Issue reported first with the link in the Radeon software, i thought i'd also share it here.
As soon as i receive a message from a Steam friend and the notification in-game of it, any game where this notification will be displayed starts to stutter heavily and drop fps insanely.
For instance i was playing Hollow Knight ealier, i was going from 144 fps to 60-80, sometimes even less than 60. I was able to notice the same perf issue in Trials Rising (very specific here, the steam overlay propagated to this game by an Epic Game Launcher added in steam as a "non-steam game", and then from the Epic launcher it starts Trials Rising by also opening Uplay ; this game is capped at 60 fps so fps didn't drop much, but unsmooth gameplay was well there) and Torchlight III (Alpha).
So, steps to reproduce :
I think AMD display driver is still not perfect. Sometimes I had a similar FPS drop issue with an overlay plugins in games. The reason for this problem is that FreeSync driver still does not work flawlessly. FreeSync driver also tries to be active when an alert is received and this is causing an FPS drop issue. I solved my problem I was experiencing as follows like that... I made "AMD External Events Utility" service disable and restarted my system. In this way, FreeSync only worked with fullscreen mode, and when a warning came, it disabled FreeSync feature and eliminated the problem of excessive FPS drop for me.
Well, i got some new info about this issue, and it's very surprising. I've no idea how this can be a thing:
I disabled the steam overlay, started a game from Steam, here Hollow Knight. So no more message notifications in game, but as soon as i received a message from a friend in the steam chat window associated, the fps drop occurs.
Additionally i installed MSI Afterburner to still have a fps counter, but for now i can't do anything about that Steam issue so i re-enabled the Steam overlay. I don't really want to disable FreeSync, and i play most of my games in borderless so i can't just set FreeSync to work in fullscreen only.
I think the same with you. I think the problem you are experiencing is caused by FreeSync, and Radeon driver control panel only offers you the active-deactive option and is not effective. nVidia offers the option of which game you can activate GSYNC with Inspector software with fullscreen or borderless options. This is a deficiency but not an unresolved problem. You can contact AMD and I suggest you specify the additional feature requirement to the driver.
I just tested by disabling FreeSync, it still occured for me apparently. I don't know if i could somehow capture in video the issue.
I forgot but for Hollow Knight i had to turn on the V-Sync otherwise it'd run the game at 500 fps which is a bit useless and probably a bad idea in the long run as i assume it uses all the resources available on the PC CPU/GPU wise. Most games now have a fps limit you can set with a default value at 150 often, which is probably the best to use in addition to the FreeSync. Hollow Knight doesn't.
Doing further tests with FreeSync off, i could still get massive fps drop w/ or w/o V-Sync activated in the game, and w/ or w/o Radeon Chill activated (which seems to be an alternative for games that doesn't provide a fps limit setting like here). In all cases receiving a steam friend message caused a fps drop. V-Sync off for instance it went from 500 to ~380.
I contacted AMD as you suggested, thanks. We will see where it leads to, if it leads anywhere.
Could you try the problem it with a monitor or a TV that is not FreeSync compatible?
Part of the problem is that trademark infringer called Epic
Over on Steam there is a lot of hostility towards them by the users
Strangely enough, i just tried on my old monitor which is my second screen in the list in the OP (Philips 243v5 (HDMI, 60Hz, 1080p)), and i had no fps drop issue / unsmooth rendering when i received a steam friend message.
I also tried before this test to disable FreeSync in the monitor settings directly of the main one in 144Hz instead of just the test i did by disabling FreeSync only in Radeon software but the issue still occured.
I don't really know what to do at this point... If even by disabling entirely FreeSync on my main monitor the issue is still there, what am i supposed to do?
In the meantime AMD requested me to "give a try by performing clean installation of latest 20.2.1 driver by using the AMD Cleanup utility and check the issue status". With a detailed process. I'll do so and edit this message if it fixed anything.
Update: So when doing that reinstall, on opening Radeon Software for the first time i clicked the games preset instaed of standard. And this time the issue didn't occur, though Hollow Knight was between 400-600 fps. I tried to disable Enhanced Sync right after, this was my first change in the default settings. And at this moment the issue came back. So FreeSync without Enhanced Sync = issue occurs.
As soon as i enable Enhanced Sync however it's fine. Nope, it's not.
I enabled Radeon Chill too, with a 60-150 fps range as i don't have any use of frames going above that. It came back as being not good with it.
I set the settings back to where they were at first, and... the issue occured again, with the exact same config. I don't understand what's going on.
Update 2: Seems like i was able to set in stone a working config, at least in Hollow Knight. i'll see how it goes for others games. But apparently the winning combo is FreeSync + Enhanced Sync + VSync Off in-game. I'm not really sure yet about Radeon Chill. Hollow Knight "limit refresh rate" setting limits at 400 fps instead of up to 600, but the GPU is used at only 25-40% and CPU 30% so i guess it's fine.
I suggested that you experiment because I know that disabling FreeSync will not work. I still think the problem is from FreeSync. I think you should share this situation with AMD with sharing this forum link. https://www.amd.com/tr/support/contact-email-form
Yep, thanks again for the help. That's exactly what i did in my answer to their mail (and i already did put a link of this thread in the first message i sent for the ticket). Maybe they'll look into this issue further to fix what's wrong here.
Update: Well they only answered me "Please refer below link and perform the following steps for the FPS ," with 3 links:
Guess they'll not check further this issue. In the meantime, while the issue seems to be fixed, i got 2 new ones: