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cvearl
12-04-02, 11:52 AM
I cross post this as it is buried 10 feet deep in an old thread and I wanted to share these findings and comments. Also, this reply is also not on the same subject as my 64 vs. 128MB thread.


As some of you may have already read in my previous posts, I was getting ticked off at the Jitters effect some games gave me when maxing the texture settings in them. I have been reading around for weeks and posted my original 64 vs. 128MB Jitters question in several forums. I was trying to figure out if my issue was that I only had 64MB and if I should spend some more cash to go to 128MB. The pattern I began to notice was that people with 128MB G4Ti4400/4600 and Radeon 9700 Pro cards were not complaining of this issue. That originally led me to believe that perhaps it was because they have 128MB cards. Since I have not really been able to prove yes or no, I loooked at other possibilities and ultimately solved my JKII Jitters when run in "Very High Texture" mode. After thinking about it, it was not only that the people not complaining had 128MB but also that thier cards all sported faster memory. My MSI G4Ti4200-64TD is default clocked at 513Mhz. G4Ti4400/4600 sport faster video memory starting at 550Mhz - 600Mhz and faster on the 9700Pro. While 10-15% faster meory does not sound like it should make that much difference, I did some looking around. I found a review of my card at HardOCP where they specifically noted that the memory on the MSI 4200 card was 3.4ns and that it is rated for 556Mhz. Just to let all of you know that I am not an overclocker. At least not since the Celeron 300A days anyway. I always felt it was more work than what you got in the end. However I wanted to test the faster memory theory out. Also, knowing that the review of this 4200 also eluded to the fact that MSI put an oversized cooler and faster memory on board while including an overclocking utility right in thier driver properties, MSI was tryin to attract overclockers. They actually encorage it! To test, I installed thier 31.00 driver (is that an MSI modified 29.82??? who knows) and then tested JKII. The Jitters were still present. Then I pushed the memory from 513 to 556 and did a 3DMARK 2001 SE run a few times making sure there were no visual artifacts. There were none at all which would confirm that the memory is indeed rated for 556Mhz. HardOCP actually settled on 608Mhz as thier maximum reliable speed but I don't like to push things to far. I like quality over speed any day. Anyway, I then fired up JKII again and Viola! no more jitters!!!!! This leads to two comments. First, I thorize that it is not the actual increase in speed of the RAM that solved the problem as it only increased my 3DMark score by about 4 or 5%. Instead I beleive that memory is more efficient when it is run at it's rated speed and when "underclocked" by the vendor as in the case of this card, you can uncover small annomlies such as the Jitters when I pushed all the settings to max in JKII. This is because you really are not pushing the memories envelope until you go to these higher settings. As I stated earlier, going to the Highest Texture Setting did not actually drop the framrate by any noticable amount, but the jitters in the textures appeared. This all probably comes down to a memory timing issue where in the lower setting, the ram has a harder time syncronizing with the GPU for delivering texutres accurately. If this is all true, my final comment is that I wish that manufacturers would just optimize clocks at the factory for best performance/visual qualitly and stop selling "overclockable" product. I would rather they do that at the factory for me so that I can spend more time using the Freakin product and less time tweaking to get the card to it's proper settings in the first place. nVidia has reference designs for a reason! Follow the design Aholes! and if you want to swap out for faster memory, then clock it properly!!! I have half a mind to send this to MSI if they could even read it but it would be a waste of time. Overclocking has turned into a sport. ATI on the other hand is known for shipping thier cards (8500LE being one acception) tuned for maximum speed and stability and most people have trouble getting even a few percentages out of ATI 9700 Pro cards. Thank you ATI. This is one of the reasons I am likely going to buy a 9500 Pro!

Peace out!

Charles.

poursoul
12-04-02, 03:32 PM
Your findings are very interesting indeed, but then I got to the rant part, got dizzy, and decided to reply.

