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CPU Throttled to 30% on NXT?

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Kyle†Fer
Dec Gold Premier Club Member 2009

Kyle†Fer

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SOLVED, SEE LAST POST BY ME ON PG 2

NXT
Windows 10
Laptop Lenovo Legion y720
Intel Core I7-7700HQ @2.8 GHz, Quad Core
Nvidia GEFORCE GTX 1060
16gb RAM

SOLVED, SEE PG 2

Hello, I've been trying to get to the bottom of why my laptop will not run Runescape at a full on 60 fps smoothly at all times like other players/streamers I have seen with the same graphics card. I have boiled it down to my CPU being throttled.
I could upload a pic, but I feel it would be useless as I can explain everything here as well. Here is what I have observed, and what I have done.

Problem: Running NXT on ultra settings yields about 14% GPU load and 30% CPU max, it never goes over 31% load. Meanwhile my FPS will be around 33-45 during this time. I am trying to figure out what is throttling the CPU so that I can have smoother gameplay during intense events like Nex and Raids.
I have given NXT access to all CUDA cores through the Intel and Nvidia Control Panel, I have set all settings in the Nvidia Control panel that I could to High Performance Mode. I have set my max CPU output to 100% in the power settings, my CPU will go over 30% on other applications, just not on NXT.

I know with things like this there is usually just a setting somewhere that needs to be turned on or off to fix it all, but for the life of me I cannot find out where to find such a switch. I have tried just about all I can think of.

Also worth noting that I get about a 10 FPS boost by moving NXT window over to an external display, I am guessing the HDMI out has quicker access to the GPU, but then again, my GPU is only being utilized 12-18% by NXT.

I got this laptop pretty much to run RS and some other games, but mainly RS, and I hate that RS seems to be the only game so far that does not run as smooth as the rest. Any other game I get a solid 60fps, but RS seems to just be stuck at 30-45.

Also should note all my temperatures look good.

Thank you for any and all help.

22-May-2019 20:55:26 - Last edited on 14-Jun-2019 00:26:32 by Kyle†Fer

Hmm
Jan Gold Premier Club Member 2016

Hmm

Posts: 11,761Opal Posts by user Forum Profile RuneMetrics Profile
The game is very much still single threaded in a lot of areas. Basically, RS can only use one and a bit core at a time, so the reason you're limited to 30% is because you're running a quad core system and RS is capped at one and a bit of them, but can use those one and a bit of them at a time, which is 30% for you.

There's unfortunately no fix for this, you'd need to overclock the CPU which I wouldn't recommend for a laptop to get more out of it, or hope that upcoming mobile updates will also reduce the requirement for the desktop version making the 30% it can use more efficient.

RS is very much CPU bound versus other games, and a good GPU will be limited by a mediocre CPU, single core performance is vital, so you could have an RTX 2080 Ti performing poorly on RS if the CPU isn't sufficient enough, and I see it happen a fair amount.

Edit: Relooking at your stats, it's absolutely the CPU which is limiting you here.

22-May-2019 21:01:42 - Last edited on 22-May-2019 21:09:16 by Hmm

Kyle†Fer
Dec Gold Premier Club Member 2009

Kyle†Fer

Posts: 927Gold Posts by user Forum Profile RuneMetrics Profile
Thank you, I'll look into seeing if it is possible to swap out the CPU on this laptop, I'm willing to do that, the only thing I was skeptical about was the CPU when I bought it.

Is it possible that NXT could be set to use more CPU cores by Jagex or is this just an impossibility with the way the game is setup?

22-May-2019 21:06:49

Hmm
Jan Gold Premier Club Member 2016

Hmm

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I think the biggest cause of the lag is the lack of GPU acceleration on the player models, and the fact that even invisible players are still rendered even if not actually shown on screen, so you end up with a 1000 people with particools that are hammering on a CPU bottleneck even if you're only seeing 5 of them because they're all on one tile.

It's not impossible to fix this, Jagex could work on it, and due to Mobiles release, they likely are working on substantial improvements down the line. But there's nothing you as a player can do that isn't upgrade the CPU, and laptops generally can't be upgraded.

