View Full Version : G200 to G450 upgrade - VERY disappointing

Ron Goller
27th March 2001, 22:13
Hi to all at MURC -

Sorry for the long post, but I am both disappointed and a bit upset about my new G450 and its performance. So, thanks for your patience with me and any advice that you may be able to offer.

I just upgraded from a Matrox G200 to a Matrox G450 (retail ver.) and I am extremely disappointed with the results (or, rather, lack thereof). [System information is below. DxDiag below. IRQ list below.]

My primary PC use is 2D applications (a lot of word processing) and so I wanted the excellence of the Matrox card in the 2D usage. [Before you ask "Why a P3-850 and 512 RAM for word processing?", the answer is that I use voice recognition a lot and it really needs that much power to function well.] I did, however, want to try my hand at Microsoft's Flight Simulator 98. I know that "gaming" is not the G450's forte, but advice from the sims group indicated it would at least improve the visual effect in FS98 by "three times" over the G200. (This seemed, to some extent, to be logical to me since I was going from 8 Mb to 32 Mb on a card by the same manufacturer.) I have a dual boot system with Win98se and Win 2000, but everything I do, including FS98, is now in Win 2000.

With the G200 card, FS98 gave me rather blotchy scenery. A river, for example, looked like a blue cartoon lightning bolt (i.e., the were no curvilinear lines; no realism whatsoever). FS98 will tell you your fps rate by pressing Shift + Z. With the G200 I was getting 50 fps without any real fluctuation and +1.0 Gs (whatever that means!). I thouroughly uninstalled the G200 (in Win2000 I only had the drivers installed, not the PowerDesk software) including leftover files and registry entrys per Matrox's on-line FAQ.

I installed the G450 with the latest WHQL drivers (5.14.033) and software. Now in FS98 I get fps rate of 25 *maximum* and it often drops to as low as 14. The scenery has not improved one single bit. In fact, if anything, it is not as good. So I uninstall the software, drivers and card, clean up and reinstall it with the latest drivers (5.51.005). I get the exact same poor results.

I can't believe I spent over US$130, went from an 8 Mb card to a 32 Mb card, all just to *cut* my fps *in half*. Needless to say, I am *very* disappointed. Any ideas on what I may have done wrong or what I can do to improve the results will be very much appreciated. If this matters, I did not change the AGP setting in BIOS from default 64 (should I set this to 128?) and I did not check the "Use 32-bit Z buffering" under PD Options (should I?).

A couple of other things. I was very unhappy with the fact the you *have* to install the PowerDesk software (in lieu of just the drivers) and that *everything* got install in the System32 and System32/DRIVERS folders. Why couldn't they have created a PowerDesk folder and put some of the "junk" stuff in there? Also, I see that I can keep the monitor icon from appearing in the system tray (via Options tab), but is there a way to create a shortcut that would let me launch it when I want it and then close it down? If you elect to close it, there seems to be no way to re-open it, short of rebooting.

Overall, I must say it has been a *very* disappointing experience!

Thanks for your attention and any advice you may be able to give to me.

Best wishes,
(Note: Please see info about post to Matrox Forum at end of this post.)

System Info:
Mainboard: Abit BX6-2, rev 2.01; QR BIOS
CPU: Intel Pentium III 850 [Slot1 - S.E.C.C.2]100FSB // SL47M
Memory: 512 MB - 4 Sticks of 128 Mb ECC, Corsair PC-100
O/S: dual boot - Win2K [5.00.2195] (D:\) // Win98SE [4.10.2222A] (C:\)
ATA Ctrl: Maxtor Ultra ATA100 IDE Controller
Drive 0: Maxtor 20.4gb (Model 92048U8); UDMA(ATA66); 7200 rpm; ATA 1(master)
Drive 1: Maxtor 30.7gb (Model 53073U6); UDMA(ATA66); 7200 rpm; ATA 2 (master)
CD ROM-1: Acer CRW 1832 [CDRW]; 10/8/32; IDE 2 (master); ATAPI
CD ROM-2: HP 8100i CD Writer; 4/2/24; IDE 2 (slave); ATAPI
Network: Linksys NC100 ver. 2 10/100 Fast Ethernet; PCI slot 3
Videocard: Matrox Millimmium G450, 32mb (G45+MDHA32DR, retail ver.)
Monitor: Iiyama Vision Master Pro 17"; .25AG, SVGA - Mode: 1024 x 768 (32 bit) (85Hz)
Soundcard: Sound Blaster Live! Value (Mod. 4830); PCI slot 4
Modems: a- Motorola Voice Surfer 56K v.90 (internal); ISA slot 2
b- Motorola CyberSURFER Wave Modem
LPT Card: SIIG CyberParallel PCI (IO 1839); PCI slot 2
Case: AOpen HX-08 (300 watt FSP-300-60GT p/s)

