I have been toying with Crossfire since launch, and I have finally found a fix that makes Crossfire work properly with this game. I have verified this with various benchmarks including Radeon Pro. In order to make Crossfire work with this game, you have to follow very careful instructions.
2. Install AMD Catalyst 13.11 Beta v 9.2 and reboot your PC
3. Download ULPS Configuration Utility 1.1.4 and run it to disable ULPS and reboot your PC to complete the process. This must be done AFTER installing Catalyst 13.11 Beta v 9.2
4. Open Call of Duty Ghosts, and go into the Video Advanced settings, and set the following settings:
Anti-Aliasing: Off (You will want to set AA here, but don't...We will get AA later, turn it off)
Anisotropic Filtering - High
Screen Space Ambient Occlusion - High
Sync Every Frame - Yes (this one must be set, its VSync pretty much)
Monitor Refresh Rate - Should be set to your monitor refresh rate...mine is 60 hz
Resolution - Whatever your Resolution is, mine is 1920X1080
Terrain - High
Depth of Field - yes
Distortion - yes
Image Quality - High
Textures - Manual, Set all Textures and Water Textures to High.
Save Settings and COD Ghosts will reload, now exit out of Cod Ghosts.
5. Open AMD Catalyst Control Center
6. Click Gaming and then Click 3d Application Settings.
7. Click the + Add Button and Navigate to C:\Program Files\Steam\Steamapps\Common\Call Of Duty Ghosts
8. Find iw6mp64_ship.exe and highlight it and click Open. With iw6mp64_ship.exe highlighted Click Save. You will be prompted to overwrite, just click yes.
9. Click the + Add Button and Navigate to C:\Program Files\Steam\Steamapps\Common\Call Of Duty Ghosts
10. Find iw6sp64_ship.exe, highlight it, click Open and click save. You will be prompted to overwrite, just click yes.
11. Go to Catalyst Control Center. Click on Gaming and then 3d Application settings
12. Highlight iw6mp64_ship.exe and set the following settings in Catalyst Control Center:
Anti-Aliasing Mode: Use Application Settings
Anti-Aliasing Samples : Use Application Settings
Anti-Aliasing Method: Multisampling
Morphological Filtering: On (Here is our AA and it looks damn good in this game, it will slightly blur text on the game menu, but it makes the game itself look great with hardly any performance hit at all. AMD beefed MLA with Version 2.0 a few months ago with very little press, it performs 80% better in direct X 10-11 titles then the old version did while being much more accurate.)
Anisotropic Filtering: Override Application Settings
Anistropic Filtering Level: 16x
Surface Format Optimization: On
Texture Filtering Quality: High Qauality
Wait for Vertical Refresh: Always On
Tessellation: AMD Optimized
Maximum Tessellation: AMD Optimized
AMD Crossfire X:
AMD CrossfireX Mode: AMD Predefined Profile: Highlight iw5mp.exe
Click Save and your done with multiplayer, Close Catalyst Control Center.
For Single player, highlight the iw6sp64_ship.exe we created earlier, use the same settings you did for multiplayer except set the AMD CrossfireX Predefined Profile to iw5sp_Singleplayer.exe and click Save.
Now Crossfire X should work correctly. DO NOT enable ANY Anti-aliasing settings in game, Leave Vysync on in game and force it through Catalyst Control Center, Failure to do follow these instructions will result in texture flickering on guns and the environment that can make it look like strobe lights are going off in game, and terrible screen tearing.
My game now runs at a solid 60fps and never dips below 59, both of my HD 7850 2 GB cards are utilized around 50-65% a piece give or take 5%. Remember, AMD CrossfireX Scales at higher resolutions, at 1440P you may get more utilization, multiple monitors may get more utilization....don't expect your GPU's to be pegged at 99%, you don't want that...if the game only requires 50-60% of each to render a solid, smooth experience, then thats fine.
AMD Will be releasing another beta driver soon that will include a Crossfire Profile for Ghosts, when it releases, make sure you change the custom profile to the Ghosts profile, and run the ULPS disable tool after every driver update, because ULPS gets turned back on everytime you update your drivers.
this is the one game i have found where MLAA really shines, the game looks really goood, and it does a great job on foliage, trees, etc and for a very minimal performance hit, especially on HD 7000 series and newer cards that use GCN(Graphics Core Next)
Good luck hope this works for you, it works just fine for me...im utlitizing both of my cards in Crossfire games runs smooth as butter with a consistent 60 FPS where 2 days ago a single card was around 35-37....So i know for certain this has worked for me and worked for my cards, I hope it works for you until AMD releases a fix.
Hey, nice job. Well written directions.
Question though. What is the point? If your cards only run at around 50% utilization. You would be better off just running one card at around 100%. In my case, my cards will not go above 50% utilization in crossfire, and even then they sink down to about 10% or 20% after a few minutes of gameplay. With just one card at around 100% the game is playable at high settings.
Very good question Clanbake. I'll try and explain.
I don't know if you realize, but AMD CrossfireX and Nvidia SLI use a form of AFR(Alternate Frame Rendering).
