Skyrim - Q9300 Core2Quad 2.5Ghz, R7 250X 2GB DDR3, which bottleneck?

VirtualLarry

No Lifer
Aug 25, 2001
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I was hoping that these would be a fairly matched pair.

I re-built my Q9300 rig (now un-overclocked, because last time I was using it, last year, it was freezing up while overclocked to 3.0Ghz, when doing DC work), and added my new R7 250X 2GB DDR3 XFX card, and booted Steam and DLed Skyrim, and it played, well, a bit underwhelming compared to my G3258 @ 4.0 and 7950 3GB GDDR5 card.

Is my bottleneck my 2.5Ghz Core2Quad, or the R7 250X, or both?

I guess this is more for curiosity sake, since I have no desire to plow more money into a rig this ancient. (I did throw in one of my Silicon Power S60 240GB SSDs though. Scores 7.7 on Win7 64-bit's WEI.)

Edit: 1080P over HDMI. I tried the newest 15.10 beta Oct 12 drivers for Win7 64-bit first, but my HDMI audio didn't work. I had to revert to the release 15.7 drivers.
 
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Feb 19, 2009
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I think 250 DDR3 would be the bottleneck.

I recall playing Skyrim on my old Q9400 powering a 7950 and it delivered very good performance at 1080p.
 
Feb 25, 2011
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Yeah, I knew a couple who were really, really, reeeeeally into Skyrim. They both had Phenom II x4 rigs, but they had 2GB GTX 460s.
 

VirtualLarry

No Lifer
Aug 25, 2001
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I'm guessing that the fact that these are DDR3 250X cards, is what the problem is.

I think, that before, when I tried Skyrim on my Q9300, the CPU was at 3.0, and I think that maybe I had a R7 260X / 7790 GDDR5 card installed then. Seemed pretty darn smooth and good-looking back then.
 

MajinCry

Platinum Member
Jul 28, 2015
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It's the card.

I've got a relatively hefty skyrim setup; my own More Spawns - Scriptless mod (3x the enemies), More Complex Needs, SexLab (don't judge me), Epic Gameplay Overhaul, some super-intensive ENB I hacked together with NLA as a base, Sound Propagation Overhaul & other stuff.

'Tis me GPU that's holding me back; enabling my ENB takes off 6fps from my minimums, whereas if my card had a wider bus, I'd probably only see 1-2 fps lower minimums tops.

And if ya have a GPU that uses OpenCL 2.0, you can get HDT-SMP for OpenCL physics.

If my sucky memory serves me well, a quad core is rather necessary for Skyrim; a faster dual core will have higher maximum framerates, but will suffer quite a bit with minimums, whereas a slower quad core will have the reverse.

So yeah. It's the GPU.
 

hawtdawg

Golden Member
Jun 4, 2005
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definitely the card. I had a core2quad laptop with 4870's that played the game fine.
 

SPBHM

Diamond Member
Sep 12, 2012
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try playing on high (not ultra) without MSAA and it should work well enough.

also it might be a good idea to lock the game to 30FPS using Afterburner/RTSS or something.
 
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VirtualLarry

No Lifer
Aug 25, 2001
56,431
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@VirtualLarry

Why dont you install one of those 270X you got recently and see how it will perform ??
Still waiting for those to be delivered. I'm also not sure I want to go to the bother of swapping the whole PSU out. (The 270X takes two 6-pin cables, the current PSU is an Antec VP-450 that only has one. The 250X only needs one.)
 

VirtualLarry

No Lifer
Aug 25, 2001
56,431
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Apparently, my memory of the game was pretty hazy from the last time I played it. I guess my thinking that it was "silky smooth" was the opening cinematic, with the horse-drawn cart.

I haven't actually played that much of the game.

I guess the 250X isn't too bad. It's not like I'm getting lag or frame-rate issues, but it's not like it's 60fps locked either.
 

NTMBK

Lifer
Nov 14, 2011
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If it's running silky smooth, you clearly haven't installed enough mods :awe:
 

Magic Carpet

Diamond Member
Oct 2, 2011
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Still waiting for those to be delivered. I'm also not sure I want to go to the bother of swapping the whole PSU out. (The 270X takes two 6-pin cables, the current PSU is an Antec VP-450 that only has one. The 250X only needs one.)
Just use a molex to 6 pin adapter or something, 450w is plenty for 270x.