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CPU Spikes to 100 infrequently causing fps drops, lag and low GPU usage (gaming)

Hi everyone! problem stated in title but i'll be more descriptive below.
Here's my build:
AMD FX 8350 (overclocked to 4.5)
MSI 990FXA Gaming Motherboard
Partiot 16gigs ram 1600hz
GTX ASUS STRIX 980
Samsung 260gig SSD
600w power supply.

Some of my games run fine. I get full GPU usage and about 30-60% CPU usage. great!
I've been playing an MMO Black Desert online, which I understand is a very CPU heavy game but I don't understand why I'm getting small spikes of 100% on my CPU and only 40-65% GPU usage. It's caused me to have to turn my settings down to get a 60+FPS.
Every so often i'm getting fps drops as well as little lag spikes (aren't network related) my ram usage seems steady. It's about 50%.

Why can't I get full usage out of my GPU?
My CPU temps are fine. (36c)
I've set priorities to Realtime and also tried to set affinity to those cores which are hitting 100% yet the the problem still persists.

If anyone has any thoughts or recommendations as to how I can help optimize my CPU to prevent this from happening that would be great.
Thank you!
4 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about cpu spikes 100 infrequently causing fps drops lag low gpu usage gaming
  1. The 8350 is not the most stable chip, just remember that, AMDs just aren't as good quality as Intels. You also didn't mention your cooler. I suggest getting better cooling for your system, and be sure your thermal paste is correctly applied
  2. Best answer
    I've personally never had an issue with my AMD chips, but I wouldn't rule the above out. I wouldn't so much say not as stable as simply not as powerful. Your CPU temps are fine, they're about 30c under throttle, 20-25 under where I would start to get worried. The one thing I would put out there is that MMOs are very, very, very CPU intensive. Compare them to say, an open world game. I do not have a great GPU in my system, but when I play, say, Fallout 4, I can't run my GPU up to 100% because at that point my CPU is bottlenecking it. The same thing will happen at intensive points in GTA V, certain points whilst playing Tera, etc. Next time while you're playing, open up your task manager to your performance tab and track your CPU usage. If (when you get the spike) your CPU usage also spiked, then it's not necessarily an issue with the game or that your CPU is just running heavily. If, however, it's where you're going into something more intensive than normal and your entire usage goes up during that time and you get frame drops, that could also be it. As long as those temps are the temps that were under load, you don't need to get better cooling for your system.
  3. genthug said:
    I've personally never had an issue with my AMD chips, but I wouldn't rule the above out. I wouldn't so much say not as stable as simply not as powerful. Your CPU temps are fine, they're about 30c under throttle, 20-25 under where I would start to get worried. The one thing I would put out there is that MMOs are very, very, very CPU intensive. Compare them to say, an open world game. I do not have a great GPU in my system, but when I play, say, Fallout 4, I can't run my GPU up to 100% because at that point my CPU is bottlenecking it. The same thing will happen at intensive points in GTA V, certain points whilst playing Tera, etc. Next time while you're playing, open up your task manager to your performance tab and track your CPU usage. If (when you get the spike) your CPU usage also spiked, then it's not necessarily an issue with the game or that your CPU is just running heavily. If, however, it's where you're going into something more intensive than normal and your entire usage goes up during that time and you get frame drops, that could also be it. As long as those temps are the temps that were under load, you don't need to get better cooling for your system.


    I do get FPS drops during more intense moments and my GPU usage raises just slightly but I don't appear to be getting CPU spikes during these times. 96% (probably 100) is the highest any core goes. this only happens ever so often at random times regardless of what im doing. My GPU and CPU temps are perfectly fine and hardly fluctuate. I have a pretty solid cooling system .

    In theory, if the CPU and GPU aren't topping out, what prevents them from running at full potential?
    Could it be my power supply?
  4. If one of your cores is hitting near 100% and the game doesn't utilize all 8 cores, then your CPU is topping out. I've found that if your CPU usage goes over a certain amount -> your GPU usage cannot max. Doesn't work the way it does if GPU maxes. If GPU maxes out, CPU isn't effected, CPU will keep running as hard as it needs to. If your CPU can't keep up with how fast it needs to calculate the games mechanics at a steady framerate, your GPU cannot output an image faster than the computations run.

    What's your PSU?
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