Baldur’s Gate 3 is available on PC right now and if you have an older PC then you might have some trouble getting to your desired frame rate. That is where this Baldur’s Gate 3 PC optimization guide comes in. In this Baldur’s Gate 3 PC optimization guide, we are going to go over how you can run the game at 60 FPS.
Baldur’s Gate 3 PC Optimization For 60 FPS
Baldur’s Gate 3 has launched as a Steam Early Access title. Obviously, there is work that remains to be done on the game including optimization. This means, running the game at 60 FPS can be challenging for a mid-range PC.
In my Baldur’s Gate 3 PC Optimization Guide, I’ll take players through each of the game’s graphical settings and will explain what they do and their performance impact. I will also recommend the perfect setting for each of the graphical options to achieve that 1080p/60 FPS experience on a mid-range PC.
By mid-range I mean a PC with a GTX 1060 6GB GPU, 4 core Core-i5 CPU, and 8 GB of RAM. The reason why I am choosing a GTX 1060 as a baseline for this Baldur’s Gate 3 PC tweaks guide is that the GPU still holds its own. A GTX 1060 is capable of running games like Mafia Definitie Edition and Star Wars Squadrons at 60 FPS with Ultra settings.
Also, if you have an SSD then I suggest you install the game there. It’ll not only improve loading times but will also keep the game from stuttering. The following are the Baldur’s Gate 3 graphics options along with their tweaks.
Here you will pick the resolution and refresh rate of your monitor. If your display if 1080p then you need to select 1920×1080. If your monitor refresh rate is 60Hz then select that option and so on.
For this setting, I recommend that you select the Fullscreen option. Going with windowed or fake fullscreen will potentially make you lose FPS.
This graphical option in the game synchronizes the frames rendered by the GPU to match them with the display’s refresh rate. This eliminates screen tearing but caps the FPS.
Disabling this option will allow the GPU to render as many frames as it can for the game. But, this will cause screen tearing as the frames will be rendered either faster than the display’s refresh-rate or slower.
I recommend that players disable the in-game v.sync and enable it through the GPU driver. If you want to experience how much FPS can your GPU can render for Baldur’s Gate 3, there is an option for that one too without the screen tearing.
Open Nvidia Control Panel > Manage 3D Settings > Program Settings > select Baldur’s Gate 3. Set “Vertical Sync” to On and hit apply.
If you want to experience high FPS without screen tearing then set it to “Fast”. However, if you have a 60 Hz display and the game is rendering at 80 FPS, then GPU will only display 60 FPS while the rest of the frames will be wasted.
Recommended: Force it through the driver.
Cap the framerate at the refresh rate of your monitor. If you have a 60 Hz display then you should can the frame rate at 60 FPS and so on.
Model Quality in Baldur’s Gate 3 controls how much geometrical detail can be rendered for objects. The higher the options the detailed the objects will look. But, this is one of the most performance impacting graphical option.
I got a 2% boost in performance when moving from high to medium. I got an additional 1% performance boost when moving down to low so it is not really worth it. I recommend that players set this it to Medium.
Instance Distance controls how far small objects can be displayed. Setting it to High will allow these small objects to be displayed at the maximum distance. However, this is one of the hardest performance hitting options in Baldur’s Gate 3. I recommend that you keep this setting at Medium and even drop it low if players want more performance.
Texture quality controls the resolution or overall quality of textures. Since I am targeting GTX 1060, players can set it to High. However, if you have less than 4GB of VRAM then you should go with Medium or Low.
Texture Filtering has little to no impact on the performance and players can set it easily at x16.
Recommended: Anisotropic x16
Lighting Quality controls the overall quality of the in-game lighting like its volume and overall resolution of the lighting. Moving from high to medium gave us a boost of 3% and moving down to low gave as an additional 1% performance boost. I recommend that you keep this setting at Medium.
This setting controls if the Shadows are enabled for in-game objects or not. I recommend that you enable this setting and tweak it through the Shadow Quality option below.
Light Shadows enabled shadows from random light sources scattered throughout the game. The performance impact can for enabling it can drop the FPS below 60. So keep it disabled.
Shadow Quality controls the resolution of the in-game shadows if players have chosen to enable shadows. Shadows can really impact performance and I recommend that players keep this setting at medium.
I saw no performance difference between SMAA and TAA so you can test both and see which one works for you. There is a difference in image quality when switching between the two options.
