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  1. #1
    Joined
    May 2015
    Posts
    16

    CPU Bottleneck??

    This link shows my current build that I have. It's a random assortment of different parts that I have purchased, or have been gifted to me. I feel like my CPU is very underpowered for what I want in gaming, and wanted to hear other peoples opinions. What do you think?

    http://pcpartpicker.com/p/DTKFhM

    I was thinking about getting the AMF FX-8350 to replace my current one.

  2. #2
    Joined
    May 2015
    Posts
    16

    Re: CPU Bottleneck??

    My apologies, make that an AMD FX-8350, not AMF.

  3. #3
    Joined
    May 2001
    Posts
    11,534

    Re: CPU Bottleneck??

    Quote Originally Posted by CalebMcCarty View Post
    This link shows my current build that I have. It's a random assortment of different parts that I have purchased, or have been gifted to me. I feel like my CPU is very underpowered for what I want in gaming, and wanted to hear other peoples opinions. What do you think?

    http://pcpartpicker.com/p/DTKFhM

    I was thinking about getting the AMF FX-8350 to replace my current one.
    That CPU and do more research on power supplies. Power supplies are rated at their performance for a fixed (but variable only by what the manufacturer deems "appropriate") temperature in celcius. This has a direct relation to the quality and true regulation at load and more realistic temperatures. It doesn't matter if its 700W and someone told you that was overkill. What matters is what that unit really does when you're using it, and how long it can take intensive gaming or other stressful situations before its limitations cause stability issues. Generic manufacturers make you dig for that information, or they present it in a murky fashion which doesn't nail down the precise temperature they tested the maximum "stable" output of. Quality manufacturers are proud of it, so they list it in their specifications. I have seen name brand ones even in the past even use this same loop-hole to sell underpowered units. Nothing ever runs at 25C in the real world. I don't know what that unit qualified at. If it is in fact not listed, is unclear if the rated power sustains up to the max temperature, or listed at an unrealistically low temp. then it is immediately unacceptable. You can reliably assume if a temperature corner was cut, then so were other things. Now you know what I look for. To really narrow down what's going on in that front: The best power supply reviews I've ever seen were done on PCPer.com. You can find them under Reviews>Cases and Cooling. I've been shocked a couple times....
    ...Does anybody else feel like Congress simply bailed themselves out? Isn't that what they really mean by a bailout?

  4. #4
    Joined
    May 2015
    Posts
    16

    Re: CPU Bottleneck??

    Quote Originally Posted by notdrugged View Post
    That CPU and do more research on power supplies. Power supplies are rated at their performance for a fixed (but variable only by what the manufacturer deems "appropriate") temperature in celcius. This has a direct relation to the quality and true regulation at load and more realistic temperatures. It doesn't matter if its 700W and someone told you that was overkill. What matters is what that unit really does when you're using it, and how long it can take intensive gaming or other stressful situations before its limitations cause stability issues. Generic manufacturers make you dig for that information, or they present it in a murky fashion which doesn't nail down the precise temperature they tested the maximum "stable" output of. Quality manufacturers are proud of it, so they list it in their specifications. I have seen name brand ones even in the past even use this same loop-hole to sell underpowered units. Nothing ever runs at 25C in the real world. I don't know what that unit qualified at. If it is in fact not listed, is unclear if the rated power sustains up to the max temperature, or listed at an unrealistically low temp. then it is immediately unacceptable. You can reliably assume if a temperature corner was cut, then so were other things. Now you know what I look for. To really narrow down what's going on in that front: The best power supply reviews I've ever seen were done on PCPer.com. You can find them under Reviews>Cases and Cooling. I've been shocked a couple times....
    Maybe I should clarify. I'm not concerned about the lack of power getting to my CPU. I'm thinking that my current CPU is not powerful enough to handle the games that I desire to play at a reasonable frame rate. I feel like my FX-4300 is bottlenecking my 280x's capabilities, and want to know if that is really what is going on.

