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Finally Brought Down - 3870's no more

post #1 of 18
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So a while back (nearly 4 years now) you kind folks helped me build the rig that I have and am still using. It is in my sig. Recently, I bought both Battlefield 3 and Skyrim, neither of which are performing very well. Battlefield 3 gives me 30+ FPS rather consistently on medium but experiences periodic drops in FPS and sound stuttering. Skyrim reads my settings at Low so I have not even tried playing that yet.

The 8400 is running at 3.6mhz @ 1.24V
The 3870's are overclocked using CCC Overdrive
Card 1 at 806mhz/1156mhz
Card 2 at 845mhz/1196mhz

These settings passed a 14 hour Prime95 session and got 3dMark06 scores of 15900.

So do we think the cards are causing the bottleneck at this point or is there something else I am missing? Let me know what other information could be helpful.
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My Rig
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post #2 of 18
Damn, the resemblance to my Media Rig is scary, although Im using only one 3870 on it.

And Yes that system is pretty dated now, Prehistoric by BF3 Standards.

It's a combination of both your CPU and GPU, and well everything else bottlenecking the game.

Funny a few weeks ago just for fun I swapped my 3870 into my main 980X rig.... the card could only play it at low settings with 15-30 fps everything turned off. (I don't play newer games on my media rig)

So at this point your best option would be to build a new SB 2500k build from the ground up.
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T-980X
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post #3 of 18
Well, considering you have a Maximus Formula already (a damn good X38 board I might add), you might want to think about trying to find a Q9550 or Q9650, and pair it with a couple 6870's if you don't feel like upgrading the platform alone. I feel a Q9550 paired with the 6870's should be able to run BF3 on a mix of High / Ultra no problem (minus MSAA of course).

Sad to say, but a dual core processor simply doesn't have the oomph that it once did, and those 3870's in crossfire are barely cranking out the GPU horsepower of a single 4870.

So as I said, either upgrade your 775 gear, or look into building a Sandy Bridge setup. New GPU's are a requirement regardless.
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Pwnz0r Radley IV
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post #4 of 18
Are you willing to upgrade to a new build? If so what's your budget, this would be a good indicator for us on where to start on suggestions.
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post #5 of 18
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post #6 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by adjas View Post

this is the best bang for your buck

That's cool and all, but your overlooking the fact that his E8400 will severely bottleneck that card, and BF3 as well.

BF3 and 90% of all these newer games absolutely need a decent QUAD core to plow through these games with any card.
T-980X
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post #7 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kosai View Post

That's cool and all, but your overlooking the fact that his E8400 will severely bottleneck that card, and BF3 as well.
BF3 and 90% of all these newer games absolutely need a decent QUAD core to plow through these games with any card.

I would agree on BF3, but that's an outlier, being that it's one of the few games out there that legitimately strongly benefits from a quad even at lower FPS levels, and is fairly crippled by only having a dualie.

But games like that are few and far between (not even remotely near 90%), and most games (in fact I'd say darn near anything that isn't GTAIV, BFBC2 and BF3, basically) coming out even today (Skyrim, for example) will run perfectly adequately on that chip (as long as it's nicely OC'd), with only a very small loss of FPS vs a 2600K@5.0GHz, especially if you're not going to run it on low settings so that it will run at 200FPS.

It's good to remember that the worst-case scenario when you increase the probability of encountering a CPU bottleneck by your GPU upgrade is that you won't get any higher FPS than you do now ... but you'll be able to achieve the same FPS with much higher IQ settings. The vast majority of the time though you'll get both higher FPS and higher IQ settings when you do a GPU upgrade ... unless your existing CPU is SUPER FAR below the quality of your GPU(s). Which is not the case w/an e8400 and single 5870.
Edited by brettjv - 12/28/11 at 11:35pm
    
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post #8 of 18
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post #9 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by brettjv View Post

The vast majority of the time though you'll get both higher FPS and higher IQ settings when you do a GPU upgrade ... unless your existing CPU is SUPER FAR below the quality of your GPU(s). Which is not the case w/an e8400 and single 5870.

But it is, check my media rig... I'm not talking out my ass here. That was my gaming rig for a few years, and yeah I had multiple GPU's in that rig including a 5870 and saw a WHOPPING bottleneck on every game except what MW2?

Double check the OP he wants to play BF3, bottom line that E8400 just doesn't cut it no matter what you say.

Adding a 5870 to that E8400 would be like adding sprinkles on a turd.
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post #10 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kosai View Post

But it is, check my media rig... I'm not talking out my ass here. That was my gaming rig for a few years, and yeah I had multiple GPU's in that rig including a 5870 and saw a WHOPPING bottleneck on every game except what MW2?
Double check the OP he wants to play BF3, bottom line that E8400 just doesn't cut it no matter what you say.
Adding a 5870 to that E8400 would be like adding sprinkles on a turd.

This.

Dont forget: the Xbox 360 GPU was based on the X1900, so you should be able to get by with your 2 3870s at some setting. But your CPU is underpowered for those games: BF3 is just demanding, and Skyrim's buggy code eats CPU like no tomorrow.

But before you upgrade, try this
http://www.skyrimnexus.com/downloads/file.php?id=4387
Bruce
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