My recommendation is the TAA as it completely eliminates aliasing but, makes the overall image quality a bit soft. This can be fixed by enabling image sharpening from Nvidia Control Panel. Open Nvidia Control Panel > Manage 3D Settings > Program Settings > select Baldur’s Gate 3. Turn on “Image Sharpening” and set the intensity of the sharpening. This will eliminate the softness or blurriness in the image quality.
Ambient Occlusion is a graphical effect that makes the overall in-game scenes grounded and realistic. This option creates shadows for objects that would be otherwise ignored by the Shadows options. Disabling it makes the game look somewhat odd but the impact on performance for enabling it can be too much.
God Rays is a lighting effect that allows light shafts to cross through clouds, trees, and other in-game objects. This graphical effect gives the lighting a more volumetric quality and makes it look realistic. However, the performance impact can be significant. I recommend that players disable God Rays.
Bloom has no impact on performance. This is a post-process effect that recreated the imaging artifact of real cameras when players move from indoors to outdoors or outdoors to indoors. However, The use of this effect depends on the player and it doesn’t matter much since you’ll be playing the game in a top-down view. The only place players will actually notice it will in cutscenes but, would also be in a limited capacity.
Subsurface Scattering is an effect that mostly impacts in-game NPCs and characters. Subsurface Scattering controls how light interacts with the character’s skin.
Enabling this option makes character models look realistic but the impact on the performance is too much. I recommend that you keep it disabled.
Optimized Setting For 60 FPS
Model Quality – Medium
Instance Distance – Medium
Texture Quality – High
Texture Filtering – Anisotropic x16
Lighting Quality – Medium
Shadows – Enabled
Light Shadows – Disabled
Shadow Quality – Medium
Anti-aliasing – TAA
Ambient Occlusion – Disabled
God Rays – Disabled
Subsurface Scattering – Disabled
Optimized Setting For 30 FPS
Model Quality – High
Instance Distance – High
Texture Quality – High
Texture Filtering – Anisotropic x16
Lighting Quality – High
Shadows – Enabled
Light Shadows – Enabled
Shadow Quality – High
Anti-aliasing – TAA
Ambient Occlusion – High
God Rays – Enabled
Subsurface Scattering – Enabled
Other Optimizations And Tweaks
Now that players know what each of the game’s graphical settings does, there are some tweaks that players can perform outside of the game to boost FPS and eliminate stuttering.
The following are the tweaks that players can perform through Nvidia Control Panel and more.
Turn Off Game Mode And Game Bar
Turn off the game mode and game bar overlay in the windows settings. Both of these are not worth it for now especially if you have older hardware.
Hardware Accelerated GPU Scheduling
You can turn this setting on in the graphics settings of windows. Provided that you have updated it to the latest version. This will improve performance in-game. If you have lower-end hardware or a laptop then you will notice a boost of 3-4 FPS.
However, for some GPUs, enabling Hardware Accelerated GPU Scheduling will result in degradation of performance.
So if you experience performance degrading instead of boosting after enabling Hardware Accelerated GPU Scheduling then disable it.
To enable Hardware Accelerated GPU Scheduling, open Settings > System > Display > click Graphics Settings at the bottom and enable Hardware Accelerated GPU Scheduling.
Vulkan Vs DX11
If you have an AMD graphics card or a recent PC then you can use Vulkan. If you have an older PC then you can try DX11. The older graphics cards will run the game better with DX11.
However, Vulkan is causing Baldur’s Gate 3 to crash on some systems. If that is happening to you then switch to DirectX 11.
Nivdia Control Panel Tweaks
There are some options in the Nvidia Control Panel that players can tweak to improve the overall FPS without sacrificing much on the image quality. Make sure that you have installed the latest GPU driver.
Open Nvidia Control Panel > Manage 3D Settings > Program Settings > select the game. Make the following changes and hit apply.
Anti-aliasing-FXAA – “Off”
Anti-aliasing-Gamma Correction – “Off”
CUDA GPUs – “All”
Low Latency Mode – Ultra.
Set Power Management to “Prefer Maximum Performance”
Shader Cache – “On” only if you are using an HDD. Don’t need to enable it for an SSD.
Set Texture filtering – Quality to “High Performance”
Triple Buffering – “Off”
Set Vertical Syn to “On”
That is all for our Baldur’s Gate 3 PC optimization guide. If you are having issues running the game then you can check out our errors guide. For more content related to Baldur’s Gate, you can check out our Baldur’s Gate 3 guides hub.