  5. #5
    Joined
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Janesville, Wi
    Posts
    6,453

    Re: CPU Bottleneck??

    Quote Originally Posted by CalebMcCarty View Post
    Maybe I should clarify. I'm not concerned about the lack of power getting to my CPU. I'm thinking that my current CPU is not powerful enough to handle the games that I desire to play at a reasonable frame rate. I feel like my FX-4300 is bottlenecking my 280x's capabilities, and want to know if that is really what is going on.
    Welcome to the forums.

    I understand the "feel" thing, but is the processor actually bottle-necking the GPU ?

    Are you overclocked ?

    Are you monitoring CPU utilization in some way ?

    Are you monitoring GPU utilization ?

    Specifically what games are you playing that make you feel the processor is holding you back ?


  6. #6
    Joined
    May 2015
    Posts
    16

    Re: CPU Bottleneck??

    Quote Originally Posted by mmettin View Post
    Welcome to the forums.

    I understand the "feel" thing, but is the processor actually bottle-necking the GPU ?

    Are you overclocked ?

    Are you monitoring CPU utilization in some way ?

    Are you monitoring GPU utilization ?

    Specifically what games are you playing that make you feel the processor is holding you back ?
    Thank you!

    I have overclocked the CPU to 4.0 Ghz, but when I do, my games don't run properly. They fail to launch. I have also mildly OC'd my GPU, but was unable to stabilize it much more than 100 mhz above its standard base clock. I use CPU-Z, GPU-Z, and MSI Afterburner to monitor usage. I am using up to 100% of 3 of my CPU's cores, with the 4th ranging from %10-%70 or so. I haven't kept my eye on those readouts a lot as of late.

    I am currently playing Witcher 3 with all graphics settings at the lowest possible, averaging a frame rate of about 39-42 fps. Also I play Far Cry 4, Skyrim, Metro LL, Tomb Raider, and Sniper Elite 3. I would much prefer to get a frame rate of 45+ at minimum at very high settings on whatever I play.

  7. #7
    Joined
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Janesville, Wi
    Posts
    6,453

    Re: CPU Bottleneck??

    Quote Originally Posted by CalebMcCarty View Post
    Thank you!

    I have overclocked the CPU to 4.0 Ghz, but when I do, my games don't run properly. They fail to launch. I have also mildly OC'd my GPU, but was unable to stabilize it much more than 100 mhz above its standard base clock. I use CPU-Z, GPU-Z, and MSI Afterburner to monitor usage. I am using up to 100% of 3 of my CPU's cores, with the 4th ranging from %10-%70 or so. I haven't kept my eye on those readouts a lot as of late.

    I am currently playing Witcher 3 with all graphics settings at the lowest possible, averaging a frame rate of about 39-42 fps. Also I play Far Cry 4, Skyrim, Metro LL, Tomb Raider, and Sniper Elite 3. I would much prefer to get a frame rate of 45+ at minimum at very high settings on whatever I play.
    What resolution are you running ?


  8. #8
    Joined
    May 2015
    Posts
    16

    Re: CPU Bottleneck??

    Quote Originally Posted by mmettin View Post
    What resolution are you running ?
    1920x1080p plus a side screen at 1280x720p.

  9. #9
    Joined
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Janesville, Wi
    Posts
    6,453

    Re: CPU Bottleneck??

    Ok,

    Back to basics as it is...
    Remove all of the overclocks.

    At stock speeds fire up a game, with Windows process monitor (performance tab) on the "other screen"
    Have something like speedfan (or MSI Afterburner) running as well.

    As you play the game (or run the benchmark) keep an eye on the other screen.

    Make notes of CPU/GPU temperatures, CPU utilization, GPU utilization, etc.

    Please report back with your findings (Screenshots would be helpful)


  10. #10
    Joined
    May 2015
    Posts
    16

    Re: CPU Bottleneck??

