TechSpot

Upgrades to increase FPS on Counter-Strike Source

By samm1
Mar 28, 2008
  1. Hey guys,

    My problem is that when i play css and some other games i get around 25 fps on all maps with all settings on low and the lowest resolution but i still get 25 fps when all the settings are on high with high resolution. When i play on a server by myself however i can get around 70 fps but when other people join it starts going WAY lower. I have a ATI 9550 256mb and am using a intel celeron 2.66ghz. Someone told me that i should upgrade my cpu because css is a "cpu based game" or something like that anyways....

    So yeah, i got around $200-400AU to spend on upgrades but if theres any settings i can change or programs that might make the game work faster it will be really appreciated

    Thanksss
     
  2. mopar man

    mopar man TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 1,492

    Yes, you probably do need a new processor (just like me :X).

    The Celerons are not good for gaming at ALL, which I have noticed personally.

    The problem is we need your Motherboard model. Download System Spec here: http://www.techspot.com/downloads/3100-system-spec.html and tell us what it says your motherboard model is.
     
  3. samm1

    samm1 TS Member Topic Starter Posts: 28

    Windows: Windows XP5.1 (Build 2600) Service Pack 2
    Internet Explorer: 6.0.2900.2180
    Memory (RAM): 1024 MB
    CPU Info: Intel(R) Celeron(R) CPU 2.66GHz
    CPU Speed: 2665.3 MHz
    Sound card: Realtek AC97 Audio
    Display Adapters: ATI Radeon 9550 / X1050 Series | ATI Radeon 9550 / X1050 Series Secondary | NetMeeting driver | RDPDD Chained DD
    Screen Resolution: 1152 X 864 - 32 bit
    Network: Network Present
    Network Adapters: NETGEAR WG311v3 802.11g Wireless PCI Adapter - Packet Scheduler Miniport | SiS 900 PCI Fast Ethernet Adapter - Packet Scheduler Miniport
    CD / DVD Drives: D: ASUS DRW-1608P3S
    COM Ports: COM1 | COM2
    LPT Ports: LPT1
    Mouse: 8 Button Wheel Mouse Present
    Hard Disks: C: 37.3GB | E: 74.6GB
    Hard Disks - Free: C: 21.1GB | E: 12.0GB
    USB Controllers: 4 host controllers.
    Firewire (1394): Not Detected
    PCMCIA (Laptops): Not Installed
    Manufacturer: Award Software International, Inc.
    Product Make:
    AC Power Status: OnLine
    BIOS Info: AT/AT COMPATIBLE | 10/14/05 | GBT - 42302e31
    Time Zone: E. Australia Standard Time
    Battery: No Battery
    Motherboard: Gigabyte Technology Co., Ltd. GA-8S661FXM-775
    Modem: Not detected

    Hope This will help ! =D
     
  4. Whiffen

    Whiffen TS Rookie Posts: 323

    Alright so you have an AGPX8 board. This is somewhat an older graphics interface so unless you think you wont be moving on to the more next gen games than that interface should still get you a descent graphics card. If you did want to upgrade to something more current you would be looking for a motherboard with a PCI-Express 16X interface.

    As for Counter Strike: Source your current interface type is fine.

    The first thing I would upgrade is your CPU and lucky for you your motherboard has a 775 CPU slot which supports the latest processors from Intel. (My mistake your current board does have a 775 slot but it only supports Pentium 4. You'd think that if it had the same socket it would be compatible >.>)

    You are probably going to want to buy a Intel Core 2 Duo processor.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produ...343 1051707842 1050722265&bop=And&Order=PRICE

    You can take a look at them there, all of those are compatible with your Mobo. It will most likely set you back more than one hundred dollars but all of the ones listed their will do you good.

    If you wanted to go for the more extreme and spend the full 400$ You could buy the processor, motherboard, and get a good graphics card as well, to the point where you can play a game like Crysis on higher settings.

