Launched on September 13, 2019, Borderlands 3 was destined to witness both cheering and booing among its players – although most people would expect an AAA title to be stable enough when it came out, a bulk of big games have proved they were wrong. Whoever has played one or more games is probably no stranger to game issues such as crashes, low FPS, freezing, and stuttering. Anyway, if you’re experiencing FPS drops in Borderlands 3 – don’t sweat it so soon. There’re still a few general fixes that can mitigate or even resolve your problem.
Why do I have FPS drops in Borderlands 3
So far, there’s been no official statement about why so many people are having low FPS in Borderlands 3. Generally speaking, the problem may relate to hardware performance or software issues, or both. For example, if you’re using a computer that barely meets the system requirements for Borderlands 3, the game can be quite laggy, just like you’re playing a slideshow on PC or something.
Even players with high-end computers can be caught in a low FPS problem. If that’s similar to your situation, you should try to optimize your PC’s performance and make sure it’s running in tip-top shape. There’re quite a few things you can do: updating graphics card drivers, clearing computer cache, turning off background programs, etc. However, if none of these subtle tweaks work out, then maybe Borderlands 3 hasn’t been optimized for all users yet. In this case, all you need to do is wait until new patches are released to fix any related problems.
Check your PC specs first
First of all, check your PC specs to see whether they meet the system requirements for Borderlands 3. If not, then lots of problems will come up: crashing, low FPS and so on. To find out your PC specs, here’s how:
1) On your keyboard, press the Windows logo key and R at the same time to invoke the Run dialog box. Type in dxdiag and click OK.
2) In the DirectX Diagnostic Tool window, on the System tab, you can see the make and model of your computer. Just take note of the following parameters: Operating System, Processor, Memory, and DirectX Version.
3) Go to the Display tab so you can view the information about your graphics card.
4) If you also want to know the screen resolution of your monitor, right-click a blank area of your desktop to open the context menu. Then click Display settings.
5) So this is your screen resolution, as illustrated in the following screenshot.
6) Don’t rush to close the Settings window. Click Storage in the left pane and then you’ll find out the storage of your PC easily.
After checking your PC specs, take a look at the minimum and recommended system requirements for Borderlands 3:
MINIMUM SPECS 1080p Gaming
|Operating System||Windows 7/8/10 (latest service pack)|
|Processor||AMD FX-8350 (Intel i5-3570)|
|Graphics card||AMD Radeon™ HD 7970 (NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680 2GB)|
RECOMMENDED SPECS 1440P Gaming
|Operating System||Windows 7/8/10 (latest service pack)|
|Processor||AMD Ryzen™ 5 2600 (Intel i7-4770)|
|Graphics card||AMD Radeon™ RX 590 (NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 6GB)|
If you find out that your computer cannot keep up with the game, you should upgrade some components first, say replacing your graphics card with a more powerful one (based on your actual situation of course).
8 Fixes for FPS drops in Borderlands 3
Now it’s time to get to the point: here’re 8 fixes that have proved useful to many players. You may not need to try them all; just work your way down from the list until you find the one that works for you.
Fix 1: Wait for the game updates
This is a rather passive solution but honestly, what else can we do if the game actually has some technical issues causing low FPS? It’s unavoidable for everyone, whether your PC is up for running Borderlands 3 or not. Of course, you can take some proactive actions rather than sit tight, such as forwarding your problem to Gearbox Software. Or you can try other fixes in this post to enhance your PC performance and optimize it for gaming, which will improve the situation a bit.
Anyway, given Borderlands 3 was just released not long ago, there must be some improvements for it in the future. So maybe you shouldn’t rush to give it up when finding that you couldn’t run the game fluidly on PC. Just show some patience and see if the low FPS issue can be fixed sometime later.
Fix 2: Modify in-game settings
Before the game developer optimizes Borderlands 3 for most users, your best bet is to turn down certain settings in the game to improve FPS. This fix isn’t only reserved for low-end and mid-end computer users; even if you own a powerful gear, you should try lowering some settings because that can make a big difference in FPS sometimes.
Besides, there’s no such standard for “best settings”. You need to modify the settings based on your PC performance, striking the balance between visual quality and frame rate. For example, you may have to sacrifice visual quality for smoother running of the game. In this regard, the ideal settings should be able to compromise the effects of both sides, boosting FPS as much as possible without noticeable visual downgrade.