    Quote Originally Posted by mmettin View Post
    Ok,

    Back to basics as it is...
    Remove all of the overclocks.

    At stock speeds fire up a game, with Windows process monitor (performance tab) on the "other screen"
    Have something like speedfan (or MSI Afterburner) running as well.

    As you play the game (or run the benchmark) keep an eye on the other screen.

    Make notes of CPU/GPU temperatures, CPU utilization, GPU utilization, etc.

    Please report back with your findings (Screenshots would be helpful)
    Okay! Will do. I might be a day or two though. I'll be busy tonight.
    AMD FX-4300 3.8GHz Quad-Core Processor
    Gigabyte GA-970A-UD3P ATX AM3+ Motherboard
    Team Dark Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory
    Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive
    XFX Radeon R9 280X 3GB Double Dissipation Video Card
    Thermaltake TR2 700W ATX Power Supply
    Samsung SH-224DB/BEBE DVD/CD Writer
    Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 OEM (64-bit)
    Cooler Master Stacker RC 832 Full Tower Case

  11. #11
    Joined
    May 2015
    Posts
    16

    Re: CPU Bottleneck??

    Quote Originally Posted by mmettin View Post
    Ok,

    Back to basics as it is...
    Remove all of the overclocks.

    At stock speeds fire up a game, with Windows process monitor (performance tab) on the "other screen"
    Have something like speedfan (or MSI Afterburner) running as well.

    As you play the game (or run the benchmark) keep an eye on the other screen.

    Make notes of CPU/GPU temperatures, CPU utilization, GPU utilization, etc.

    Please report back with your findings (Screenshots would be helpful)
    Okay, so I was able to do some testing. Not extensively though. I was unable to take screenshots, because every time that I changed screens all the stats would change since I was not in game anymore. This is what I have. Please advise if anything is lacking, or I was unclear.

    Tested with Witcher 3 medium graphics settings, HBAO+ on, Hairworks off.
    Avg in game FPS with FRAPS was 48-50 fps.
    GPU Core and Memory Clock were maxed out at 1000 MHz and 1500 MHz respectively with a 99% load the entire time.
    Temp was 70-75 degrees Celsius under load, with a fan speed of 78%, 2700 RPM's.

    CPU Core usage were as follows:
    CPU1%: 62-70
    CPU2%: 40-50
    CPU3%: 60-70
    CPU4%: 25-40

    Performance Monitor was an average of 40, with a max of 83. I'm not familiar with this tool, so I am unsure of what that means exactly. Let me know what you all think! Thank you!
    AMD FX-4300 3.8GHz Quad-Core Processor
    Gigabyte GA-970A-UD3P ATX AM3+ Motherboard
    Team Dark Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory
    Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive
    XFX Radeon R9 280X 3GB Double Dissipation Video Card
    Thermaltake TR2 700W ATX Power Supply
    Samsung SH-224DB/BEBE DVD/CD Writer
    Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 OEM (64-bit)
    Cooler Master Stacker RC 832 Full Tower Case

  12. #12
    Joined
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Janesville, Wi
    Posts
    6,453

    Re: CPU Bottleneck??

    Out of curiosity, what temperature is the CPU at when you are running a game ?


  13. #13
    Joined
    May 2015
    Posts
    16

    Re: CPU Bottleneck??

    Quote Originally Posted by mmettin View Post
    Out of curiosity, what temperature is the CPU at when you are running a game ?
    It runs quite cool. I have an after market cooler on it right now, although I don't remember the name right now. I believe it runs around 25-30 degrees Celsius under load. I'm at work right now so I can't check for certain. Haha.
    AMD FX-4300 3.8GHz Quad-Core Processor
    Gigabyte GA-970A-UD3P ATX AM3+ Motherboard
    Team Dark Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory
    Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive
    XFX Radeon R9 280X 3GB Double Dissipation Video Card
    Thermaltake TR2 700W ATX Power Supply
    Samsung SH-224DB/BEBE DVD/CD Writer
    Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 OEM (64-bit)
    Cooler Master Stacker RC 832 Full Tower Case

  14. #14
    Joined
    May 2001
    Posts
    11,534

    Re: CPU Bottleneck??

