Whether you’re gaming on a high-end beast of a rig and want to push your PC as far as it can go, or struggling to get your five-year-old PC to run the latest games – we’ve come up with some tips to help you out.
Check out how to increase the performance of your PC and get those few extra frames-per-second below.
Clean up your system
Let’s start off with some simple PC maintenance to increase performance both in and out of games.
Use the following tools to clean your system and generally improve performance across all programs.
- Disk Defragmenter – Disk Defragmenter is software that is bundled within the Windows operating system, and can be accessed via the Start Menu.
- Disk Cleanup – Although Windows does have a Disk Cleanup option, it is better to download a more comprehensive and efficient tool such as CCleaner.
- Virus/Malware Scan – Virus or Malware scans should be regularly conducted in order to ensure the safety of your system.
Customise launch options
If you are having trouble running certain games, you can set custom launch options and change settings in order to improve performance.
Ensure that when running a demanding game, the process is set to “High Priority” in the Windows Task Manager. To set a task to high priority, open Windows Task Manager, go to the details of the program and right-click to change process priority (it is highly-recommended not to set priority to Realtime).
Steam allows players to easily implement launch options that can improve performance. To access launch options for a Steam game:
- Right-click on the game title under the Library in Steam and select Properties.
- Under the General tab click the “Set launch options” button.
- Enter the launch options you wish to apply (be sure to separate each code with a space) and click OK.
- Close the game’s Properties window and launch the game.
Launch options differ from game to game, and it is best to search for the recommended settings for each game. Launch options can change everything from the version of DirectX to the amount of memory a program uses.
Update drivers and change settings
If you are having trouble running relatively new releases or haven’t updated your video card drivers in a while, it is always a good idea to update them.
Up-to-date drivers can make huge differences in newer games and may even render previously-unplayable games playable.
If you have an Nvidia graphics card, you can update your driver via the GeForce Experience application or the Nvidia website.
If you have an AMD graphics card, you will be able to update your drivers from Radeon Settings or the Radeon website.
Additionally, Nvidia Control Panel and Radeon Settings both have graphics options which set your graphics card to focus more on performance and forgo better visuals.
Overclock your hardware
Overclocking is a complex process, and should not generally be done without experience. If you are going to overclock your graphics card or processor, ensuring that you have both adequate cooling and enough reliable power.
Many graphics cards come bundled with overclocking software on the driver disc, and it is generally acceptable to use the software specific to your graphics card. However, if you do not have overclocking software, one of the best programs around is AMD Overdrive.
Other overclocking options include CPU-Z, GPU-Z, MSI Afterburner and RivaTuner.
If you are going to overclock your system, it is best to consult the wide variety of guides available online.
Upgrade your HDD to an SSD
If you want to increase your gaming rig’s power without upgrading expensive components like processors or graphics cards, the best option is to buy a Solid State Drive.
SSDs can drastically improve load times and general performance due to the massive speed advantage they have over normal HDDs. No matter what the specifications of your gaming rig, an SSD will noticeably speed up both gaming and general function.