TechSpot

Low GF4 Performance

By AcidicRage
Jul 20, 2002
  1. Pentium 4 2ghz
    1GB of DDRAM
    GA-81EXP Mobo (Latest Bios)
    GeForce4 Ti 4600 29.42 drivers
    4xS AA, Ansio Disabled, Vsync off

    I seem to get a lot of tearing when I play 3d games. When I turn vsync back on, there's no more tearing, but frames per seconds is capped. Ansio doesn't do much either. It doesn't make the tearing go away. I have 4xS because I want maximum antialiasing. The tearing only happens when you view textures far away such as landscape or far away houses. I want to max out my GeForce4 Ti 4600, plz help. Any suggestions? My refresh rate is set at 60hz. I asked my friends, they said that since I have vsync off, my refresh rate at 60, and I'm getting fps 100+, that'll cause tearing.. so does this mean that if I set my refresh rate higher (even if vsync is off), i won't get as much tearing? Also, my aperture size is set at 128MB. I have noticed a major difference in smoothness from 60fps and 100fps+. All my older video cards had vsync off and getting around 100fps also, but it showed no tearing. My friend has a TNT2 getting around 100fps+, vsync off, and no tearing too. Any utilities to check if I have my AGP at 4X, and etc other stuff that I should make sure be checked?
     
  2. AcidicRage

    AcidicRage TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 22

    I downloaded the GeForce Tweak Utility and it says AGP Transfer Rate is "auto". Does this mean it's automatically on 4X or what?
     
  3. AcidicRage

    AcidicRage TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 22

    So I'm pretty sure it could just be my GF4. I think it's weird that my older cards had vsync off and had no tearing either, absolutely fine. It's just the GF4 just tears, or at least on my comp. I had most of the same settings on my older cards - voodoo3, tnt2, such as 2x/4x AA, ansio disabled
     
  4. AcidicRage

    AcidicRage TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 22

    Hmm.. I turned back on vsync. The tearing seems to be the same. So it might just be CS's graphics... but I still don't understand.. hmm...on my old card, CS was fine without vsync on either.
     
  5. JAV

    JAV TS Rookie Posts: 210

    Did you use "Detonator Destroyer" www.guru3d.com between driver installs?

    Are you overclocking the card or the FSB? Are you familiar w/BIOS settings? Excellent explanation here: http://www.itcp.net/~awsh/Speed_Demonz/BIOS_Guide/BIOS_Guide_Index.htm It is quite long & highly detailed, but I think you'll benefit from it. :grinthumb

    I run a refresh rate of 85mhz w/my MX400. If your monitor will support it ... What is your 'prerender' setting, do you know?

    Run 'destroyer' & reinstall the 29.42 & then try the highest refresh rate your monitor supports. Give the BIOS stuff a good read & let us know what happens.

    HTH,
     
  6. AcidicRage

    AcidicRage TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 22

    Well, this is a new comp. I picked the parts including the GF4. So I don't need the Detonator Destroyer 'cause there wasn't any cards/drivers before the 29.42.
     
  7. uncleel

    uncleel TS Rookie Posts: 980

    Tearing is caused by disabling VSYNC
     
  8. AcidicRage

    AcidicRage TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 22

    Actually, I just enabled vsync now. And it still shows tearing. So I'm sure it's either CS (Counter-Strike), my drivers 29.42 (hmm, I must try the new beta 30.30), or a defect in my card, which shouldn't be because I bought it brand new outta the box!
     
  9. StormBringer

    StormBringer TS Rookie Posts: 2,244

    It is also possible that it could be a defect in the card. Even the best manufacturers work on Monday morning you know. In other words, a bad product always has the possibility of slipping through.
     
  10. AcidicRage

    AcidicRage TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 22

    Btw, if you have UT, what fps do ya get? I get about 150 average with 4x AA, and every detail "High" level. It seems that this card is incredible smooth and awesome, but I'm just worried maybe it's a "low" performance. I haven't played enough games or tried 3DMark2001 to see what scores I get. Btw, I posted this question in the GTU Forum, but no one seems to be responding. I'll post it here:
     
  11. StormBringer

    StormBringer TS Rookie Posts: 2,244

    Why are you complaining about 150fps? The human eye can only detect a max of something like 65fps. The only purpose for extremely high frame rates is to brag about it. This might also be the reason for your problems. I'd suggest that instead of trying to beat everyones benchmark scores, just tweak the settings until the game looks and feels good. Then play the game. I assure you that you will enjoy the game much more and will have a lot more time to actually play.
     
  12. AcidicRage

    AcidicRage TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 22

    I have noticed a major difference in smoothness from 60fps and 100fps+. It seems to have different quality images too. If it's down to like 50fps, it'll start becoming very laggy and unsmooth.
     
  13. Rick

    Rick TechSpot Staff Posts: 4,573   +65

    Being superhuman isn't easy... I know.. :rolleyes:

    If you truely ARE able to tell the different between 60 and 100fps, it is due to not sustaining that fps. A constant 60FPS will be identical to 100FPS.. But it has to be constant.