So in the future this might improve, but the situation is really out of our hands unfortunately.

Edit: There was talks a LONG while ago, back in 2016, that Jagex might transition the NXT client to use different rendering API's, explicitly, Vulkan, which has a lower CPU overhead than OpenGL. This would further benefit your situation if they did get around to this, but unfortunately I don't think it's particularly likely at the moment because there's far more engine related work they have to prioritise.

22-May-2019 21:08:54 - Last edited on 22-May-2019 21:14:24 by Hmm

Pinguicula

Pinguicula

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Kyle, you typed 700HQ but I think you meant 7700HQ. I couldn't find anything about 700HQ.

I don't have much experience with finding CPU bottlenecks but seems like an Intel Core i7-7700HQ should be OK for running the NXT client. Am I missing something? I didn't think having a base frequency of 2.8 GHz would be too low. What would be a good laptop CPU for the NXT client?

23-May-2019 03:51:32 - Last edited on 23-May-2019 03:52:29 by Pinguicula

Singularity
Apr Gold Premier Club Member 2007

Singularity

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Have you monitored the CPU's clock speeds? Third-party programs such as CPUID HWMonitor or HWINFO can check this.

What you should do is monitor the clock speeds (numeric value measured in "MHz";) and watch the numbers. What number is it reporting consistently? And does it ever drop lower?

You can do the same for your GPU as well. Keep an eye on the MHz numbers (memory/graphics). What do they show and are they stable?

The reason to check this is because laptops especially can throttle the CPU's speed. Typical reasons can be: excessively high temperatures, hitting the power limit of the CPU (i.e. if a CPU is a power limit of 15W and it hits that during an intensive task, it will throttle down the speed) and also power-saving features being active (some laptops have additional software pre-installed by the manufacturer that controls power management).

NXT doesn't rely on the CPU as much. I typically see usages of about 20% under normal operation. It will occasionally over-use my CPU and climb to the 40% (that's when I notice the game introduce minor stutters). It's the GPU that matters the most and you clearly have a decent enough GPU.

That said, your CPU can play a part. And it definitely will if it's failing to run at a fast enough speed and/or is very weak. I don't think yours is extremely weak though. I would expect your machine to at least hit the 60 FPS mark. I can't speak if it would remain stable at that frame rate as that depends.

Your GPU load is alarming though, especially for Ultra settings. That usually bumps up GPU load massively. My GPU (GTX 1050Ti) sees about 30-40% load at high-ish settings. I would expect that value to be much higher.

Are you sure the client is actually using the Nvidia GPU properly? You can check via the developer's console. Once opened, type "renderer" and scroll all the way up. You should see Nvidia mentioned.
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23-May-2019 04:11:06

Kyle†Fer
Dec Gold Premier Club Member 2009

Kyle†Fer

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Yes I meant to say 7700, my apologies!

So with Hwmonitor (I actually had that already) It is always reading around 3300 to 3500 mhz on all cores, except core 03, which sometimes drops into the 700s then jumps back up. I logged in after a few hours break today and noticed my fps was capped at 30 fps, even though in the graphics settings I had it to 60, I changed it and no change whatsoever, it stayed 30 fps. Rebooted client and it jumped, for the first time in a while I'm getting 60 fps almost everywhere, CPU still locked at 30% as well.

Now I went back to where I was last night where it was consistently 37-45, and it is holding a steady 57, when I pan around it dips into the 40s... But after that incident where I left the client open a few hours, was logged in the lobby a good bit of the time, and it getting locked at 30fps, only shows me that something built/programmed into the laptop has to be limiting the game, something made it cap off at 30 after it was left idle for a while or something, it would seem as such at least. Temps were getting into the mid 60į C , but turning on turbo cooling fixed that. I also have a usb fan always aimed at the keyboard as I noticed some heat vents thru the keyboards, making the keys feel warm which to me is just uncomfortable, I like feeling a cold surface when I type. Cooling should not be an issue here as well, I'm convinced it's 100% software, like you said 2.8ghz while maybe not as good as the 3.2ghz/3.4ghz CPUs out today, which my last laptop HAD 3.2GHz Quad Core and ran at 20fps on lowest settings but Intel HD 4000 Grpahics Card, which is basically a stock card for business laptops, ready to run Word and Videos. I hope I answered your questions here, I will re-read your post after I post this and edit as necessary.

