AMD Wattman - custom fan curve; AMD alternative for "Prefer maximum performance"

Discussion in 'Videocards - AMD Radeon Drivers Section' started by Atman73, Dec 4, 2019.

  1. Atman73

    Atman73 New Member

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    GPU:
    Sapphire RX 570 ITX
    Hello, I've recently purchased Sapphire RX 570 ITX for occasional light gaming and I have some questions if anyone cares to answer.

    1. Does Wattman or any other 3rd party utility include option similar to the one present in Nvidia inspector "Prefer maximum performance"?
    Seems like extremely important option especially for infamous AMD's downclocking/FPS drops issues - do they think people are buying relatively powerful discrete gaming GPUs mainly to save power?
    Honestly I'm quite perplexed by this behaviour.
    The only thing similar is the "Power limit" percentage setting but that seems to be tied to the power draw and not displayed FPS.
    Another thing coming to mind is the "Chill" function which allows to set min and max FPS but then it's presented as a another f*cking power-saving feature so I'm quite doubtful about that.

    2. There's a strange issue with the fan curve in Wattman (driver ver.19.11.2) where for the love of God it just denies to be set lower than 38 % no matter what I do which is quite irritating. Manually editing the xml doesn't help. The lowest value is stubbornly set to 38 % from 0°C. Is this a known bug of this "great" SW?
    Of course I can set the curve any way I like in say MSI Afterburner (or certain version of Trixx, some versions don't work properly - shitty coding there Sapphire), but then I need 2 apps eating limited resources to control my GPU.
    And another related thing - the "Min Acoustic Limit" should help maintain set frequency by increasing the fan speed and it seems like it's always on. Does it somehow interfere with manually set fan curves in wattman or other apps?
    I sure as hell won't subject myself to that ridiculous automatic setting - 0 revs till 50°C then sudden "explosion" of revs and then the same abrupt dead silence of 0 revs. What the actual sexual intercourse AMD.

    3. Also there seems to be some issues with the overall (in)stability of the GPU especially when idle - I left the PC for half an hour and came to black screen and had to hard reset. Not quite sure whether it's HW or drivers' issue or what but it definitely doesn't inspire much confidence in AMD solutions.

    I'm considering returning the card (still within 14-day period), because for a few hours of gaming a week there seems to be a lot of hassle with this AMD product.

    Too bad my reincarnated baked HD4870 controlled by extremely lightweight and easy-to-use Ati Tray Tools went to silicon heaven after 9+ years of service.
    Maybe I'll just stick to my backup GT710 and play only 2D games or 3D games from 15+ years ago.
    I wanted to support AMD and to be honest their cards are cheaper here than comparable Nvidia alternatives (roughly 40 % or so in mid-range GPUs), but they're surely not making it easy.

    Have a nice and productive day.

    Edit. Would you recommend any specific previous driver version for the RX 5XX series which may work better than the latest one?
     
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2019
  2. Paul L

    Paul L Maha Guru

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    GPU:
    Sapphire RX 5700XT
    Interesting thoughts regarding the 5700xt... Must admit I've been thinking around the same stuff recently given early adopter issues around the 5700xt.

    I have found that if I had no response on the screen (PC's seemingly in sleep) unplugging the display cable to the monitor woke it up upon plugging in.
    I haven't had such an issue as of the current 19.12.1 driver.
     