DxDiag Info:
Here is a "shortened" printout from DxDiag. Note that it says "No problem found" on each
tab except "Display" tab, which has a message that "G400GHD.dll" is
uncertified, etc., but it does not say there is a problem. All buttons are
"Enabled" including DirectDraw Acceleration, Direct3D Acceleration and AGP

******** DxDiag "printout" from W2K*******

System Information
Time of this report: 3/27/2001, 19:21:07
Machine name: MyComputer [fake name]
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional (5.0, Build 2195)
Language: English (Regional Setting: English)
Processor: Intel Pentium III, 850MHz
Memory: 512MB RAM
Page File: 107MB used, 772MB available
DirectX Version: DirectX 7.0 (
DX Setup Parameters: Not found
DxDiag Version: 5.00.2134.0001

DirectX Components [all are English Final Retail 12/7/1999 12:00:00]
ddraw.dll: 5.00.2180.0001
ddrawex.dll: 5.00.2134.0001
dxapi.sys: 5.00.2180.0001
d3dim.dll: 5.00.2180.0001
d3dim700.dll: 5.00.2180.0001
d3dref.dll: 5.00.2180.0001
d3dramp.dll: 5.00.2180.0001
d3drm.dll: 5.00.2134.0001
d3dxof.dll: 5.00.2135.0001
d3dpmesh.dll: 5.00.2134.0001
dplayx.dll: 5.00.2169.0001
dpmodemx.dll: 5.00.2169.0001
dpwsockx.dll: 5.00.2169.0001
dplaysvr.exe: 5.00.2169.0001
dsound.dll: 5.00.2165.0001
dsound3d.dll: 5.00.2134.0001
dinput.dll: 5.00.2172.0001
joy.cpl: 5.00.2134.0001
gcdef.dll: 5.00.2134.0001
gameenum.sys: 5.00.2134.0001 (9/25/99)
dmusic.dll: 5.00.2160.0001
dmband.dll: 5.00.2134.0001
dmcompos.dll: 5.00.2158.0001
dmime.dll: 5.00.2134.0001
dmloader.dll: 5.00.2134.0001
dmstyle.dll: 5.00.2158.0001
dmsynth.dll: 5.00.2145.0001
dx7vb.dll: 5.00.2134.0001

DirectX Media Files
ir50_32.dll: 5.2562.15.0055
atl.dll: 3.00.8449.0000
comcat.dll: 5.00.2181.0001
msvcrt.dll: 6.01.8637.0000
oleaut32.dll: 2.40.4512.0001
olepro32.dll: 5.00.4512.0001
urlmon.dll: 5.00.2920.0000
wininet.dll: 5.00.2920.0000

DirectX Drivers
framebuf.dll: 5.00.2180.0001 Certified
tsd32.dll: Certified
vga.drv: Certified

Display Devices
Card name: Matrox Millennium G450 DualHead - English
Manufacturer: Matrox Graphics Inc.
Chip type: Matrox G450
DAC type: Integrated, 360 MHz
Device ID: Enum\PCI\VEN_102B&DEV_0525&SUBSYS_0641102B&REV_82
Display Memory: 32.0 MB
Current Mode: 1024 x 768 (32 bit) (85Hz)
Monitor: MT-8617E
Monitor Max Res: 1600,1200
Driver Name: G400DHD.dll
Driver Version: (English)
DDI Version: 7 (or higher)
Driver Attributes: Final Retail
Driver Date/Size: 2/23/2001 19:16:02, 2411573 bytes
Driver Certified: No
Mini VDD: g400dhm.sys
Registry: OK
DDraw Test Result:
D3D Test Result:

