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4870 1GB, getting odd performance.

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DBorg1

New Member
Joined
Nov 22, 2009
My specs:

Windows XP SP3
2.9 ghz Duo-Core2
2gb RAM
1gb ATI Radeon 4870
575Watt PSU (cheapo $30 one with 25A on 12v rail)

Problem:

I am heavily underperforming while playing games such as Dead Space or even HL2. In HL2, I can run max settings and only get 30 FPS at best. In Dead Space, I get 20 FPS. And yes, V-Sync is turned off in both games.

The strange thing is, I get the exact same FPS regardless of what settings I use (whether it be max settings or lowest settings). So I can run at 640x480 at all low on HL2, and get some crappy performance.

And the really strange thing is, I get 30 FPS on Crysis on all high with 2xAA, 40+ FPS on Fallout 3 maxed out, and 30-50 FPS on CoD:MW2 maxed out.

And I know it isn't my CPU or RAM, because when I had my old videocard (GeForce8600GTS), I had BETTER performance than the 4870 with HL2, far far better.

The videocard runs 70c on idle and 80c under load (a little less with fans at 100%), and I'm not sure why its so hot, I have the case open and adequate fanning.

And I'm not an idiot, I have all the latest drivers, no viruses, theres no old graphics drivers (because I did a complete reformat after installing this new vid card), no crazy game settings that are limiting my FPS, etc..

Though, I suspect my problem is my PSU. Ever since I installed the 4870, occasionally when I turn on my computer, the display won't turn on and it'll give me continuous short beeps until I turn it off. But sometimes, it'll boot up like normal and run perfectly fine. I'm not sure what the cause of this is, but I'm thinking somehow my PSU isn't delivering enough power to my whole computer on some boots.

So what do you guys think? New PSU or what?
 

TheGame240

Member
Joined
Oct 23, 2002
Location
Muscle Shoals, AL
It almost sounds like the card isn't going into 3d clock mode. Try firing up furmark or another 3d program you can run in Windowed mode and see if the clocks are changing. It could be that insufficient voltage on the 12v rail is keeping the card from changing clocks. I know they'll throttle when they overheat, but I have no clue if lack of voltage would cause similar issues.
 
OP
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DBorg1

New Member
Joined
Nov 22, 2009
I'm running the program, but I'm not sure what you're wanting me to check here? I don't even know what 3d clock mode is.
 

theflyingrat

Member
Joined
Apr 20, 2001
Location
St. Paul, MN, USA
Open the Catalyst Control Center. Under the "ATI Overdrive" drop-down selection, it should state your current clock speeds. In 2D mode (when nothing is running) it'll be clocked way down - my HD 4830 clocks down to something like 160 core and 400 memory or such. Yours shouldn't be too much different.

Now, start Furmark or another 3D testing app that you can run in windowed mode. Once it starts, you should see those clock speeds under "Current Values" in the CCC window jump up to their set operating speeds. If this doesn't happen, it's definitely your issue, and the power supply is a likely culprit for that not happening. But it's not impossible that it's just a b0rked video card anyway...

If your idle is 70C, something is most definitely wrong to begin with, though. Any HD 4xxx series card shouldn't idle at much more than 50C in a pretty warm case, due to the automatic clock-down routine. 80C at load is very acceptable, but one has to wonder about thoise idle temps...
 
OP
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DBorg1

New Member
Joined
Nov 22, 2009
Strange. It says my current clock speed is constantly 750 mhz, and it lists my GPU activity under CCC as 99+%, even though I'm not running anything at all. Restarted my comp, and it still says that. I even looked at GPU-Z, and it said my GPU load was 100%. Maybe that's why it's so hot all the time?

But I'm not running anything at all, I don't know what the deal would be.
 

Max47

Member
Joined
Jan 5, 2004
Location
Indiana, US
I know u said you had the latest drivers, but have you tried a clean re-install? If not I would uninstall in windows then use CCleaner and Driver Sweeper in safe mode then reboot and install a new download of the driver. If that didn't clear it up I would contact the manufacturer and see about an RMA.
 
OP
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DBorg1

New Member
Joined
Nov 22, 2009
Yep, that's my PSU.

Alright I'm buying a new PSU, and I'm returning the 4870, and getting a 4890 instead.
 

Trap05

Member
Joined
Jan 8, 2005
Do what you wish but I'd try the power supply first and see if that solves your problems. Get a quality unit with the proper plugs for your 4870...ie 2 6-pin or 1-8pin and 1-6pin.
 

SuperDave1685

Member
Joined
Jul 22, 2002
Location
USMC.. OoRah!!
Good decision man. I'm glad you decided to get a good, quality unit. Too many people just don't understand the importance of a good power supply. Let us know how things go once you're back up and running!
 

fanaticati

Registered
Joined
Dec 6, 2009
Location
georgia
i have the same config only psu is 600w 12v~26a and i am getting same issue as-----Ever since I installed the 4870, occasionally when I turn on my computer, the display won't turn on and it'll give me continuous short beeps until I turn it off. But sometimes, it'll boot up like normal and run perfectly fine. I'm not sure what the cause of this is, but I'm thinking somehow my PSU isn't delivering enough power to my whole computer on some boots.--- and if you-author of thread if found a solution please post~ pleaseeeeeeeeeeeeeeee