DCS: Frame rates, how much is enough?


So I’ve just upgraded my laptop for work and what a shocker, it has RTX 2060 …no idea how that happened!!!

I am now getting 70 plus FPS and I’m very happy, however the jump from 42 ish on my old system is not like night and day like I hoped it would be.

The question is, what FPS are you happy with?



I would like fps to match my Steam Index VR hz. So 120 fps please.

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it’s very personal!

with my old cpu i7 2600k and a 2070rtx i had a very bad cpu frametime!
in Vr samsung odyssey once i had very bad fps on a server! i was around 14fps!

note in Vr fps are even more important to avoid nausea!

it was not pleasant at all! a slideshow!
but i was able to attack some bombers (ww2) and make some passes at them making good hits!
i was surprised!

with new cpu i run vr from 45 to 60 and it’s playable but i definitely want more!

as a reference i think movies are 25 to 30 fps
and i always heard 30 is the minimum for a game to be playable…
the more the smoother and the better…

also even when you are stable above a certain limit… slowdowns and stutters are very evident and can be dealbreakers for a lot of people…

if you check reviews they tend to show low 1% fps too

once you reach a smooth top fps avoiding low fps and stutters (low 1%) is the next goal…

in a sim could be when you load the next bunch of terrain… or when the cpu is busy generating a certain sound and skips feeding the gpu some frames to elaborate…

also consider your monitor refresh rate…
once we had 60hz =60fps…
now we have 144hz and more used by esport players… (and not only)

probably being able to see a subtle change in the situation some milliseconds earlier can make the difference!

in my initial example i attacked bombers flying steady!!! But i wasn’t able to hit a jinking fighter…

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Its whatever you are comfortable with.

this is from X plane 11

So that’s just a Civilian flight sim. I believe anything above 60 in DCS is good. I use to fly around at 30 with no problems either though.

And to be perfectly honest, I have no clue what my FPS is in any game I play anymore. As long as I can play it without any noticeable stutters or slow downs, im good.

If you are over 60, it might be that you are exceeding the refresh rate of the screen. Personally I am fine as long as things are smooth because it’s hard to impossible to judge speed when things are choppy, so I’m happy with anything above 30.

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If you’re using TrackIR you want to lock framerate to 60 fps for the smoothest experience. I have a 144hz G-Sync display and I use the NVCP to lock the framerate at 60 fps. G-Sync will match the display refresh rate with the fps so I end up with 60hz/60fps and its super smooth. There are many ways to lock the framerate but for some reason I found that the one in nvidia control panel does the best job and keeps the frametimes stable. Other methods allow the fps to wobble from 59/60 fps and this causes TrackIR to do this annoying micro-stutter thing.

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I usually aim for 50. But I can handle 40.

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If you are getting 70fps constantly on a laptop, you are doing good. Several things are missing from your post. How are you playing? On a laptop screen? How is the visual quality? What is the resolution? 1080, 2k, 4k? Add a monitor then you will get less if you try to play in hi res.
Add VR and forget a laptop with a 2060. If you are happy how it looks, Your next move should be Track IR.


Thanks for taking the time to advise.

I’m now connected to a 32in wide-screen Asu 144hz. I have put my Track ir 5 on and I’m just running the one screen. I’ve noticed a drop in FPS so I’m running at medium and it has picked up to around 57 and I’m happy with that. As for VR, I have no intention of running that.

I lock the fps to 60 and have the monitor refresh rate at 60hz to get the smoothest experience.

In VR it runs at half so about 40fps to whatever 80hz native

Can’t say for 144hz really …60fps is fast enough but is it smooth enough?

This is what my original post was about, regardless of the actual.frame rate and the kit you are using…are you “happy” with what you have ?

How much is enough?

Its enough when it is smooth. If I can move my head and its smooth, that is good. If I get a consistent, uninterrupted 45 fps in VR and no jerkyness, I am happy. 60 is better but I dont care about that unless I am doing something that requires a lot of FPS. i.e. If I go after a load of B-17s in DCS, that can be demanding. You want at least 60fps at the start because you know it will drop.

Well I am a 1080P player so I’ll chime in from my system’s experience:

20fps - minimum playable. It won’t be great or even good but you can live with it, if you have to…I guess.

30fps - smoothness is a noticeable improvement. A good baseline / fallback frame rate for demanding scenes / missions where you can’t maintain your typical frame rate. (Half rate for 60hz with vsync)

40fps - smoothness is much improved and tearing becomes less of an issue if you can stay here or above. Preferred as the minimum in complex scenes to the prior.

50fps - smoother again but not really as noticeable until the frame rate drops, and then it is VERY noticeable. Consider this “bottom of the top end” for 60hz monitors.

60fps - Ideal cap for 60hz displays, Vsync.

70-80fps - Much, much smoother but again it only is noticeable when the frame rate drops. The drop from 70-80 down to 40 is drastic - it feels like the rate at which time passes is changing. This is why I started capping at 60fps instead as 60 down to 40 isn’t too bad and plays well with Vsync.

My framerates vary from 40-60fps typically and down to 30 when things get really busy. My preference is a minimum of 40. If it was possible, I would love to lock in at 80-90fps all day, but we have to deal with dips. Drastic changes are the most off-putting so dropping your maximum to be in step to your minimum is more useful to me presently.

Simply put:
Smoothness in output (max->min fps not a major drop) trumps smoothness in display (unconstrained high FPS).


I had not heard any of that about TIR before!

I will try locking my flight sims at 60Hz and see if things seem smoother. I wasn’t having poor performance by any means in Il-2 or DCS, with an i7-9700k and an RTX2070, but I’m always looking to make it even better.

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Great response, and you have explained it in a way I can understand!!

It is so subjective…but 60 FPS looks like it could be the sweet spot.