Sound Devices
Description: SB Live! Wave Device
Device ID: PCI\VEN_1102&DEV_0002&SUBSYS_80271102&REV_07
Manufacturer ID: 1
Product ID: 100
Type: WDM
Driver Name: emu10k1f.sys
Driver Version: (English)
Driver Attributes: Final Retail
Driver Certified: Yes
Date and Size: 5/5/2000 12:50:18, 279301 bytes
Other Files:
Driver Provider: Creative
HW Accel Level: Full
Registry: OK
Sound Test Result:

DLS Path: D:\WIN2000\SYSTEM32\drivers\GM.DLS
Microsoft Synthesizer, Software (Not Kernel Mode),
Output, DLS, Internal, Default Port
Microsoft Synthesizer (WDM), Software (Kernel Mode),
Output, DLS, Internal
Registry: OK
Music Test Result:

Input Devices
Device Name: Microsoft SideWinder (Auto Detect)
Provider: Microsoft
Hardware ID: Gameport\SideWinderGameController
Status: 0
Port Name: Game Port for Creative SB Live!
Port Provider: Creative Technology Ltd.
Port ID:
Port Status: 0

Registry: OK

Input Drivers

DirectPlay Service Providers
Internet TCP/IP Connection For DirectPlay - Registry: OK,
File: Internet TCP/IP Connection For DirectPlay (Internet TCP/IP
Connection For DirectPlay)
IPX Connection For DirectPlay - Registry: OK, File: IPX Connection For
DirectPlay (IPX Connection For DirectPlay)
Modem Connection For DirectPlay - Registry: OK,
File: Modem Connection For DirectPlay (Modem Connection For
Serial Connection For DirectPlay - Registry: OK,
File: Serial Connection For DirectPlay (Serial Connection For DirectPlay)
DirectPlay Test Result:

DirectPlay Lobbyable Apps
FlightSimulator - Registry: OK,
File: FlightSimulator (FlightSimulator

**** END DXDIAG ****************

Info on Post to Matrox Forum:

I posted much of the above info to the Matrox Forum ("General Troubleshooting", they moved it to "Gaming"). I got a response from "Richard, D3D/OGL group, Matrox Graphics, Technical Support Rep" that stated, in pertinent part: "The G450 will not work properly without an IRQ. ACPI should be enabled as WIN2000 uses it to properly manage your resources (IRQ's, DMA ...). Turning on ACPI now will not have any effect on your system as it should be enabled before the OS is installed. Assign IRQ to VGA should also be enabled to ensure that the card gets a proper IRQ."

Here is part of what I said in response:
I specifically do not use ACPI for a variety of reasons. When I first set up W2K there were some legacy hardware issues that prohibited it. As I am certain you are aware, you cannot just "switch" from Standard PC to ACPI (not properly, at any rate). It requires a complete new install of W2K and all applications. This, for me, is more than a full week of work, when you consider setting program preferences, settings, macros, toolbars, user data, etc. It is truly a nightmare of a process. That is why I use Drive Image for a backup of the system. If I install something new that causes problems, I can revert to the prior setup in about 1 to 2 hours (instead of 7 to 10 days). After I install something new (which I do sparingly) and it works correctly for a good period of time, I burn a new set of backup disks. I even keep the older ones "just in case". I believe I did my homework thouroughly before buying the G450 (i.e., getting the retail version instead of an OEM version because of the many differences). I did not see a single mention of the fact that on a W2K machine it must be set up in the ACPI mode for the card to work properly. If, as your statement seems to imply, that it is correct that the card needs ACPI to function correctly, then that should have been clearly and conspicuously noted by Matrox in pre-sales infromation and on the box.

As I indicated, this is a dual boot (Win98 & W2K) system. I am a bit concerned about your recommendation of "assigning IRQ to VGA should also be enabled to ensure that the card gets a proper IRQ". I have no available IRQs left in Win98. I am posting below the IRQ settings for both W98 and W2K. Please take a look and advise what setting I should use in the BIOS that would not cause a problem for either W98 or W2K.

