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New computer - same problem! Driving me insane

Alexthekiwi asked
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2010-04-25
Hey Guys

I would really appreciate your help with this problem. I have just built a computer for the following specs:

AMD AM2 Athlon X2 Dual Core 4200
Asus nForce4 SLI M2N4-SLI
2gig DDR2 533 Adata / Hynix
Seagate 250gb Sata2 3gb 7200.9rpm
Leadtek 7950GT 512mb PCI-E
Win XP pro

Ok so this is a brand new system which, IMO, be a pretty freaking fast system. But alas I am having the same HL2/DOOM 3 problem that I had with my last system.

The problem is that I getting major FPS drops in random areas of maps. For the most part the HL2 will run between 80-100fps on full graphics and 1280x1024 resolution. Of course in a tunnel etc it will be like 150-200FPS but when it comes to an outside map, like say the airboat at the start of HL2 I will only get low 40s for those maps.... surely this is not acceptable with my kind of specs??? what is going on?

My last computer had the same problem.... it's specs were:

AthlonXP 2400+
1gig DDR400 ram
Geforce 6800GT 256
7200rpm 120 gig HD

I mean, that pc was two years ago, and when HL2 first came out it would run the game almost the same as this PC.

What the hell is going on? SURELY my PC should be smoking fast in any area of HL2???

Also, doom 3 will do much the same. All throughout doom3 there are rooms with moving machinary and lights etc, well periodically and somewhat randomly the frames will drop to like 40fps from say around 80 or 90 and it seems like nothing in the scene I am looking at is really different from previous rooms with the same sort of stuff? so it's nothing obviously causing the drop...

The final example of this that bothers me greatly is in lost coast, right at the end of the map when you blow up the chopper, well I walk to the edge of the platform and look straight down to the water and chopper carnage below... it drops down to 27FPS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I have the graphics at max and res at 1280x1024... my computer should be all over that right???

There must be somthing, to fix this, someone out there in the community that has had this same problem?? I thought it was just my old computer. I got so pissed at it that I sold the old beast and gave up gaming for 2 years... but I thought since I had the money to build a new beast that my HL2/DM3 problems would be long gone...

please guys I need a saviour!
Watch Question

Top Expert 2012

Have you changed the video drivers?  They can play a big role in how fast the game feels.



yup, video drivers, directX, are all up to date...


In Half Life 2 Lost Coast, at the bit I mentioned where I am looking down at the sea where I just blew up the chopper, I tried dropping all graphical settings to the lowest they can go, including setting the res to 640 *480 the framerate doesn’t change one bit - that is crazy!
Top Expert 2012
Are you able to monitor cpu usage?  Changing the resolution lower and not seeing an improvement in framerates usually means you are cpu constrained.  Some games have a dual core patch: http://www.amdzone.com/modules.php?op=modload&name=Sections&file=index&req=printpage&artid=217

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Hey callandor, I have tried the AMD dual core patch.... no change though.

When I get home I will try and monitor the cpu usage in that one scene in Lost Coast where it is 27fps. if the CPU load for HL2 is high when I run it does it mean the CPU is stuggling?

"but we are not done with the game yet as some conflicts with Nvidia drivers were found." that is an interesting comment. I am thinking about selling my new video card...  and trying an ATI one. what do you guys think?
Top Expert 2012

>if the CPU load for HL2 is high when I run it does it mean the CPU is stuggling?

Yes - you have sufficient cpu power that it should not be happening at all.  Even a game that scales with the processor like BF2 does not hit 100% with my Athlon64 X2 3800.  A problem in the game is a distinct possibility - there are patches and bugfixes all the time.


Hey again, I just tried playing Lost Coast and looking at the usage, it's around 55-65%. That is about right aye?

What do you think about switching to Core 2 Duo? I am just so sick of this. Everyone else I know has no problems with HL2/Doom3 etc, and neither should I so I am really considering sell my new CPU and motherboard and going core 2 duo
Top Expert 2012

That cpu usage looks about right.  While I have both an Athlon64 X2 3800 and a Core2 Duo E6600, I don't think it will solve your problem because you aren't stressing the cpu.  Have you tried a standard benchmark to see if this behavior is consistent with your hardware, and not just HL2?  3DMark05 is a good test for determining this, and you should be able to compare against other systems.
Have you tried removing drivers via Ctrl-Alt-Delete, have the minimun necessary and then try the application.  It could be that you have a conflict that prevents the application from working.

Bring  your hardware accelerator to high if its not, if its set to high bring it down 1 level. To do this go to: control panel ---> display ---> settings ---> advance ---> troubleshoot

If all else fails call the software company and/or go to their website and see if your issue is posted. you might want to run dxdiag and save this file and submit it to the software company technical support


have simply changed to core 2 duo and has made a world of difference for the AMD man haha thanks guys
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