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game stutters after 30 mins

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just bought vice city and its not running to well.....i got:


amd 1700xp

512 ddr 2100

geforce 4 4600 ti

c-media 6 chnl sound card (pci)

yamaha sw1000 soundcard





win 98se

directx 9.0a


after about half an hour the sound goes all stuttery and i get about 4-10 fps, sometimes it seems to go away but it always returns


im using the nocd patch 1.0 cause the cd access was totally p!ss!ng me off even after id installed all the radio stations to the hard drive - WTF?


ive tried using 60hz refresh rate, running at 1024x768 and setting my desktop to this res.... no different


i read that the 1.1 patch shouldnt be used unless you have graphic probs, which i dont, should i try that?


anyone got any other ideas, cos this game is quite cool :)

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i have exactly the same problem, i tried asking for a no cd crack but most people on this forum are retards and keep saying i shouldnt talk about it, but if youve tried it and it didnt make a difference then i dunno. i get a new graphics card and windows xp in a few days so maybe a format and reinstall will solve it, i dunno.


but if anyone knows how to fix it, let me know too

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it seems to me that some games companies are more worried about makin a game "copy proof" than whether it runs smoothly on the machine of a legitimate purchaser (if at all) - if i buy a game and it takes some kid to h4x0r it to get it running acceptably then ill dload the crack in a flash




ive not checked that yet, but ive got the side off my case with a house fan blowing across the inside of the comp....


ill check that next time it happens...



thanks for the replies


edit: just tried it at 800x600x16 and still the same probs....

also the gfx card doesnt seem to heating up



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check and ensure that all the connections between the heatsinks and their parts, and the parts themselves (pci, agp) are clean.


Also, check and make sure you have enough power (check the voltages, and make sure their are +/- 5 - 10 %. If it is none of those, do a dx and driver reinstall.

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Sounds like something that would happen if your RAM gets full and none of the information in it is deleted. But I don't see how 512 DDR isn't enough, provided I have 512 SD. Like they said, check your card, upgrade/downgrade some drivers. Hopefully that will help :)

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Mine is doing it, too.  However, my sound doesn't stutter.  But after 30 or so minutes, the game "stutters" whenever it rains, someone shoots, wrecking cars, etc..

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thankls for the help guys


ok, ive updated the detonators to 44.03 from nvidia website,

cleared some gunk of the cards fans and installed fraps


i checked the voltages also


Vcore = 1.8

Vagp = 1.5

+5V  = 4.8

+12V = 12.0


its an epox 8kha+ mobo


these values fluctuate but not much


using fraps i noticed that although the game slows down the framerate doest seem to dip as much  i.e a slow stutter sometimes happens at 30 fps which seems like the games running at 4 fps also there is slow downs to 10-15fps


at 640x480x32 with aa off and aniso off it still happens, frame limiter on or off makes no difference, slow downs and stutters


at 1024x768x32 with aa off and aniso off its the same, no differrence with frame limiter on or off


i think ill need to reinstalll if i want to remove dx9 which im not willing to do now - ive just reinstalled recently and am happy with the performance of everything else


will try reinstalling dx9 see if that makes any difference


what sound type should i use, auto detect finds eax and i can use surround sound but i dunno if this is whats causing it, have tried using only 2 speakers but still the same, also tried dx hardware, software and rad tools - no change


i also have gta3 which ran fine in 1024x768x32 with no probs


its not installed at mo so i cant compare


anyone got any ideas?

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Longshanks UK

I suffer from the same symptoms....


Runs great for a while...a good hour`n half just cruising around looking for packages.

Where as if i go on a full out chaos binge,causing as much devastation as possible things start to stutter after about 15 mins...a good thunder storm can easily knock another 5-10 mins off...

so if i go "6 star" in the rain,i`ll be on a one way ticket to "lagsville" after about 8 mins!!


Now..Im no PC wizard,but the problem seems to simply be that my memory has been used up and the game has been forced to use virtual memory.


Being the unfortunate pauper that i am,an upgrade is out of the question...so the only way i can solve this is to reboot my system every time the game becomes too choppy.


Which on the whole i can live with. :)


In the normal course of playing the game(doing missions that is)I can normally have 2 or 3 good attempts at a full action packed mission before i need to recover my memory :) ...so i normally get about 30 mins of good smooth play at full draw distance,1024x768x32.


But all said and done this little babe runs a whole bunch better than gta3 ever did and my specs are just scraping over the minimum requirements.


1ghz athlon t-bird

320mb sdr

geforce3 ti200 128mb ddr

onboard sound

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noone seems tobe posting their operating system. i tried installing xp today but my video card doesnt work with it so i couldnt see if it was that. tho ive heard windows me (what im using to play VC on) doesnt support over 256mb ram, that why i got xp.


also has anyone noticed that after 30 mins when the game stutters, it only stutters when it trys to play a sound.. like you sit there silent for a bit and then if u hit a car it stutters trying to play the 'car falling appart sound'. stuttering has improved for me since i ramed the new graphics card in there but i have:


amd 2200+ xp

512mb ram

Gforce 3 ti 200 64mb

win me

newly formatted and defraged Hdd


and vice still seems to struggle at 800x600.  when i got this new system i though it would be like 1024x768 full aa, and everything running smooth. its playable but its annoying how ive just got anew system and it STILL cant run the latest games!!