*************** Win 2000 IRQs ****************************
IRQ # Device
1 PC/AT Enhanced PS/2 Keyboard (101/102-Key)
3 Communications Port (COM2)
4 Communications Port (COM1)
5 Motorola VoiceSURFR 56K Internal PnP
6 Standard floppy disk controller
8 System CMOS/real time clock
10 Win2000 Maxtor Ultra ATA 100 IDE Controller
11 Intel 82371AB/EB PCI to USB Universal Host Controller
11 Creative SB Live! Value (WDM)
12 Network Everywhere Fast Ethernet Adapter(NC100 v2)
13 Numeric data processor
14 Primary IDE Channel
15 Secondary IDE Channel

****************** Win98se IRQs *****************************
IRQ # Device
0 System timer
1 Standard 101/102-Key or Microsoft Natural Keyboard
2 Programmable interrupt controller
3 Communications Port (COM2)
4 Communications Port (COM1)
5 Matrox Millennium G450 DualHead - English
5 IRQ Holder for PCI Steering
6 Standard Floppy Disk Controller
7 ECP Printer Port (LPT1)
8 System CMOS/real time clock
9 Motorola VoiceSURFR 56K Internal PnP
10 Win95-98 Maxtor Ultra ATA 100 IDE Controller
10 IRQ Holder for PCI Steering
11 CyberParallel PCI (LPT2)
11 SIIG CyberParallel PCI Board
11 Creative SB Live! Value
11 Intel 82371AB/EB PCI to USB Universal Host Controller
11 IRQ Holder for PCI Steering
12 Network Everywhere Fast Ethernet Adapter(NC100 v2)
12 IRQ Holder for PCI Steering
13 Numeric data processor
14 Primary IDE controller (dual fifo)
14 Intel 82371AB/EB PCI Bus Master IDE Controller
15 Secondary IDE controller (dual fifo)
15 Intel 82371AB/EB PCI Bus Master IDE Controller
******** END IRQ LIST ******************

27th March 2001, 22:43

I have similar hardware to yours (P3 850, 512MB, G450, Win2k).

I compared the image quality from my G200 to the G450 in flight sim just now, and there is a night and day difference. I am using Flight Sim 2000, and my fps fluctuates from 50 to 100 down to 33, but it always appears smooth. I noticed on my Radeon that the fluctuation is very similar, as is the framerate, so I suspect their fps counter is a little miffed.

Anyhow, make sure you have your card selected in the display options in flight sim, and hardware acceleration is turned on, also there are some image quality settings in there for you to play with to get both smooth gameplay and the visuals you want. I have VSync turned off, and use the MTSU off the Matrox website (it's in the support/drivers section under utilities) to force VSync off. Also, make sure you have used the monitor settings tab in display properties/settings/advanced to "Set a different display mode" (set the mode you use in the game to the refresh rate you seek) and save the settings for windows to use, this way when you run any OpenGL/Direct3D game, the refresh rate you want is retained, and makes the game look a lot better.


Good luck.

27th March 2001, 23:21
First off, welcome aboard ... http://forums.murc.ws/ubb/smile.gif

Now 2ndly you should really try to put the IRQ of your G450 to 9 or above, because otherwise the performance will be crippled and your whole system might be unstable.

Also I noticed you're still running DX7 ... update to DX8.


27th March 2001, 23:33
Unless something has changed with the G450, I don't the Matrox tech support guy knows much about Windows 2000. You don't need to enable ACPI to have your card use an IRQ, in fact managing your IRQ's yourself will generally give performance than using the current sharing mechanism in W2k.

You may be looking at a BIOS problem with your motherboard - if you have an "Assign IRQ for VGA" option, make sure it is set to yes.


Ron Goller
28th March 2001, 00:15
Rags, Maggi and Paul -
Thanks for the warm welcome and the advice. Some responses/questions:
1- In FS98 display option there is no entry for my card. Only "Primary Display Driver". If I select "User Defined" I get that and a second option, which is "Primary Display Driver (Direct3D)". I have selected the latter. How do I get it to recognize my card?
2- Hardware acceleration is turned on.
3- Downloaded the MTSU (MTSU418.exe) but have not installed it pending what else I find out about these other settings.
4- What monitor settings do you recommend to begin with? Set them with PowerDesk, FS98 or both?
5- My BIOS (latest version) does have "Assign IRQ for VGA" option. I have never used this. Do you just set it to "yes" or "yes" and then select the IRQ?
6- If I can select the IRQ, and Maggi say 9 or above, I have 9 free (unused) in W2K. In W98, however, 9 is used by my Motorola VoiceSURFER 56K Internal PnP Modem (on ISA slot 2) and my G450 is currently on IRQ 5 in W98 . Will setting it to 9 in the BIOS cause a problem in Win 98?
7- I am a bit reluctant about Dx8 from all the negative posts I have seen about it elsewhere, but I will give it a try if these other item don't help out. (Not trying to be difficult, I just don't want to compound the problem with other issues if I can avoid it.)

