How to improve your FPS (Frames Per Second) for a smoother experience

MarshyMoo

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FPS Guide

This guide will go through the variety of things you can do to improve your frames on GTAV and MafiaCity.

Thank you to LadyEm for the fantastic guide template!

See also MCRP Commands List & MCRP Websites Guide

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Geforce Experience (Nvidia)
If you have an Nvidia Graphics Card (Press here if you don't know how to find out what graphics card you have) you can use GeForce Experience to automatically tweak your graphic settings to the most optimal settings to that of your computer specifications. Though, sometimes this may not be enough to give you a smooth experience and so there will be some further manual changes listed below.

Once GeForce experience is installed you should see a list of games that you have installed on your PC.
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Left-click on the game you wish to modify, in this case, GTA and it should provide you with a list of your current settings next to what GeForce recommends. Now, to apply these settings all you have to do is press "optimize" on the left hand of the screen and you now have your new graphical settings!

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As a side note; GeForce also doubles up as a game libary. You can launch all games from it by pressing "Launch" in the top right of the game. I'd recommend doing this as sometimes games revert graphical settings back to its default if the game is not launched through GeForce.
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Radeon (AMD)

If you have an AMD Card (Press here if you don't know how to find out what graphics card you have) you can use Radeon to automatically tweak your graphic settings to the most optimal settings to that of your computer specifications. Though, sometimes this may not be enough to give you a smooth experience and so there will be some further manual changes listed below.

I don't own an AMD card nor do I know anyone who does so, unfortunately, I cannot provide a step-by-step guide to how to optimise with AMD, however, it should be roughly the same as above. If you cannot figure it out, here is a video that takes you through it: Video here
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Manual Graphics Tweaking

Each PC is different and so some computers may need fewer tweaks and others will need more. I'll provide all of the beneficial graphic settings and it will just be down to you to experiment with your graphic settings to see which works best for you for optimal graphics and frames.

Just as a reminder, here is what Rockstar claim to be the most basic (minimum) graphic settings required to run GTA even on the lowest of settings;

  • Operating system: Windows 8.1 64 Bit, Windows 8 64 Bit, Windows 7 64 Bit Service Pack 1, Windows Vista 64 Bit Service Pack 2 (Nvidia video card recommended if running Vista OS)
  • Processor: Intel Core 2 Quad CPU Q6600 @ 2.40 GHz (4 CPUs) / AMD Phenom 9850 Quad-Core Processor (4 CPUs) @ 2.5 GHz
  • Memory: 4 GB
  • Video Card: Nvidia 9800 GT 1 GB / AMD HD 4870 1 GB (DX 10, 10.1, 11)
  • Sound Card: 100% DirectX 10 compatible
  • Hard Drive Space: 65 GB
  • DVD drive: Only if you have a physical version of the game
But let's move onto the actual tweaks that you can apply in order to improve your graphics.
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1. Use MSAA instead of FXAA
MSAA (Multisample Anti-Aliasing) usually looks a bit better than FXAA (Fast Approximate Anti-Aliasing). Turn off FXAA and try turning on MSAA at either 2x or 4x to improve low FPS.

2. Try VSync
Turning off the VSynch feature deactivates frame rate limitation and can boost your FPS. But you may notice some screen tearing, which happens when a game displays images from multiple frames at the same time. If you’re seeing that, turn VSync back on.

3. Lower your texture and grass quality
Lowering your texture quality will boost your FPS, but at the cost of less-detailed graphics. You can also find individual GTA V graphics settings for grass and water, but only a lowered grass quality will give you a big FPS boost. Lowering water quality didn’t result in significant FPS gains in our tests, so you can leave it on High and enjoy those sparkling waves and ripples.

4. Drop your shader quality
While you’re adjusting individual GTA 5 graphics settings, try reducing the shader quality as well. In addition to lighting — what shaders usually control — the shader quality setting determines how much detail is preserved on parts of objects that are farther away.
Lowering your shader quality will cause you to lose some detail, but it’s not that noticeable at a glance, and you’ll get a big FPS boost.

