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Old 06-28-2008, 11:45 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default GeForce GX2/ IRQ

Hi all.

This is not really a "gaming" question, per se, but I am going to mention a game a lot of you have probably heard of: "Crysis".

I put together a new system back in early May of this year, 2008, and out of all the games I have, I can't get Crysis to run smoothly (very slow/ choppy/ stuttering frames, low FPS). So first, here's my systems specs:

Win XP Pro SP 3
Gigabyte Motherboard EP35C-DS3R
Intel Core2 Quad Core 9450 (2.66Ghz per core)
4GB RAM
BFG 9800 GX2 Nvidia Graphics card (1GB video RAM)
Sceptre Widescreen Monitor X20WG-Naga (native resolution of 1680 x 1050)
BFG Power Supply uinit of 650 watts
Western Digital 320GB SATA HDD
[On-board 7.1 sound by RealTek HD Audio]

What I have in my system more than meets Crysis's requirements, it surpasses it. Since May, I have been in contact with many tech support people, from the manufacturers/ publishers of Crysis, to BFG Tech support (for the GX2 card & the PSU), to Nvidia, and also my motherboard's company of Gigabyte. I've also posted messages on other forum message boards elsewhere on the 'Net.

So......I've had many suggestions and ideas sent my way, all of which have gotten me nowhere. There's the "usual" suggestions of: latest drivers for EVRYTHING in your system? Yes. This also includes latest BIOS and chipset drivers on the motherboard. Latest DirectX? Yes. Latest patch for the Crysis game? Yes.

It was even suggested to download and run a program many of you have probably heard of called "3D-Mark06". I myself didn't fully understand the on-line results, but when I did some checking elsewhere, it turns out I scored very poorly, considering the components I have in my system (I should have scored higher). If you want to check out some screenshots of my results, here's the web links:

http://i289.photobucket.com/albums/l...e/3D-Mark2.jpg

http://i289.photobucket.com/albums/l...e/3D-Mark1.jpg

I've been leaning toward the notion that I think it's a power supply issue. Before I purchased all of my components for my system, I had contacted BFG Tech and asked them if the Q9450 and their 650 watt PSU was going to be sufficient for their GX2 card, and they said yes. However, I found out something recently as far as power consumption goes for BOTH the GX2 AND the Q9450. I already knew ahead of time that the GX2 needed 580 watts; but then I found out just recently about the CPU; the Q9450 needs 65 watts.

The BFG 9800 GX2 needs 580 watts

580 plus 65 equals..........645 watts.

My BFG PSU has 650 watts.

That leaves 5 watts left over.

I have one SATA hard drive that needs power.

I have one DVD ROM drive that needs power.

I have one PCI add-in card that needs power.

I have some USB devices that are always plugged in that need power.

I have 5 case fans that need power.

You REALLY think that the 5 watts that are left over is enough to supply all of this?

BFG tech seems to still think that the PSU is plenty of power for all of this.

On a recent telephone call with BFG tech, I spoke to a woman who asked me to do this:

She said go to the Device Manager, click on View/ Resources by type, and then expand the content of Interrupt Request (IRQ). She asked what IRQ number(s) the GX2 card had assigned, and if there was anything else sharing this same IRQ number.

I told her the number and what was being shared with it, and one of the items sharing the same IRQ number is my on-board RealTek/ Gigabit Ethernet. This is not a separate add-in card, but rather is integrated on the motherboard.

And btw, the GX2 receives two IRQ numbers since it is 2 GPU's in one card.

Anyway, she said that THAT'S my problem right there, that the GX2 is sharing an IRQ number with the RealTek/ Gigabit Ethernet, that THIS is causing the conflict and is the explanation for my poor frame rates in Crysis and also the 3D Mark test. She said it would be OK if the GX2 was sharing an IRQ with, say, one of the "controllers".

So......anyone know if this is legitimate? Could something like this sharing of an IRQ really affect my system this much?

I've checked with some other people, and they said IRQ sharing may have been a problem YEARS ago, but not in today’s day and age.

BFG tech said it's not possible to try and "force" a different IRQ number on the GX2 card (that this was possible in the past but not now). They said I could try un-installing the video drivers, shut the system down, and then physically remove the graphics card from the PCI-E slot, wait a few moments (and perhaps clear the CMOS on the motherboard), and then re-insert the graphics card, boot the system, and then hope I'll get "lucky" and the system will assign a different IRQ number to the GX2 card.

Does this sound correct to you? This conflict of IRQ numbers with the GX2 card and your RealTek on-board item? Like the people I've checked with, this doesn't sound like something that should be a problem in today's day and age; it doesn't sound right to me either.