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yeh it seems to be with the rain for me too...


does the game stutter in all resoulutions?


last night i defragged the hard drive again and reinstalled the sound card drivers, this morning i set my virtual mem to double my ram and its still not really helped


i think its something to do with dx9 and my soundcard....

cause i get the same audio glitches no matter what res im in


not sure


i can live with it like you say but i just feel as tho my machine should play it better, so in a way im spoiling it for myself not playing the game at its full potential, but i just cant stop :cool:


cant remember what my bios agp aperture is set at, will try that next and see what happens


thanks for the info :)

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i can live with it like you say but i just feel as tho my machine should play it better, so in a way im spoiling it for myself not playing the game at its full potential, but i just cant stop :cool:

i know what you mean. if it was any other game then i might wait untill it was running perfect but i just wanna play VC. same with gta, i played that for a year with it in 640x480 and still crap frames but it was just an amazing game.


ill keep checking back here to see if anyone has a solution and ill post if i find anything.


tho i think its a problem with having more than 256mb ram and a specific op system

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i can live with it like you say but i just feel as tho my machine should play it better, so in a way im spoiling it for myself not playing the game at its full potential, but i just cant stop :cool:

i know what you mean. if it was any other game then i might wait untill it was running perfect but i just wanna play VC. same with gta, i played that for a year with it in 640x480 and still crap frames but it was just an amazing game.


ill keep checking back here to see if anyone has a solution and ill post if i find anything.


tho i think its a problem with having more than 256mb ram and a specific op system

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i think i got it:)


i tried the yamaha sound card an it worked perfect!


1024x768x32 2xaa 2xaniso  50fps average

might try some adjustments to see what i can push it to


the yamaha is a mates, its a pro audio card and it used to crash gta3 before so i never used it, but now....:cool:



what kinda soundcard you got?

it might be that

i finished about 80% of gta3 with a 32meg ati rage pro with an average framerate of about 14 (+/- 13), heheh, at 640x480x16


Longshanks UK:

i notice youve got an onboard soundcard, could it be that?


anyway, thanks for the help an i hope you guys get the game running better

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Same happens on my rig:

XP1800+  (512 DDR)

Win 98SE




After 10 minutes, it starts to grind to a halt. Particularly if I hit

another car or a lamppost. Usually, new voices add a stutter, meaning between 4-5 seconds BETWEEN frames.... unplayable.

(The Riot mission became a nightmare, with all the voices).


I have tried EVERYTHING (new drivers, defragged 5 times, reinstalled 3 times). Still no luck though.


Must try DirectX 8 next.....



(PS GTA3 ran very smoothly on the same specs....)



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i know manoid said he fixed it with a soundcard but i still think its summing to do with 256+mb ram and windows 95/98/ME. i own windows xp but it wont work with my video card, im gonna phone the company to get it sorted tho..


plus, i dont see how it could be the sound card anyway, fair enough if you fixed it but if it was carp sound cards causing this then wouldnt it be right from the moment you stat the game. my stutters are sort of on and off but only after like 15 mins.


i really want this fixed cos gta i had 640x480 rez and 2fps but with my new system i can actually run gta vc in 1024, full aa and all that crap with pretty good frames, just this damn sound thing.


if anyone has over 256mb ram and NOT windows xp could they post summing here and tell us if your game forks up too? that would help alot

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hey all,

well i've got 256 mb ddr ram and win 98 and it stutters like a mofo after 30 minutes. Exactly what everyone's been talking about here.  I really would like to see this fixed, i'll keep you posted if i can figure out anything


ps i've got an onboard sound card, so that might be it, tho i hope its not

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hey again...


it seems as though your right about it not being soundcard related gta3runscrapforme, after playing vice for a while i found that the yamaha software still crashes but only after playing which is fine by me:)


but then i forgot to switch it over and it played perfect thru my original soundcard, huh? :wtf:


so i dunno whats happened here, when i was using the yamaha, vice would only use emulated software audio, and when i switched back vice continued using the d3d emulation where before it would detect eax


i read somewhere on the forum about turning the harware acceleration down a notch on your soundcard:

control panel/multimedia/audio tab - advanced properties, i did switch the sample rate to maximum but didnt touch the acceleration, dunno if this will help anyone any


hope you get it sorted soon....




edit: something else that ive changed recentely was my swapfile size, i set it to 2xram, for me 1024meg


thats both lower and upper limit


right  clik  mycomputer/properties/perfomance tab/virtual memory tab


please note::im not responsible if your machine dies:: :)



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Windows 98se? Youve seriousley gotta be kidding me, but I guess if the game says it will work...


Try saving up for a good computer, honestly, get a new comptuer every 2 years minimum.


