Question Does lowering resolution through NVIDIA control panel save GPU memory?

Ryan Hagen

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May 6, 2015
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I have an ultra-wide monitor and normally run 3440x1440 at 100Hz. Some new games are pushing my graphics card to its limit at that resolution. If I switch the resolution of my monitor to say 2560x1440 via the nvidia control panel and then play the game full screen at that new rez, is my graphics card aware of the remaining ultrawide pixels and wasting power thinking about them, or does it just think I have a 2560x1440 monitor? I.E. Will it save me some fps?
 

k1114

Titan
Moderator
It's unnecessary to change desktop res. You set the res in game and it's doing the same thing. That's why you will notice you still have the option to go with a higher res in game. It should be common knowledge to pc gamers that using a lower res reduces gpu resource needs.

I think it's better to lower other settings before res as the quality is significantly affected vs other settings. Btw the gpu still knows what it's connected to. It always knows. It even knows what you did last summer. But it's not wasting power on blank screen space.
 
I think it's better to lower other settings before res as the quality is significantly affected vs other settings.
In this case, however, they simply want to run a 16:9 resolution on their 21:9 screen. Assuming they intend to run the game with black borders to the sides, rather than having it stretch to fit distorting everything, they should still get 1:1 pixels at the same pixel density, and it should still look fine.
 

Ryan Hagen

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May 6, 2015
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4,510
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In this case, however, they simply want to run a 16:9 resolution on their 21:9 screen. Assuming they intend to run the game with black borders to the sides, rather than having it stretch to fit distorting everything, they should still get 1:1 pixels at the same pixel density, and it should still look fine.
This is correct. Setting the rez in the game just stretches it to my ultra wide width and the picture is distorted. I want to play the game with the black bars if it means more fps. I'm wondering if the GPU is actually processing less of those pixels when I set it via control panel.
 

k1114

Titan
Moderator
Stretching is an issue with scaling settings so ncp just has an added scaling setting. You could set to scale on gpu instead of monitor so you don't have to change the res every time you want to play. 2560x1440 is 2560x1440 no matter if it's stretched or not.
 

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