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)
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:
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.