How to reduce lag and improve FPS in CraftMine (in-depth)
Nobody likes lag - that’s why I’m going to show you how to stop it, or at least reduce it! :)
Knowing the causes of lag
It’s important to know what is the cause of your lag, as there could be various factors that determine the game’s performance. Knowing the cause will make it easier to fix it.
The main causes are:
- Outdated Java version
- Incorrect Java architecture (e.g. using 32bit Java on a 64bit computer)
- The video settings are too high for your computer to handle
- Slow/old graphics card or using Intel integrated graphics (such as Intel HD graphics)
- Slow CPU
The following claims that also affect performance are incorrect/invalid:
- Slow or small amounts of RAM (the speed of your RAM does not make your game any faster, as many independant studies have shown - even 1600Mhz RAM is more than fast enough for the best consumer grade CPUs out there. However, faster RAM will make a small difference if you’re using integrated graphics such as Intel HD or an AMD APU. The amount of RAM installed on your PC does not improve performance either - you likely won’t notice any performance improvement at all when comparing 4GB with 64GB.)
- Storage speed (having a faster hard drive RPM speed or an SSD makes absolutely no difference to your FPS. It only speeds up load times when launching the game. Once the game’s loaded, it’s stored in the RAM and therefore the hard drive/SSD is unused whilst the game is launched)
Get the latest 64bit Java
If your PC was made after 2007, it supports 64bit. Obviously, if you put 32bit Java on it, it can’t make use of the full potential of your computer and as a result, you will get significantly worse performance and you won’t be able to allocate more than 1GB of RAM to Java games and apps, even if your PC has more than 1GB of RAM free/available.
Also, if you are using an outdated Java version, you won’t be able to make use of the latest optimisations and performance improvements in the latest Java.
Here’s how you get the latest 64bit Java:
- First, uninstall ALL versions of Java currently on your computer, so that they won’t conflict when you put the newer Java version on later.
- Restart your computer once you have removed and uninstalled all versions to make sure they fully uninstall
- Go to this page and download and install “Windows Offline (64-bit)”. That link will give you the latest 64bit version of Java.
And that’s it! :)
Get your settings right
If you have a computer that can’t handle the default settings in a game or you turn up the settings higher than your computer can handle, you will lag. Manually changing advanced video settings in CraftMine is generally a bad idea if you don’t know in-depth what each setting does, as lots have different effects and some are specifically set as they are to help prevent graphical glitches.
First, and the easiest way to help improve performance in-game is by typing
/profile load Fastingame. This’ll load the fast preset, which’ll improve performance at the cost of slightly worse visuals. To reset all video settings to their defaults, type
/profile load Defaults.
Get the edition of CraftMine tailored to your computer
If you’re still lagging, try switching to the “Light” edition of CraftMine. This edition is the same as normal CraftMine, and all editions of CM are cross-compatible. The Light edition is especially designed for slower or older PCs, or non-gaming laptops/tablets. Just switching to the Light edition alone will significantly improve performance.
If even after switching to the Light edition of CM you’re still lagging, you can try typing
/profile load Fastestwhilst ingame on the light edition to squeeze out the maximum performance possible. This is the fastest the game can possibly run whilst still being cross-compatible with other editions.
Upgrade your graphics card or integrated graphics unit
First, I’ll talk about how to upgrade a graphics card. Then I’ll talk about integrated graphics.
Discrete Graphics card
An outdated graphics card such as an Nvidia GT or ATI card will significantly bottleneck performance, no matter how good everything else in your computer is. The same goes for budget/slow graphics cards.
Upgrading your graphics card will help a lot, but that doesn’t mean you have to splash out and spend a fortune on an upgrade. An AMD Radeon R7 370 or Nvidia GTX 750 will suffice if you’ve got a tight budget, but if you’re willing to spend more, do. The more you spend, the better the graphics card you’ll get. It doesn’t really matter too much if you go with either Nvidia or AMD as they’re both decent, but from experience I tend to find AMD is better value for money.
Currently I have a Sapphire Nitro AMD R9 280X GPU and it’s fantastic, easily getting around 70-80fps on default settings in CM standard edition with my CPU being the bottleneck (I need to upgrade my CPU or get a better cooler, as I’m certain when I do that my FPS will be higher with the same graphics card).
Integrated graphics unit
If you have an Intel HD or Intel Iris you can’t really upgrade it as it’s part of the CPU. I would recommend getting an AMD A8 or AMD A10 APU if possible if you have a laptop that you game on and aren’t pleased with the performance. AMD APUs tend to be slightly slower than an equivalent Intel CPU, but AMD’s integrated graphics performance is in an entirely different league and is miles ahead of Intel in the graphics department.
If you have a desktop and are currently using the built-in integrated graphics on the motherboard or CPU, buy a discrete graphics card using the instructions above and turn off the integrated one. Most integrated graphics on a desktop tend to just be for those wanting to watch videos and not much else, they’re not designed to handle games at all.
And finally… upgrade your CPU (desktops only)
Minecraft modpacks are pretty CPU intensive. Although this isn’t so much the case with CM because of the kind of special optimisations it has, it’s still fairly CPU intensive.
No matter how good everything else in your PC is, if you have a slow CPU it’ll be bottlenecking your performance. Please, don’t buy a cheap Intel Atom, Intel Celeron, Intel Pentium or Intel Core i3 processor for gaming on your desktop. Don’t bother. They’re not great value for money and they’re definately not designed for gaming. If you have a really tight budget for your processor, go with AMD. AMD may not make the fastest processors out there but I guarantee you they’re much better value for money. An AMD CPU costing you £80 would probably be the equivalent performance to an Intel CPU costing you £130.
If you’re willing to spend more on a CPU upgrade, great! A 5th or 6th generation Intel Core i5 or Intel Core i7 would be fantastic. If you’re an AMD guy, an AMD FX 8370 or AMD FX 9590 would be roughly around the Intel Core i5 and Intel Core i7 equivalents, respectively.