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Terrible FPS in Games (Recommend Me an Upgrade)

By Wicked Sushi ยท 11 replies
Dec 8, 2007
  1. I have recently decided to do a little upgrading on my computer, because I was getting annoyed by getting rather low frames-per-second in all my games. At first I thought it's my power-supply and my RAM, so I went and bought a 500W PSU and 2 x 1GB sticks of RAM. Saw no difference in my computer's performance when it came down to games.

    This is the current set-up I have running right now:
    - BFG GeForce 7600 GT OC
    - 2GB RAM PC2300 Kingston
    - Pentium 4 3.06Ghz with Hyper-Threading (775 LGA)
    - 500 Watt Power Supply
    - I'm not sure about the motherboard, but my PC is a Compaq Presario SR1930NX.

    In Team Fortress 2, I can get anything from 35 to 10 fps. In Serious Sam 2, I can get anything between 50 and 30 (everything on high). In BioShock, I get around a constant 25 (everything on high). The worst offender however is all the Source games. No matter what my settings (could be 640x480 to 1280x1024, low and high, no AA) are, I don't get anything above 20 and 30, unless I'm like facing a wall with no enemies near. According to my research, when this game came out, my current card and processor was considered great, high-budget stuff. So what's the problem?

    The only thing I could have thought of was that my CPU is bottlenecking my set-up. I was thinking about buying a new CPU, though I'm not sure which one I should buy. I would however rather not buy a new motherboard, as then I would have to re-buy my RAM as well and I'm no Scrooge McDuck.

    However, if I would need to replace my CPU and my motherboard, how should I go about it? Anything you guys recommend? I have about $200 to spare on this upgrade, but no more.

    As for some side notes, I'm getting a GeForce 8800 in a week or two, I'm not interested in over-clocking, I uninstalled/reinstalled my video card's drivers yesterday and my motherboard BIOS is up to date. Thanks!
  2. mailpup

    mailpup TS Special Forces Posts: 7,306   +577

    Wait until you get your GeForce 8800 before doing anything else. That could solve your problem to a large degree.
  3. Wicked Sushi

    Wicked Sushi TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Mhm, I was going wait with this upgrade until I would get my new card installed. However, my current card should be getting way higher fps already, especially in Half-Life 2. I see people with (seemingly) slower processors and worse graphics cards, getting at least 60-100fps and it's unsettling.
  4. technicalfury42

    technicalfury42 Banned Posts: 62

    Try deleting and reinstalling your nVidia drivers with the latest version.

    Also, I find it difficult to understand how all Low, no AF, no FSAA, 640x480 would not exceed 80fps with your setup.

    Your CPU is somewhat of a bottleneck, but it should not be that significant.
  5. Wicked Sushi

    Wicked Sushi TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I deleted and re-installed my drivers last night, it made no difference, unfortunately. Would you say it's still a good idea to buy a CPU though, once I get my 8800? If so, which?
  6. Wicked Sushi

    Wicked Sushi TS Rookie Topic Starter



  7. technicalfury42

    technicalfury42 Banned Posts: 62

    You should not be getting that low of an FPS. Is something consuming most of your memory?

    Download Process Explorer (it's free) and run it. Then after you go into the game, alt-tab and investigate to make sure nothing is stealing CPU cycles (in constant or spiking massive quantities) from the game. Also, check to see how much memory is in use, and whether anything is pushing your game into the Windows cache.

    Wouldn't hurt to post screen shots of process explorer when you alt-tab out of the game.

    Which version of nvidia driver are you using?
  8. Rage_3K_Moiz

    Rage_3K_Moiz Sith Lord Posts: 5,397   +37

    Your drivers seem to be messed up. Use Driver Cleaner Pro (Google for it) and clean out all your drivers and install them again. As for your upgrade, you can buy the Abit IP35 in a combo with the Intel Dual-Core E2140 CPU for $120 or so on m-Wave. Get a good cooler like the Thermalright Ultra-120 and you can OC the CPU to excellent frequencies (You'd need to do that to remove any bottleneck for your 8800 anyways). Good luck and let us know how it goes. :)
  9. Wicked Sushi

    Wicked Sushi TS Rookie Topic Starter



    Seconds after closing the game

    I'm using the latest drivers, the ForceWare Release 163.75, so it can't be that, I think.

    I don't think it's my drivers, because this is a new, fresh Windows install from less than a month ago. I haven't installed any other drivers besides the latest one from November.

    Ah, that motherboard looks pretty good, thanks! Would you say an Intel Core 2 Duo E6750 be just as good for that motherboard though? The 2140 seems like it would be great for Half-Life, but for newer games it might not. I was really looking into that processor earlier, but figured it wouldn't work in my current motherboard. :\

    Thanks for trying to help me guys, by the way!
  10. technicalfury42

    technicalfury42 Banned Posts: 62

  11. Wicked Sushi

    Wicked Sushi TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Just tried it, but still, no difference. At first I thought it worked:

    But then I went outside of the building and got similar fps to this throughout:

    Seems like my fps depends on if I'm in an enclosed or an outside area.

    I'm not sure if I remember correctly, but when I first got my card (one year ago) the fps of the game didn't bother me much. I thought Half-Life 2 ran at pretty good speeds. Though that could be just because I didn't care about fps at that point. I don't know.
  12. Wicked Sushi

    Wicked Sushi TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Okay, I just figured out my problem. I was talking with my friend and we looked up my processor, apparently it's one of the worst ones from the Pentium 4 line, having twice as slow FSB than any other ones. So I definitely gotta buy a new mobo / cpu. Anyways, thanks for trying to help me guys. Appreciated! :D
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