G-SYNC 101: External FPS Limiter HOWTO


In-game vs. External Framerate Limiters*

*As of Nvidia driver version 441.87, Nvidia has made an official framerate limiting method available in the NVCP; labeled “Max Frame Rate,” it is a CPU-level FPS limiter, and as such, is comparable to the RTSS framerate limiter in both frametime performance and added delay. The “Nvidia Inspector: 2> Frame Delay” setup detailed further below is legacy, and does not apply to the “Max Frame Rate” limiter, the setup of which is also now detailed below it.

As described in G-SYNC 101: In-game vs. External FPS Limiters, In-game framerate limiters, being at the game’s engine-level, are almost always free of additional latency, as they can regulate frames at the source. External framerate limiters, on the other hand, must intercept frames further down the rendering chain, which can result in delayed frame delivery and additional input lag; how much depends on the limiter and its implementation.

In-game framerate limiters, however, aren’t available in every game, and while they aren’t required for games where the framerate can’t meet or exceed the maximum refresh rate, if the system can sustain the framerate above the refresh rate, and a said option isn’t present, an external framerate limiter must be used with G-SYNC to prevent V-SYNC-level input lag instead.

RTSS is a CPU-level FPS limiter, and introduces up to 1 frame of delay, whereas Nvidia Inspector uses a driver-level FPS limiter, which introduces 2 or more frames of delay. See G-SYNC 101: In-game vs. External FPS Limiters for complete details, along with input latency tests comparing the two external solutions against an in-game limiter.

RivaTuner Statistic Server: <1 Frame Delay

RTSS is available standalone here, or bundled with MSI Afterburner here.

If only a framerate limiter is required, the standalone download will suffice. MSI Afterburner itself is an excellent overclocking tool that can be used in conjunction with RTSS to inject an in-game overlay with multiple customizable performance readouts.

Blur Buster's G-SYNC 101: External FPS Limiter HOWTO

RTSS can limit the framerate either globally or per profile. To add a profile, click the “Add” button in the lower left corner of the RTSS windows and navigate to the exe. To set a frame limit, click the “Framerate limit” box and input a number.

Nvidia Inspector: 2> Frame Delay

An unofficial extension of the official Nvidia Control Panel, Nvidia Inspector (download here) exposes many useful options the official control panel does not, including a driver-level framerate limiter.

Nvidia Inspector can limit the framerate either globally or per profile (more details on profile creation can be found here).

To set a frame limit, locate the “Frame Rate Limiter” dropdown in the “2 – Sync and Refresh” section, select the desired limit, and then click the “Apply Changes” button in the upper right corner of the Nvidia Inspector window.

Blur Buster's G-SYNC 101: External FPS Limiter HOWTO

As of Nvidia Profile Inspector version 2.1.3.6 and Nvidia driver branch R381 or later, a new “Frame Rate Limiter Mode” dropdown has been introduced with a “Limiter V2 – Force Off” option:

Blur Buster's G-SYNC 101: External FPS Limiter HOWTO

This option claims to reduce the limiter’s input lag; exactly by how much, and with what combination of settings, remains to be determined.

NVIDIA Control Panel: <1 Frame Delay

As of Nvidia driver version 441.87, Nvidia has made an official framerate limiting method available in the NVIDIA Control panel labeled “Max Frame Rate.”

To set a framerate limit, navigate to the “Manage 3D settings” section in the NVCP, locate the “Max Frame Rate,” entry, select “On,” set the desired limit, select “OK,” and finally select the “Apply” button after it appears in the lower right corner of the NVCP window.



1772 Comments For “G-SYNC 101”

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warface9991
Member
warface9991

Thanks for detailed article. This is unprecedented.
Yet, I have a question about low fps gaming. You have written that the cap should be ~3 fps below the maximum refresh rate but most AAA games cannot be run at 140fps at all. In this case, how should I cap my framerate on @120Hz or on @144hz etc. in order to have a smooth experience?
Thank you for everything.

Zehdah
Member
Zehdah

Hello. I’m wondering if there’s any negative to me using G-sync as explained above but in borderless windowed mode (enabling the option in NVCP too)? The only reason I want to do this is because I play a game (Final Fantasy XIV) which doesn’t work properly in full screen mode, but flawlessly in borderless windowed mode.

voicon
Member
voicon

G-Sync + No FPS Limit vs V-Sync + No FPS Limit, who is less input lag ?

voicon
Member
voicon

In Monitor 165 Hz, G-Sync + No FPS Limit vs G-Sync + ingame FPS 162 who is less input lag ?

Ku6epgeg
Member
Ku6epgeg

Do I need to set low latency mode on for Resident Evil Village?
I have an MSI GeForce RTX 3070 ventus 3X OC and a Samsung Odyssey C27G75TQSI monitor.
I enable G-sync and v-sync in Nvidia drivers.
I get 90-100 frames per second in Resident Evil Village, do I still need to enable low latency mode?
And also wanted to know another low latency mode for the World of tanks game?
Maybe I can just enable vertical sync and low latency mode in nvidia settings permanently?

xm3lite
Member
xm3lite

Hi, I wanted to ask, is V sync on in control panel still recommended over in-game v sync after MPO was added? thanks.

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