Apr 23, 2009
Hello, first time poster here.

My rig is as follows:

Motherboard: ASUS M2A-VM 690G Micro ATX HDMI
Processor: AMD Athlon 64 X2 6400+ 3.2ghz
Video Card: Sapphire 512MB GDDR4 HD3870
Hard Drive: 7200 RPM 160GB Western Digital
Monitor: Samsung 206BW 20" Widescreen LCD (1680x1050 native resolution)

I understand that I do not have the best components at the moment, but I feel that I should be getting better performance from the games that I am playing.

I mainly play World of Warcraft at 1680x1050 with 4x AA and the graphics are set at "Good". My framerates are generally from 40-80 FPS except when in Dalaran, 25-man raids or even when traveling through certain Northrend zones at high speed. In these zones, my framerate is usually anywhere from 10-25 FPS. During 25-man boss encounters, the framerate drop is almost unbearable and certainly affects my performance in the raid.

I have tested other games such as Call of Duty World at War and I receive around 50-60 FPS when not in combat, but during combat it usually goes down to around 30-40 FPS and even as low as 24 FPS during explosions. All graphics are set to "automatic" at 1680x1050 with 4x AA.

My CPU and video card idle at around 45 C and get up to around 58 C under load, 60 C max. I am using stock cooling with both the video card and CPU.

If there is a bottleneck, I would guess that it would be my motherboard because it is probably the oldest component and is now a deactivated item on Newegg.com. The motherboard's HT is 1000mhz and the processor's HT is 2000mhz. Also, the HD3870 is PCI-Express 2.0 and the board only supports PCI-E 1.0. The chipset standard for Micro-ATX boards is the 780G, so I'm thinking that the M2A-VM's older chipset, the 690G, may be bottlenecking my components as well.

My question is this: Can any of you see a bottleneck from glancing at my hardware? Or is something else affecting my performance?

Thanks in advance!


Apr 14, 2009
The WoW raid slowdown may be a multi-pronged issue. i.e. online lag. If the same rig slows down at the same situation in a LAN party, then only then will I conclude it's hardware.

The CoD slowdown is most likely hardware - cpu & gpu.

What's your upgrade budget? Is gaming the only concern?

sub mesa

If you get low fps in dalaran, its your GPU. Upgrade it to a modern nvidia chip and you should be fine. I also played with HD3870 but it appears even GeForce 7600/8600 GT perform much better already, at least under linux but i've tried the HD3870 on Windows XP too. Its not that great with WoW.