    JAV TS Rookie Posts: 264

  3. StormBringer

    StormBringer TS Rookie Posts: 2,871

    FPS? you are telling us that you are goind to sell the system just because of your framerate. You know, if you are able to keep those numbers you mentioned and not drop below them, I'm talking down in the 20s and below for extended periods, then you should have a good gaming experience. People who obsess over FPS usually never actually get a chance to enjoy the games they are playing.

    I do agree however that you should be able to get better numbers than that using that setup. Maybe you overlooked something or maybe there is a conflict somewhere that is causing this. Or maybe the links JAV posted can help you.

    For the record:
    The human eye cannot detect framerates higher than around 65, so everything over that is just bragging points. Another thing you might want to know is that around 30 and up is smooth and most people stop seeing a difference somewhere between 40-50fps.
     
  4. Rick

    Rick TechSpot Staff Posts: 6,305   +52 Staff Member

    Your sources are proably wrong.

    You overestimate your computer and everyone else's for that matter. There's always going to be games that make your system drop below100 FPS at some point during the game... If it doesn't affect your ability to aim and shoot, don't worry about it.

    Any problems you DO have, are likely due to poor optimization, bugs and configuration problems. It happens with to us all. My recommendation would be to look at some tweak guides if it means that much to you.

    Here's a benchmark of Jediknight 2 with a superior system. Compare and contrast...
    http://www.tomshardware.com/graphic/02q2/020418/vgacharts-04.html


    Test Bed:

    Hardware
    System AMD AthlonXP 2000+
    ASUS A7V266-E
    VIA KT266A
    133 MHz FSB
    256MB PC-266 MHz RAM CL2 (2x128MB)
    Drivers & Software
    DirectX Version Direct X 8.1
    OS Windows XP Professional


    The fact this Athlon 2000+/GF4600ti system "only" gets an average of 96 is probably a good indicator you should be seeing considerably less. And since this is indeed AVERAGE FPS, that means dips in FPS might go well into the 40-50fps at times... Hey, it happens in all decent looking games on any practical systems out there. And if you think you are having a hard time now, wait for another year to roll around when you'll be running games at 800x600 with medium textures and shadows turned off... That also happens too.

    The point is, don't worry about it.. Go outside.. Have fun with your friends. You won't have to worry about FPS outside. :)
     
  5. Didou

    Didou Bowtie extraordinair! Posts: 5,899

    I tryed that once but I got a BSOD ( Blue Sky Of Death :dead: )
     
  6. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 12,623   +320

    lol. Not counting sleeping I've been outside probably 5x as much as inside this summer. Being outside is good.
     
  7. Vehementi

    Vehementi TechSpot Paladin Posts: 3,199

    How much are you selling it for? :D
     
  8. absinthe

    absinthe TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Heh, I"m not going to. I was just expressing my extreme frustration with the bad performance of my system. Like Rick was saying, if it doesn't affect my ability to aim and shoot, it shouldn't matter...and it rarely gets that bad. On some levels I get as low as 20 fps though...but I guess it's not all that bad. I've taken a look at some benchmarks and my system performs about as well as it should. I guess all those people who were bragging about getting 100+ fps in games were just..full of it. :p
     
  9. Th3M1ghtyD8

    Th3M1ghtyD8 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 794

    Try playing at 1024x768 instead, it is not a huge step smaller. Also 80-90 fps solid? I think not, that is more like what you are likely to get running a benchmark/timedemo.

    As long as it runs at 30fps+ it will be pretty smooth and playable

    As for buying a good laptop, what sort of gaming performance are you expecting from it. The best graphics available for laptops are GF4MXs which are no where near as good as GF4Ti's.
     
  10. absinthe

    absinthe TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Well, I wasn't expecting any gaming performance really from a laptop. I was just going to buy it to write papers/take notes on, which is all I'll be doing in a few weeks anyway :)
     
  11. Vehementi

    Vehementi TechSpot Paladin Posts: 3,199

    Hehehehe good. I was kidding too.

    Also, have you run 3DMark? You can compare your score to similar systems, for further reassurance...
     
     
  12. absinthe

    absinthe TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Yes, I've run two 3DMark tests....my score on the first was 8282, and on the second it was 8888, with the new drivers. I beat the other 3 systems with the same specifications.
     
  13. Vehementi

    Vehementi TechSpot Paladin Posts: 3,199

    See? Your system's fine.
     
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