    In many games, it is possible to get an average of 60fps, but dip lower than 40 fps, which can be noticable.
     
  14. StormBringer

    StormBringer TS Rookie Posts: 2,244

    Well, something is definately wrong then because you shouldn't really see any difference between 60-100fps, possibly up to 70 you might see a tiny difference if you have very sharp eyesight. Most people report 30fps being very smooth and it just gets better up to 55 or so and it starts getting hard to tell a difference. There may be some other problem causing this. Maybe CPU load.
     
  15. AcidicRage

    AcidicRage TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 22

    Well, I'm on Windows XP with a 2ghz processor p4 and whenever I run big games like HL or UT, the % usage is 100%. I asked many people, and most of them say it's normal because you want all of your cpu usage to be at that program. But when I have the program on, my computer goes slower when trying to process other programs. My other friend says when he runs UT, HL, etc.... It only takes up 18%. So I find this weird.
     
  16. StormBringer

    StormBringer TS Rookie Posts: 2,244

    100% CPU usage is fine if the application that is using that is screaming while it is using it but from what you are saying, the game is limping along. What else are you running? Background apps, utilities, anything that might be using CPU cycles.

    I have an Athlon 1600 and I only use close to 100% CPU when I'm rendering some 3D graphics and working with Video sometimes. Some places in some games it goes pretty high but never constantly.
     
  17. AcidicRage

    AcidicRage TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 22

    I barely have any utilities in the background. Just a mouse program. Thats about it because this comp is farely new.
     
  18. StormBringer

    StormBringer TS Rookie Posts: 2,244

    Does it show any CPU usage when you aren't doing anything?
    Just close any active programs, other than whatever runs in the background and check the Task Manager.

    Mine says 1% right now. I have three IE windows open and my normal background operations which are quite a few.

    Oh, another thing, check your Processes in Task Manager as well, you'll notice quite a few things running and consuming memory and maybe CPU cycles. These are the things that are all running in the background as well as the things you are using. Some of those are necessary, some are not.

    If the System Idle preocess is really high like 98 or 99, don't worry that is the amount of the CPU that is doing nothing. Make a note of anything else that is high or that looks odd to you.

    If you already knew all that just humor me, I'm trying to be thorough.
     
  19. AcidicRage

    AcidicRage TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 22

    I don't think it's a CPU problem, rather than drivers.
     
  20. Rick

    Rick TechSpot Staff Posts: 4,573   +65

    Your friend is doing either one of three things:

    1.) Lying
    2.) Doesn't know what he's talking about
    3.) Has the FPS limited to a certain amount

    Even old games like Starcraft and Diablo (Yes, the first one!) will use 100% CPU usage. Windows allocates maximum CPU usage to whatever you are working on. It does share CPU amongst multiple programs, but what you are working on gets preference by default.

    100% CPU usage in Unreal Tournament is COMPLETELY NORMAL and 18% CPU usage is a lie unless he's using some sort of trick like limiting the frame rate at a very low rate. Even then, I'm not sure if it would be the low or not.

    The reason you get 150FPS in Unreal Tournament is because your CPU is used 100%. If you had set Unreal Tournament to run at 60fps, you might get lower CPU utilization. But unless you cap the frame rate, Unreal Tournament wil use every CPU cycle it can get its hands on to deliver as many frames per second possible as your system can produce.

    If you are using Windows XP or Windows 2000, you can set the priority of the program to low, so that Windows does not give Unreal priority. This will make other programs run smoothly in the background. To do this, you can right click on the taskbar and go to "Task Manager". Click on the "processes" tab and right click on the UnrealTournament executable. In the menu that pops up, choose "Set Priority" and choose "Below Normal".

    I don't understand what you plan on doing while playing a game though...
     
  21. AcidicRage

    AcidicRage TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 22

    5566 3DMark2001SE is the score I got. Man, that is real crappy for my specs. I mean, EXTREMELY CRAPPY!
     
  22. Th3M1ghtyD8

    Th3M1ghtyD8 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 664

    Is CS running in Direct3D or OpenGL mode? These can make a big difference as some cards are better at one than the other.

    Also have you tried my tweaking program, as it has several NVIDIA speed up options (i.e. AGP Fast Writes/4X Mode/Side Band Addressing)
     
  23. AcidicRage

    AcidicRage TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 22

    My card is already FW, SBA enabled and 4x AGP
     
  24. JAV

    JAV TS Rookie Posts: 210

    Did you turn the 4X FSAA off & re-bench? ;)

    Yes, hopefully one day the framerate w/16x will be as good or better than with it off, but until then ... turn it off to bench. :grinthumb

    Want some better #'s @ 3D? Set the *pre-render* rate in Riva Tuner > DX > V-Sync > to 40 on all the low detail 'games'. You can run just them (use the 'custom' tab) & the results will be saved (unless you close it) & then set the *pre-render* back to 4-6 & run *only* the high-detail 'games'. Then you'll get a total score. :cool: Make sure V-Sync is off too!

    HTH,
     
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