    I apologize for that, CalebMcCarty, if you have no reason to believe there is a power supply issue preventing your hardware from running properly then I won't continue on about that. And I'm not trying to jump in over mmettin, it's smart to be sure there isn't a problem with your system first, and to see if your overclocking is actually directly affecting performance in a negative way. But if it does come to upgrading, I do have something to say that you should consider before doing so. Much of this, you already know, just judging from your apparent knowledge. Sometimes it helps to hear it from someone else, maybe.

    We know that new gaming titles often are way ahead of their time. That said, it stands to reason that your mileage depends completely on what you're willing to spend. Something that I always take into consideration is that fact that the whole system in reality is the problem because it's not just the CPU or video card that affects the end performance. It's the video card, the CPU, the motherboard, the RAM, and the drivers of the whole system which are responsible for your framerates.

    We also know that on any given system, the video card plays the biggest role in your end performance for gaming. Further, it has become apparent that performance of any component in your system is somewhat equal to its technology generation. In this specific situation, I tend to recommend going for the latest generation GPU, and then when you're done with the platform and its CPU, carry it over to a new motherboard/CPU (be sure it has changed generations and truly using new chipsets and drivers) and reap the benefits of that newer technology. If you spend five or six hundred dollars on a new GPU, wouldn't that be about the same as graduating to an i7 and a new motherboard? The difference is, the GPU itself will likely give you the best change in performance. While it would be nice to go i7, in a couple years, there will likely be a later generation (better performing) platform to use that you could plug that hypothetical high dollar GPU into which you spent way too much money on. At that time, you will certainly notice another major performance improvement, and may not have to reinvest in a GPU quite yet. I have personally done this myself, so I know it can happen. But, if it's just out of the question to do so, the only choice you would have if you can't drop at least 5-$600 on a video card is to upgrade the CPU on your current motherboard. I would be surprised if the change in performance was satisfactory, though. Your other option is obviously to just live with what you have for now and spend your tax return next year on a total outfit, but again, you won't be able to get a "cheap" 2-$300 video card and expect to have a good result.

    You may also be aware that the recommended system requirements for games are really a starting point, with the minimum system requirements being what it takes for the game not to crash on lowest settings or simply run at lowest settings to begin with. Really think about that last point. You will notice that for Witcher 3, they are listing component model numbers of the same generation throughout with really minimal difference in actual capability between "minimum" and "recommended". This is a testament to how far ahead of its time the game really is. The truth is, you don't want the recommended requirements. You actually need something far better.

    You may have noticed that the people who are getting nice performance on PC games with up to date high-texture technology have bottomless pockets. It's been this way forever. The reason for this is, the PC title is built to enable more features with the more that your rig is capable of processing. Rarely does a rig exist that can run a new game like this with maxed out settings and decent frames. I promise you will be happier if you run a $1,000 CPU and two or more expensive video cards, 32GB of the fastest possible system RAM, and an SSD drive or two. If you can pay your bills still. Other than that, there is always something to critique, and few real economical solutions. Sorry to be the Rachel Dratch of pcper.com, that's what I do. And if it sounds like bunk, I'll take another lump on the head. I'm used to it.
    ...Does anybody else feel like Congress simply bailed themselves out? Isn't that what they really mean by a bailout?

  15. #15
    Joined
    May 2015
    Posts
    16

    Re: CPU Bottleneck??

    Quote Originally Posted by notdrugged View Post
    I apologize for that, CalebMcCarty, if you have no reason to believe there is a power supply issue preventing your hardware from running properly then I won't continue on about that. And I'm not trying to jump in over mmettin, it's smart to be sure there isn't a problem with your system first, and to see if your overclocking is actually directly affecting performance in a negative way. But if it does come to upgrading, I do have something to say that you should consider before doing so. Much of this, you already know, just judging from your apparent knowledge. Sometimes it helps to hear it from someone else, maybe.

