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Old December 2nd, 2011, 03:45 PM   #1
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Ram? Graphics Card? What's my issue?

I think it's my video card, but some expert here can probably tell me for sure. I'm running two monitors a 24" 1920 x 1200 and a 30" at 2560 x 1600.

The thing is when I browse photos, they load much,, much, faster when I open them on the smaller monitor, and Vegas responds better when it's on the smaller monitor. Problem is I use the larger monitor for Vegas.

I have a GTX 460 SE fermi 1GB video card. I've suspected/had reason to believe, at one time or another, that my video card was not working properly, but I can't prove it.

Anyway, to get better performance, do I need a more powerful video card? Any thoughts?
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Old December 3rd, 2011, 01:59 AM   #2
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Re: Ram? Graphics Card? What's my issue?

When I disconnected the second (24") monitor things improve somewhat on the main display. I've been googling the subject, but haven't yet found any answers. My current card "should" be fine, I don't know.
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Old December 3rd, 2011, 03:40 PM   #3
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Re: Ram? Graphics Card? What's my issue?

As your monitor gets bigger usually the resolution does too. I have used dual monitors since the nvidia 7900 GT series cards and every time a new card came out, the performance on the main/second monitor ratio would improve. Looking at a game for example, it was hard to even browse a website and have the game play with out a noticeable difference in frame rates. Now if the 2nd monitor was smaller say 17" and the main was 24" the main would run better than having two 24" monitors. Video cards tend to double themselves in power/performance about every other series that they release. ( about every 18 months or so ) Video cards have multiple cores but when they are doing double and triple duty, ( two monitors, graphics rendering ) they sometimes don't multitask very well, what I mean is, even if you have a static page on the second monitor, the video card has to take time out from updating the main display. Since vegas is now using the card to do graphics processing, this also has to fit into the scheme of things too. IMO, the best thing to do, is add a second video card for the second display. Even if it is a cheaper one.

If you want to upgrade your card, you can always buy your way to more performance but that tends to cost rather large amounts of cash, to get slightly better results. The 560Ti 448cores was just released and I bet it is about 3% or so faster than the 560ti, which is 3% faster than the 560gtx, which is 3% faster than the card you have now. These numbers I am pulling from the thin air, but you get my drift. ( did you know that 87.5% of most stats are made up? )

The hardest part is the unknown is, if I upgrade will I really see a benefit? I know in version 10, I went from a i7 940 8 threads to dual zeon with 24 threads. That was a huge 5x difference in rendering. ( now with version 11, I am second guessing myself if I should go to the newer version I7 when it comes out in January or buy a better video card from the 560TI that I have now. ) So it really sucks not knowing really which way to go.

Since I own a computer shop for 20+ years now, I am lucky and can experiment and once I have some true real world findings, I will post them. But today, I cant see enough difference between a 560 vs 580 to spring for that amount of money, on a chance that I might see a 5-10% improvement..... When is enough a enough...

The same thing goes for which video camera to buy. So many settings, so many features. I tend to second guess my purchases all the time too. I know I bought a DLSR and while it does a great job the amount of support equipment needed to do a professional job, is so costly that the camera is really peanuts in the grand scheme of things. ( I added a XA10 7 months ago to make up for the shortfalls of the DSLR )

It never ends. Now, I wish I knew more about the shooting and more about different codex and 100million different rendering settings, that tend to change every other day. It never ends....blue ray settings, grrr..

Hey that canon 300 looks nice too, oh, man, here we go again.

I know this is not really the answer you wanted to hear, but it is the best I can come up with. I am not sure how many others are running the type of equipment that you do, and have had different systems, with different configurations that can have real world advice that matches what you need to know. Basically the difference where you are now, vs where you would like to go/be.

Hope it helps a bit though. Sometimes sitting on the fence does pay off...
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Old December 3rd, 2011, 04:39 PM   #4
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Re: Ram? Graphics Card? What's my issue?

Well Joe, thanks for your response, appreciate it.

I pulled my GTX 460, bought a $60 card today, my CPU temps when rendering are now 15C lower. That is worth a lot right there. Photos load very slowly with the new card (on my 30" monitor), but when I hook up the second monitor tomorrow (I need a mini HDMI cable as this card only has one dual link connector) I'll use the 24" monitor for photo browsing and it should be fine, at least I hope it will be.

I went backwards, not forwards, as an experiment, I suppose. I already see that my rendering is taking longer (MainConcept) which makes no sense to me as I have been running with GPU turned off anyway, and MainConcept doesn't benefit from GPU anyway. 60 minute render is now 70 minutes, albeit cooler temps. Weird. I never thought a video card affected render speed, at least it never seemed to in the past.
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Old December 7th, 2011, 11:54 AM   #5
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Re: Ram? Graphics Card? What's my issue?

Well, to answer my own post, my power supply, while not bad, was not cutting it. I replace it with a more powerful model and the difference, as I mentioned elsewhere, is nothing short of amazing.

Thumbnails show instantly now, regardless of monitor, used. Everything open faster, my overclock which was stable one minute, and not stable the next, is now perfect.

I have a lot of expensive components in my machine, and I always felt the PC did not run as it should, but couldn't figure it out.

I'm a firm believer in the ASUS power supply calculator, it seemed to calculate exactly what I needed to run efficiently.

It feels like I have a new PC. If you are having stability issues of any kind, I recommend at least looking at your PSU, particularly if you overclock. Just because I needed a new PSU doesn't mean anyone else does, but I wish I had done this a long time ago.
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Old December 7th, 2011, 02:05 PM   #6
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Re: Ram? Graphics Card? What's my issue?

