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Does your HDD cause any stuttering in games?

Does your HDD stutter sometimes in games?

  • I have no stutters, my rig rulez!!

    Votes: 24 66.7%
  • I have these tiny stutters in some games, it's normal isn't it?

    Votes: 10 27.8%
  • All my games stutter I want an SSD NOW!!!

    Votes: 2 5.6%

  • Total voters
    36
  • Poll closed .

LifeOnMars

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#1
The majority of my games run fine but I do have tiny half second stutters in a few different titles. Namely -

BATTLEFIELD 3 - Single Player Campaign - Savepoints

STALKER - SOC = At various points (AI engine as I understand it)

MOST UNREAL ENGINE GAMES - Alice-Madness Returns, Bulletstorm, Batman AA etc checkpoints/new events

TRINE - In the very first tutorial level as it keeps popping up help messages

COD - All games in the series have certain stutters in specific areas.

CRYSIS - Binoculars zoom in and the obvious save/checkpoints

PORTAL 2 - As I enter a new chamber

I have previously had an HD 5870, GTX 460 1GB, an HD 5770 and currently a GTX 560 TI and the same stutters have remained. My PSU is a brand new Corsair HX 850w. I have also tried stock clocks, looser timings on RAM, higher voltages on certain things at stock and also with my chip not unlocked yet still the stutters remain in the same games. They are not gamebreaking in any way but they have made me curious.

I thought I would try this poll to see if it is a common thing to have these little stutters in games and do you just accept it as the norm or maybe there is a slight IO problem I am having with my particular system.

Be honest and it will be interesting to see results.

Thanks.
 
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#2
I have always had some stutter with mechanical hard drives, in RAID, single drives, multiple drives with split duty.


The only time I have not had stuttering worth mentioning is with my current drive setup, and it still has a little hiccup on some games. But it is unnoticeable unless you are looking.
 
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#3
I have an SSD as my operating system drive but my steam games folder is on a mechanical drive and I cant say that i experience any stutter in these games... I think it could be your HDD but also the amount of system ram and VRAM you have to preload in.
 

LifeOnMars

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#4
I have an SSD as my operating system drive but my steam games folder is on a mechanical drive and I cant say that i experience any stutter in these games... I think it could be your HDD but also the amount of system ram and VRAM you have to preload in.
Interesting, although I do only game at 1680x1050 and have 8GB RAM. Does your GTX 580 have 3GB of VRAM? And is your steam folder on the raided samsung drives?
 

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#5
No stuttering at all. Not even in Alice, and that's about the most complex game I'm playing atm.
 

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#7
i've been on SSD for some time now. i got like 4 SSD's. not a hint of stutter. Actually all my games, from Crysis 2 to Skyrim play amazingly well with excellent frames even in 3D mode.
 
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#8
Nothing i really notice, i found call of pripyat used to have what i assumed to be a hard drive orientated stutter, but it dosent do it anymore, even when i moved it from the ssd to my mechanical drive. (Maybe because the mechanical drive is not running the OS anymore?)
 

candreae

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#9
Depends on the game

Hard drive access speeds can cause stuttering in certain games if they are too slow. A perfect example would be World of Warcraft. Many people experience smooth gameplay when questing by themselves...but in large raids, busy cities or jam packed battlegrounds they complain of a lag effect. They add memory, upgrade their CPU or graphics to no avail. This is because the problem here is related to access times. While the game world and 3d effects the program can predict to happen will already be loaded into memory, the objects, textures and effects it can not predict will have to be pulled from the drive. These unique and unexpected objects come most commonly from the unique textures that make up other character's appearance and activity.

Games like first person shooters are able to load pretty much every required rendering file into memory since the number of players is often very limited and the number of simultaneous effects can be predicted quite easily.

Again, it's about what you play...there's no blanket answer to the question of hard drive stutter or lag. But for my mmorpg playing customers, I will continue to suggest solid state drives (and if mechanical hdd units get any more expensive i'll suggest them to everyone.)

My first post here...try not to flame me too hard. :nutkick:
 
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#10
Interesting, although I do only game at 1680x1050 and have 8GB RAM. Does your GTX 580 have 3GB of VRAM? And is your steam folder on the raided samsung drives?
I need to update my system specs, i no longer have raid samsung F1's... using just one at the moment (and the other in my secondary rig). The GTX580 has 1.5gb vram and i game at 1920x1200
 

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#11
I noticed some stutter lately in Skyrim, but a couple of days before I was using the same mods, and no stutter. Probably it's because of random background programs which I forgot to check. It's hard to determine whether stutter is due to the SSD/HDD or whether it's due to mediocre cpu performance or mediocre drivers...
 
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#12
Yeah I have them sometimes. Especially in some scripted and triggered situations or in giant scenes of distruction in some games.
 

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#13
Not that i notice, games on raid 0 setup.
 
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#14
We either have a bunch of enthusiastic liars :laugh: or I have been suffering for years with an affliction that no one else has.



I consider a stutter any sort of lag or jumpy gaming either while entering a large new area on a game, or due to lack of resources.

