The Difference Between Gaming “Lag” and Low FPS (and How to Fix Them)

Many players check with any efficiency drawback in an internet recreation as “lag.” But when your pc’s body fee is low, that isn’t the identical factor as lag – lag and low FPS are completely different issues with completely different causes.

This text was written as a result of so many players name any efficiency situation “lag.” Understanding what's and isn’t lag will assist you to determine and repair efficiency issues after they happen.

Low FPS Is a Laptop Drawback

Low frames per second (FPS) seem as your whole recreation behaving slowly. In case your body fee is low sufficient, taking part in the sport might really feel like watching a slideshow as only some completely different frames seem in your display screen per second. In much less excessive instances, the sport will really feel jerky and gradual – simply the other of easy.

Body fee points aren’t attributable to community issues. In case you have a low body fee, that’s not the sport experiencing lag – that’s your pc failing to maintain up with the sport. It's possible you'll want a sooner graphics card, extra RAM, or a greater CPU. Your laborious drive could also be too gradual, inflicting the sport to decelerate because it’s pressured to learn knowledge out of your laborious drive. You could have an excessive amount of junk software program working within the background, competing for assets.

In different phrases, low FPS is an issue with the sport’s efficiency in your pc. It doesn’t have something to do along with your community connection.

Lag Is a Community Drawback

Lag isn’t a results of an issue along with your pc; it’s a results of an issue along with your community. It might be a results of the sport’s servers experiencing issues, nevertheless it’s additionally probably {that a} community drawback is happening someplace between your pc and the servers. When you’re far-off from the sport’s servers – maybe you’re in Europe taking part in a recreation on North American servers – your latency (sometimes called your “ping” time) could also be excessive. (Be taught extra about latency right here.)

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Lag reveals up very in a different way from low FPS. In case your recreation is lagging closely, your FPS should be very excessive. When you’re taking part in a multiplayer recreation, the sport could also be utterly easy, however different gamers could also be caught strolling in place or teleporting round. Once you shoot at somebody in an internet FPS, you could all the time miss as a result of your latency is so excessive that, by the point your shot reaches their place, they’ve lengthy since moved away. Actions you soak up an internet recreation might occur noticeably later – latency is the time it takes to your pc to speak with the server.

Lag usually refers back to the delay attributable to persistently excessive latency (additionally known as excessive pings), however it's also possible to expertise “lag spikes” the place everybody else within the recreation seems to pause in place, adopted by their characters teleporting or racing to new places as the sport receives updates.

To enhance lag, strive a unique server, use Ethernet as a substitute of Wi-Fi, improve your networking {hardware}, or–in case you have a very gradual web connection–pay for a greater bundle.


Low FPS and Lag are Typically Linked

Low FPS and lag typically present up on the similar time, complicating issues.  For instance, in the event you’re taking part in a massively multiplayer on-line RPG (MMORPG) and your character is standing in a significant metropolis with a whole lot of different characters working round in your display screen, you could expertise each low FPS and lag. The lag happens as a result of the server is struggling to maintain up and slowing down with a lot occurring in a single place directly, whereas the low FPS is a results of your pc struggling to attract all these characters in your display screen directly.

On this case, low FPS and lag have the identical trigger – extra folks than the sport can deal with in a single place on the similar time – which can confuse some players into pondering they’re the identical factor. However they’re not – the big variety of gamers is inflicting each efficiency issues in your pc (low FPS) and community points (lag).

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Why You Ought to Care

This isn’t just a few summary argument about children today utilizing phrases fallacious. When you perceive the distinction between lag and low FPS, you'll be able to determine issues and have a greater shot at fixing them.

When you’re experiencing low FPS, your pc’s {hardware} simply can’t sustain (or you've gotten an excessive amount of junk software program working within the background) and you may repair it by upgrading your pc’s {hardware} (or decreasing the sport’s graphical settings).

When you’re experiencing lag, that’s a community drawback. It's possible you'll want to attend for the scenario to enhance, swap to a better server, or repair issues in your native community.

In some poorly coded video games, it’s potential that community issues might end in low FPS. Nevertheless, this isn’t usually the case.

Picture Credit score: Hexidecimal on Flickr

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