Want to get more frames per second out of your games? Here are some of the most effective tips guaranteed to improve PC speed and performance:
If you don’t have the latest drivers for your video card, then you could be missing out on substantial framerate improvements. Video card drivers help your video card process the latest PC games. If you’re playing a game that was just recently released, then Nvidia and AMD may have released drivers designed specifically to handle that game.
To find out which video card you’re currently running, type dxdiag into the Start menu, press enter, and then and click on the Display tab from the pop-up menu.
Once you’ve downloaded the drivers, reboot your PC. If you’ve been having framerate problems in a new PC game – even when you have a good video card – then downloading the latest driver might be all you need to solve the problem.
In-game settings play the biggest role in determining your frames per second. You’ll need to set your in-game settings in accordance with your PC’s hardware specifications.
If you have a decent-powered PC, then set all graphics settings to the highest level. Then, if you’re experiencing framerate problems, lower your graphics settings in the following order:
-Lighting effects (shadows, draw distance)
After lowering each graphic setting, load your game to see if framerate problems persist
Want to know one of the best secrets for optimizing game settings? Download the GeForce Experience (which you might have already done in the previous tip). The GeForce Experience is a driver management tool for Nvidia video cards. But it does so much more than scan for drivers: it can also scan for games and change your in-game settings based on your graphics card.
How does it work? Nvidia looks for other gamers with PCs that have similar specs to yours. Then, it checks the in-game graphics settings these gamers are using on games that you own. You can set your graphics settings to the same average level as the crowd of other gamers in order to maximize your framerate with as little quality loss as possible.
You can’t trust your eyes to benchmark a game for you. In most cases, your eyes can’t tell the difference between 60fps and 100fps, and some even argue that eyes can’t tell the difference between 30fps and 50fps (I disagree).
In any case, you’ll want to use benchmark programs to test PC performance. One of the best ways to benchmark PC performance is to use FRAPS, which runs in the background of your PC while you’re gaming and monitors your frames per second. The bare minimum for smooth gameplay is 25fps. Any framerate below that will appear jerky.
If you’ve done all of the above tips and aren’t satisfied with your game’s framerate, then you have one more option: overclock your rig. Overclocking can be dangerous, but if you know what you’re doing and have adequate cooling, then boosting clock speeds by 5% to 10% shouldn’t damage anything.
The graphics card should be the first thing you overclock. You can overclock your graphics card using AMD and Nvidia’s built-in software, or you can download third-party utilities as well. After overclocking your GPU speed by a few percentage points, consider boosting CPU speed, although I highly recommend installing an aftermarket CPU cooler before you do that.
There are all sorts of free and paid PC optimization programs on the internet today. PC Cleaner Pro is an excellent way to improve general PC performance – including in-game performance.
Do you have other tips for boosting PC performance when playing games? Feel free to share them below!