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Dell 5150 Poor FPS with World of Warcraft


bpatters69

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I am getting horrible FPS on World of Warcraft. On a good day, I average 15 - 20 but it is not uncommon for me to get sub 10FPS or 8, 9 FPS. I am running the game on a non-hyperthreaded P4 Dell 5150.

The specs on my machine are:

Dell 5150 with Windows XP Home SP2

PROCESSOR, 80532, 3.06G, 512K

1.2GB of RAM

ATI Mobility 9000 Video Card with 64MB of RAM

All the latest drivers from Dell for the video card and hardware

Latest DirectX

I have tried reinstalling everything including re-installing the Operating system. I have run the tests under DxDiag and I have not found any problems. Concidentally, I also run the game off a 5 year old P4, 1.3Ghz with 768MB of RAM and the game runs fine. The FPS is usually above 25 and often in the 30 to 40 range or higher. The only difference between the two computers is that the 5 year old PC is a Desktop and the video card in the Desktop is only 2 or 3 yeards old. I think it is a GeoForce NVIDIA.

I have seen threads talking about heat build-up on the 5150. I have had the PC for a couple of years and never used compressed air to clean out the dust. I will try that when I get home. Does anyone else have any ideas?

Is there a way to see how hot a computer is running?

Thanks, Bill

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i'd say dust buildup is quite possible if you've had the system for a while and have never cleaned or blown out the vents. What you could do is get one of those air compressed cans and blow out all of open vents on the back and one to the side, or if you're daring like me, you can just completely open up the entire system and wipe/blow off the dust inside. if you ever intend on doing the latter, check here:

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Inspiron5150/

it's a yahoo! groups site for i5150 that someone made, and once your a member you can view the photos of detailed steps that are taken to completely open up an i5150. i relied on it when i first opened up my i5150, and it's all in my memory now.

my i5150's got 2.8 w/ HT, 1gig ram, and nvidia 5200go 64mb card instead, and whenever i "used" to play wow, an idle location in ironforge would yield me like around 30-60, and somewhere like mc would be as low as 10-15. That was after I put every single windows settings to low (like the xp settings), put all wow settings to the ultimate low, overclocked my gfx, and had a laptop fan platform thingy blowing underneath constantly, as well as a table fan that blew at the vent lol.

but yea, that's my story :) gl to you

Edited by daonesteven
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Matrix lag is a big indicator of heat, it is when the game runs in "slow motion" but you still get the same FPS as regularly. If you dont have this problem, heat may not be an issue. Dropping FPS is usually an indicator of CPU, Hard Drive usage, or the video card simply isnt powerful enough. With a 32MB video card, Wow may be loading too many textures into memory and the video card can't handle it as well. Try overclocking the memory a little bit, my 64MB Go5200 runs at 244/477MHz (stock speeds are 196/392MHz, core/mem respectively)

Try closing ALL background programs (except the ones XP needs to run), if the harddrive indicator is blinking or on when the FPS drops (beside the power light) then something is accessing the harddrive and is likely the problem. Otherwise, all I can say is you need a better GFX card.

The FX series GeForce cards are horrible in general. Try an ATI Radeon 9000 64MB (you can buy some really cheap on ebay), you may get better performance if overclocking doesnt help. even a 64MB Go5200 would probably do better.

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Matrix lag is a big indicator of heat, it is when the game runs in "slow motion" but you still get the same FPS as regularly. If you dont have this problem, heat may not be an issue. Dropping FPS is usually an indicator of CPU, Hard Drive usage, or the video card simply isnt powerful enough. With a 32MB video card, Wow may be loading too many textures into memory and the video card can't handle it as well. Try overclocking the memory a little bit, my 64MB Go5200 runs at 244/477MHz (stock speeds are 196/392MHz, core/mem respectively)

Try closing ALL background programs (except the ones XP needs to run), if the harddrive indicator is blinking or on when the FPS drops (beside the power light) then something is accessing the harddrive and is likely the problem. Otherwise, all I can say is you need a better GFX card.

The FX series GeForce cards are horrible in general. Try an ATI Radeon 9000 64MB (you can buy some really cheap on ebay), you may get better performance if overclocking doesnt help. even a 64MB Go5200 would probably do better.

Thanks to all for your responses. Just FYI. I have the ATI Mobility 9000 card and it has 64MB of RAM. Also, in the bolded text above, you mentioned shutting down all background applications. How do I know if an application is required by XP? I knnow about restarting with minimal apps loaded into memory by using "msconfig".

One other point. I started using this laptop in December for WoW. The laptop worked fine until Feb or March. The decline in perfomance seemed to coincide with one of the WoW "patches". I have contact WoW tech "support" and all they could say was update the drivers, blah, blah, blah.

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most techs do that. if it seems to coincide with the patches then there's nothing really you can do. The newest nVidia driver doesnt even support the GeForce FX Go5200 anymore, I'm guessing the same goes for ATI, and if you downgrade WoW then obviously you cant play on the official servers. Kinda chitty if u ask me.

Edited by mew905
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most techs do that. if it seems to coincide with the patches then there's nothing really you can do. The newest nVidia driver doesnt even support the GeForce FX Go5200 anymore, I'm guessing the same goes for ATI, and if you downgrade WoW then obviously you cant play on the official servers. Kinda chitty if u ask me.

Yeah. No kidding. Good old ATI and NVIDIA have notebook users by the ball$..... :)

Shame I can't buy a newer card and get newer drivers. I think I have found a work-around though. I found a two sites that have programs that mod the newest ATI drivers to work with my card. Might not work but it is worth a try.

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I found a two sites that have programs that mod the newest ATI drivers to work with my card. Might not work but it is worth a try.

Which site??? www.laptopvideo2drag.com ???

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