If you decide to adjust the graphics settings in Borderlands 3, here’s the recommended configurations for you (note that they may not suit your computer best):
1) On the launching screen, click OPTIONS.
2) Then VISUALS.
3) On the BASIC tab, make sure you set Display Mode to Full Screen. As for other options, you can simply copy the following settings or modify them according to your taste.
4) On the ADVANCED tab, make the following tweaks:
- Graphics API: DirectX 11
- Overall Quality: Medium (If your computer is a bit old or something, set it to Low or Very low)
- Anti Aliasing: FXAA
- FidelityFX Sharpening: On
- Camera Motion Blur: Off
- Object Motion Blur: Off
- Texture Streaming: Ultra
- Anisotropic Filtering: 16×
- Material Complexity: Medium
- Shadows: Medium/Low
- Draw Distance: Medium/Low
- Environment Detail: Medium
- Terrain Detail: Medium
- Foliage: Medium/Low
- Character Detail: Medium
- Ambient Occlusion: Off
- Volumetric Fog: Medium or Off (If you turn off Volumetric Fog, the game may look less atmospheric in some sections.)
- Screen Space Reflections: Off
Again, I have to say that the above settings may not be most suitable for your computer. When you try to configure the graphics settings, check them out one by one until you finally figure out the best choices.
If you see instant improvements in FPS, you can either stop here or go on to try other fixes below. They may also be helpful to improve FPS in Borderlands 3.
Fix 3: Update device drivers
Manufacturers like NVIDIA and AMD keep rolling out new graphics card drivers designed for lately released games. My point is, you don’t necessarily have to update your graphics driver each time they release a new one as long as your current driver is still working fine. However, if you did notice significant FPS drops or other annoying problems in Borderlands 3, you should try updating the graphics drivers (and other device drivers when necessary, such as sound card, network card, and CPU) because sometimes the latest versions thereof may be able to fix certain technical issues.
You can update your drivers in Windows Device Manager, but sometimes it may fail to detect an out-dated driver, hence unable to provide a newer one; you can also download the video driver corresponding with your PC specs from NVIDIA, AMD, etc. and then install the driver step by step. However, if you want to update all the device drivers, the above two ways may be of limited use. In this case, we highly recommend using Driver Easy to manage all the driver updates.
Driver Easy will automatically recognize your system and find the correct drivers for it. You don’t need to know exactly what system your computer is running, you don’t need to risk downloading and installing the wrong driver, and you don’t need to worry about making a mistake when installing. Driver Easy takes care of everything.
You can update your drivers automatically with either the FREE or the Pro version of Driver Easy. But with the Pro version it takes just 2 clicks:
1) Download and install Driver Easy.
2) Run Driver Easy and click the Scan Now button. Driver Easy will then scan your computer and detect any problem drivers.
3) Click the Update button next to your graphics card driver to automatically download its correct version, then you can manually install it (you can do this with the FREE version).
Or click Update All to automatically download and install the correct version of all the drivers that are missing or out of date on your system. (This requires the Pro version which comes with full support and a 30-day money back guarantee. You’ll be prompted to upgrade when you click Update All.)
Now that you’ve updated your drivers, launch Borderlands 3 and see whether you still have low FPS. If the problem persists, please move on to Fix 4.
Fix 4: Disable fullscreen optimizations
This fix can only be applied to Windows 10 so if you’re not using Windows 10, simply skip this fix and head over to the next one.
1) Locate the game folder where you’ve installed Borderlands 3.
2) Right-click the file named Borderlands 3 () and select Properties.
Then, on the Processes tab, locate Borderlands 3 in the list of processes, right-click on it, and select Open file location.
3) In the Borderlands 3 Properties window, on the Compatibility tab, select the Disable fullscreen optimizations check box. Then, click Change high DPI settings.
4) Check the Override high DPI scaling behavior box. Then click OK.
5) Click Apply > OK.
Now launch Borderlands 3 and take note of your FPS. If this fix didn’t help improve your FPS, proceed to the next method.
Fix 5: Close unnecessary programs
To get Borderlands 3 running more smoothly, you’d better close all the unnecessary programs open in the background and allocate more system resources to the game. Here’s how:
1) On your keyboard, press the Windows logo key and R at the same time to invoke the Run dialog box. Type in taskmgr and hit Enter.
