"Unusual" hardware upgrade boosted my performance.

Discussion in 'General Hardware' started by NomadAssassin, Jul 20, 2015.

  1. NomadAssassin

    NomadAssassin Master Guru

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    So for most of you this would come as a surprise or wont believe at all but it's a fact. You know if you are old enough you heard that by getting a dedicated sound card your fps in games increase back in 2000 and something when CPU's were single and dual core. Now ask anyone and he is going to say CPU's like i5 and i7 nowdays are powerful enough not to be affected by the processing of some sound. Yeah but I found out it's complete bull. This thing is still fact in 2015.
    Assassin's Creed Unity had relatively poor performance on my machine around 25-30fps and there is a certain spot around Notre Dame where I use as a benchmark of my own. In before I get my Sound Blaster Z audio processing unit the game would fall in to 21-22 fps. Well guess what with this sound card (and will assume with ANY sound card) the fps is now 29. But wait that is not all. In most places now I enjoy 35-40 fps which for AC is pretty damn playable and smooth with X360 controller.

    I did test again by reverting to the integrated realtek codec and boom massive drop in fps in EVERY game. Now you might say it's something to do with drivers and such but no it's not. Did another test but with no audio at all. Everything disabled SBZ and Realtek. Absolutely the same results as I was running SBZ.

    I'm extremely happy with my purchase of sound processing device as this. Now think twice before you say dedicated cards are useless. The audio DOES affect the CPU performance at least it does on my i5. Maybe if you get 800$ CPU and equally expensive GPU you wont notice but I do. Funny no one does Sound Card FPS benchmarks on the internet today. What a shame.
     
  2. cyclone3d

    cyclone3d Master Guru

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    Haven't thought about it much lately, but I wonder if this is why people with similar hardware to mine seem to have much more problems performance-wise in some games.

    But everybody just keeps parroting that audio hardware acceleration is dead.

    How is a pretty much pure software solution going to perform anywhere near what a dedicated hardware solution will?
     
  3. biggerx

    biggerx Ancient Guru

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    Anecdotal evidence is anecdotal. Have you seen some of the testing and results with graphs and info and stuff some of the guys do on this site?
     
  4. NomadAssassin

    NomadAssassin Master Guru

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    No I have not. Gif link. I'd appreciate it thanks.
     

  5. Darkest

    Darkest Ancient Guru

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    Chances are you had some sort of driver conflict or issue with your on board sound. That said, AC: Unity is a notoriously buggy game. Have you tested to see if there's a difference in anything else?

    Your soundcard isn't magically boosting your FPS, that's for certain.
     
  6. NomadAssassin

    NomadAssassin Master Guru

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    Idk as I said I'm noticing boost in all of my games. I remember having really solid lagging, stuttering and low framerate in general on my old PC not this one, while playing certain games. I remember disabling the onboard audio completely from the bios made the games that let me launch them with no audio running normal and playable. The games were Oblivion, Arkham City and I think GRAW 2. Look driver or hardware (as I presume), onboard sound is crap and gives only problems.

    The card can't boost anything yes. It's the CPU that boosts the damn thing. The audio processing steals cycles. When the sound card deals with the sound CPU has nothing else to do but calculate the graphics or whatever it does in the game physics, animation etc.
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2015
  7. Shinzok

    Shinzok Member

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    If i may ask (this may sound weird but i found a review in Dutch about something that might be related to your pc performing better with seperate audio)

    Do you know what motherboard revision you have. ie. 1.0 or 2.0

    Cause if 2.0 it could be that Gigabyte has skimped on the components of the motherboard.

    Let me include the link to the article
    https://translate.google.com/transl...es-presteren-merkbaar-verschillend&edit-text=

    I hope you don't mind but i've taken the liberty to include the link so that it is translated from dutch to english by google translate.
     
  8. NomadAssassin

    NomadAssassin Master Guru

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    It's 2.0 indeed. God damn it...
     
  9. cyclone3d

    cyclone3d Master Guru

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    Does the Rev 2.0 board use a different sound driver? If the specs are the same and the driver is the same, it should perform exactly the same, even if it is a different revision of the audio chip.

    As for the rest of the board, that is messed up.

    The thing about the cheap onboard audio codecs is that they are just that.. cheap.

    Depending on the game, it could very well make a difference if the game needs more CPU than your system can give it when just using the onboard sound.
     
  10. mbk1969

    mbk1969 Ancient Guru

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    Well, when you change the drivers for videocard you can expect possible changes in performance. Practically the same story is with drivers for any hardware component in PC.
    I mean this is not (most probably) because you swapped to dedicated soundcard because soundcard on the MB is dedicated too - it is not in CPU, it is connected to PCI-E bus.

    But in case dedicated card implements more DirectX (or whatever API is used in game) features in hardware than built-in one - yes, such swap is actual upgrade (like say swap from GTX 670 to GTX 970).
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2015

  11. NomadAssassin

    NomadAssassin Master Guru

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    I aways thought that the onboard audio is just a codec that uses the CPU (e.g. my i5 4590) for the processing and that the dedicated sound cards use their own CPU. Idk im not going to pretend I know anything im a complete noob in this area :bonk:
     
  12. thatguy91

    thatguy91 Ancient Guru

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    Tge B85 chipset is really business orientated, and the boards are made with that in mind too. It may not be the same with a higher end board with Realtek ALC1150, for example.
     
  13. zimzoid

    zimzoid Maha Guru

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    I recently sold my sb-z card and am using my realtek 1150 on my Asus rampage iv black edition motherboard and have noticed no change in performance, the card was in between my sli 980ti affecting cooling even the sound quality has not been that much of a downgrade.
     
  14. thatguy91

    thatguy91 Ancient Guru

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    Your board is much higher end than the B85 of the OP, and not only that it's actually designed with gaming in mind :). So that doesn't necessarily surprise me. Of course, the difference could be completely unrelated to the board (the board is likely non-gaming orientated since the chipset isn't), but the gaming/non-gaming point is valid!
     
  15. mbk1969

    mbk1969 Ancient Guru

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    Well, that was the case with AC97 codecs. But HDA codecs are more advanced (more dedicated).
     

  16. mbk1969

    mbk1969 Ancient Guru

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    AC97:
    HDA:
    So AC97 controller is placed in southbridge (chipset). And HDA controller is dedicated PCI-X controller. Big difference.
     
  17. NomadAssassin

    NomadAssassin Master Guru

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    Nice man good to know. Thanks.
     
  18. Twiddles

    Twiddles Maha Guru

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    I've been tinkering with hardware for quite some time and yeah I remember the time when I was happy when I got my soundcard because it relieved the CPU a bit in UT :D Now IIRC: In the past the audio was done via PCI and the PCI mem space, and that did require some CPU power IIRC. Same thing could still apply if it uses a PCIe lane. So the average MP3 would be unnoticeable but a more complex 7.1 high bitrate etc etc may require a lot more CPU power. Maybe I'll do some more research when I get home.
     

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