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Game framespikes and microstutter

Talk about NVIDIA G-SYNC, a variable refresh rate (VRR) technology. G-SYNC eliminates stutters, tearing, and reduces input lag. List of G-SYNC Monitors.

Game framespikes and microstutter

Postby Aerith » 08 Sep 2019, 00:15

Hi,

I've been a G-Sync user for 4 years now and loved every moment of it. However I do have an issue currently and I cannot seem to figure out how to fix it. Now my use case is very niche and there might not be an actual fix.

I play community servers on CS:GO, resulting in 64 players with custom maps, plugins, models etc. and the game engine / CPU is the bottleneck here, while also not being optimized for 64 players. Sometimes the game can drop to as low as 60 fps in certain situations.

I recently upgraded my PC from a 2500k / GTX 970 to a Ryzen 3700X, RTX 2080ti and found that capping the framerate will cause slight microstutters / hitches when moving around. I've noticed the GPU clockspeed sits at ~1515Mhz and then boosts when needed which I presume creates a slight stutter as it dropps 400Mhz.

Now before you say anything, I have tried many things. Fresh install of Windows, Drivers, Windows 10 Optimization "Guides", CS:GO "optimization guides", Nvidia Driver "optimization guides" and nothing seems to fix it. Even "Prefer maximum performance" doesn't keep the clockspeed at the "maximum". I don't have this issue on any other game, not even Counter-Strike: Source. Perhaps I'm just going mad and that CS:GO does have FPS issues at the moment, or that my hardware is "too good". I'm honestly scratching my head at the moment and almost some regret is coming to mind as I just wanted to have a good experience.

So normally I have set fps_max 160, Nvidia V-Sync on etc. and all set up in the guide. I tried RTSS but since the framerate isn't a stable 160, I found that caused it's own issues. Now funnily enough, there are zero issues when I turn G-Sync off and allow the framerate to be stock fps_max 300 but the game looks like shit because of screen tearing.

Anybody have any ideas?
Thanks guys.
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Re: Game framespikes and microstutter

Postby RealNC » 09 Sep 2019, 13:26

Does it also do that without g-sync but with fps_max 160?
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Re: Game framespikes and microstutter

Postby Aerith » 10 Sep 2019, 07:43

Hey, thanks for the response. Yes it does.
So I've been messing around RTSS overlay and watching what's going on. Looks to be the GPU clocks going down.
Even with Maximum Performance Mode enabled, the game still stutters in some really CPU intensive parts as the GPU clockspeed drops to 1515Mhz. Even with 8x MSAA, max pre-rendered frames 1 etc.
Been fiddling with Nvidia Inspector but couldn't find much, was looking to see if I could set a "maximum power" mode for CS:GO.
Who would've thought upgrading a GPU would cause issues like this, but again this is niche.
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Re: Game framespikes and microstutter

Postby Aerith » 10 Sep 2019, 08:19

Okay, I've managed to find that you can lock your clockspeed / voltage in MSI Afterburner. I've been testing this now.
So I'm thinking it's not the system, but rather the game. Seems odd that it would to this on high-end hardware.
So when turning around, it loads all the textures / models and can cause a stutter. I can confirm this now as there is a "!hide" commands that hides all players, when toggling it, frametimes jump up. Funnily enough, toggling the scoreboard jumps up to 38ms as well. So it seems running textures / models on low fixes most of it, which is a shame.
Strange that nobody else gets this issue, perhaps I'm the only one running G-Sync.
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Re: Game framespikes and microstutter

Postby Chief Blur Buster » 10 Sep 2019, 12:51

Strange clockspeed behaviour.

Try slightly underclocking while keeping high-res. See if that fixes the problem. If so, then there's a transient thermal throttling problem that might be made to disappear with better cooling. There are situations where stock coolers are sometimes not enough even for default clockspeeds, especially manufacturers push clockspeed limits at retail to out-do their competitors.
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Re: Game framespikes and microstutter

Postby RealNC » 10 Sep 2019, 13:53

CS:GO will definitely not push a 2080 Ti anywhere near thermal throttling. Even with a 980 Ti, GPU load in that game is low. CS:GO always had hitching in casual modes where player models and skins come and go. Competitive 5v5 where nothing new is loaded while playing the map doesn't have the issue. A 64 player custom mode on the other hand will have hitching for sure.

One thing you can try to see if it helps is to force vsync OFF in the nvidia panel. When a game has hitching, gsync + vsync ON can make it worse, so try gsync + vsync OFF instead. Another thing is to make sure you're using true fullscreen mode, not borderless windowed mode.
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Re: Game framespikes and microstutter

Postby 1000WATT » 10 Sep 2019, 17:37

Aerith wrote:Even with Maximum Performance Mode enabled, the game still stutters in some really CPU intensive parts as the GPU clockspeed drops to 1515Mhz.

Chief Blur Buster wrote:Strange clockspeed behaviour.

Maximum Performance Mode forces the GPU processor to work in P0 state even if the application does not require this mode.
In my example with 1080 ti, the minimum frequency in default for P0 state = 1569.
https://imgur.com/1nPEiJy
If the application has enough of this frequency. An attempt to fix a higher frequency will not produce any positive changes (it will only become warmer in the room). But if the frequency drops below P0, a noticeable input delay appears.
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