I'm sad to hear that major oc'ing cards aren't for you, but if they weren't to make those cards the rest of us wouldn't get to have our fun:D :D :D

cvearl
12-04-02, 03:42 PM
Sorry about the Rant at the end. But look at my account. I am 34 years old and not into overclocking anymore. If I buy a Dodge Viper, I want it to perform like one right off the lot. Not go home and tinker to get it to purr. But that's just me. Bumping my clock to 554Mhz really was not all that bad though. Especially since I was able to confirm that it is the correct speed for those chips in the first place. I just don't like pushing hardware out of spec because in the past when I overclocked (and I did alot of it) I would go balistic if I was 45 minutes into some game and had forgotten to save and locked up knowing full well that is was likely due to my overheated setup.:rolleyes:

Charles.

thcdru2k
12-04-02, 07:34 PM
good point for the person who doesn't want to bother with overclocking. but they're tons of people who don't mind :)

StealthHawk
12-04-02, 07:49 PM
Originally posted by thcdru2k
good point for the person who doesn't want to bother with overclocking. but they're tons of people who don't mind :)
the point being that if the card is amply capable the manufacturers should just overclock it for you :)

cvearl
12-04-02, 08:18 PM
That's all I was saying. Can anyone really sit there and tell me they would rather get a conservative card and play with it to optimize it? over getting a card that is precision engineered to get every last drop of spead freak goodness right after the first install and the first benchmark is run. I would rather have it so that even if the tools were available that one more bump on the slider would simply cause instability. Because then I would know that I got the best I could afford. This way I woulde be done plalying warcraft III by now. Heh heh.

Charles.

thcdru2k
12-04-02, 08:26 PM
yeah, but they'res alot more that goes into overclocking, people's cases are different. what clocks well in one person's case might not in another person's. if someone loads up all their pci slots, has no case fans, perhaps the engineered card for the higher clock wouldn't work properly. thats why they'res so much headroom.

pelly
12-04-02, 08:34 PM
Can anyone really sit there and tell me they would rather get a conservative card and play with it to optimize it?

Actually....yes.....I can.... :D

I must be sick or something, but I take great pleasure in taking a $150 card and overclocking it up to a $400 card...a feeling of accomplishment....add to that the excitement of first receiving the card and not knowing how high you can push it.....its really kind of fun if you do it correctly ( ie: NOT push the slider as far to the right as possible and then complain that your card blew-up ) :p

In addition, users who have used their cards at stock speeds for a given time can essentially get a free card upgrade down the road by overclocking...

:D

cvearl
12-04-02, 08:43 PM
I nearly got bit by the OC bug. 3rd week of November I bought a P4-1.8A (100Mhz FSB) with a Gigabyte-8IEX mobo and PC2100 RAM from a store where I know the service manager. I read around and people were OC'ing it to 2.4. I pushed my FSB to 133 and it booted but it would not run stable. A fewminutes of desktop it would reboot or freeze. I went back to the store with a plan to buy Cosair PC3200 RAM and 2 case fans for the fron and back for cooling. The additional memory and fans was going to be $80 more. This service guy said why not just exchange the 1.8 for a real 2.4 and the PC2100 for PC2700. The cost to do that was only $115 total. The savings to OC were $35 and I would never have been as stable as just going stock 2.4 and PC2700. I am glad he caught me before I did it. And just for the record, he had a 1.8Ghz running at 2.4 using Cosair PC2700 (he bought his 1.8A before the 2.4b was available) and my SCIsoft Sandra scores are still a bit higher than his with mine at stock settings. Explain that one.

Charles.

thcdru2k
12-04-02, 08:51 PM
lots of factors could affect scores. perhaps he didn't tweak his system as well as you did.

the best systems are overclocked, some people really enjoy purchasing cheap hardware and overclocking to near or above the performance level of more expensive hardware.

StealthHawk
12-05-02, 12:29 AM
Originally posted by thcdru2k
the best systems are overclocked, some people really enjoy purchasing cheap hardware and overclocking to near or above the performance level of more expensive hardware.

well of course, but the difference is that they are more overclocking the top end parts rather than trying to buy more conservative parts and oc them for a better price/performance ratio.

the top scoring systems only care about absolute performance, not cost.


of course the reason why we don't see these "oc monster" cards being clocked higher by default is probably because that would hurt sales of other cards like Ti4400 and 4600.