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Massive FPS and GPU Usage Spikes In BF3

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
I recently added a second GTX 580 to my system. The two cards seem to be working decently well in most games/benchmarks, but Battlefield 3 is virtually unplayable, as FPS swings from ~60 down to a slideshow every 5 or 10 seconds and then back up to 60. The effect seems to get worse the longer the game is played and seems most noticeable in large, bright, open areas. Temps are good, I have an 850W PSU and an i5 2500K, so I'd be surprised if any component other than the graphics card were causing the problem. It looks like the GPU memory usage for each card is at 1500+ pretty much constantly, which is, of course, 100%, so that could be the problem. I deleted my old drivers and installed the latest drivers from NVIDIA's website, to no avail. I'm not sure what to do next. Could 3Gb of memory really not be enough for BF3?
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post #2 of 9
If the cards are 1.5 gb each you still have only 1.5gb, memory doesn't double. Sounds like you are having some horrendous micro-stutter, I've never had it THAT bad.
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post #3 of 9
There is or was a problem with SLI in BF3 after a patch that DICE put out. I had two 580s before getting my 590. Disable one 580 and you'll see that your usage is 99%. Then re-enable and relaunch game and you'll see it fluctuate again. Very annoying.
post #4 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by JTHMfreak View Post

If the cards are 1.5 gb each you still have only 1.5gb, memory doesn't double. Sounds like you are having some horrendous micro-stutter, I've never had it THAT bad.
Correct on the vram capacity thumb.gif

However ...

This is not microstutter. In fact, microstutter does not cause the FPS to change at all. That's because tools like fraps or whatnot do not have fps meters with sufficient granularity to be able to detect it. Basically if you can see a sudden FPS drop and then a quick return to normal ... that's just plain old stutter, not microstutter. I can explain why this is in more detail if you'd like thumb.gif

@OP ... does the issue go away if you keep all else the same and drop resolution a notch or two? This should drop memory usage to the point where it's not pegged out anymore. If you no longer get the same large drops (although a drop from 100 to 50 in this circumstance would be similar to dropping from 60 to 10fps at your current settings, so keep that in mind)? Does alt-tabbing out and back in have any effect? Or does this problem only start AFTER you've alt-tabbed out and back previously?
    
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post #5 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by brettjv View Post

Correct on the vram capacity thumb.gif
However ...
This is not microstutter. In fact, microstutter does not cause the FPS to drop at all. That's because tools like fraps or whatnot do not have fps meters with sufficient granularity to be able to detect it. Basically if you can see a sudden FPS drop and then a quick return to normal ... that's just plain old stutter, not microstutter. I can explain why this is in more detail if you'd like thumb.gif

Please do, I'm actually really interested
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post #6 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by JTHMfreak View Post

Please do, I'm actually really interested

Okay ... I'll oblige since you're really interested. I made a new thread to discuss the topic wink.gif

Edited by brettjv - 6/28/12 at 9:04am
    
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post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 
So I just turned down the texture setting, VRAM usage dropped to around 1300, and the stuttering stopped completely. I hadn't realized that A. SLI doesn't double VRAM and B. 1.5GB of VRAM isn't enough to cope with BF3's "Ultra" textures. I suppose what I encountered was not so much a bug as it was a technical limitation. Thanks for the input everyone.

Note: I'm playing at 2560X1600, you can get away with ultra textures on 1.5GB cards at lower resolutions.
Edited by Catalyst218 - 6/28/12 at 3:59pm
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post #8 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Catalyst218 View Post

So I just turned down the texture setting, VRAM usage dropped to around 1300, and the stuttering stopped completely. I hadn't realized that A. SLI doesn't double VRAM and B. 1.5GB of VRAM isn't enough to cope with BF3's "Ultra" textures. I suppose what I encountered was not so much a bug as it was a technical limitation. Thanks for the input everyone.
Note: I'm playing at 2560X1600, you can get away with ultra textures on 1.5GB cards at lower resolutions.

I can do ultra just fine on 19x12 though
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post #9 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Catalyst218 View Post

I recently added a second GTX 580 to my system. The two cards seem to be working decently well in most games/benchmarks, but Battlefield 3 is virtually unplayable, as FPS swings from ~60 down to a slideshow every 5 or 10 seconds and then back up to 60. The effect seems to get worse the longer the game is played and seems most noticeable in large, bright, open areas. Temps are good, I have an 850W PSU and an i5 2500K, so I'd be surprised if any component other than the graphics card were causing the problem. It looks like the GPU memory usage for each card is at 1500+ pretty much constantly, which is, of course, 100%, so that could be the problem. I deleted my old drivers and installed the latest drivers from NVIDIA's website, to no avail. I'm not sure what to do next. Could 3Gb of memory really not be enough for BF3?

Perhaps adding a third GTX 580 might help? It certainly did for my BF3 build.
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