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Video Card Bottlenecked?


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#1 Sterling14

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Posted 10 November 2007 - 08:30 AM

I've had my new build up and running for about 10 days now, and I've been thinking maybe my graphics card is getting bottlenecked. It's been playing games real well for me, but I want maximum performance. I have an ATI X1900GT, got it on newegg for a really good deal! Anyways, do you think this old Pentium 4, 630, 3.0ghz is bottlenecking it? I'm going to upgrade to a core 2 duo or maybe even the Q6600, but I don't really have the money to now. I'm asking this because when looking at benchmarks for CPU's on tomshardware, this processor gets like 40-50FPS in one game (I forget which game I did) compared to the core 2 duo's which were all doubling that. I know that bottlenecking works out when the graphics card is loading things faster then the processor and has to wait for the processor to catch up (or vice versa). Any help is appreciated!
"I think there is a world market for maybe five computers." - Thomas Watson, Chairman of IBM, 1943

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#2 DaChew

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Posted 10 November 2007 - 09:04 AM

your best option would be to overclock your cpu if your motherboard and HSF can handle it, your P4 would still do OK in games that aren't optimized for dual threads, even after you upgrade to a core 2 duo your memory would probably be the bottleneck

your video card is mid level now and there's no point in upgrading very much

it's all about "balance in the force"

the FPS ratrace is an expensive habit, staying a year behind is quite cost effective
Chewy

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#3 Sterling14

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Posted 10 November 2007 - 09:11 AM

Thanks for the reply! I was looking to overclock, but without touching the voltages. I didn't know if it would really be that great of an improvement, even if I went up to like 3.4-3.5ghz. Also, I have DDR2 800mhz memory. I planned for the future with my XFX nvidia 650i motherboard. I got this all so I could upgrade quite a bit in the future.

EDIT: I overclocked to about 3.2ghz and its going pretty well. I don't know how hot is too hot, but my CPU is averaging around 50C (it was averaging about 48C before I overclocked). I'm using Speedfan, and the nvidia utility that came with my motherboard, and they're are usually within 1 degree of each other. Is this too hot? I was thinking maybe I should adjust my fans because all my fans are exhaust. The heatsink fan is blowing out a vent on the side of my case, the back fan is blowing out, and the top is blowing out too. Should I set the back to blow in? I might reapply thermal paste, I don't think I did that great of a job to begin with.

Edited by Sterling14, 10 November 2007 - 10:15 AM.

"I think there is a world market for maybe five computers." - Thomas Watson, Chairman of IBM, 1943

#4 Robert Isbell

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Posted 10 November 2007 - 11:34 AM

just be forwarned that you're now shortening the lifespan of all the components in the case and are more susceptible to damage from spikes, etc..

#5 DaChew

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Posted 10 November 2007 - 01:47 PM

use everest, cpuid and coretemp to monitor the settings of your overclock, that cpu is designed to run up to 85C under heavy load, don't go that high

by all means reseat the cpu HSF with a thin layer of premium paste

make sure your internal case temp/mobo stays no more than 10C above room temp

as long as you are just OC'ing the cpu and not the mobo and ram you should be fine

go slow and monitor and don't push it too far, know every setting in your bios, especially if you have to reset cmos

mine has been running almost 2 years at 25-40% overclock
Chewy

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#6 Sneakycyber

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Posted 10 November 2007 - 03:36 PM

While only a mild OC celeron (my ram is prety lame) I have been running it at 105% for the past 6 months with no problems.

Chad Mockensturm 

Systems and Network Engineer

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