    Processor: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115005
    Motherboard:http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128088 (Something like this but if someone else wants to make some recommendations as well that would be great.)
    Graphics: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130318

    One thing to make note of is that your memory is DDR while this motherboard only supports DDR2 and your power supply might not have enough juice for this setup. If you were to make some sacrifices then you still might be able to get another GB of memory for under 400$ but if you needed a new power supply to that would take you over. Another thing is that the processor I suggested might bottleneck the graphics card a bit so If you were able to spend a bit more I would get something a bit stronger. (Overclocking the processor could be a second choice though if you aren't able to spend more)

    Keep in mind that if you were to just buy the processor it would be compatible with your current mobo and the new mobo so you don't have to upgrade it all at once, try buying a new processor first and if your not satisfied up the mobo and gcard.
     
  5. Jesse_hz

    Jesse_hz TS Maniac Posts: 638

    As far I can tell from gigabyte's page, a Pentium 4 is the best he'll be able to run with that board.
     
  6. Whiffen

    Whiffen TS Rookie Posts: 323

    OH whoops, sorry about that I looked to quickly at that page because I had browsed to it as well and noticed "Supports LGA775 Intel..." and thats when I stopped reading. That puts you in a tougher position because the Intel core 2 duos aren't compatible with your mobo.

    Isn't he using a Celeron? Or is it just that the motherboard can't support anything higher than a Pentium 4 but does support lesser processors?
     
  7. samm1

    samm1 TS Member Topic Starter Posts: 28

    So do you recommend i upgrade to a Pentium 4 because my dads old computer has one but no one ever uses it.

    So i guess i could just swap the cpu's?
     
  8. samm1

    samm1 TS Member Topic Starter Posts: 28

    And i won't really be thinking of playing next gen games like crysis, i just want to be able to play games like cod4, css, TF2 at a good frame rate.

    Btw, cod4 works great on my computer but for some reason css dosn't....

    i would of thought it would be the other way around
     
  9. Jesse_hz

    Jesse_hz TS Maniac Posts: 638

    Exactly.
    Well, if you don't feel like spending money on a new board & CPU, then you could try that.
     
  10. samm1

    samm1 TS Member Topic Starter Posts: 28

    Okay, so if i get the mobo Whiffen suggested...

    GIGABYTE GA-73PVM-S2 LGA 775 NVIDIA GeForce 7100/nForce 630i Micro ATX Intel Motherboard

    and a new Pentium 4 processor will that be okay?

    or is it that if i get the mobo i can get a better processor than pentium 4?
     
  11. mopar man

    mopar man TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 1,492

    Well, if CSS runs worse than COD4, then something is wrong. May try typing -dxlevel 9 into the launch options.
     
     
  12. Jesse_hz

    Jesse_hz TS Maniac Posts: 638

    Yes, if you decide to get a new mobo, then you should definitely get a Core 2 together with it. Doesn't need to be an expensive Core 2, even the cheap ones would be a decent upgrade from what you have right now.

    Edit:
    But if you get a new motherboard, you will also need new RAM and a new GPU, so that's probably not the best option.
     
  13. samm1

    samm1 TS Member Topic Starter Posts: 28

    Okay, but since i already have a celeron 2.66 ghz then if i get a core 2 with less than 2.66 ghz how much faster will it be?
     
  14. samm1

    samm1 TS Member Topic Starter Posts: 28

    Do you mean the console because i dont have a shortcut to css it just runs from steam. I'll try and find out how to change the dxlevel from the ingame console
     
  15. Whiffen

    Whiffen TS Rookie Posts: 323

    It would be a great improvement from the Celeron, and what you can do to enter that is go into your steam games tab, right click css, propertys, set launch options, and enter:

    Code:
    -heapsize 524288 -dxlevel 81
    -dxlevel 95 for DirectX 9c
    -dxlevel 90 for DirectX 9
    -dxlevel 81 for DirectX 8.1

    The lower the directX the faster it should run.

    Also I have attached a file below, download it and open up my computer. Browse to c:/programfiles/Steam\SteamApps\your@email.com\counter-strike source\cstrike\cfg folder. Then in that same window go to tools, folder options, view tab, and deselect "hide extensions for known file types and apply. Now go to where u downloaded my file and you should see autoexec.cfg.txt delete the .txt off the end and hit yes to the warning. now place the autoexec.cfg file into that folder i mentioned above and try out source. Oh right u can select the "hide extentions for known file types" after you have erased the .txt off the end.