What do you think? Is it this sharing of the IRQ number? Do you think I could be correct with my idea of the power supply of 650 watts not being enough for EVERYTHING in my system?

Some games I have run very smooth with good frame rates, like Painkiller with its add-on pack, and even the recent Grid demo (the racing game). But those 3D-Mark benchmark results and the poor performance in Crysis have me concerned. I realize that Crysis is one of the "newer" games on the market and very demanding of a person's system (especially the graphics card), but those results of the 3D-Mark are very disconcerting.

But please, let me know what you think. PSU problem? Or, do you think it's what BFG Tech suggests, the issue with the shared IRQ number? Some people I've communicated with think the suggestion of the IRQ sharing is.......uhhhh......just a "line" they're handing me, that they don't really want to deal with this and possibly admit that their PSU of 650 watts is not enough to handle everything (like they said it would originally).

Any insights? Please let me know.

Thanks,
Pez
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Old 06-28-2008, 01:46 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: GeForce GX2/ IRQ

Hello,

Well there could be a few issues. First the 9000 series drivers are buugy at best right now. They do not work right on XP or Vista.

Next i see you have 1GB of Video RAM and 4GB of RAM. That makes 5GB. 32 Bit OS's can not utilize that. They can only recognize and utilize 3.5GB max. For info on that see this topic:

Difference Between 32 Bit (x86) and 64 Bit (x64)

3rd, a IRQ conflict could also not help you out. But if you had a IRQ Issue you would get a BSOD (Blue Screen of Death) at some point.

4th, i would have to agree on your guess that the PSU is underpowered. 5W is not enough to run everything you have. After taking into consideration the needs for the CPU and GPU.

Cheers,
Mak
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Old 06-28-2008, 01:48 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: GeForce GX2/ IRQ

You should also need to Enable SLI on the 9800gx2 or its going to perform really really badly.. (that could be one of your issues and check over the ones Mak said)

But that BFG PSU should have enough Amperage on the 12v Rails for you to be fine..
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Old 06-28-2008, 01:53 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: GeForce GX2/ IRQ

Crysis is extremely demanding, but your right.. those 3Dmark scores are terrible. Hopefully we can get one of the powers that be in here to help you out.

Silly question, but you are running 3Dmark on all stock settings, right?
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Old 06-28-2008, 01:55 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: GeForce GX2/ IRQ

Looking on Google and some forum history some GX2's seem to perform really badly or just not boot up period... Try to RMA that card.. and see if the same thing happens on the replacement
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Old 06-28-2008, 09:10 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: GeForce GX2/ IRQ

Mak213: I remember a little while back I had posted here, and you had helped out then by explaining about Win XP 32 bit not being able to "recognize" or "see" over a certain amount of RAM (3.5GB).

With the video drivers for the 9000 series, I've used the WHQL certified drivers, and then I even tried one of the Beta drivers out there; still, no better performance in Crysis.

And yes, I'm still leaning toward the power supply being insufficient for everything in my system (besides the obvious CPU & GPU).

And with BFG Tech's claim about an IRQ conflict.......think that's legitimate? Or do you think they just don't want to admit that their PSU could be falling short of the mark? Before I purchased everything, I had written to them asking if their 650 PSU was sufficient for the GX2 and my Quad Q9450....and they said "Yes"; hmmmm....now I'm beginning to wonder. An IRQ conflict? Do you think they're "reaching" with that one? Not wanting to own up with what's really wrong?

vernong1992: What do you mean by "Enable SLI on the 9800gx2"? I really don't have two graphics cards. You probably already know this, but the GX2 is two GPU's inside of one card (the card's really thick, kind of like a brick and it takes up two spaces on the motherboard). But what do you mean precisely by Enabling SLI? Is this something in the Nvidia Control Panel?

LeftEyeBlind: What do you mean by 3DMark on all stock settings? When I launched the program to test out my CPU & GPU, I just clicked the button on the interface to launch it to let it run, I didn't "adjust" any settings.

And vernong1992 again: The GX2 card works fine on some games of mine, including the recent demo of the racing game Grid; Grid is pretty demanding of both multi-core processor and graphics cards. But, Crysis and the 3DMark test results have me concerned. I should be able to go through both of these with flying colors.

I was on the YouTube web site, and there was a video there of someone playing Crysis with a 9800 GX2 card with settings on High and also a high resolution (something even past my native resolution of 1680 x 1050). I play mine at 1024 x 768 and I still get those crappy frames per second. So the person on this YouTube video is doing something right; excellent, vivid graphics and smooth gameplay during intense battle scenes.

