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How to Improve Minecraft Performance and FPS

People are often surprised to find out when they launch Minecraft Java that it performs rather poorly, now to be fair to Mojang with 1.20 they have improved the situation massively, that been said for people who don’t have high end PC’s you may still run into some issues.

Thankfully there are some things you can do to improve the situation. This article will cover changes that can be made using vanilla Minecraft settings (vanilla means no mods), what mods you can do and lastly what hardware upgrades will benefit you most.

Vanilla Minecraft Tweaks

Increasing The Available Memory

First things first the amount of memory that is used by the game. The amount of memory available to the game is 2GB by default, for most people this will be enough but if you use mods, shaders or have made other changes to the game, you might find that increasing this a good first step to improving Minecraft performance.

Please note that this is unlikely to increase FPS but it will help overall game performance.

From the Minecraft Launcher, click on “Installations” up the top, select the installation you are using which will be usually the top one.

Once selected, click on “More Options” and you’ll see a box “JVM Arguments”

Simply increase the first number (obviously you need to actually have that amount of memory available) I typically use between 4 and 6 GB, so the JVM argument would look like this.

If you hit F3 when running the game you can see how much memory is being used

In the screenshot above you can see I’m using 539mb and have 6gb allocated. This will change depending upon what you’re doing at the time.

Change Video Settings

In game, click on options…, then click on video settings… now from here there are lots of options you can tweak to improve the performance.

  • Render distance, I’m lucky enough to have a beefy PC so I have my render distance set to 20 and my FPS is at 289. If I change this down to 12 this sky rockets to nearly 1000, which is ridiculous but shows you just how big a difference render distance can make.
  • Resolution – If you’re prepared to lower the resolution then this can make a huge difference.
  • Graphics – toggle this down and you may get some benefit.
  • Smooth Lighting – turning this off will of some improvements.
  • Change other settings such as clouds, particles, entity shadows, entity shadows entity distance and will all make some improvements to your FPS.

Fabric Performance Mods

Even with 1.20’s performance improvements it’s possible to improve the performance of Minecraft by using mods. On some PC’s this will take the game from barely useable to a nice solid 60fps+ so it’s worth checking out.

The two mods that I recommend are Lithium and Sodium.

Lithium is a general-purpose optimization mod that improves various aspect of the game, the idea behind it is to free up CPU usage which will help improve the FPS.

Sodium on the other hand aims to greatly improve the rendering performance as well as fixing minor graphical issues, this can improve frame rates for some players by up to 500%!!!

So they are definitely worth checking out. The good thing about fabric is you can still join vanilla servers with those mods installed and enjoy the performance benefits on your game.

If you need to know how to get started with fabric and fabric mods, I’ve actually done a tutorial on that very subject.

Mod Downloads

Hardware Upgrades

If you’re lucky then changing the settings and adding performance improving mods has made your Minecraft experience nice and smooth. If not then maybe it’s time for a hardware upgrade.

Here’s thing with Minecraft, it’s a CPU limited game rather than GPU. So if you’re looking to upgrade just one part for Minecraft then go for the CPU first, if your soul aim is Minecraft performance then look for the best single threaded performance cpu in your budget.

Check out CPU Benchmark Single Threaded Performance

I myself went for an Intel i9 13900KF which should keep me going for many years to come!