5. Deactivate reflection MSAA and lower reflection quality
Reflection MSAA controls the smoothness of reflective surfaces, such as a shiny car or a puddle of rainwater. In our test, deactivating reflection MSAA netted us a 5 FPS boost without a significant loss in graphics quality. So you can safely turn off reflection MSAA to get a small FPS boost without sacrificing visuals.

Reflection quality determines the crispness and detail in the reflections you see around Los Santos. Lowering the reflection quality to Normal means you’ll lose all reflections on vehicles, and on wet roads in the rain. Try setting your reflection quality to High for a decent FPS gain without sacrificing all graphical effects.

6. Reduce distance scaling
Distance scaling in GTA 5’s graphics settings determines the level of detail you see in objects that are far away from your character. High distance scaling populates your screen with buildings, terrain objects, cars, and pedestrians, and outfits them with full textures even at long distances, but doing so takes lots of juice from your GPU. The Extended Distance Scaling setting is the most demanding, but most visually rewarding, version of this GTA 5 graphics setting.

7. Turn off advanced shadow settings (under Advanced Graphics)
Go to the Advanced Graphics section to find your advanced shadow settings. In our tests, increasing the High-Resolution Shadows and the Extended Shadows Distance incurred serious FPS costs while raising our video memory use by up to 800 MB. For top performance, keep these settings at a minimum.

High-Resolution Shadows and Extended Shadow Distance
Turning off High-Resolution Shadows will leave your object shadows with less definition — the objects will look soft. Deactivating Extended Shadow Distance will save your computer the trouble of rendering shadows for objects that are farther away from your character. But you’ll trade this fidelity for much higher FPS.

Soft shadows and long shadows
Choose sharp shadows over soft shadows to boost FPS even more. The shadows won’t look as lifelike, but your game’s performance may improve. You can also get rid of long shadows — shadows that stretch as the sun drops closer to the horizon — for additional FPS gains.


8. Anisotropic filtering, tessellation, particle quality, and other GTA V graphics settings
The GTA 5 performance tweaks listed above aren’t the only settings you can dial back to boost FPS, but they’re the ones that’ll give you the best results — making them GTA 5’s best settings to boost FPS on a low-end PC.
Other settings aren’t as impactful on FPS, and you can leave them as high as you’d like to enjoy the gorgeous scenery.
  • Anisotropic filtering in GTA V sharpens textures in the environment. Turning it off won’t have a noticeable difference in FPS.
  • Tessellation is a technique that adds more detail to trees and other objects. Leave this on, too.
  • Particle quality determines the level of detail in particle effects like smoke and sparks. You can leave this on Normal.
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I am running out of allowed characters for this post but I shall provide a secondary post regarding further things you can do below in the comments.

Thank you for reading and I hope that it can provide you with a smoother experience. If you have any issues or need direct help (I'm happy to look at your specs and advise you on the settings on a case by case basis) then feel free to DM. The fastest way to contact me is via my discord; Marshall#1132
 

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MarshyMoo

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Commandline Tweaks
If all else fails and your game is still laggy then you can modify the startup commands for GTA. This may seem daunting at first, however, I can assure you that its completely safe, legal and won't land you in any trouble at all.


Step 1: Navigate to your game folder: for example, E:\Games\steamapps\common\Grand Theft Auto V.

Step 2: If you see a file called commandline.txt, open it. If not, create one yourself:
  1. Right-click in the folder and select New.
  2. Select Text Document.
  3. Rename the new document commandline.txt, or commandline if file extensions are disabled.
Step 3: Open this commandline with Notepad or your preferred text editor. (I'd recommend: Notepad++)

Now, with your commandline text file open, type in the following options to modify the game beyond what’s possible in the settings menu.

-disableHyperthreading
Most modern processors have virtual cores for better multitasking. Adding this can boost performance on older machines, so it may be worth trying if that’s your situation.

