Strange FPS drops with HD4870 after mobo change

Discussion in 'Videocards - AMD Radeon' started by johnmcderp, Apr 24, 2013.

  1. johnmcderp

    johnmcderp New Member

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    GPU:
    AMD Radeon HD4870 512MB
    Hi,

    Here's a bit of important background to my problem. Last year, my old motherboard, an MSI G41-P28, broke down and died (it actually served as a replacement to my much better ASUS mobo (forgot its model) a long time ago), so I replaced it with a G41M-P33. I know the mobo's not that great, but it's quite hard to find one that still supports my CPU's old socket (775 LGA, my CPU is an Intel Core 2 Quad Q9400). My GPU is an HD4870 512MB which replaced an old 4870 that died possibly due to Bitcoin mining.

    Anyway, I replaced the motherboard, everything else in my rig is the same, from the CPU, PSU, HDDs, optical drive, GPU, etc. Now, here's the problem. I usually play Dota 2 on my rig. At very random occassions, my FPS would quickly drop from a comfortable 45-60 fps to a terrible <10fps. If I'm lucky, I could just wait it out and after 5-10 minutes it goes back to normal, but usually I just restart Dota 2 and everything usually goes back to normal for another thirty minutes.

    Keep in mind that these slowdowns occur usually when almost nothing is going on in-game. Like, when I'm just running in a quiet jungle, or laning without anybody harassing me. The slowdown sometimes occurs in a clash, where everybody is fighting and throwing around spells that would obviously give FPS drops, but the frustrating part is that it occurs more regularly while nothing significant is going on. I tried playing at very low settings (even went so far as to set my resolution to 640x480 when my native monitor resolution is 1680x1050), but it still happens.

    Now I'm also playing Borderlands 2, and I experience the same problem. It doesn't matter if I'm playing in settings optimal to my PC (everything on high except for PhysX, which gives me 40-60fps), or really low settings (everything on low, resolution at 1024x768, steady 60+ fps). The frustrating part of it is still the same: The sudden FPS drop occurs when nothing significant is going on in-game, like walking around without even shooting anything. It usually gets fixed by restarting Borderlands 2, but it happens again after 10 or so minutes of gameplay.

    Now I just resort to playing on my laptop since it's so frustrating to play on my rig now. But I really don't want to let my rig go to waste since I've invested quite a lot building it and keeping it alive for about three years.

    Any advice and suggestions on how to fix my problem(s) are greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.

    Edit: I turned on Afterburner and kept it running on a second monitor. I noticed that whenever I get the severe FPS drops, my GPU usage goes down from normal (>50%) to 0-1%. Did the GPU suddenly go ninja or something? I could really use a clue on what's really going on around here.
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2013
  2. Kaerar

    Kaerar Master Guru

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    GPU:
    RX Vega 64
    What drivers are you running? Personally I've found anything post 12.6 on the 4890 I have just causes FPS drops or general failure to run properly. Get 100+ in Black Ops 1 with 12.6 while getting about 20FPS with 13.1
     
  3. johnmcderp

    johnmcderp New Member

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    GPU:
    AMD Radeon HD4870 512MB
    I use 13.1. I'll try downgrading to 12.6 and see if that helps.
     
  4. johnmcderp

    johnmcderp New Member

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    GPU:
    AMD Radeon HD4870 512MB
    I know this is a shameless bump, but it's also an update to the problem anyway. I downgraded to 12.6 and the problem still persists. I turn off all forms of OC'ing for the GPU: disabled AMD Overdrived in CCC, and set the core clock in MSI Afterburner down to 500 MHz.

    Could this be a problem with the mobo's PCI-E port or something? The GPU messes up in Ubuntu as well (I dual boot it alongsize W7), as I can't run a Bitcoin miner anymore without everything freezing into a stop after ten minutes or so.
     

  5. Kaerar

    Kaerar Master Guru

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    GPU:
    RX Vega 64
    Well I have an update, after running 12.6 for a couple of days the GPU had a **** fit and refused to boot with the 12.6's (think this is more of a problem with the card though!). Only driver that would recognise the GPU after that was the 13.1 Legacy drivers. Oddly though I didn't get the massive FPS drop that I did with the normal 13.1's.

    http://support.amd.com/us/gpudownload/windows/legacy/Pages/legacy-radeonaiw-vista64.aspx


    TBH though the Card could just be past it's use by date, I know mine is, hence the wait for my 6950 currently being RMA'd...
     
  6. automaticman

    automaticman Master Guru

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    GPU:
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    Have you checked to make sure there's not something else going on with your PC besides the GPU? Try monitoring the CPU, RAM, and/or disk usage on your second monitor. See what the top process is when the issue happens.

    I ran into a problem where my machine would start the Windows Experience Index Benchmark once a week or so while I was playing a game and suddenly I'd be looking at a slideshow for 5 minutes.

    Also, take a look at the GPU clocks when the usage drops to low percentage. I wonder if something is pulling it out of 3d clocks. Any chance you are running in windowed mode?
     
  7. volkov956

    volkov956 Ancient Guru

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  8. johnmcderp

    johnmcderp New Member

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    GPU:
    AMD Radeon HD4870 512MB
    I monitored the CPU and RAM usage while playing and they appear to be normal, with all my CPU cores receiving normal load (80-98% per core) while playing. RAM usage doesn't look unusual either.

    About Windows running the Experience Index Benchmark automatically at set times, I'll try to look where it can be found and disabled so that I can see if that is the root of my problem. Though, Windows must be a huge dick if it decided to bog my computer down only when I'm playing something.

    GPU core clock goes down to the minimum (500 MHz) whenever the usage dips down, which is probably typical, most likely for power-saving/temperature control reasons inherent to the GPU. Usually I have it set to 700 MHz. Even tried disabling OC entirely (kept it at 500 MHz), but to no avail.

    I updated my motherboard's BIOS using MSI's LiveUpdate Utility but it did not solve my problem.

    That's strange, because my dad uses the same GPU (Powercolor Radeon HD4870 512MB) for his PC. My GPU is actually one half of his former Crossfire setup (both the same chipset and manufacturer), took it from him because my old 4870 broke down and he didn't really need Crossfire nor his PC either nowadays. I have already tried swapping the GPUs from both PCs and it didn't solve the problem either.

    Maybe this is an issue with the motherboard itself? Or the PSU? In either case anyway I can't really do anything besides build myself a new rig because this machine is quite old and replacing the mobo and/or PSU would be the equivalent of performing an engine overhaul on a dying 1970's car.
     
  9. holeindalip

    holeindalip Member

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    GPU:
    6970 crossfire
    Can you try different set of memory,I had a problem like this awhile ago. Changeling the ram solved this issue
     
  10. johnmcderp

    johnmcderp New Member

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    GPU:
    AMD Radeon HD4870 512MB
    I swapped my single 4GB DDR3 stick with 2x 2GB DDR2's (my mobo can accept either DDR2 or DDR2 DIMMs, but not both at the same time), but the problem still persists.
     

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