Update: WHen I moved RS to the Laptops Built In Display I got the 10 fps dip I mentioned earlier, it is now steadily 42-45 fps. Very strange.

23-May-2019 08:15:11 - Last edited on 23-May-2019 08:29:31 by Kyle†Fer

Kyle†Fer
Dec Gold Premier Club Member 2009

Kyle†Fer

Posts: 927Gold Posts by user Forum Profile RuneMetrics Profile
Ran out of characters on the last post, but you are right, the GPU utilization does seems low, I feel like something hides that value from showing the true value as well, for instance; while playing some games like FPS games, the GPU does not even register as being utilized by it, but I know it has to be to be pumping the 60fps that it does. I am using the Task Manager to get these readings though, perhaps it is not very accurate.

Edit: Client has been running about 30 minutes now, I went back to where I was when I logged in, moved the Client window over to my external monitor, and the FPS is now hovering in the 40s, not staying native 60 like it did when I logged in. Now that to me feels like something is modifying the clients potential by regulating it as it runs... Just like how after a few hours it was totally locked at 30 fps.. This is really just boggling my mind, I am going to sleep on it. I will check this thread tomorrow. Thank you again for any and all help/advice.

23-May-2019 08:31:20 - Last edited on 23-May-2019 08:37:30 by Kyle†Fer

Singularity
Apr Gold Premier Club Member 2007

Singularity

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Core 3 dropping to 700MHz does sound a bit odd unless it's not a core that's being used by anything, so drops to idle speeds. Although, if you're on the High Performance Windows power plan, it should stop throttling to conserve power. You really want to avoid any form of throttling while running games. Sudden drops can impact FPS stability, even if it's only for a second or two. If that were me, I would not be happy with one core dropping to 700MHz while I was gaming.

Try to identify what's making core 3 drop to 700MHz occasionally. Does it drop when it has low usage? Are Core 3's temps high enough to warrant throttling?

Have you also made sure to set your background FPS to match your foreground? This is just so you don't mess with the readings from monitoring programs as clicking out the client will drop FPS to whatever is set on the background option. You don't want that as that lowers usage of system resources which will impact speed readings if power management options are enabled on your machine.

Do you have any pre-installed software that your laptop manufacturer may have installed onto the machine? Check if there's anything installed that might be controlling how your laptop manages power/heat draw.

For GPU monitoring, HWMonitor is capable of showing you GPU loads and speeds. I would watch those closely as well. GPU clock speeds are just as important as CPU speeds. If HWMonitor isn't showing anything about your GPU, try GPU-Z instead.

When monitoring GPUs, pay attention to which card is active. Your laptop has an iGPU (the integrated GPU embedded onto your processor) and a dedicated GPU (the Nvidia GTX 1060 - the one you want to be using). Gotta make sure the right GPU is being used for Runescape. Make sure the Nvidia GPU is active and running at full speed (base speeds).

Your machine definitely seems like it should be performing better. I would at least expect 60 FPS with possible dips.
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24-May-2019 07:07:55

Kyle†Fer
Dec Gold Premier Club Member 2009

Kyle†Fer

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My apologies for taking so long to reply, it has been a rough week for me. GIve me some time to catch up on this and look into everything.

I know for a fact that the NVidia GPU is the active GPU for NXT, I have set it manually to only use the GTX 1060 when it runs, it was set to the onboard graphics by default which still got okay fps but wasn't made to run high fidelity games.

I'm gonna try that 60 60 fps ratio, I usually have the background set to 5 fps.

31-May-2019 04:49:05 - Last edited on 31-May-2019 04:49:23 by Kyle†Fer

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