Anything else? Dang this is frustrating.
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Old 06-28-2008, 09:13 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: GeForce GX2/ IRQ

Even though that 9800GX2 is not SLi, you need to enable SLI in the Forceware Utility, so that the cards work together in the game otherwise it just utilizes both GPU's on the PCB, otherwise it just works on one

Its in the NVidia Control Panel, just look a bit harder...

EDIT: after looking online some more.. I see that going into device manager and checking if it shows two 9800gx2's can tell you if your card is defective or not..

If it shows only one you should definitely RMA the card

on GPU-Z it should look like this:

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Old 06-28-2008, 10:04 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: GeForce GX2/ IRQ

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pezzy View Post
Mak213: I remember a little while back I had posted here, and you had helped out then by explaining about Win XP 32 bit not being able to "recognize" or "see" over a certain amount of RAM (3.5GB).

With the video drivers for the 9000 series, I've used the WHQL certified drivers, and then I even tried one of the Beta drivers out there; still, no better performance in Crysis.

And yes, I'm still leaning toward the power supply being insufficient for everything in my system (besides the obvious CPU & GPU).

And with BFG Tech's claim about an IRQ conflict.......think that's legitimate? Or do you think they just don't want to admit that their PSU could be falling short of the mark? Before I purchased everything, I had written to them asking if their 650 PSU was sufficient for the GX2 and my Quad Q9450....and they said "Yes"; hmmmm....now I'm beginning to wonder. An IRQ conflict? Do you think they're "reaching" with that one? Not wanting to own up with what's really wrong?

Pez
Hello Pez,

I can understand that you are using the certified drivers. But i have heard of nothing but issues from them on the OS side. Game not working, Drivers failing and causing BSOD's.

I think the IRQ claim could be legit only if you get BSOD's from it. If not i would lean toward PSU.

Cheers,
Mak
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Old 06-29-2008, 01:01 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: GeForce GX2/ IRQ

Hi again.

Mak213: I remember I used to get lots of BSOD's back when I had Windows98; I hated those evil blue screen thingies!!! I've had WindowsXP Pro now since about 2003; very stable operating system. For now I'm not going to go to Vista.

Anyway, I think you're right in that if it truly were a legit claim that there was an IRQ conflict, then there would be more obvious repercussions: More evidence would show up because of this conflict, more "unstableness" of the system or, the system not booting at all. I'm able to use the video card to watch movies on my DVD ROM drive, I can play many games with sharp clarity and smooth gameplay......but if I load up Crysis or that benchmark test of 3DMark......then things go downhill. If something were really wrong with the video card period, then I don't think things would work at all; it would be more "in your face" obvious. Meaning, no matter what I tried to load up or play I'd have graphical problems with it.

But since it only happens with the two "demanding" items I know of on my system - Crysis & 3DMark - then I think because of the demands these two programs put on the system, the graphics card can't meet it because it can't draw enough power......from the PSU. At least that makes sense to me!!

vernong1992: I did a search on that program of GPU-Z, and I think I downloaded the latest version of it. I ran it and things seem like they're OK unless I'm reading it wrong. Here; take a look at this screenshot and tell me what you think:

http://i289.photobucket.com/albums/l...ude/GPU-Z1.jpg

I don't want to RMA the video card because I don't think that's the problem. And I'm not saying there's anything necessarily wrong with the PSU.....just that there's not enough juice in it to power everything I've got. But I don't think BFG Tech wants to admit this because they told me it (the PSU) would be sufficient before I purchased the components (and after all, I'd be purchasing two items from their company: a GPU & a PSU....and the GPU being quite an expensive purchase).

I'd rather RMA the PSU, but on the phone they said they only RMA for the exact item in return; I want to "trade up" and was even willing to pay the difference between the 650 PSU and one of their more powerful models, like an 800 or 1,000 watt.

I've been trying to work through this since the first week of May of 2008. With the money I've invested in putting this new system together (besides the GPU & PSU), I should have been streaming with ease through graphical-intense applications by now.

Sheesh.
Pez
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Old 06-29-2008, 02:00 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: GeForce GX2/ IRQ

Hello Pez,

I would lean toward PSU. I seriously would. While you may haev enough 12V Rails like they said. You have a very demanding system. With the power requirements alone of hte GPU and CPU being so high having to power the rest of your system is causing issues. In the long run if the PSU is underpowered you will kill it faster and have to repalce it sooner.

Cheers,
Mak
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