Thanks again for your kind and helpful responses. Any further input you can give will be greatly appreciated.

Best wishes,

28th March 2001, 01:26
You need to turn on the VGA IRQ option.
You do not assign a particular IRQ.
On Abit BX mother boards the IRQs are assigned by slot number.
Your VGA will get the IRQ for slot #1.
The setting Plug & Play OS Installed also has an effect on your IRQs.
This may cause Win98's IRQs to conflict, but that would be a separate problem that is not too dificult to solve.
I have had unholy hell with those Motorola modems before. That would be the first place to look for conflicts.


[This message has been edited by cjolley (edited 28 March 2001).]

28th March 2001, 01:28
Hi Ron,

Yep, set the option to yes and then start w2k. Provided there are suitable IRQ's free, w2k will mostly likely put the video card on IRQ 9 or 11, and performance should improve significantly. If there are other devices on these interrupts, then I would shift them elsewhere.

Kind Regards,


28th March 2001, 01:29
Hi Ron,

The most important problem is the IRQs. Do you use both COM ports? If not, disable say, COM2, so that IRQ3 becomes available, and then you should be able to get your modem onto there.

There's no need to select IRQs in the BIOS, just turn on the 'assign IRQ to VGA' option, and see what happens. It might also be a good idea to 'Reset Configuration Data' (might be labelled differently).


"Life is what we make of it, yet most of us just fake"

28th March 2001, 02:46
Ron, the problem you're having is due to your card not having an IRQ. Assigning an interrupt was optional for older, non-busmastering Matrox cards (Millenium I, Mystique etc) but it's necessary for any busmastering video card, including the G450. I guarantee that's where your performance problem is coming from.

As far as ACPI goes, changing your system may not be necessary. I noticed you have three IRQs assigned for IDE devices. Are you using all three channels? If not, disable either the primary or secondary IDE channel in your system bios and use its IRQ (14 or 15) for something else. You can either put the G450 on that IRQ, or, preferably, get your ATA100 disk controller on it and use IRQ10 for the G450. There are a few other possibilities if you are using all three channels, such as moving your soundcard to IRQ7 (Win2K does not require an IRQ for parallel ports).


Ron Goller
28th March 2001, 11:11
First, let me say thank you to all of the kind contributors who have offered assistance. I have read various newsgroups and user groups and clearly this is one of the friendliness and most accommodating I have yet to see. My sincere thanks to all those who have given their time and expertise to assist me.

Now for the results. I went into BIOS and selected the "assign IRQ to VGA" option. I booted into W2K and that the following results: IRQ 5 formerly was Motorola ISA modem, now has Matrox G450 assigned to it; IRQ 7 formerly was empty, now has Motorola ISA modem assigned to it. I then booted into W98 and there were no changes in IRQ assignments. Thus, now in both W2K and W98, the Matrox G450 is assigned to IRQ 5 . All is well in Camelot!

I ran a quick test of FS98 in W2K. I got fps rates of 50, fluctuating to as low as 11, but running generally in the mid to high 30s. This is a substantial change for the better. Scenery, although not great, is substantially improved. I assume now that some tweaking in the FS98 program itself might serve to enhance the performance level even more.

It appears, gentlemen, that you kind assistance has remedied my problem. Once again, my most sincere thanks for all who offered their assistance and advice.

Best wishes,

28th March 2001, 15:01
Yes, we're a good old bunch http://forums.murc.ws/ubb/smile.gif

Why not stick around, maybe even run Seti or Genome for us http://forums.murc.ws/ubb/wink.gif


29th March 2001, 01:24
Thanx for the flowers, Ron !


But you should really try to get it to an IRQ of 9 or above ...

Goto your MoBo's BIOS, PCI configuration and assign your PCI slots to IRQ 9, 10 and 11.
Maybe you should also assign IRQ 5 to be used by ISA legacy.

That's how I managed to get rid of IRQ sharing and put all my cards that need it to IRQ 9, 10 & 11.


Hong Kong
29th March 2001, 02:31
Nope. Actually G450 improve really a lot compare with G200.