Question Stutter when playing NFS Heat on PC above the recommended requirements

Exploding PSU

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Hi all, I have quite a head scratcher here. Full transparency, I don't really play games these days, so my knowledge might be a bit rusty about the gaming stuff.
Alright, so my relative is coming over and he wanted to play NFS Heat. So we installed it and what do you know, it was a stuttering mess. What I mean by "stutter" is the game drops from 60 FPS to 40-50 range, enough to be noticeable. PC specs is better than the recommended system requirements.

Symptoms include :

- Stuttering randomly, it doesn't seem to correlate to what's going on in the game. Sometimes there can be many things going on at once in the game (with multiple rival cars, chases, lighting effects) and the game would run smoothly, but sometimes we can simply park on the side of the road and the game drops to 40 FPS for no reason momentarily.

- Random freezes for several seconds at a time. The entire game would stop for around 5 seconds (or even more), and would continue like nothing happened. When this happens the game doesn't "skip" 5 seconds, it's like the game pauses for a moment before continuing again. Sounds (like songs and car sounds) still play normally when the game freezes.

- Happens both when playing online and solo, so it's probably not internet connection related.

- Stuttering still happens no matter the graphics settings. I personally didn't see any difference in performance in either lowest settings or ultra settings. Sure, the graphics looks much better but the stuttering is still there.

- Looking at the "AMD overlay" thing, the GPU and CPU doesn't seem to struggle at all. GPU is only around 20-40% usage depending on what's going on (at ultra settings and with intense scenes, it can jump all the way to 50%, but far from the 100% cap so I guess it still has some room to spare?). CPU almost always below 10% on average (not sure if it's accurate or not).

I'd like to add that the temperature for the GPU and CPU is under control, so it's not thermal throttling (probably). Both CPU and GPU usually hovers around 70 C. The game is installed on an SSD.

Things I've done :
  • Restarting the computer everytime we wanted to play
  • Shutting down background stuff like the Cooler Master keyboard utility and NZXT Cam, making sure the game is the only application running.
  • Enable and disabling Freesync
  • Opening the case and placing an industrial fan blowing directly into the PC to cool it down (temperature for the GPU and CPU would drop to 60 C if we do this, this fan used to operate in a warehouse, so it's loud, massive, and inappropriate)
  • Messing around with the graphics settings (like I said, both lowest setting possible and highest setting possible make no difference)
  • Switching the graphics profiles in "AMD Adrenalin software", also turning off the "instant replay" and video recording features
  • Following stuff from YouTube (on top of my head : disabling Xbox DVR, setting process priority to high, tuning the RAM, disabling AMD adrenalin altogether, disabling some Windows services)
  • Driver reinstall, including trying several other drivers.
None of the above has solved the problem.

The only thing I haven't tried is to reinstall the whole OS, but I really don't want to do such drastic action. This is my work PC, I literally don't want to reinstall it just because an EA game isn't running properly.

Other games work fine. I have a copy of Forza Horizon 4 installed, and it runs flawlessly at highest graphics setting possible, locked in 60 FPS. Destiny 2 also runs fine, and pretty much all other games in my library (except Ubisoft games) run well.

Again, it's been a very long time since I played any game seriously, so I might have missed somethihg. I'd be grateful if someone can give me a pointer on what to do. Feel free to ask me for more info.

Obligatory system specs :
CPU : Ryzen 5 2600
MB : MSI X370 SLI Plus
RAM : T-Force Delta R DDR4 3000 32 GB(16x2)
GPU : Yeston RX 6800 XT
SSD : Samsung PM1725a 1.5 TB
HDD : An old 500 GB Seagate Momentus Thin
PSU : Seasonic S12G Gold
Cooler : Cryorig H7 QL

The game is played on a 1080p 60 FPS monitor on Windows 11 22H2, AMD Software version 22.5.1, motherboard BIOS version 7A33v3L4.
No hardware modification / tuning has been done, everything is stock like they came from the factory, other than the RAM's XMP profile set to 2866 MHz. I simply don't have the guts to touch any of these tuning knobs.

Thank you
 

Lutfij

Titan
Moderator
PSU : Seasonic S12G Gold
What is the wattage of the unit and how old is the unit in question?

my relative is coming over and he wanted to play NFS Heat. So we installed it and what do you know, it was a stuttering mess.
Where did you source the installer for the game?
 

Exploding PSU

Reputable
Jul 17, 2018
344
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4,770
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PSU : Seasonic S12G Gold
What is the wattage of the unit and how old is the unit in question?


my relative is coming over and he wanted to play NFS Heat. So we installed it and what do you know, it was a stuttering mess.
Where did you source the installer for the game?
The PSU is 650W. I bought it around 2018 I think, but I admit it's a rather old model, it was first released when Haswell was still the hot new thing.

It's a Steam installation. I understand the forum's stance on piracy, so I wouldn't even show my face here if it was pirated, am I right?
 

Lutfij

Titan
Moderator
The PSU is 650W. I bought it around 2018
What did it power from the moment it was purchased to today, apart from the RX6800XT? Even if the PSU was brand new, you're underpowered for your build. A PSU that's been in service for a while will output considerably less power due to (internal)wear and tear.
 

Exploding PSU

Reputable
Jul 17, 2018
344
80
4,770
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The PSU is 650W. I bought it around 2018
What did it power from the moment it was purchased to today, apart from the RX6800XT? Even if the PSU was brand new, you're underpowered for your build. A PSU that's been in service for a while will output considerably less power due to (internal)wear and tear.
When it was bought new it powered a Vega 56 for around 4 years-ish before I switched the GPU to a 6800XT around February this year. CPU has always been the same, an R5 2600. Also upgraded the cooler once and added an SSD, but everything else stays the same since it was new.

The PSU never failed me, I mean it never shut down all in a sudden or anything. But I'm open to suggestions.

Also, I actually bought the PSU following a recommendation from someone on this forum after the previous one failed spectacularly (that PSU incident was the reason why I signed up to the forum, just read my username). I'm kind of averse to PSU failures.
 

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