Want to speed up your gaming PC for free? The best way to do that is by disabling certain settings in the games you’re playing.
But which settings give you the best bang for your buck? Which settings can be disabled without turning your game into some Minecraft-looking monstrosity?
Today, we’re helping out PC gamers by explaining the graphics settings you should always disable if you want to maximize your PC’s performance.
We live around shadows every day. We don’t think twice when the tree in our front yard casts a shadow.
But you might be surprised when you start playing a PC game without shadows – and find you don’t notice a difference.
Yes, disabling shadows takes away some of the realism. However, your graphics card has to do a lot of work interpreting all that shadow data – and making sure the edges of the shadows look realistic, and not jagged.
Now, the best part about PC games is that you don’t need to disable shadows entirely. Just knock it down to low or medium to boost your frame rate.
Motion blur is something many people disable regardless of frame rate problems. Some people get motion sick when using motion blur. Others just don’t like it – especially in competitive games.
In any case, motion blur has a big impact on performance, and it doesn’t impress most gamers. Disable it, and you might find your K/D ratio in first person shooters actually goes up.
Depth of Field
In the real world, things get blurry at a long distance away. Games replicate this effect with “depth of field”. The larger the depth of field, the farther away you’ll see. Reducing depth of field means you’ll see fewer objects in the distance – but it also vastly decreases the load on your system.
Depth of field is particularly draining in games like Fallout 4 or GTA V, where you can often see miles into the distance.
Dynamic reflections make your game look better. They improve the quality of reflective surfaces in your game. However, the difference isn’t that noticeable to the average gamer.
Disabling dynamic reflections leads to a bigger performance improvement than anything else on this list. In PC Gamer’s testing, disabling dynamic reflections boosted FPS by 30 to 50%. That’s enormous. That’s the difference between a choppy frame rate and silky smooth 60FPS.
Most games have supersampling disabled by default. However, you may have accidentally enabled it in your settings menu.
Supersampling is a relatively new graphics technology where the game renders frames at a higher resolution, then scales it back down to fit your resolution. It makes games look better, but it also has an enormous performance impact. If you want to maximize performance, and don’t mind slightly weaker resolutions, then you can do without it.
Want to increase framerates without turning your game into a blocky nightmare? Start with the settings listed above. Then, you can move onto the settings that really affect graphic quality, like resolution, anti-aliasing, and texture quality.