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Poor game performance with dual displays - (2007.06.28)

This was happening most notably with Doom 3, using my brand-new NVIDIA GeForce 8600 GTS, under Windows XP and a Core 2 Quad. The framerate should have been flying. At "High detail" and 1280x1024 resolution, with v-sync disabled, my old P4 3.2 GHz was getting 57 frames per second, but the best I could get on the new machine was only about 34 FPS.

Solution? It turns out that the newer NVIDIA display drivers have a performance-mode setting that allows you to select between "dual display" and "single". Setting it to single fixed it, and I was able to get 114 FPS. I don't know for sure, but I presume that it was trying to render both displays at the full framerate even though the game runs on only one display. I haven't seen any other impact of changing this setting. Only a restoration of the expected framerate in my games.

(framerates were tested by using Doom 3's "timedemo demo1" console command, and running it at least twice to get a more reliable number)

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