30 FPS is more than enough for single-player games, 60 FPS is ideal for competitive multiplayer, and anything higher than that is only for hardcore competitive gamers.
The ever-debated question in the gaming circles is just what the ideal FPS for gaming is. The answers, of course, vary greatly from person to person.
In this article, we aim to answer this question once and for all from an unbiased perspective.
Whether you are new to gaming and unsure of what FPS actually is or are a seasoned veteran having doubts, you will be able to find answers to most of your questions here.
What is FPS?
FPS is an acronym standing for frames-per-second. Essentially, it measures how many images a GPU (graphics processing unit) is able to render and how many are being displayed on your monitor each second.
For example, if a game was running at 1 frame per second, you would only be seeing one image every second. This is more akin to a slideshow than a real-time experience and a game would literally be unplayable in that state.
So, in the end, the more frames are rendered and displayed each second, the smoother the experience will be.
The human eye is a highly advanced organ, but it can hardly tell the difference between a couple of frames. Because of that and because of the standards imposed by the hardware, FPS is usually rounded up to:
- 30 FPS – The performance targeted by consoles and lower-end PCs. Keep in mind, though, that stuttering is only noticeable at under 20 FPS, so anything above 20 FPS can be considered playable.
- 60 FPS – This is the target goal for most gaming PCs. On consoles, only the less demanding or better-optimized games can manage a stable 60 FPS.
- 120 FPS – A framerate that is only possible on monitors with 144-165 Hz refresh rates, it is what only the more powerful high-end gaming PCs can achieve. It is not achievable by consoles.
- 240 FPS – The very highest framerates only possible with the most advanced 240 Hz monitors and the most powerful hardware.
Keep in mind that the higher the framerate, the harder it is for the human eye to distinguish a difference. For example, anyone would be able to see just how much smoother 60 FPS is compared to 30 FPS but a difference between 120 FPS and 240 FPS is hard to see in real time even when compared side by side.
Which FPS Rating Is The Best?
Here, we come to the important question. However, it is one that is impossible to answer.
Simply because there is no single best framerate that is ideal for everyone and for every type of game. Personal preferences aside, it can be summarized as:
- 30 FPS – Good for single-player and for a more cinematic experience
- 60 FPS – Only truly relevant for competitive multiplayer as it can improve reaction time. Even more important for games where reacting to animations is key.
- 120 FPS – Only for the more serious competitive gamers
- 240 FPS – Also for competitive gamers who are willing to invest extreme amounts of money in hardware that can push this kind of framerate. Provides minimal improvement over 120 FPS.
So, in the end, the frame rate that you should target is based largely on your personal preference and the type of games you will be playing.
30 FPS can actually be a more enjoyable and cinematic experience, but when it comes to multiplayer, 60 FPS offers an advantage that should not be ignored. And finally, unless you are a hardcore gamer, investing in monitors with 100+ Hz refresh rates and hardware that can render 100+ frames per second is overkill.
And as a final word, if you’re currently shopping for a new monitor, we would advise checking out our thorough guide on the best gaming monitors of 2019!