    What it does is use a bunch of console commands automaticly on startup, you can open the file and read the comments (Comments come after the //) to see what they do and if you don't want one just delete the comment and the command in front of the comment. If you dont like it you can always delete the file as well but it has help some people get 50+ more fps than they were.

    Here are some things I can already see you might want to change.

    Code:
    mp_decals "0"            // How many player sprays will be shown. [B]Make it more than zero if you want to see player sprays. [/B]
    cl_ragdoll_physics_enable "0"    // Disables ragdoll. [B]Delete this or change the value to 1 if you want ragdolls.[/B]
    r_3dsky "0"            // Disables the rendering of 3d sky boxes. [B]This deletes the 3d skybox, you might not be familiar with this if you never mapped with hammer but it is world geometry that is placed around the map to make it look like the map isn't floating in nowhere. Take a look at de_dust2 for example, look over the buildings on the perimeter of the map, that is the 3d skybox.[/B]
    r_eyes "0"            // Disables eyes in models. [B]Thats just freaky to have no eyes, delete this or change the value to 1.[/B]
    r_teeth "0"            // Disables teeth in models. [B]I guess you dont see their teeth very much but if u have and like their smiles delete this or change it to 1[/B]
    Anyway you can have a look threw them and change what you dont want. Good luck! ;D
     

    Attached Files:

  16. samm1

    samm1 TS Member Topic Starter Posts: 28

    Okay, i installed the file and changed the dx level then started a game. Well my fps has almost doubled now but when i'm searching for servers i cant change the location (Doesn't do that anymore xD) and some other settings and when someone dies their shadow stays where they died.If you know a way to fix that it will help alot =D

    I will be getting a pentium 4 tomorrow, any recommendations on which one?
     
  17. Whiffen

    Whiffen TS Rookie Posts: 323

    Their are lots of Pentium 4's to chose from, the ones names with "Prescott" use a smaller 90nm architecture so they will use less power. Just look for one with at least 2.0 GHz, I would aim for 2.5 GHz though. If you are still thinking of getting something more current then the core 2 duos are what you want, but those aren't compatible with your motherboard and will end up making you buy an entire new rig. I don't know just how much buying a Pentium 4 will do for you over a Celeron but give it a go and see if you can get a full rebate if you don't like how it preforms.

    Aha I remember those shadows back when I had to use tweaks like this!

    Code:
    cl_downloadfilter "nosounds"        // Disables annoying pub sound downloads [B]If you are one of the people who like to download the 10000 songs when joining a server then delete this part, personally i like it.[/B]
    net_graph "3"            // Enables net_graph (Required in SS round) [B]You can delete this or change the value to zero if u don't like the green grapgh on the bottom centre of your screen.[/B]
    mat_compressedtextures "1"    // Disables texture compression. Users with low amounts of system memory should turn this on.[B] I think if you want some more gain you should turn this off[/B]
    r_shadows "1"            // Enables shadows (Change be disabled for additional performance.) [B]This can just turn the shadows off by turning it to 0 or deleting it[/B]
    cl_ragdoll_physics_enable "0"    // Disables ragdoll. [B]This might be what is causing the shadows on the ground if you still have it set to 0, because you can't see the rag doll, but it is still their, it still casts a shadow[/B]
     
  18. samm1

    samm1 TS Member Topic Starter Posts: 28

  19. Whiffen

    Whiffen TS Rookie Posts: 323

    It is an alright choice but those prices are rather high, remember that if you buy those parts you are going to need a new graphics card as well as another GB of DDR2 memory.
     
  20. samm1

    samm1 TS Member Topic Starter Posts: 28

    I thought my ram was already DDR2 and why do i need a new vid card?
     
  21. Jesse_hz

    Jesse_hz TS Maniac Posts: 638

    As Whiffen already explained, you memory is DDR(1) not DDR2 and your video card uses the old AGP slot, so they wont work with a new board.
     
  22. Whiffen

    Whiffen TS Rookie Posts: 323

    Yeah, sorry but like I said before If you end up buying a new board than your going to end up having to buy a completely new rig, the only things you would be able to spare is your hard drive, power supply, case, monitor and other peripherals. But with your current board the most you could do is upgrade to a Pentium 4 which may not give you as much as an fps boost as you would like. I would try to buy the Pentium 4 but make sure that would be able to return it for a full refund, that way if you don't notice much gain you can return it.

