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Old November 1, 2009, 10:24 AM
burebista's Avatar
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Default RivaTuner basic guide

I'll try to present a mini-guide for RivaTuner.
Before I start I must say that is not the latest and greatest RivaTuner guide but original was for 2.09 RT version. Meantime some options has changed, but for having an idea about RivaTuner I think is still pretty good.
Some of pictures below are borrowed from Derek's guide after I receive his permission (unfortunately his site is down so I decided to put my guide here instead) some are mine with my old 8800GT and some are from my actual GTX 260 so don't be confused about different pictures, final result matters.

Official page for RivaTuner.
After download and installation (on x64 systems don't forget to click yes on that update request at the end of install, that is RivaTuner signed driver) we see something like this

Every option has a build-in help (at least for early version of RivaTuner but how users don't bother to read them unfortunately Unwinder drop that build-in help in latest builds). For Vista64 users download a patch for this feature to be active.
For Win7 x64 user the patch is here.

Fan profiles

In section Driver settings click on the arrow next to "Customize...". We'll see a menu with many options. For now we focus on video card icon. Click on it and we'll see a window System tweaks. Here we can play with video driver settings.

Select Fan tab

Then direct control from drop down menu

We move the slider until our desired value of fan speed

Then click on Apply button and we can save this entry as a fan profile.
Click on floppy icon to save profile

You'll be asked for a name for saving, give one suggestive and click OK.

Same steps for multiple fan profiles. In my example I've made fan profiles for 80% and 100% fan speed.

Overclock/underclock profiles

We come back to System settings icon

Click on "Enable drive-level hardware overclocking" check box from Overclocking tab

You'll be warned about a reboot for reading frequencies. Click Detect now.

Select performance 3D from drop down box.

Move slider at your desired value for GPU, shader and memories. WARNING, test your new frequencies for stability before apply (don't hunt me if you fry your card from first OC attempt).

Click Apply.

Save profile with a click on floppy icon

Give profile a suggestive name.

Same for a underclock profile and a default one.
Give profiles suggestive names.

Now we'll add them in Launcher tab. We give them a name, we assign a hotkey, we check Associated overlocking profile box and select overclock profile. Click OK.

After we finish to add all Launcher profiles they'll look something like this

Add Launcher items

Select Launcher tab

Click on that + to add a new item

Select "Regular item" and click OK

Give it a name.

Then link it with a fan profile

Rinse and repeat for others fan profiles.

Creating tasks (Task scheduler)

Those Scheduler Tasks are an elegant mode to launch a Launcher item or other applications when an event is triggered.
Select Scheduler tab

Click on the same + for adding a new task.

Click on drop down menu to select Fan speed 100% element

Click Run task drop down menu to select the event which triggers Fan speed 100%. In our case "on hardware monitoring range event"

If you don't have active "background hardware monitoring" you'll be warned to do so after task selection.
Click Yes.

Choose from drop down menu under Data source Core temperature. If you have 2 video cards then it will appear Core temperature 0 and Core temperature 1.

Now enter Range min and Range Max for launching this profile. Click OK when you're ready.
Here you must enter 0 in those 2 boxes Data sampling period and Task freezing period.

Repeat for Fan speed 80%

And Fan speed 60%

Continue until you finish all your desired profiles

If you have a fan problem with changing his RPM between 60% si 80% profiles make a gap between temperatures for which profile is active. Something like 56-63C and 68-75C instead 56-65C and 66-75C

Aditional Tasks

We can define another tasks. For example system shutdown for a high GPU temperature (fan broken for example).
We add a new task, select application from drop down box and click on Browse to choose our option.

In our case at the end of list we select System shutdown.

Select "on hardware monitoring threshold event" task, select core temperature as source and we set 89 value and "upward" direction.

Now what? At 90C core temperature system will shutdown.

Same you can define what profile to launch on RivaTuner startup overclock, underclock, or standard frequency.
Some examples

Hardware Monitoring.

A lot of monitoring option here. Most of then came already with RivaTuner but we can use third-party plugins (Core2Duo sau AMD core temperature, SpeedFan or Everest, RealTemp for example).
At first launch of Hardware Monitoring you may be warned about activation of some plugins. Click Yes if you want them enabled automatically or No if you're brave and want to activate them by hand later.

Main window Hardware Monitoring

Be sure that you activate background monitoring (click on that red circle)

Now let's take a look on Setup

Here we can select what we can monitor/control with RivaTuner and where we can see it(on screen, in tray or on your fancy G15 screen).
We begin with selecting Core temperature then select Setup

Those are all Core temperature options. If you want to see temperature in tray or/and as tooltip, or OSD or on your G15 keyboard screen check those boxes.

Below is a screenshot with OSD informations provided by RivaTuner

We can change color for tray temperature.

Pick a color and OK

You can define another range for showing temperatures.
When you're done click OK.

The same drill for other monitoring options.
When you're done click OK.

Below is what RivaTuner show me in tray: GPU and ambient temperature, distance to TJMax Core0 and Core1 (from RealTemp plugin), MB temperature and HDD's temperatures (via Everest plugin).

Using Statistics Server.

One of the strong points of RivaTuner. With RTSS we can control launching profiles (overclock, fan) when detects a 3D application launch (game or anything else 3D).
For that we need RTSS running in background. We can launch it from Start-Programs-RivaTuner group or we can make a Launcher item with it.