Loading a level in HL:2 with the new cinematic mods installed on all high settings and then the first couple seconds as the textures are fetched there is a small amount of stuttering.


Skyrim, transitioning to skyrim with ultra settings on (some adjustments in the .inf file and to AF/AA) I occasionally get a stutter, or when entering a new area like the snow in the mountains with a long view distance I get occasional stutters. Nothing that is gameplay stopping or bothersome, just barely noticeable on a game that is enveloping and immersive on a 46" screen, 5.1 and a dark house with a few creaks of its own from the hardwood floors heating and cooling.
 

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#15
No stuttering at all. Not even in Alice, and that's about the most complex game I'm playing atm.
Just thought that there could be some microstuttering, but it's nothing I notice. In games like EU3 there is some stuttering going on when running the game on max speed and there's a lot going on and you move the map around but that is expected.
 

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#16
I dont have stutter at all, but i have 6 HDDs and everything is spread out. I have a 60GB mushkin callisto SSD (OS only)
programs/user folder drive
Music/movies drive
Work drive
Gaming drive
backup/image drive

my games are seperate from everything even programs run off of a diffirent drive. my pagefile is setup on my backup/image drive as that drive is used once a month.
 
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#17
We either have a bunch of enthusiastic liars :laugh: or I have been suffering for years with an affliction that no one else has.



I consider a stutter any sort of lag or jumpy gaming either while entering a large new area on a game, or due to lack of resources.

Loading a level in HL:2 with the new cinematic mods installed on all high settings and then the first couple seconds as the textures are fetched there is a small amount of stuttering.


Skyrim, transitioning to skyrim with ultra settings on (some adjustments in the .inf file and to AF/AA) I occasionally get a stutter, or when entering a new area like the snow in the mountains with a long view distance I get occasional stutters. Nothing that is gameplay stopping or bothersome, just barely noticeable on a game that is enveloping and immersive on a 46" screen, 5.1 and a dark house with a few creaks of its own from the hardwood floors heating and cooling.

You must understand that not all mechanical drives are created equal. Take for instance the Samsung Spinpoint F3's. Arguably the fastest mechanical drives on the market, and they are pretty fast. One of those drives will outperform a RAID 0 array of some of the older WD Caviar drives.
Now you take 2 of those drives in RAID 0, and you're talking EASILY well over 200MB/s throughput. Now take four of those, short stroke them and use a dedicated RAID controller (Perc i5/i6), over 400MB/s AVERAGE throughput.
And I highly doubt that 8ms of access time is going to cause any sort of stutter in games. Before I went with RAID 0 array's, I had stutter in games such as Oblivion. After RAID, not a one.

But there's a little bit more to it than that. It depends on the controller as they're not all created equal. Some newer ones are actually slower than the ones from 7 years ago. Then there's partitioning and short stroking for head placement optimization and so on.
 

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#18
Defragging is a must for a HD, not sure how it affects SSDs...
 
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#19
Rarely have shuttering Ie always used mechanical drives. When I do its a when there is a lot of activity in a game. I dont think its the drive doing it. By then all the data is in memory. Unless its writing to page file.

Are you using ahci mode? I use to have shuttering in IDE mode. Also I never Defrag but 7 does it automatically
 
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#20
i have super tiny stutters on SOME games but it's almost un-noticable and I use a WD 1TB green. I was using my SSD and i had none but i need more space then my current ssd so im going to hold off as my 1TB does just fine.
 
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#21
No stutters, but then I'm very strict about what I have installed. I keep installed apps to a minimum. I keep my HDD completely empty, except for OS and games (BF3 and APB Reloaded). All of my downloads (Firefox and Orbit) are set to go straight to my backup drive.

Keep your drive as empty as possible and don't forget to defrag.

My first post here...try not to flame me too hard. :nutkick:
You brought some usefulness to the table, you're all good :toast: Welcome to TPU! Land of the Genius and Home of the Great :)
 

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#22
I sometimes get stutters on Bf3, but then my PC isn't BF3 ready, and I have tons of photos and videos stored on it.
 
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#23
Using a WD 500GB Black for my Windows install and a 750GB Black for games and i have not experienced any stutter on any Unreal engine games (aka UE3.0) and Trine.

Cant confirm for the rest though.
 
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#24
Wow nice replies people. Thanks alot for your input so far and taking the time to answer the poll.

@Steevo - Lol, I agree. I'm supersensitive to both frame rate changes and any hitching/stutters no matter how minute in games. These are not what I consider game breaking stutters but sometimes I find myself looking for them rather than just cracking on with a decent gaming sesh.

@Jetster - I'm in ahci mode and my disk has 0% fragmentation as I'm pretty stringent.

@Scam - I just have os/games/drivers installed on the disk, everything else goes to my storage disk which also holds downloads and fraps.

I'm moving onto a sandybridge setup with SSD raid and a 2nd GTX 560ti sli'd within the next couple of months hopefully. I will report back with any improvements/observations :)

Keep posting and voting guys and gals, it's all good.
 
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#25
No stuttering at all. Not even in Alice, and that's about the most complex game I'm playing atm.
Which Alice are you talking about?