Whether its older or newer hardware, usually stuttering, especially in games where the hardware shouldn't be stuttering is driver problems. At least in my experience, 9/10 times.
I have an 8800GT and I know for me personally, certain series of drivers cause me to stutter WAY MORE than others. I am using the 296.10 drivers currently as an example because the new 300 series have caused more stuttering (and almost a static sound when it DOES stutter) than these.
Sometimes new gfx drivers mess up dated cards because they give bug/feature priority to the new cards. So when they drop a new feature that the newer cards can handle and it creates bugs for everyone, they most likely are resolving the bugs for newer cards sooner than older ones.
Give a different set of graphics drivers a try, see if it helps any. Just make sure you uninstall the old ones well first, using driver cleaner pro and what have you.
I have a creative sound card too, I dont use onboard. Drivers for those too can sometimes cause stuttering on my system just the same as the gfx drivers, although the current ones have seemed to resolve the problem. And for me when I install the DanielK or KX project drivers, supposedly ones taht cause LESS stutters/bugs, I actually have more (although the 2 ZS i have is still not terrible and plays my meh surround sound pretty nicely).
In fact, the most recent stutter/static issue I had in skyrim, I just resolved the past week, through a combination of switching down to the 296.10 series of nvidia. This fixed the stuttering 99% of it. The last bit was the stutter i would get when the sound card would make a static'-ey sound instead of doing an accurate sound such as a fire crackling (instead it would be static-ey, and cause a stutter). Through some crazy uninstalling/reinstalling both the kx project a few times, then finally ending up going wtih creatives official drivers, all my issues are gone.
I'm willing to be its a driver issue and you just need to find a good combo of drivers for your system. Everyones specific combination of hardware/software has preferences for different versions.
And even if you are using that newer 6950 card? I'd still wager its a drivers problem.
Edited by kmac20 - 7/21/12 at 4:01pm