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When playing Battlefield 3, I get a framerate of about 20-30 FPS. When playing mutliplayer, maybe after 5 minutes or so the framerate will drop and stay at 4-8 FPS. When a new map is reloaded this resets.

I am wondering if there is any common graphics settings for this. I noticed that Catalyst reports my video memory as 4 GB "Hypermemory". Perhaps at some point RAM is being used for video memory? (The card is 1 GB), maybe disabling this will help?

Update:
Using GPU-Z, I noticed that when this happens by GPU load % drops from a steady 100% to 0-10%. So it is as if the graphics card stops being used. The dedicated and shared memory are not going to the capacity of the card, so I don't think hypermemory theory is right.

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Seems to happen after the process memory gets to 1024 as wel... can't find a way to disable Hypermemory. Some things mention a Memory entry in the registry under ATI, but I don't have that. Also "ATI Tool Tray" fails to do it. –  Kyle Brandt Oct 29 '11 at 3:37
    
You'll need to post your specs. The number of causes for a dropping framerate are numerous. –  surfasb Oct 29 '11 at 7:37
    
8 GB RAM i5 M540 2.5 GHz, Raedon Mobility 4670. The card is kind of under powered for the game, but played the entire campaign fine. –  Kyle Brandt Oct 29 '11 at 13:26
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Assuming updated drivers, the next common cause of this is overheating. I'm not sure about the 4600 series but the 4800s were notorious for throttling or even crashing due to memory overheating not GPU.

Since you got GPUZ, I'd look at the memory temperatures next.

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@surasb: Thanks, do you know what temp in Celsius might cause it to throttle? –  Kyle Brandt Oct 29 '11 at 20:18
    
(A quick look at the log from playing earlier show it going up to 90C) –  Kyle Brandt Oct 29 '11 at 20:19
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@KyleBrandt I generally consider my devices to be overheating when they reach within 10% of being able to boil water. –  Breakthrough Oct 29 '11 at 23:09
    
How else will I heat my tea? I played for a while and didn't have this happen again, but next time I play I will see if it correlates to heat. I bet this is the answer. Ordered a new card for my Desktop that I should get Tuesday anyways :-P –  Kyle Brandt Oct 29 '11 at 23:10
    
FYI, I have Xfire 4870s and I have three 120mm fans on them to keep the memory from overheating. But I got them for 25% off, so I guess that's the trade off :) Depending on your manufacturer, generally they will start throttling at about 85 to 90. I know when Tom's Hardware was benchmarking the 4870's, they ran into the same throttling issue. –  surfasb Oct 30 '11 at 6:10
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