If you have ever encountered a gamer, you would know their high concentration level in gaming. Timing is everything to them. Anything or anyone can wait when a gamer is playing. However, if, in such a situation, the system delays for even a millisecond, the gamer may end up losing the game. When it comes to gaming, every millisecond counts. Input lag, the delay between your actions and their display on-screen, can significantly impact your gaming experience.
Input lags make fast-paced games very difficult to play. If your system experiences input lag, it's like your gamepad controls your game, making the perfect timings impossible. This is true for games that require fast reflexes and decision-making based on split seconds.
Keep reading to learn how to reduce input lag on your computer so you can continue your game without delay!
Turn off the Power Saving Option
You can reduce the input lag on your PC by turning off power-saving, energy-saving, and hibernate modes. Turning off sleep mode and fast start-up is also recommended.
To do this:
- Press the Windows key to open the start menu and click "Settings."
- Click "System" in the left-hand column of icons under "Devices." A new window will open with various options listed on it
- Look for an option labeled "Power & Sleep Settings" or similar (depending on your version of Windows).
- Click this option and scroll down until you find an option called "Additional Power Settings."
- Click it to reveal further options within this menu - make sure both options are unchecked here: 'Turn Off Display' and 'Put Hard Disk(s) To Sleep After.'
Make Sure the Display Is Set to the Correct Resolution
You can check this by entering your computer's settings, selecting Display, and clicking Advanced Display Settings. On the next screen, look for a setting called Resolution. If it's set to something other than native or recommended, click on it and change it there instead of in-game (this will make things smoother).
If all else fails, try lowering your graphics settings until we find ourselves in an era where PCs can run games at 4K resolutions without breaking into a sweat--and hopefully never again!
Peripheral Driver Updates
You can reduce input lag by updating your peripheral drivers. This includes updating your mouse driver, keyboard driver, graphics card driver, and motherboard chipset driver. You can do this in Windows by going to Control Panel > Device Manager.
For example: if you have an Intel processor with an integrated GPU (commonly known as an iGPU), then it uses the Intel HD Graphics 4000 driver; if you have an NVIDIA GTX 1060 graphics card, then it uses the GeForce 388.00 WHQL version of their latest GeForce Game Ready Driver - both of these are available on their respective websites for download/installation onto your computer system.
Use the Latest Graphics Card Drivers
The drivers are the software that allows your PC to communicate with its hardware. They're updated regularly to fix bugs and improve performance, but this can sometimes come at the cost of stability. A new driver might resolve an issue you may be facing with your mouse, but it could also introduce new bugs not present in older versions of the same driver.
The best way to avoid encountering these issues is by sticking with older versions of graphics card drivers until you know there aren't any associated issues (or if you don't mind dealing with potential crashes). However, if a game's minimum requirements say "latest graphics card drivers," then it's probably worth trying out these newer versions before assuming they won't work well enough for your setup.
You can reduce input lag by optimizing your network. This means turning off Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and any USB devices connected to your PC. If you're using a wired connection, make sure it is plugged directly into the back of your computer instead of a hub.
Closing Bandwidth-Intensive Applications
If you're playing a game requiring quick reaction time and high input accuracy, closing bandwidth-intensive applications can help reduce latency. These apps, like Netflix, Spotify, and Chrome, use much data to stream video or music over the internet.
If you don't have any bandwidth-intensive apps open when gaming on your PC (or if they're not running in the background), then there's no need to worry about your performance getting affected! You can close background processes using Windows 10's Task Manager tool under "Processes."
Set Windows 10's Power Setting to High Performance.
You can change your Windows 10's power settings by going to Settings > System and clicking on "Balances battery life and performance" (or "Power & sleep").
Once you're in, click on the "Advanced" tab at the top of the window, then scroll down until you see "Turn off display" under the "Computer sleep:" setting. Change this option from its default setting of 1 minute to 15 minutes or 30 minutes, depending on how long you want your computer to stay awake before shutting off its screen and going into hibernation mode (you don't want it sleeping too often).
You should also make sure that "Hibernate after:" is set to Never under Sleep options.
Change Your Display's Refresh Rate.
Changing your display's refresh rate is easy and can be done by going to "Display Settings" in Windows. Once there, select the option for "Screen Resolution."
You'll see a dropdown menu with various resolutions available on your monitor. Select one of these options (if you need to know which one to choose, try 1920x1080).
If there is no option for changing resolution in this menu or if it doesn't appear, your computer does not support changing resolutions on its own; instead, it will require third-party software like NVIDIA Control Panel or AMD Radeon Settings applet.
Reducing input lag on your pc is essential for achieving optimal gaming performance. Implementing the strategies and tips outlined in this guide can significantly minimize input lag and enhance your gaming experience. Remember, each system may have specific requirements, so feel free to experiment and find the best settings for your setup.