    We know that new gaming titles often are way ahead of their time. That said, it stands to reason that your mileage depends completely on what you're willing to spend. Something that I always take into consideration is that fact that the whole system in reality is the problem because it's not just the CPU or video card that affects the end performance. It's the video card, the CPU, the motherboard, the RAM, and the drivers of the whole system which are responsible for your framerates.

    We also know that on any given system, the video card plays the biggest role in your end performance for gaming. Further, it has become apparent that performance of any component in your system is somewhat equal to its technology generation. In this specific situation, I tend to recommend going for the latest generation GPU, and then when you're done with the platform and its CPU, carry it over to a new motherboard/CPU (be sure it has changed generations and truly using new chipsets and drivers) and reap the benefits of that newer technology. If you spend five or six hundred dollars on a new GPU, wouldn't that be about the same as graduating to an i7 and a new motherboard? The difference is, the GPU itself will likely give you the best change in performance. While it would be nice to go i7, in a couple years, there will likely be a later generation (better performing) platform to use that you could plug that hypothetical high dollar GPU into which you spent way too much money on. At that time, you will certainly notice another major performance improvement, and may not have to reinvest in a GPU quite yet. I have personally done this myself, so I know it can happen. But, if it's just out of the question to do so, the only choice you would have if you can't drop at least 5-$600 on a video card is to upgrade the CPU on your current motherboard. I would be surprised if the change in performance was satisfactory, though. Your other option is obviously to just live with what you have for now and spend your tax return next year on a total outfit, but again, you won't be able to get a "cheap" 2-$300 video card and expect to have a good result.

    You may also be aware that the recommended system requirements for games are really a starting point, with the minimum system requirements being what it takes for the game not to crash on lowest settings or simply run at lowest settings to begin with. Really think about that last point. You will notice that for Witcher 3, they are listing component model numbers of the same generation throughout with really minimal difference in actual capability between "minimum" and "recommended". This is a testament to how far ahead of its time the game really is. The truth is, you don't want the recommended requirements. You actually need something far better.

    You may have noticed that the people who are getting nice performance on PC games with up to date high-texture technology have bottomless pockets. It's been this way forever. The reason for this is, the PC title is built to enable more features with the more that your rig is capable of processing. Rarely does a rig exist that can run a new game like this with maxed out settings and decent frames. I promise you will be happier if you run a $1,000 CPU and two or more expensive video cards, 32GB of the fastest possible system RAM, and an SSD drive or two. If you can pay your bills still. Other than that, there is always something to critique, and few real economical solutions. Sorry to be the Rachel Dratch of pcper.com, that's what I do. And if it sounds like bunk, I'll take another lump on the head. I'm used to it.
    I appreciate the reply. I definitely would be happiest with a $3,000 rig. Haha. As you may have implied though, I am looking for a more economical solution. I just upgraded my GPU from a Radeon HD 7770 to my current R9 280x, so I really don't want to be upgrading that once more. After doing a lot of research, I have found multiple people that seem to have better performance than I do with a higher end processor than me, with similar, or worse GPU's. This is what is partially leading me to believe that upgrading my CPU is the best option to achieve higher performance. From what I can tell, my AMD FX-4300 is definitely not a CPU on the higher end of the market, performance and quality-wise.
    AMD FX-4300 3.8GHz Quad-Core Processor
    Gigabyte GA-970A-UD3P ATX AM3+ Motherboard
    Team Dark Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory
    Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive
    XFX Radeon R9 280X 3GB Double Dissipation Video Card
    Thermaltake TR2 700W ATX Power Supply
    Samsung SH-224DB/BEBE DVD/CD Writer
    Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 OEM (64-bit)
    Cooler Master Stacker RC 832 Full Tower Case

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