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Windows 7: What affects fps?

07 Jul 2012   #1

windows 7 home premium
What affects fps?

Hey guys i was wondering just what factors affect fps (core clock etc etc)
Im not actualy sure what affects fps and im a little baffled as something like the 560 i saw had a higher clock speed than the 580 but yet it was gaining lower fps so just what makes the fps higher and what should i look for when buying a new gpu -stormz

My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Jul 2012   #2
Microsoft MVP

Windows 7 Ultimate X64 SP1

I can't answer what affects the FPS. I would look for GDDR5, as much as you can afford, 256+ bit interface.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 Jul 2012   #3

Windows 7 x64 Professional SP1

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by silverstormz View Post
Hey guys i was wondering just what factors affect fps (core clock etc etc)
Im not actualy sure what affects fps and im a little baffled as something like the 560 i saw had a higher clock speed than the 580 but yet it was gaining lower fps so just what makes the fps higher and what should i look for when buying a new gpu -stormz
Hello silverstormz,

There are a few factors that affect FPS:-

1) GPU architecture

The general rule of thumb when it comes to determining the effect of a particular graphics card's attribute to its performance is as follows, from most influential to least influential:-

The amount of Shaders/CUDA cores (as compared to the same family/generation of cards),

followed by the card's ROPs,

Shader/Processor/CUDA core clocks,

Memory Type
(Dedicated, or Integrated) and Interface (64, 128, 256 and 384 bit) ,

Memory Speeds
(clocks) and Generation (DDR3, GDDR3, GDDR5) and

finally, the Amount of Memory
(512 MB - 3 GB).

When you compare the GTX 560 and GTX 580, you have to note that the 580 has a higher number of CUDA cores (512 cores) as compared to the GTX 560 Ti (384 cores) and the 560 (336 cores).

This indicates that the even if the GTX 580 is lower clocked than the GTX 560 variants, (recalling the hierarchy listing, number of Cores>Core clocks), the 580 will still perform better, resulting in a higher FPS count for the GTX 580.

To summarize, as Britton30 put it above, get a Graphics card with many cuda cores/shaders, one with at least a 256 bit memory interface and one with 2 - 3 GB of GDDR5 RAM

Another way of quickly determining the prowess of a card based on its model number is to look at the second digit of the number, given that the the cards in the comparison are of the same generation.

:- GTX 580 vs GTX 560, 8 is higher than 6 so 580 is more powerful

2) CPU Clocks and Architecture

Although most games and 3D applications are GPU limited (which means that they can only run as fast as your graphics card can perform, and the CPU doesn't really affect the speed), there a few that require the CPU heavily for additional functions, like multi threaded physics simulation calculations, and threaded AI.

Notable examples in which your CPU might heavily affect your FPS is in strategy based, AI heavy games like Civilization V, and Battlefield 3 with it's dynamic multi-threaded renderer

In this case, the superior CPU would be one with at least quad cores and lots of Level 1/2/3 cache plus an IMC (Integrated Memory Contoller, reduces RAM access latency. All Intel CPUs since the Core i series and AMD CPUs since the Athlon 64 have this built in.).

is also a bonus to have but it's effect varies from game to game. (the Core i7/i5 series by Intel and the Bulldozer series by AMD)

3) Your RAM amount and speed

Your game requires system RAM to run optimally.

Insufficient system RAM could lead to parts of the game being sent out to the pagefile on your HDD which would lead catastrophic loss of performance and FPS, and/or stuttery performance. (the game is trying to load assets from the HDD instead of the system RAM which is a few orders of magnitude faster than your spinner)

RAM Speeds are also important but the margins of improvement in your FPS are not as noticeable when using slower RAM but sufficient RAM as compared to if you have insufficient RAM

Get at least 8 GBs for a 64 bit OS, 16 GB (or as much as your motherboard supports) to be future proof.

4) Your HDD type (SSD vs HDD)

Games that rely on streaming in assets continuously to the system RAM/VRAM (Video RAM) will perform better on a SSD as compared to a conventional HDD.

Examples include games that use the Unreal Engine 3 middleware such as Gears of War PC, and Mass Effect 3

5) Background Applications and other Antivirus Scanners (AVs) and Scanners

Having a high number of background programs and parasitic applications will of course lower your FPS due to resource contention.

If you want the absolute fastest FPS count during gaming, shut down all unnecessary tasks and programs before starting the game to ensure that the PC will dedicate all its resources to the game.

Set AVs into gaming mode if available and disable active real time malware scanning while gaming.

This (disabling protections for AVs) of course doesn't apply to online gaming.

6) Drivers

Having old and outdated drivers will reduce your FPS.

The latest drivers for your card are usually the best, unless there are specific issues pertaining to the card/game for that particular driver

7) Other things to look out for when looking for a graphics card.

Power requirements (Do I have a PSU strong enough to handle this graphics card? How many 6 pin PCI-E connectors will i need to power this card and do i have them?)

Dimensions (How many slots will it occupy in the case?, Will it fit my case?)

Manufacturer warranties
(Terms? 1 year? 3 years? The longer the better. What are the RMA policies in case of breakdowns?),

Cooling systems
(how many fans does it have, is it noisy or quiet, fan RPMs, low profile) and

Overclocking status (Is it factory overclocked? How far can it be pushed?)

Always check out reviews from reputable sites like HardOCP for a preliminary look at how the card you're interested in will perform for you and the reviewer's experience with the card.

[H]ard|OCP - HardOCP Computer Hardware Reviews and News

There're quite a few more but i think this should get you started.

Hope that answers your queries!
If you have further enquiries, don't hesitate to post them in this thread.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

07 Jul 2012   #4
Victor S

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

My System SpecsSystem Spec

 What affects fps?

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