  3. Atman73

    Atman73 New Member

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    GPU:
    Sapphire RX 570 ITX
    In the end I decided to return the card as it was not worth the hassle. It surely worked great in well-optimized games like Titanfall 2, Grid 2/Autosport or say GTA 5, on the other hand for example Wolfenstein games (Old blood, New order) were almost unplayable - very low GPU utilization and vomit-inducing FPS.
    Waking the computer from sleep mode didn't work at all and there was a roughly 50:50 chance of GPU not sending any signal after automatic LCD power-down(I just turned both features off to avoid further frustration). In both cases I had to use hard reset or power-down. Very user-unfriendly. Even though the GT 710 gaming performance is understandably pathetic, at the very least it's reliable in carrying out basic functions.
    Fan curve in Wattman didn't work properly in several driver versions - fan revs couldn't be set lower than 38 % no matter what, so I had to use MSI Afterburner just for that, and the "min acoustic level" function seemed to have no impact on it anyway.
    The lack of an alternative to Nvidia's "Prefer maximum performance" option didn't bother me too much as aggressive underclocking wasn't really an issue with the RX 570. That of course is no excuse for absence of such option especially when a lot of "early-adopting" owners of recent-gen 5XXX XT cards are very much affected by nonsensical "power-saving" behaviour of their high-performance GPUs.
    Best of luck and strong nerves to all you early adopters and unpaid beta testers.;)
    If I ever consider buying new GPU for occasional gaming purposes, it will most likely be from Nvidia, even though they're more expensive than AMD and I really don't like their business policy in recent years - slow drip of performance increases between GPU generations and abhorrent price gouging.
     
  4. JonasBeckman

    JonasBeckman Ancient Guru

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    GPU:
    AMD S. 5700XT Pulse
    Yeah it's been six months since the 5700's release and I would have liked a bit more action on resolving the critical outstanding issues with Navi though some stuff was resolved and some stuff regressed and then Adrenaline 2020 introduced a whole host of new issues some of which 19.12.3 fixed up a bit but there's more that needs to be done.

    It's not a terrible card in terms of hardware but the driver situation is kinda problematic making it tough to recommend the GPU at all when the user has some 50/50 either it'll work or it'll be the most broken GPU purchase ever so it's going to be a NVIDIA recommendation or trying the Polaris or Vega from AMD until the situation improves but several regressions have happened here too so yeah it's kinda rough and well it's a bit of a mess for the software situation and it applies to Linux and Windows though worsened after Adrenaline 2020 which I hope will see a return to form in January with 20.1.1 but I do expect it to take months of driver releases to get all these issues resolved.

    Sorta gave up keeping a list of what works and what's broken or what worked but then got broken or has been fixed since 19.7.1 / Navi10 being released but it's all over the place with reported issues and bugs, stability or performance issues now.
    AMD's mostly silence on the situation is kinda bad as well and one of the community managers on the AMD Reddit talking about how many features Adrenaline 2020 has that were requested wasn't a good show either as the topic asked about the added bloat and why the driver software now included a web browser. (Integer scaling and other stuff made it in and were well received and heavily requested but that browser addition and the overall mess of Adrenaline 2020's layout and heavy focus on social media and recording is weird and a decline over the form in the prior control panel much as it had performance issues with multiple profiles due to poor caching or something.)


    Still liking the hardware but it's when it works and the software situation is not in a good shape now though some users manage well and avoid most of the bigger stability or performance regressions and others well if it's within warranty now after several months it's clear just waiting and hoping is not quite going to be as fast as hoped for that situation. (Stuttering and the performance issues also do happen though some are more sensitive towards it as the GPU gets throttled by well not sure exactly how that operates other than CPU being a big factor.)

    Hopefully the RDNA2 / Navi20 cards will have less of all of this but I'll be watching for user reviews and opinions for the first few months and comparably NVIDIA's driver work for this year seems to be quite good with new features, performance fixes and bug fixes on a much better level than the two or so drivers AMD gets out monthly with sometimes very minimal additions too which is also a important factor for deciding what to go with.
    (Their budget and team is bigger though but that doesn't really factor in it for the end user who wants a working experience to begin with and no hassle or various workarounds so yeah it needs to be improved.)

    Known issues for 2020 and 19.12.3 both seem bad enough to where the driver probably should have been delayed far as I'm reading it and bug reports and user opinions and experiencing and problems solidify it further, it's bad alright though I remain hopeful the start of the year will start turning stuff around as this gimmicky yearly feature driver is out now so focus can be on getting stuff fixed.