-hdr
Rockstar Support says this setting “sets the whole rendering pipeline to 16-Bit.” We didn’t notice any significant changes when adding this, but your eyes may be sharper.

-Noquattransform
Quaternion transformation is the fastest technique for rotating objects in 3D space, but it may introduce errors. If you see objects floating in space, use this command to disable quaternion transformation.

-adapter
Add this setting followed by a number between 0 and 4 to instruct GTA 5 to use your chosen graphics card. For example, if the game is using your integrated chipset (adapter 0), you can enter “-adapter 1” to make GTA 5 choose your discrete graphics card. Use this in combination with the next option.

-ignoreDifferentVideoCard
This setting makes GTA 5 use only the one graphics chip you specified with the above command — and it can fix stuttering.

-FrameQueueLimit
This limits frames pre-rendering. Reducing this can also fix GTA 5 lag and smooth things out a bit. Use -FrameQueueLimit 0 or -FrameQueueLimit 1 and see what works best.

There are a lot more commands you can add for even more boosts to your FPS, if you wish to know all commands then GTA5.Info have provided a complete list which you can find here
 
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Nefarious

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I love the detail in this. Pinned to this section.
 

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Thanks, I think the codes actually helped me, appreciate it man!
 

Wxzzy

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This helped me a lot but I'm still having problems with FPS dropping / stuttering. Been in the city for a few months now and recently my frames will plummet within the blink of an eye. I usually get around 110-130 FPS. But recently if I go near an even semi-populated area it'll drop to like 10-30 FPS. Not only that but now I can barely go past 60 MPH in my car without freezing, stuttering, etc. This never happened before and is a recent issue of mine within the past 2-3 days or so. Could anyone on the thread help?
 

MarshyMoo

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This helped me a lot but I'm still having problems with FPS dropping / stuttering. Been in the city for a few months now and recently my frames will plummet within the blink of an eye. I usually get around 110-130 FPS. But recently if I go near an even semi-populated area it'll drop to like 10-30 FPS. Not only that but now I can barely go past 60 MPH in my car without freezing, stuttering, etc. This never happened before and is a recent issue of mine within the past 2-3 days or so. Could anyone on the thread help?

Sounds strange. There are a few possible solutions i can provide.

Have you tried limiting how much FPS you can get? I'm not entirely sure how it all works but I know that certain games (GTA Included) are actually better at limited frame rates. I'd recommend sticking to 60 Hz. Here is how you limit it; Settings > Graphics > Refresh Rate

Try running GTA V in Administration Mode. Some games need administrator access to its related game files on the system. If it doesn’t have permission, certain necessary files can’t be read and loaded. As a result, you might encounter GTA 5 stuttering issues. Right-click the shortcut or executable of GTA 5 and choose Properties, Go to the Compatibility tab and check Run this program as an administrator option, Click Apply and OK to save changes.

Update your Graphics Drivers! A lot of issues come down to outdated drivers so make sure to check yours. (I'd recommend using GeForce Experience for this if you have a Nvidia Card)


Hope these work for you!
 

Wxzzy

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I appreciate the help. I checked my drivers and their up to date. I also limited my frames and turned on administrator mode, definitely worked for me. Still experiencing some FPS issues but not as bad as I was before. Do you think uninstalling / reinstalling RageMP would do anything?
 

MarshyMoo

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I appreciate the help. I checked my drivers and their up to date. I also limited my frames and turned on administrator mode, definitely worked for me. Still experiencing some FPS issues but not as bad as I was before. Do you think uninstalling / reinstalling RageMP would do anything?
Probably not but its such a small download that I suppose its worth a try
 

Wxzzy

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Yeah, don't really understand why MCRP gives me so many problems all of a sudden. Especially when I run much larger games at over 100 FPS consistently. Thanks for the help bro
 

MarshyMoo

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Yeah, don't really understand why MCRP gives me so many problems all of a sudden. Especially when I run much larger games at over 100 FPS consistently. Thanks for the help bro
No problem :)