2) In the Task Manager window, on the Processes tab, click the Memory column header to sort the programs by memory usage. You can also click CPU and Disk respectively to view the state of CPU and disk usage.
3) After finding out the programs taking up most of your system resources, you should shut them down completely to allocate more memory to Borderlands 3. This should improve your FPS in the game.
To close a program in Task Manager, simply select it and click End task. (If it’s a program you’re using, e.g. Microsoft Word, make sure you save any unsaved work first.)
4) Aside from the programs you can close via Task Manager, also make sure you turn off some Windows features relating to gameplay:
On your keyboard, press the Windows logo key and S at the same time to invoke the search box (you may also see it on the taskbar). Type in game mode and click Game Mode settings.
5) On the Game Mode tab, in the results pane, move the toggle under Game Mode to Off.
6) Move to the Game bar tab, and turn off Game bar.
7) On the Captures tab, toggle off the option under Record in the background while I’m playing a game and Record audio when I record a game.
Now check to see your FPS in Borderlands 3. If it’s still too low (say below 60), try out the next fix.
Fix 6: Delete temporary/junk files
Lots of people haven’t formed the habit of clearing temporary and junk files in their computers periodically. However, these files can slow down your computer and thus put a damper on your gaming experience. Apparently temp/junk files are not the main culprits for FPS drops in Borderlands 3, but maintaining your computer regularly is always beneficial to its performance.
1) On your keyboard, press the Windows logo key and R at the same time to invoke the Run dialog box. Type in %temp% and hit Enter.
When Windows asks for permission, click Continue to open the folder.
2) Press Ctrl + A to select all the files. Then hit the Delete button on your keyboard. (This won’t affect your personal files.)
3) Click Skip if you’re presented with a notification that says “the folder or a file in it is open in another program.”
4) On your keyboard, press the Windows logo key and R at the same time to invoke the Run dialog box again. Type in temp and hit Enter.
If prompted about permission, click Continue to open the folder.
5) Select all the files and delete them. (This won’t affect your personal files.)
6) Click Skip.
7) On your keyboard, press the Windows logo key and R at the same time to invoke the Run dialog box again. Type in prefetch and hit Enter.
If prompted about permission, click Continue to open the folder.
8) Select all the files and delete them. (This won’t affect your personal files.)
9) Click Skip.
10) After sweeping all the temporary/junk files off your computer, right-click on the Recycle Bin and select Empty Recycle Bin.
If clearing temporary files didn’t help improve your FPS in Borderlands 3, please proceed to Fix 7, below.
Fix 7: Adjust Windows power settings
Some people said adjusting Windows power settings gave them a boost in FPS. Under the Adjust for best performance power plan, Windows allows your CPU to run at a higher speed (for demanding games however, this tweak may not make a big difference) but your computer also generates more heat and noise. To change your Windows power plan, here’s the procedure:
1) On your keyboard, press the Windows logo key and R at the same time to open the Run dialog box. Type in control panel and hit Enter.
2) Under View by, select Category. Then click System and Security.
3) Click System.
4) In the left pane, click Advanced system settings.
5) In the System Properties window, on the Advanced tab, click Settings… in the Performance section.
6) Go to the Visual Effects tab and click Adjust for best performance. Then, click Apply > OK to save the change. (You may also click Custom and adjust settings according to your preferences.)
Now go on to check your FPS in Borderlands 3. Hopefully this fix helped you improve the frame rate; if not, then give the last fix a try.
Fix 8: Update your Windows operating system
Keep in mind to update your Windows operating system (OS) on a regular basis. This is old talk but indeed useful, so it bears repeating. Although some people may consider Windows Updates to be troublesome, these updates will ensure the security and stability of computers. They did bring about problems sometimes such as software conflicts, but their benefits will outweigh the drawbacks in most cases.
Anyway, updating Windows OS may be helpful to improve your FPS in Borderlands 3 so it worths a shot.
1) On your keyboard, press the Windows logo key and I at the same time to open the Settings window. Then click Updates & Security.
2) On the Windows Update tab, in the results pane, click Check for updates.
3) Wait for the system to search for available updates online. If there’s indeed a pending update, then Windows will automatically download the update and install it. Once the process completes, restart your computer for the changes to be fully implemented.
Hopefully this article has helped you resolve the low FPS problem in Borderlands 3, or at least mitigate it to some extent. If you find out more effective ways to boost FPS, please feel free to leave comments below and share them with other players. Thanks for reading!