    EDIT: So overall a bit more negative view on the situation since earlier comments on my views on AMD and the primarily software side of the situation going on here with their GPU's much as Navi itself far as the hardware side goes improves on earlier designs and has a lot of fixes but that means little if usability is compromised to where it's simply almost unusable even for just desktop tasks outside of heavy 3D activity whether work related or gaming.
    (Still somewhat positive but I hope to see a good number of fixes going into the January drivers and beyond after the holidays here and getting this Adrenaline revamp driver done with.)


    EDIT: And then other than the hyper sensitive downclocking for many users it just works (Reasonably.) so I do wonder where the root cause is but the amount of code fixes seen in the Linux code submissions for 5.5 and 5.6 now do point to it being a bit of a situation for the driver and code though on Windows well user reports and just testing and seeing but there's plenty of confirmed problems too and many can be fairly easily replicated.


    Still curious what the black screen problem really comes down to in the end, that's a big one for the stability issues though there's more but that'd be a good one to get done with and resolved. (Well it sounds easy, it's probably less so figuring out and replicating it down to where exactly this just breaks especially the GPU just shutting down and forcing a hard reset instead of doing a driver restart and recovering.)

    Multi-display.
    FreeSync.
    Enhanced Sync.
    Media.
    Wattman. (Nothing new here but it's gotten even worse.)
    HDR.
    OpenCL.
    D3D9 performance issues, OGL performance issues and D3D11 performance issues.
    (Worse for D3D9 and OGL well the code situation is known though D3D11 is curious too.)

    Black screen problem and at least half a dozen suggestions and different possibilities if not more.

    What else am I missing, probably stuff with ReLive, 2020's new overlay and other additions and the entire current situation on Linux plus game specific problems like the tessellation in Red Dead Redemption 2, Nioh and a few others no longer starting at all though MK11 was at least listed as a known problem now.

    Probably other stuff, AMD has some work to do and some of this and other problems also regressed or popped up for GCN so anything still supported including Polaris and Vega.
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2019

  5. JonasBeckman

    JonasBeckman Ancient Guru

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    GPU:
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    As to the fan curve specifically now in the current drivers in addition to being a bit over and under performing compared to what's set and overall very sensitive thanks to the curve being stepping instead of a curvature the fan settings can be all over the place and even setting a singular speed value will have the GPU report RPM and fan percentage going all over the place with or without zero RPM being active though that can affect it even more.

    Supposedly a regression in 19.7.2 and then the usual for every point being a immediate step up instead of a actual curve but now it's really tough to use it though Afterburner or the More Power tool can at least force a reasonable setup with Wattman not really working out well at all.
    (Applies to clock speeds and voltage too so yay though the fan settings are affected worse far as I can tell.)


    EDIT: And the downclocking just happens, More Power can try to force a higher minimum clock state unlike Wattman just ignoring this but might be using the voltage value.
    (Still going to drop though and might ignore the set value and drop lower anyway, it's a weird thing for Navi however this is "working" or what to call it.)

    So for the worst performing titles IE Minecraft it's not going to be ~800 -1000 Mhz it's going to be 60 - 100 Mhz and very frequent drops.
    (It might actually be going for the JavaW process and Java profile as a application and not the Minecraft and a game for how badly it is clocking much as the OGL driver is not the fastest for how poorly this is performing on Navi cards.)

    And for when it drops it can be anything from ~1 Ghz to 1.5 Ghz even if nothing appears to be bottlenecking the GPU and it shoots right back to the 2 Ghz default after maybe a second at most or fluctuates all over the clock speed settings for low, mid (game) and high (boost) with no real reason other than possibly something maybe bottlenecking it but it's just really sensitive and some games just don't scale well at all whether D3D9 or D3D11 and it includes well threaded games that can use the CPU though AMD's D3D11 multi-threaded driver code is...not exactly ideal so that might also factor in.
    (But the fact remains that this doesn't happen on Vega or earlier.)
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2019

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