Question Extremely low CPU usage (0 percent) during gaming (help needed)

Aug 23, 2022
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Hello!

It has been a while since I've been here and so it is nice to be back. I'll cut to the chase and describe my problem. Yesterday, I moved my PC from the living room to the bedroom, after plugging all the cables and benchmarking a few games, I noticed that my CPU usage was incredibly low and that I was missing out on perhaps 20-25 percent of the performance that I used to have. If previously I could run, say, Warhammer 2, at 100+ frames, now the game can barely run above 50 frames on top of being an unplayable, stuttering mess. Other games (RDR 2) have dropped performance by a smaller margin (from 100+ to 75-80), whereas Insurgency Sandstorm now runs much better than it did before the move - frametime issues have disappeared, framerate is far higher and more consistent in spite of the tremendously low CPU usage.

So in other words, I get 0-5 percent CPU utilization and moderate GPU utilization 60-90 percent.

I'll list my specs here:

CPU: Intel i5-12600K
GPU: Zotac Trinity RTX 3080 (UV to 1785 @ 0,825 stable)
Cooler: Noctua NH-D15S
Mobo: MSI PRO Z690-A
RAM: G. Skill Trident Z 16 GB 3600 CL16
NVME SSD: Samsung 980 500 GB
SATA SSD: Crucial MX500 1 TB
PSU: MSI MPG A850GF 850 W

So far, I've done several things to try and fix this:

  • Reinstalled Windows 11 (cloud download)
  • Benchmarked my CPU/GPU in a variety of tests - beefiest OCCT preset, Aida64, etc. In all cases, CPU does boost to a little over 4,4 GHz, max cpu package power is around 90 watts, all cores run at 100 percent load, highest momentary peak temps are 72 C, P and E core average temps are in the mid 60s.
  • Tried to run games in fullscreen, borderless window, etc.
  • Tried reinstalling Nvidia drivers
  • Checked for a loose CPU heatsink, reseated the RAM and etc.
  • Checked power plans.
  • Checked all the cables.
  • Defragmented the drives
At this point, I am unsure what could be causing this. I don't remember dropping the computer or bumping it too hard during the move. All the cables are where they are supposed to be. The only thing that is different is that I had to daisy chain two surge protectors, since the only socket in the room is just too far away from the PC. I've already ordered a new, longer one. Could that be it? Some kind of power delivery problems? Anyone got any ideas?

I'm including an imgur album of a few screenshots that I have from game benchmarks and OCCT testing if it is of any use:.

BEFORE THE MOVE: Imgur: The magic of the Internet
AFTER THE MOVE: Imgur: The magic of the Internet and Imgur: The magic of the Internet
 

Darkbreeze

Retired Mod
The only thing that is different is that I had to daisy chain two surge protectors, since the only socket in the room is just too far away from the PC.
This is likely your problem. First of all, you shouldn't be using ANY power strip to provide power to your power supply unless it is a very high quality industrial type power strip, which 99% of users would not have. It should be plugged directly into the wall socket, or into a high quality (Tripp Lite, Leviton, Eaton, GE industrial, etc.) power strip or into a UPS battery backup system that itself is plugged directly into the wall socket.

Secondly, you should NEVER daisy chain power strips. Ever. It's a very good way to create a dangerous situation where a fire could occur. And using "surge protectors" is a joke. They don't "protect" anything unless you have a high quality model of surge protector/power strip (Same thing) and even then they won't protect you against something like a lightning strike that hits anywhere close enough to your home for it to be of concern. If there is an electrical storm in your area you would be very wise to simply unplug everything completely that you value and it is always a good idea to make sure that you have a whole house breaker at the panel and that the house's electrical system is properly earthed/grounded.

As for your power troubles, power strips are notorious for causing problems with power delivery, but it usually wouldn't result in one part of the PC working right and another part not working right, but anything is possible. I'd rearrange things in the room so that you CAN reach the outlet to plug the PSU in directly and see if that cures the problem. Since this is the only change from where it was before, there's a good chance it could be.
 
Hello!

It has been a while since I've been here and so it is nice to be back. I'll cut to the chase and describe my problem. Yesterday, I moved my PC from the living room to the bedroom, after plugging all the cables and benchmarking a few games, I noticed that my CPU usage was incredibly low and that I was missing out on perhaps 20-25 percent of the performance that I used to have. If previously I could run, say, Warhammer 2, at 100+ frames, now the game can barely run above 50 frames on top of being an unplayable, stuttering mess. Other games (RDR 2) have dropped performance by a smaller margin (from 100+ to 75-80), whereas Insurgency Sandstorm now runs much better than it did before the move - frametime issues have disappeared, framerate is far higher and more consistent in spite of the tremendously low CPU usage.

So in other words, I get 0-5 percent CPU utilization and moderate GPU utilization 60-90 percent.

I'll list my specs here:

CPU: Intel i5-12600K
GPU: Zotac Trinity RTX 3080 (UV to 1785 @ 0,825 stable)
Cooler: Noctua NH-D15S
Mobo: MSI PRO Z690-A
RAM: G. Skill Trident Z 16 GB 3600 CL16
NVME SSD: Samsung 980 500 GB
SATA SSD: Crucial MX500 1 TB
PSU: MSI MPG A850GF 850 W

So far, I've done several things to try and fix this:

  • Reinstalled Windows 11 (cloud download)
  • Benchmarked my CPU/GPU in a variety of tests - beefiest OCCT preset, Aida64, etc. In all cases, CPU does boost to a little over 4,4 GHz, max cpu package power is around 90 watts, all cores run at 100 percent load, highest momentary peak temps are 72 C, P and E core average temps are in the mid 60s.
  • Tried to run games in fullscreen, borderless window, etc.
  • Tried reinstalling Nvidia drivers
  • Checked for a loose CPU heatsink, reseated the RAM and etc.
  • Checked power plans.
  • Checked all the cables.
  • Defragmented the drives
At this point, I am unsure what could be causing this. I don't remember dropping the computer or bumping it too hard during the move. All the cables are where they are supposed to be. The only thing that is different is that I had to daisy chain two surge protectors, since the only socket in the room is just too far away from the PC. I've already ordered a new, longer one. Could that be it? Some kind of power delivery problems? Anyone got any ideas?

I'm including an imgur album of a few screenshots that I have from game benchmarks and OCCT testing if it is of any use:.

BEFORE THE MOVE: Imgur: The magic of the Internet
AFTER THE MOVE: Imgur: The magic of the Internet and Imgur: The magic of the Internet
If you have access to an ext cord bypass the surge units and plug direct to the wall....test.

If no help run the cord to a socket in a different room....test.
 

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