Suspect CPU is killing my fps


Dec 12, 2012
Hey, I've been having some really frustrating problems gaming lately, could use your help figuring this out.

Playing Deus Ex: HR, Alice Madness Returns, and Planetside 2: I average 20-30 fps in all of these games, chopping to a brutal 10-15 fps in combat. The in-game graphics settings make very little difference, which suggests my CPU is the problem, and my graphics card is fine.

What's weird is, I have almost the same specs as the guy in this video, who gets a beautiful framerate with max settings in Alice Madness Returns:

But on my computer, Alice churns below 10 fps in some areas, and it's not even using more than 50% of my CPU (if that...probably more like 30%).

His specs:

Intel Core I3-2120/3.3GHz/2.5GT/s/3MB Cache/LGA1155
Sapphire AMD HD6670/GDDR5/1024mb
Kingston 8GB/DDR3/1333MHz/CL9/Kit Of 2
Asrock H61M-GS

My specs:

Graphics card: Radeon HD 6670 (1GB DDR3 VRAM)
Processor: AMD Athlon II X4 640 Propus 3.0GHz
Motherboard: MSI 760GM-P33

Now...I suspect the CPU is at fault, but what can I do? I made sure I had all the CPU drivers from the CD that came with the motherboard. I don't know what else to look for.

Maybe the problem isn't the CPU--all I really know is, I'm pretty sure my specs are good enough to play these games at a reasonable fps, and changing the graphics settings makes little difference (especially in Planetside--even at 800x600 my fps never changes).

Any help would be very appreciated--this has been stressing me out for some time now. Thanks!


Nov 28, 2012
You suspect your CPU?
- Really?....
- The Core i3 has HyperThreading, and if enabled the 'peak' usage is 50% and when HyperThreading is helping it will rise over a reported 50% CPU load.
- Due to the way most 3D titles are programed the CPU can run at 'max' (50%+ in this case) and the GPU can also run at/near 'max'.

If the CPU is only reaching 30% (60% normal workload) then the problem is definitely your video card.

Your methodological approach was correct, just needed a little tweak for HyperThreading/SMT, that's all.
- Try running at a lower resolution (no less than 1024x768 though)
- If your frame rate increases then the bottleneck is the video card, it's that simple.

The Radeon HD6670 is about 1/5th as powerful as a modern GTX660 Ti:
- There are probably also OEM variants of HD6670's that have even worse performance, sometimes only a quarter as fast as the part should be.

If you want a high frame rate during the action get a card with a good texel rate, and at least 88GB/sec in memory bandwidth.

To be brutally honest anything over 24 Gpixels/sec at Full HD is usually fine unless you're cranking the Anti-Aliasing or something weird...

PS: The guy in the video might be lying to sell stock.
after looking at that vid i can say he is playing at 1280/720 and high settings.
her shadow shows he is not using any AA but is on higher settings for shadows. but it looks like medium settings for textures and world detail... also make sure you have physx turned off in the options or it will cripple your fps.
my guess is its down to the better multi threading performance the i3 offers. if the game is only running off 2 cores then he will have roughly 40% more cpu grunt to play with thus the better frame rates...

try using the latest cat2 profiles along with the beta 12,11 drivers. also if you have a decent cooler. bump the cpu by 200mhz if you can...
if you can then turn down the settings and see if you get the same fps hit... if you do then its likely down to a cpu bottleneck and you will need to oc a bit.


Nov 9, 2012

Alice: Madness Returns is one of those very weird games who cap fps to 30. :??:
Anyways, to turn V-Sync and FPS cap off, try this:

Go to
\Documents\My Games\Alice Madness Returns\AliceGame\Config\AliceEngine.ini
And make the following changes

Your CPU should be capable of handling the game alright. My PC with the old E7500 and a GTX 550Ti handled the game without any issues.
It's your graphic card that's causing the problem I think. Make sure you have the latest drivers.


Dec 12, 2012
Hey, thanks for the replies. I made sure my graphics card drivers and CAT profiles were up to date.

I didn't notice I had PhysX on in Alice (the option disappears in-game), and the FPS cap increase helped too. It's playable at a healthy 30fps with decent graphics now.

Planetside 2 still has problems...I get the exact same 15fps regardless of 800x600 or 1600x1200, high or low settings, and it runs my CPU near the max. So...since the settings don't affect the framerate, either the CPU is suspect or Planetside just doesn't like me. I suspect it's Planetside's fault: the game is buggy, I'm not the only one with issues, and all my other games seem to be fine now (and by that I mean: a consistent 30fps with mid-to-high settings, which is all I was expecting).

So...unless there's some CPU problem I haven't heard of, I guess this question's been answered. Planetside is nearly unplayable, but it looks like that's a question for the Planetside forums. Thanks for the responses guys, they were all really helpful.