    Troublesome isn't it >.>
    I went through the same thing. At least mine is somewhat future proof now for my next upgrade.
     
  23. Stacks

    Stacks TS Rookie

    The source engine itself is known for requiring a good cpu to be useful.
     
  24. Mansoor

    Mansoor TS Rookie

    If you're stuck for cash and want a quick fix, use this, it'll VASTLY improve fps at the cost of alot of visual effects, but if you're really desperate:

    With these commands CS:Source has a more CS feel. Bullets actually hit and you will get much better fps than a straight out-of-the-box setup. This will require you to create an autoexec.cfg file in:

    Valve\Steam\SteamApps\e-mail@whoever.com\counter-strike source\cstrike\cfg

    Netcode Settings:
    These settings are for those people that are having issues with such things as "shots not registering", "bad net-code", "lagging hitboxes", "jerky play" and other similar complaints (comments are included for most settings).

    Setting Comment
    cl_interp 0
    cl_interpolate 0 Use in combination with cl_interp 0 -- See * note below
    cl_lagcomp_errorcheck 1 Checks for player position errors
    cl_cmdrate 100 I've always used 100, some use 101, shouldn't make a difference
    cl_updaterate 100 Same as above
    cl_rate 20000
    cl_smooth 0 Stops the game from feeling choppy
    rate 25000

    * cl_interpolate makes your screen shake a little. It is nothing drastic but this may annoy some people. When interp and interpolate are both set to 0 your hitboxes will be perfectly on the player model. I can tell you from experience that after you play with interpolate on 0 for few days, you totally overlook the little shake. I have 2 keys bound for interpolate:

    bind "." "cl_interpolate 0"
    bind "/" "cl_interpolate 1"

    You can replace "." and "/" with whatever keys you would like. The reason I do this is I tend to AWP better with a setting of 1 and use deagle/colt/ak/everything other than AWP better with a setting of 0.

    Graphics Tweaks:
    These settings are for those people that want to increase their FPS in CS:S using existing drivers and hardware. Keep in mind that this is not for people who think graphics quality is important. This is for the competitive people like myself that want good gameplay.

    Setting Comment
    cl_ragdoll_physics_enable 0 Makes the models disappear once they are killed; saves CPU from rendering death animations
    cl_phys_props_enable 0 Disables little cans/bottles that are rendered client side. Takes stress off CPU
    mat_fastnobump 1
    cl_show_splashes 0 Disables water splashes
    mat_bumpmap 0 Disables bumpmapping
    mat_specular 0 Disables specular (AKA no more shiny crap)
    mp_decals 0 Disables decals
    r_lod 5 Player models look bad but saves CPU power. A setting of -5 will make the game render perfect quality models from any distance
    mat_picmip 2 This is the command that the in game "Texture Quality" setting changes: 0 = High 1 = Medium 2 = Low
    r_decals 0 It says decals and you can't really see them in source anyway so lets turn it off
    r_shadows 0 Even though they show through some parts of walls they are still useless
    budget_show_history 0 Found this on many sites, self explanatory
    cl_ejectbrass 0 Disables bullet casings from flying out of your gun when you shoot
    cl_phys_props_max 0 Sets range at which props show up

    All of these combined make blood show up a bit better when you hit a person:

    Setting Comment
    violence_agibs "1"
    violence_hgibs "1"
    violence_hblood "1"
    violence_ablood "1"
    cl_show_bloodspray "1"

    Launch Options:

    Open steam. Click play games. Right click CS:Source. Properties. Launch Options. In the edit box put the following:

    -dxlevel 81

    Note: 70 = directx7.0 80 = directx8.0 81 = directx8.1 90 = directx9.0

    This takes some stress off your graphics card. Default is 90, which is Directx9.0. I run "-dxlevel 81" as it seems to be the best mix between performance and quality.

    CS:Source, if you run all of these settings, should run smooth with higher FPS and you will enjoy the new found bullet registration. If you ever want to return your game to its stock state you can always go back to your cfg folder and delete the autoexec.cfg file that you created. Source will automatically set the removed settings to default values.
     
  25. Whiffen

    Whiffen TS Rookie Posts: 323

    Aha thats basically what I gave him in my other post ;D
     
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