Although I doubt you will, but if you do in the future, get an AlienWare computer, they are highy-rated gaming computers and are totally decked out. Theyre about $2000


Hope the came works for all and any of you guys having problems  :/



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barbanez...how does telling us to drop 2 g's every two years help us.  I just built my own computer with all top of the line stuff, and every other game i put on it plays like a dream.  I'm not saying GTA VC is a buggy game or anything, but there's obviously something that's not working right here.  


so has anyone gotta this prob to go away for ever?

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I've been having the same problem with the 30 min stutter thing.  :/   I've tried the no-cd crack, even installing the 1.1 patch but nothing helps.  This is really getting frustrating...


Methinks this appears to be a memory problem too because I've played a game called Hard Truck (the 1st one) that had the same problems when it first came out and was fixed with a monster patch from the game devs... If memory serves me correct, their patch fixed memory handling problems where the game would fill up the buffers and not dump it when it's no longer needed.  This should explain the quickness of the game at startup for the 30 mins... then deteriorating performance.


Oh yeah, and apparently in VC, rain makes this problem happen quicker, making me believe that making rain in this game uses a lot of resources (thus filling up memory even faster).  I am thoroughly impressed by the design of this game, but would gladly trade off losing the effects of newspapers, rain, and whatever else can be sacrificed for the smooth performance of the game after that 30 mins... just like that mod that came out for GTA3 that was mentioned earlier which took out certain stuff to make gameplay smooth... we need something like that until a fix comes out for this problem!


My system isn't state of the art, and I'm glad that people with computers far more advanced than mine are experiencing this problem... which means that it (the problem) isn't caused by a computer with lower end technology.  :colgate:


My setup:



-Win 98SE (because my Microsoft FF Wheel doesn't configure right in XP)

-Athlon XP 1600+

-256 sdram (borderline isn't it?)

-64MB Geforce MX/MX400 (with it's own case fan pointed straight at the processor heat sink)

-7200rpm hard drive (measly 30giger)

-ECS K7S5A mobo (with on board sound--whee!;)

-50x cd rom (which takes forever to spin up to speed and can be annoying whenever the game has to stop to catch up)


Anyway, I'm going to continue struggling with the game.  I find that hitting the ESC key and bringing up the menu, then sitting for a bit before going back into the game helps this problem a bit, but only until memory fills up again...


Hoping to see a mod or a patch from the devs happen soon though... I wish more people with this problem would post too, so that when I write to tech support I can point them to the forums and show them that many people are experiencing this flaw... hopefully the VC devs are monitoring this forum too and get the idea what is needed to be done.

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Hi all,


Thanks for the feedback - sorry to hear you're experiencing the same problem (but glad I'm not the only one!  :p ).


I have contacted Take Two, but still no reply on this.


Any idea if a (new) patch is planned for any time soon?

I'll try turning down the H/W acceleration & fix my swap file!




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It seems to be time for update 1.2

I have the same problem. Vice city freezes after 1 hours of play. Have to restart the machine and play again.


Hmpf, update 1.1 doesn't seem to be helping.


Greetings :rampage:

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ok, i fixed the problem, then did something stupid and it's back

I turned down hardware acceleration on my sound card one notch.  For days i've been playing a stutter free gta! Now, i went to audio options and saw that audio hardware was on auto detect. I clicked it, and it chanded to d3dsound or something like that.  Now the stuttering is back.  How can i reverse this?

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I installed my newest Audio drivers and it fixed it 100%.  Funny how we both found it to be audio problems.


Install your newest Audio drivers!



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Well, I spent a whole night formatting my hard drive and switched over to XP Pro.  The 30 min stutter thing is gone!  :happy: then after playing for an hour, the game hangs! -- now I play it again and  :wtf: it now hangs every 15 mins.


Maybe it's because I installed new drivers for my motherboard and that included the latest sound drivers for the on board sound card that there is no more stutter, or maybe my memory is getting used up.. I can't say if it's xp that helped solve the problem or whatever... because it manages memory better... I'm so tired of having to think about what's going wrong...


Grumble... mumble


at least now, my desktop is real purty  :dozing:

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LOL  I find this a little bit funny since I posted about the exact same issue the day after the game came out.  No one else seemed to have this problem and I felt like I was the only one.  


I never did solve it (and believe me, I tried everything mentioned here and ALOT more! ), but I always suspected it was my onboard (Soundblaster Audio PCI 128) sound card.  Onboard cards sound like the common denominator in this thread too.  I'd recommend getting an SB Live (or something) as they're relatively cheap.


Luckily, I got a new computer the week after I bought VC and it has run the game beautifully ever since.  I still have an onboard (SoundMax) soundcard in my new system (for now), but it gets along with VC just fine.


Good luck!



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  • 2 weeks later...


i have the same prob

p4 1.6

256 rambus ram

64m gf2 mx

<realtek AC'97 Audio onboard sound card>

13gb hdd which 2.3gb is free


i found that if you put the audio setting

onto software emulation i can play for about

1.5 hours without stutter, using any other setting i am lucky

to get 30 mins

imo i think that it is the onboard sound that is that prob, not all of them just a few older ones

i think that if the latest drivers cant help than a new sound card is the only way out

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