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PC performance correlated with relative humidity?

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ultraknur:
Hi all,

For a very long time I am facing a problem that seems to be unfixable (at least on my side). My high-end PC and its peripherials don't work like it should in means of responsiveness and smoothness. I don't think I would have realized the problem was happening if I hadn't experienced in gaming cafe what games should actually look like on a high-end gaming PC. From the first clicks on my brand new PC I knew, that something was wrong. It's not reacting fast enough, also screen is not smooth as 240Hz should be and gameplay is off, like not synced with a server (error correction causing delay/input lag?). I've changed every part of my PC, even chassis which is already ridiculous, but so far nothing helped. After I realized that it's not about PC components, internet connection and settings, I started to look for the cause in the electricity provided to my building. I tried to make a choke with multiple ferrite cores of material 31 separated for live and neutral. At the beginning I could feel the difference somehow but the issue came back. I tried Schaffner RFI filter but it didn't help at all. What is interesting I was able to find correlation between how my PC works and relative humidity which as we know is pretty harmful for transformers. Yesterday I spoke to my buddy that something was different at 14:00, for a long time (since summer and dry weather) I've never had such a good gaming experience but then I checked RH in my city and surprise:



This is not the first time I noticed it.

I commissioned my power company to perform electricity quality measurements and everything looks good except 15th harmonics which is still within the limits.



I rule out:
- PSU issues - tried 2 models with 80+ gold cert. They had way too much of power output rating,
- Monitor issue - tested 3 with 144Hz refresh rate and 2 with 240Hz, weren't even close to demanded smoothness,
- GPUs issue - tested GTX1660, RTX2060, RTX3070, no changes beside framerate but even 500fps games are not smooth like a silk with 240Hz,
- RH in my apartament - it's usually 60%,

That may sound like a madness, but it took 2 years to notice that correlation. Does anyone suspect what might be the cause of the problem?



Nominal Animal:
Have you tried playing in (limited) natural light, to exclude the effects of lighting issues?  Fluorescent lights in particular do flicker; so do many LED lights.  You might be experiencing sensory issues due to the almost subliminal flicker.  That is, that the jitter you observe isn't in the hardware, it is in your perception.
In particular, if you have "ambient" LED lights behind your display, those often suffer from flickering issues.

radiolistener:
There are two things that can affect your PC performance:
1) air with different humidity has different thermal conductivity, so it leads to different cooling efficiency
2) air humidity depends on environment temperature, higher temperature leads to worse cooling efficiency

At a glance your issue looks like overheating issue. When CPU temperature exceeds some limit, it enable protection which stops clocking internal circuits to cool down the chip die. As result, the speed of CPU slows down. This state is known as "throtling".

Try to measure temperature of your CPU and GPU heatsinks when you catch lags. If its high, then this is the reason for lagging. Just improve your cooling system to solve this.  :)

The Soulman:
Do you have a solid earth/ground connection?
My pc+monitor don't like being un-grounded in a high humidity environment as the screen would glitch to black or won't turn on at all because of a corrupt hdmi signal.
Any equipment with a metal chassis should never be connected to a un-earthed outlet, but because of a house renovation I had to move the pc a few times, including to a old (soon to replaced) socket without earth.

ultraknur:

--- Quote from: barycentric on January 17, 2022, 05:06:53 am ---This sounds like a C3/C6 sleep state issue.

--- End quote ---

Could you elaborate? How to deal with that?


--- Quote from: Nominal Animal on January 17, 2022, 10:44:19 am ---Have you tried playing in (limited) natural light, to exclude the effects of lighting issues?  Fluorescent lights in particular do flicker; so do many LED lights.  You might be experiencing sensory issues due to the almost subliminal flicker.  That is, that the jitter you observe isn't in the hardware, it is in your perception.
In particular, if you have "ambient" LED lights behind your display, those often suffer from flickering issues.

--- End quote ---

That would make sense, but it is present with light off and on. I was considering my perception because my senses are way to sensitive but that actually helped me to see, that something is wrong. It is not normal, that 144Hz monitor in gaming cafe is incomparably smoother than 240Hz in my place.


--- Quote from: radiolistener on January 17, 2022, 11:04:17 am ---There are two things that can affect your PC performance:
1) air with different humidity has different thermal conductivity, so it leads to different cooling efficiency
2) air humidity depends on environment temperature, higher temperature leads to worse cooling efficiency

At a glance your issue looks like overheating issue. When CPU temperature exceeds some limit, it enable protection which stops clocking internal circuits to cool down the chip die. As result, the speed of CPU slows down. This state is known as "throtling".

Try to measure temperature of your CPU and GPU heatsinks when you catch lags. If its high, then this is the reason for lagging. Just improve your cooling system to solve this.  :)

--- End quote ---

It's all true but I excluded that long time ago. I use 360mm AiO and temps are fine and never had any issues even with demanding games on ultra settings. RH in my apartment doesn't exceed 70%.


--- Quote from: The Soulman on January 17, 2022, 11:05:15 am ---Do you have a solid earth/ground connection?
My pc+monitor don't like being un-grounded in a high humidity environment as the screen would glitch to black or won't turn on at all because of a corrupt hdmi signal.
Any equipment with a metal chassis should never be connected to a un-earthed outlet, but because of a house renovation I had to move the pc a few times, including to a old (soon to replaced) socket without earth.

--- End quote ---

PC and monitor are connected to the outlet with L and PEN (neutral is connected to ground pin). I had kitchen renovation and there are outlets with separated ground and neutral. I tried them and nothing helped. I suspect micro surges in the transfomer due to increased conductivity environment caused by RH but most likely I will be never able to prove it. Departing from the RH matter I see huge improvement at 4-5 AM, especially on Mondays so there is also a chance, that somebody is using harmful electrical devices in his flat.

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