Weird FPS fluctuation when gaming. Please enlighten me. - Techist - Tech Forum

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Old 10-28-2012, 04:21 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question Weird FPS fluctuation when gaming. Please enlighten me.

Forigve me if I'm in the wrong section. I'm sure someone here knows enough about computer to enlighten me.

It's about gaming, so here's the problem:

The FPS in every game I play on my 1 year-old laptop has a weird, continuous fluctuation starting from about 60 seconds into the game. When it goes weird, it drops from 40-something (depends on game) to 15-20 range for about 4 seconds or so, and then it rises back to normal 40+ for about 2 sec, and then it all repeats again, dropping to 15-20. It all happens even when you look at just one thing and never moves.

And it goes down and up and down, from smooth to laggy to smooth, again and again.

Fraps shows me the FPS change. And then I opened EVGA precision which helped monitor my GPU usage. The usage chart shows me a wave-like pattern (as shown in attachment).


But here's the funny thing. I play whatever game, tap out for some time, and go back in, there is no fluctuation anymore! Until, again, about 30-60 seconds later, fluctuation is all over again.

So is it about temperature? Not exactly. As on-screen display showed, in one game the fluctuation hangs at around 66-68C (minor temp drop coincide with FPS drop), but in another game it hangs at around 71-73C, and no fluctuation before that range.

Then another funny thing. In one game Skyrim, the fluctuation is there whenever I'm in the world cell, but when I go into a smaller cell (smaller area load) the fluctuation is gone. I checked carefully, the temperatures are about the same.


My laptop has a medium to low end GPU Geforce 520M (1GB VRAM I believe), with 6GB RAM, an i3 CPU.

I played graphics-intensive games like GTA4, Skyrim, Mass Effect 3, and even less intensive ones like NBA2k, but the same problem persists in every one of them.

I checked periodically and noticed that games never really exceeded 1.5GB system mem, and I theoretically have 6.

I admit I'm not an expert here. But if anyone knows what this fluctuation is called, or know the root of the problem, please tell me. Thanks. Really thanks. Anything at all.
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Old 10-28-2012, 05:48 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Weird FPS fluctuation when gaming. Please enlighten me.

Were those temps GPU or CPU? One or the other overheating and throttling could cause problems like that which is usually the case in laptops.
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Old 10-28-2012, 10:34 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Weird FPS fluctuation when gaming. Please enlighten me.

Those were GPU temp. You sure it's overheating? Could there be an easy, quick fix?

But thanks for reading. And thanks for at least helping.
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Old 10-28-2012, 10:45 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Weird FPS fluctuation when gaming. Please enlighten me.

If it is indeed overheating a simple can of air will do the trick to break the dust up that is clogging the CPU heatsink. Use coretemp and find out what your max temps are during gaming on the CPU.
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Old 10-29-2012, 12:17 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Weird FPS fluctuation when gaming. Please enlighten me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by PP Mguire View Post
If it is indeed overheating a simple can of air will do the trick to break the dust up that is clogging the CPU heatsink. Use coretemp and find out what your max temps are during gaming on the CPU.
Wait, pardon for being a noob here. How?

I tried to open the laptop case myself before but it's nothing like that of a desktop PC. The intricate design, the screw nails... I got to a point I dare not force it open, and I gave up.

Am I supposed to go back to the service department or something and ask them to open and clean it? I'm not even sure if there is something like that.

My GPU temp ranges from 68-75 during gaming. Haven't had a good software for CPU temp tracking yet.

Can you tell me more?
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Old 10-29-2012, 10:41 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Weird FPS fluctuation when gaming. Please enlighten me.

Like I said, use Coretemp, that is software designed to tell you the current and max/low temps of your CPU during usage.

Dust Off! is a brand of canned air specifically for use with computers. There will be a hole where the fan is and a hole where the heatsink is. If your temps are high you can get a can of this stuff and attach the little "straw" thing that comes with it to the end and stick it in the holes to blow the canned air through the channel. No need to take it apart. Just like this, except without an air compressor.

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Old 10-31-2012, 12:02 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Weird FPS fluctuation when gaming. Please enlighten me.

I just want to say thanks. I get an idea what the problem is.
Can't really tell what's what yet because I couldn't find cleaner like that as of now, really but thanks.
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Old 11-06-2012, 05:05 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Weird FPS fluctuation when gaming. Please enlighten me.

You can get the stuff almost anywhere.
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