Windows 10: New Laptop's GTX 940mx isn't being used properly.

  1.    29 Dec 2016 #1

    New Laptop's GTX 940mx isn't being used properly.

    I got a laptop recently, and it's been chugging along just fine until I realized that it may be running off of integrated graphics instead. I'm not sure where the specs are displayed, after I put them all up on my profile, but the laptop's got a GTX 940mx GPU, and also Intel HD Graphics 520, and so far, I've been seeing some strange symptoms that would suggest the Integrated Graphics are the only ones getting any use.

    So far I've tried:

    • Forcing the preferred GPU to "High-performance NVIDIA processor" in the NVIDIA control panel. Doesn't seem to have changed anything, however.
    • Running the GPUs through GPU-Z (I haven't used it that much before). The strange part was that neither cards seemed to be getting any load at all, even while I was running Metal Gear Solid: Ground Zeroes (a game that is supposed to be able to do 60fps on medium settings) in the background. The other strange part is that under the "PerfCap" section of GPU-Z, the 940mx seemed to be capped, giving me the message "Limited by GPU Utilization".
    • Manually disabling the Integrated Graphics. I figure, if there's no Integrated Graphics, then the laptop either won't be able to boot, or it'll absolutely be forced to use the 940mx? Well it might have been forced to use the 940mx, because when I tried running MGS:GZ after that, it ran at about 0.1 frames. A minute. The thing is that it was completely consistent. Nothing changed the framerate after that. It didn't get faster or slower, which fits in with what GPU-Z was telling me. That the 940mx is being capped, for some reason. I think it just isn't allowed to run any faster than that.
    • But, here's the REAL weird part. I tried checking out the NVIDIA control panel while the Integrated Graphics were disabled, and I was greeted with "NVIDIA Settings are not available. You are not currently using a display attached to an NVIDIA GPU." I would have thought this would be the complete opposite way around, but no. Apparently the display isn't hooked up to an NVIDIA GPU, which I suppose makes sense, if the laptop was manufactured with the display connected straight to the motherboard and not the GPU.
    • I also tried messing with drivers for a little bit, but GeForce Experience keeps kicking me out with a really informative error message of "Something went wrong." I tried updating the drivers manually, without using GeForce Experience, but I don't remember what happened after that (I tried that solution a while ago). Either way, it didn't seem to do anything.

    And that concludes this big mess of GPUs, I guess. I'm not sure what's happening, now.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails GPU.PNG   GPU.PNG  
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  2. Posts : 600
    Windows 10 Home SL 64-bit, v1803
       29 Dec 2016 #2

    Firstly, it's not a GTX 940MX. It's just 940MX.

    Second, are you using drivers from the laptop manufacturer's website?
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  3.    30 Dec 2016 #3

    I didn't actually know that Lenovo had drivers for this stuff up on their site... The only one I could find that was compatible with my laptop (ideapad 510-15ISK) was this one here. It seems to be what I'm looking for, although it hasn't had any effect when I installed it.

    I tried disabling the Integrated Graphics through the device manager again, but the 940mx is still running like it did before. Although I tried re-enabling the Integrated Graphics and disabling the 940mx, which made any game I tried run terribly. So now I'm just confused altogether. Disabling either GPU seems to slow down games, but when both of them are running, said games run a lot better (but still not as well as they should).
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  4. Posts : 600
    Windows 10 Home SL 64-bit, v1803
       30 Dec 2016 #4

    Which games are you playing? The i7-6500U is only a dual-core chip and still slower than a desktop i3-6100 so that is to be expected unless the Intel HD 520 is running instead of the dedicated one in high-performance battery plan.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  5.    30 Dec 2016 #5

    I've tried out the laptop over a few games so far, and they all seem to be chugging quite a bit.

    I'm getting about 40 frames on Morrowind, which isn't that intensive. I tried out the original Deus Ex, which could reach 120 frames in the menu, and about 80 ingame.

    MGS:GZ runs at about 30 frames ingame, all settings at their absolute lowest.

    I also tried out Hotline Miami 1, which could do about 40 frames at best, even with the resolution turned down.

    Any time I tried to play something that would tell me what GPU it was using, it would always tell me it was using the Integrated Graphics, so I was assuming the problem was with the GPU, and not the CPU, considering that the CPU should be more than able to handle stuff like Deus Ex and Morrowind.

    Metal Gear Solid might be a bit more intensive for it, though, so I suppose it makes sense there.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  6. Posts : 600
    Windows 10 Home SL 64-bit, v1803
       31 Dec 2016 #6

    It doesn't look like a hardware issue but a driver issue to me. NVIDIA and Intel have problems with driver conflicts that even I gave up with (a GTX 460 SE and Intel HD 4400).
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  7. Anak's Avatar
    Posts : 412
    10 Home 64-bit | v1803 | Build -17134.165
       31 Dec 2016 #7

    If this is just a matter of making sure which card is being used I found two lenovo faqs that may help.

    I checked on the 940 and it is based on optimus technology, and for the latter link the steps are similar. You can search for more here as I only checked the first few of 66pages, and I guessed on some of the filters, like you have win10 x64 because your specs don't clarify what you do have so you may have to make adjustments to the filters: How to switch graphics cards Lenovo 80SR

    For the poor performance: Poor video performance when the NVIDIA Discrete GPU is not selected Lenovo Y50-70/Y50-70 Touch

    Slow graphics card performance Lenovo 80SR
    I know its not your model laptop, there's 72pages, but it may offer clues to the 940 settings.
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  8. Posts : 863
    Windows 10
       31 Dec 2016 #8

    Nothing weird. The Laptop is probably restricting the Nvidia card due to cooling considerations.

    Laptops use Optimus switching with mobile chipsets. The Intel Driver installed before the Nvidia one.
    If you mess about with drivers you can get in to a bad position, as it was not needed in the first place. Manufacturers drivers or from Windows updates should work.

    They do on mine, and it has iGPU and Nvidia GTxxxM type Notebook graphics card.
    Unfortunately latest drivers is a gamers obsession rather than sticking with what works properly.

    Nvidia Version 368.71 as given on Lenovo website should be good to go. Also the 4483 version of the Intel iGPU driver (install before the Nvidia one).

    Your images mean nothing as the Nvidia GPU or iGPU is not being used much, therefore it clocks down, nothing wrong. It does not need to run at full blast for Windows.

    I use a standard test for Graphics Cards 3DMARK, been using it for 13+ years, along with Nvidia Cards for that same time. You can compare benchmarks with people who have very similar hardware, thus confirming it is performing as intended.
    You can run this either with the Nvidia Graphics, or iGPU and see the difference.

    Individual games are a can of worms with so many settings a complete nightmare to make any sensible comparison.
    You have to remember that Desktop CPUs and Graphics Cards GPUs are much faster than the Mobile equivalent versions that are specifically designed for low power consumption.
      My ComputerSystem Spec


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