Which did you buy? I've had all sorts of troubles with power supplies until spending more on the Corsairs. I have something like the HX 1000, though I'm not in front of that computer right now. Buying one good power supply is better and cheaper than watching less expensive PSUs grow noisy, hot and unreliable within a year. One of my cheaper PSUs, despite its fancy box and modular-system cords, had its fan mounted on the bottom side, and within a year, the fan loosened and started to hit the fan grate.

As for you CPU running cooler, that may also have to do with the GFX card contributing less heat as well as doing more of the cooling inside the case, depending on the fan design.

Last edited by Gints Klimanis; December 7th, 2011 at 05:03 PM.
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Old December 7th, 2011, 03:09 PM   #7
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Re: Ram? Graphics Card? What's my issue?

I bought an OCZ 1000 watt (Gold certified). Salesman that I talk to at Microcenter claimed that OCZ is but a Corsair with another name on it. Whether that is true or not I don't know, but it was very highly reviewed on two sites, and the guy at checkout told me it was the PSU he wanted but couldn't afford, so Ieft the store feeling good about it. I went in to buy the Corsair AX1200 or whatever it's called, but my guy recommended I save $100 and get the 1000W.
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Old December 11th, 2011, 08:01 AM   #8
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Re: Ram? Graphics Card? What's my issue?

Gints, a bad or marginal PSU can cause many weird things to happen. It will kill hard drives, as has happened to me, and create many small issues you cannot pin down.

The new PSU has changed everything. My overclock is still stable, and I just overclocked my ram, which has made my system even more responsive.

I just rendered an hour long project of 1080 24p with heavy color correction in footage to SD in 19 minutes. Previously I was crashing before it was finished.

Before I couldn't find the right settings for voltages because of the unreliability of the PSU. I just ordered a larger cooler/heatsink for my CPU and am hoping I can push things to 4.4gHz.

I don't think it hurt that I switched to a smaller, cheaper, cooler GPU also

Last edited by Jeff Harper; December 11th, 2011 at 08:33 AM.
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Old December 12th, 2011, 03:23 PM   #9
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Re: Ram? Graphics Card? What's my issue?

Thanks, Jeff. I notice that overclocking (with CPU and chipset watercooling) the CPU by 20% to 4 GHz makes a proportional difference in Vegas10 rendering speeds. By how much do you overclock RAM ? With the GPU watercooler but before the ASUS Rampage III chipset watercooler, 4.4 GHz wasn't stable. I'll try again. Adding a new eVGA 560Ti overclocked GPU didn't help as the eVGA Precision tool doesn't show more than 10% usage.
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Old December 12th, 2011, 03:38 PM   #10
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Re: Ram? Graphics Card? What's my issue?

Ram is overclocked only to 1750 or so, not much, but previously I had to run low voltages to keep things stable, but now I can boost Ram voltage to 1.6 and run faster, and it's fine.

I was running ram at 1333, and the ram is rated for 1600, and it's inexpensive GSkill, not the best for overclocking, but I'm a happy camper. In three years of having the ram I've always run it under spec. Previous PSU was 6 rails, and I don't know much about PSUs but I think that was an issue, and the extra 150w can't hurt.

I'm still can't believe I'm running 4.2 on stock cooler! Really the temps aren't keeping me from 4.4, I just haven't played with it enough to keep it stable with voltages. I am afraid to go over 1.35 on the cpu, that's supposedly max, but I've not found proof it's ok to go higher.

The Noctua C14 air cooler I ordered is considered the very best air cooler on many sites, and I got it because during rendering my temps get high, and I want to see how low I can get my temps. I curise at around 32C during idle, which is still not bad for stock.
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Old December 13th, 2011, 02:29 PM   #11
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Re: Ram? Graphics Card? What's my issue?

Jeff, that's great for the stock cooler. When I removed the heatsink from the ASUS Rampage III motherboard chipset, I was shocked by the poor spread of the thermal paste. I suspect that just re-doing the thermal paste for the stock chipset heat sink would have solved or helped my chipset heating problem.

I went with water-cooling CPU and chipset to control the noise level as well as a challenge to a computer engineer by trade to build a beast with 2 triple 120mm fan radiators and three additional 120mm case fans. It is an expensive route, and there are cheaper ways (case insulation, barriers) to control the noise level.
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Old December 13th, 2011, 02:40 PM   #12
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Re: Ram? Graphics Card? What's my issue?

Saw a unit yesterday I'd love to have, cost's $1k, but it takes processor to about -25c or more using refrigerant. Takes a bit of work to install. As an engineer you'l love it I'm sure.

They say the Noctua I ordered is remarkably quiet, has two 120mm fans, but they are supposedly almost inaudible, but I'll believe that when I hear it, or don't hear it.
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Old December 15th, 2011, 09:23 AM   #13
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Re: Ram? Graphics Card? What's my issue?

Gints, same thing happened to me last night! I took off my heatsink to put my new cooler on, and the old thermal paste wasn't spread evenly, and the processor wasn't tightly fastened! I'm sure it worked it's way loose, but still. I'm not one to overtighten, so that was my fault also, I'm sure. Since I did the original installation, I felt a bit sheepish when I made those discoveries. Done it dozens of times before with no problems, but I'm only human, apparently.

Anyway, I installed the new cooler. At 90% load rendering bluray, my temps were 40c lower. Yes, I said 40c. I did not hit over 50c where before I was hitting mid 80s.

What's even funnier, and better, is the Nocuta has two 120mm fans, and they are quieter than the stock fan from Intel, and even I find that hard to believe, but it's true.

So like you, I could have gotten by without the new cooler, but I would never have achieved these low temps even with a perfect install of the stock heatsink. As I work, I occasionally look over at my temps, and eventually it will sink in I don't have to monitor them any more.
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