Games run at a certain FPS rate where FPS is frames per second. The higher the FPS, the better the quality of the game. To get a high FPS, you must have hardware that supports it. The hardware must be free to use by the game i.e., your GPU should not be in use by other apps.
There are many other factors that may result in a lower FPS in a game. If you suspect that the FPS is not as high as it should be, or that it falls too often, you can add an FPS counter to keep an eye on it.
FPS counter for Windows 10
There is no shortage of apps that can add an FPS counter on Windows 10. These apps will normally only work when you’re playing a game since there are few other apps that need or refresh frames at the same rate that games do.
1. FPS counter – Windows 10 game bar
Windows 10 comes with a built-in FPS counter. It works with the Windows 10 game bar. You do not have to install anything and you can pin the FPS counter to the screen and use it to monitor the frame rate.
- Run a game.
- Tap the Win+G keyboard shortcut to show the game bar.
- Enable the Performance widget.
- Select the FPS tab on the widget.
- Move the widget to a corner of the screen.
- Click the pin icon to pin it.
- The FPS for the game will be shown live.
The Windows 10 game bar FPS monitor is only a few years old and Windows users have long needed a way to monitor the FPS in game. They’ve relied on Fraps.
Fraps has not been updated in a long time. Its product page does not mention Windows 10 however, it works just fine on the OS and can be used to monitor the FPS of a game.
- Run Fraps.
- Go to the app’s settings.
- Select the FPS tab.
- Enable the FPS box under benchmarking.
- Select which corner of the screen the FPS should appear on.
- Set a toggle to show/hide it.
- Open a game.
- Press the toggle and the FPS will appear in a corner.
3. GeForce Experience in-game overlay
If you have a gaming PC/system, you will have a GPU. If it’s an Nvidia GPU, you can install the GeForce Experience app and enable the in-game overlay. This overlay will, among other things, display the FPS for a game.
- Download GeForce Experience from Nvidia.
- Open GeForce Experience and click the cogwheel button at the top right.
- Go to the General tab and enable the Game overlay.
- Click the Settings button.
- Select HUD Layout.
- Go to the FPS Counter tab.
- Select which corner of the screen you want the FPS to appear in.
- Run a game and tap Alt+Z.
- The FPS counter will appear.
4. Steam in-game overlay
If you’re playing a Steam game, you should know it has an in-game overlay that can display the FPS.
To enable it, follow these steps.
- Open Steam.
- Go to Steam>Settings.
- Select the In-game tab.
- Open the In-game FPS counter dropdown.
- Select which corner of the screen you want it to appear on.
- Run the game and tap the Shift+Tab keyboard shortcut to enable it.
5. MSI Afterburner – FPS monitor
MSI Afterburner is a tool popular with users who like to overclock or undervault their GPU. It is a feature-rich tool capable of monitoring your system and you can use it to enable an FPS counter on Windows 10.
- Download and install MSI Afterburner.
- Go to the app’s settings.
- Select the Monitoring tab.
- From the list of items, select and enable Framerate (check mark should be active).
- Enable the ‘Show in On-screen display’ option.
- The FPS counter will be displayed when you run a game.
The apps listed here do not need a lot of system resources to run. They are light and will allow most if not all system resources to remain free for your game to consume. It’s up to you to make sure you don’t have other apps running on your system that will drag the FPS of game down.