RTSS starts minimized. Click on his icon to maximize it.

Here we have some cosmetics settings, start with Windows, show/hide OSD monitoring, screen coordinates, color of what you see in OSD.
HINT: Hover mouse over different settings, that contextual help is priceless.

Let's see how we can automate launching overclock/stock/underclock profiles linked with launching/exiting a game.
Open Hardware Monitoring, click Setup, search Hardware acceleration and click on check box to activate it.

OK, now Hardware acceleration will monitor our computer and when it will detect launching a 3D application it will have value 1 and when we close that 3D application will come back at 0 value.
Now we must add 2 tasks in Scheduler tab which will launch my profiles stock and underclock based on Hardware acceleration. One task is Stock, select item then Stock. Select "on hardware monitoring threshold event", then we choose source Hardware acceleration, threshold value 0.5 direction upward.
Click OK.

Same we add a underclock task, but on direction we choose downward.

Now what's happens when we launch a 3D application? Hardware aceleration change in 1 and Stock profile is launched. Leaving 3D application Hardware acceleration come back to 0 and underclock profile is launched.

This kind of profiles management works wonderful but only with 2 profiles. What if we have a game which need more power from our GPU and we need our overclock profile in action?
We can do that, of course: we define an item for that game in Launcher tab and we associate it with our overclock profile and a keyboard shortcut.

Everything is easy now, when pressing our keyboard shortcut for launching the game, RTSS detects changing of Hardware acceleration value and launch the profile assigned for that game.


Another method for controlling fan speeds based on low-level settings. It works only on ADT7473 controller.

Open RivaTuner, then Power user tab (answer Yes at that question) and we seek RivaTuner \ Fan. Double-click AutoFanSpeedControl and insert 3 for having access at parameters from Low-level settings (be sure that button marked with a red square is pressed in Dec value otherwise we need to enter a Hex value). Click Apply, then OK for saving and closing.

We launch again RivaTuner, press Customize... then first left button Low-level system settings.

In the new window we check Enable low-level fan control and be sure to set on Auto.

Now we are interested in values from that box with a scrollbar. Those are:
# Duty cycle min: minimum fan speed in %
# Duty cycle max: maximum fan speed in %
# T min: Temperature minimum limit. If temperature is below that value fan speed will remain at value defined in Duty cycle min
# T max: It doesn't show here but is GPU temperature for fan running at 100%. This is calculated by us based on T range below.
# T range: It's a calculated value based on others parameters and it establish how fast or how slow fan RPM's grows with GPU temperature.
# T operating, T low, T high: Those values affects dynamic T min control and we don't want this so we put some bogus values (150, 0, 150 degrees).

Formula for T range (found it somewhere on guru3D):
T range = (2/3) * (Tmax - Tmin) / [(Dc max - Dc min)/100]
Keep in mind that T range which I follow is that value highlighted in picture below. GPU temperature reported by nVidia driver has 8C offset.
And valid numbers for T range are 5, 8, 10, 13, 16, 20, 26, 32, 40, 54, 80. Other values are rounded at one of these.

My example:
I want 27% fan speed until 48C (56C reported by nVidia driver) then a liniar growing until 100% fan speed for T max 90C.
Duty cycle min = 27
Duty cycle max = 100
T min = 48
T operating = 150
T low = 0
T high = 150
T max = 90

So T range = 2/3*42/0.73 = 38.35. Rounded 40.
OK, now let's see what I get after entering those values, check box with Apply settings on Windows startup and Save.

A pretty nice curve without fan bumping up and down at changing fan profiles and without overwriting my VGA BIOS with new values.

That's all folks, I know it's not a very in deep guide but basic tasks like fan and overclock profiles, hardware monitoring and OSD display are covered.
Hope it helps somebody, someday, somewhere. :)

PS. Bear with my English mistakes and if is something awful wrong I'll ask a Mod to correct my novel. Thanks.
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  #2 (permalink)  
Old November 1, 2009, 10:41 AM
chrisk's Avatar
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Join Date: Jul 2008
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Wow a lot of work here. You like screenshots as much as I do!

I use Rivatuner but I still learned a few tricks here.:) This is more extensive than most will need. Very good work. I did not check for grammar or spelling, but scanning through it looked good.
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Old November 1, 2009, 10:46 AM
burebista's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2007
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Originally Posted by chriskwarren View Post
You like screenshots as much as I do!
Yeah, but I like graphs more.
Thanks for your kind words.
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Old November 3, 2009, 11:45 AM
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Excellent Guide.. Great work burebista, this deserves a Sticky for sure..
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Old November 3, 2009, 11:48 AM
burebista's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2007
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Thanks man. I'll be VERY happy if my guide can help someone to enjoy Riva like I do. :)
If it ain't broke... fix it until it is.
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Old December 2, 2009, 11:08 PM
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way to complicated.... burns after a few images
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  #7 (permalink)  
Old December 11, 2009, 01:38 AM
burebista's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Romania
Posts: 599

My System Specs


It's hard to format it properly in a forum post. :(
Even it's not finished you can try this excellent guide too. With videos.
If it ain't broke... fix it until it is.
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