In simple terms, this means for example while GPU 1 is rendering pixel 1 GPU 2 is rendering Pixel 2, each card is also storing the next alternate pixel in the buffer to output it to your monitor at your monitors refresh rate.
Its a common misconception that 100% utilization on 1 card is the same as 50% on two cards, thats not true due to a feature called "Flip-Que Size" which you can read more about on the Radeon Pro site. Its a driver setting (not exposed in Catalyst Control Center) that determines how many frames to render ahead for Crossfire/AFR....the optimal value seems to be 3, and it pretty much makes games like Skyrim run butter smooth on AMD hardware.
2 cards at 50% is probably equal to one card at 150% because even though both cards are only being utilized at 50%, they are still rendering frames ahead...twice the amount of frames ahead then a single card can....see thats where it gets complicated....
With 1 card at 100% it has rendered Frame 1, and has Frame 2 in the buffer, and games with triple buffering can store the 3rd frame ahead.
Crossfire however has frames 1 and 2 rendered, and has frames 3, 4, 5, and sometimes even frame 6 in que....to be rendered as soon as the monitor refresh signal is received (if using Vsync, etc) this is a very "simple" explanation....neither AMD nor Nvidia use 100% traditional AFR anymore, they use some AFR with a mix of other methods....buts its just a general idea.
If you follow my guide above, and set Vsync and settings depending on your resolution your cards should work fine, and you should be able to play on max settings or close depending on your cards...just don't use the in-game anti-aliasing, force it through catalyst control center instead.....
You don't want your cards going to 100% utilization, in fact AMD has designed its Crossfire drivers not to do that...running at 100% even during gaming just increases power draw and generates more heat on your graphic cards....its the same reasons you don't want CPU running at 100% all the time...heat and power draw....disabling ULPS does help keep GPU usage balanced across multiple cards in Crossfire.
My expereince so far is I have been able to play at much higher settings in Crossfire then a could with a single card and its much smoother...sure both GPU's are only being used 50%, but thats all the game needs at my resolution...it never drops below 59-60 FPS and is smooth as butter...on a single card i was getting between 35-37....so there is a significant difference here..MLAA forced though CAtalyst Control Center works and looks really good on this game...it pretty much eliminates all the jaggies for very little performance loss at all...its a win-win!
Very good question though, I hope i wasn't clear as mud!
That's a very thorough explanation, thanks again. My cards, in crossfire wont go above 50% utilization in COD Ghost, performance of this game blows, and the one card does at least twice as good as both in crossfire. So explain this to me (please don't write a book), why is it that when I play any of the other CODs, GPU utilization FOR BOTH CARDS is between 80%-100% depending on what is happening in game?
haha sorry for the long explanation bro!
I agree this game is horribly optimized. To answer your question about utilization at 80-100% would depend on:
1. what cards models you have in Crossfire.
2. What resolution your playing at.
3. Are you using multiple monitors IE Eyefinity?
4. what is the refresh rate of your monitor?
Those 4 factors determine how much your cards will be utilized...for example on a heavily modded Skyrim with every texture pack known to man, game stays at 60 fps and GPU utilization never goes above 60% on each card....in otherwords..."right now" at my resolution 1920X1080...2 HD 7850's are overkill at this resolution and on this monitor..if i had a 120 hz monitor...utilization would probably be higher.
fully fixing Crossfire though will not only require a patch from IW, but it will require a Crossfire profile from AMD...this just gets Crossfire working without stuttering and frame drops (it doesn't seem to work for everybody though), its definitly not optimized.
Disabling ULPS did a little something (I just did it through the registry). It helped, but still pretty much unplayable. I am actually running a 120hz monitor at 1920x1080 (synching) so its pushing those cards, but it should be way better. I guess I should be happy that the game is playable on one card. Activision is ignoring the problem, and me at the moment, but AMD is working on a fix. Thanks for the help, man, and the AFR quick start guide
what is that ULPS application? Don't quite get it. Think I might try this with my crossfire HD 6950 2gig
that ULPS application is just a small batch file program that disables the registry keys for UPLS (Ultra Low Power State). UPLS puts on your GPU's asleep when your not gaming or using gpu intesive tasks, however its known to cause un-equal gpu utilization while gaming...just google ULPS Crossfire stuttering.....ULPS is like the number one cause of microstutter/stuttering in games with Crossfire.
that application is safe, I have been using it for years....its just sets a couple dword values in the registry to disabe the ULPS function for AMD cards, but you have to reboot after using it to disable...also EVERY TIME you update your graphic drivers, AMD turns ULPS back on, so you will have to run that tool after every graphic driver update to ensure your GPU utilization is balanced across your cards.
The guide above should work for the 6950....it worked for my 7850's i don't see why it wouldn't work with yours.
When I do the profile selection on the modern warfare 3 exe for mp, it only lets 1 card work. If i do default, I can ge tboth cards working buit it loads slow and runs 40 fps and still drops alot
With my system i7 920, 12GB memory and HD7990 i had serious lag, even at the lowest settings.
After following your directions I can play the game at 2560 x 1440 with everything on extra at reasonable fps.
For extra fps i play at 1920 x 1080 with everything on high. It looks and plays great now. No more framedrops or lag.
Thanks for sharing!