Why is my GPU usage so low?
Your GPU usage is slow due to integrated GPU, outdated GPU drivers, outdated chipset drivers, corrupt Windows registries, or third-party programs.
- Integrated GPU
- Outdated GPU Drivers
- Outdated Chipset Drivers
- Corrupt Windows Registry
- Third-Party Programs
- GPU Drivers Settings
- CPU Bottleneck
- RAM Bottleneck
- Modded BIOS
- Unoptimized Games
Table of Contents
As mentioned above, antivirus, GPU driver settings, CPU bottleneck, RAM bottleneck, modded BIOS or unoptimized games can also cause a low GPU usage.
- Integrated Graphics: Your CPU may have an integrated GPU, which is being directly used instead of the graphics card. As a result, your graphics card isn’t performing anything while the integrated GPU is running the device.
- Outdated GPU Drivers: If you haven’t updated your GPU drivers in a while, it can cause a low GPU usage.
- Outdated Chipset Drivers: The chipset plays an important role in establishing communication between your CPU and motherboard. If the chipset drivers are outdated, it can lead to this issue.
- Corrupt Windows Registry: Even after you’ve deleted a program, a register entry can stay in the device. It can lead to hardware issues like low GPU usage.
- Third-Party Programs: Low GPU usage can occur due to some malicious software or third-party programs. As a result, your GPU won’t have any processing power left over for video games.
- Antivirus: Though antiviruses protect the computer from viruses, they can run long scans and steal the CPU power. It can lead to low GPU usage during video games.
- GPU Drivers Settings: Whether you have an NVIDIA or AMD graphics card, each has specific settings. If these aren’t configured properly, a low GPU usage can take place.
- CPU Bottleneck: Usually, the GPU usage in AAA games stays at around 95-100 %. If the usage is below 80%, you may have a CPU bottleneck issue.
- RAM Bottleneck: Data in your device travels from RAM to CPU and then to your GPU. If the RAM in your system is low, it can lead to the low usage of GPU.
- Modded BIOS: The problem of low GPU usage could be in your GPU BIOS version if you’re using a second-hand graphics card.
- Unoptimized Games: If the game you’re playing isn’t optimized, the game won’t use your GPU and CPU properly, which causes this issue.
How do I increase GPU usage?
You can increase GPU usage by updating your graphics card drivers, changing game settings, disabling SMT, disabling HPET, disabling third-party apps and enabling XMP on BIOS.
- Update Graphics Card Drivers: Regular update of the graphics card drivers is essential if you want to increase your GPU speed. While choosing the latest updates, make sure they suit your GPU.
- Change Game Settings: To stop CPU bottleneck and GPU overheating, you can change some game settings such as lowering the resolution. It’ll also enhance the GPU life of your device.
- Disable SMT: If you want to get the maximum power of your GPU, disabling SMT is a must. You can check the performance yourself as the FPS of your games will straight rise upto 10%.
- Disable HPET: An easy way to increase GPU usage is to disable HPET settings if you are getting flickering problems while playing high-end games on your laptop or PC.
- Disable Third-Party Apps: You need to disable third-part apps in case you’re getting a lower FPS during gameplay. It can enhance the GPU speed very quickly while offering you a better FPS for playing games.
- Enable XMP on BIOS: If XMP is disabled, it can make the RAM run at a slower speed. So you need to enable XMP on BIOS to avoid the RAM bottleneck and improve the GPU speed.
How to fix low GPU usage
To fix low GPU usage, you need to disable integrated GPU, update GPU drivers, reinstall Windows, disable third-party apps anddisable real-time protection.
Disable Integrated GPU
Since the method of disabling integrated GPU differs for motherboards, the best idea would be to follow your motherboard manual’s instructions on opening the BIOS.
How to disable a integrated GPU:
- Search for the Internal Graphics or Graphics Device
- Change the settings from Integrated/Auto to Dedicated/Disabled
Update GPU Drivers
To update the GPU drivers, you first need to uninstall all the old drivers through Windows.
How to update GPU drivers:
- In the Search bar, type add or remove programs.
- Find NVIDIA GeForce Experience or AMD Software.
- Uninstall it and download Display Driver Uninstaller.
- Install the driver, click on Clean and restart your device.
Upgrade Chipset Drivers
You need to upgrade your chipset drivers to avoid low usage of GPU. Here’s how you can do it:
- Go to Start and type System Information in the Search
- Find your motherboard model name beside Baseboard Product.
- Launch Intel or AMD’s website and type the model.
- Download and install the new chipset drivers.
Another fix is reinstalling Windows but before that, an SFC scan is a must. Open the Start menu and type CMD in the Run window.
- On the Command Prompt menu, right-click and choose Run as administrator.
- Type sfc or scannow and press Enter to begin the scan.
- Restart your device after the scan is over.
Disable Third-Party Apps
How to disable third-party apps in Windows:
- Open Task Manager by pressing the Ctrl+Shift+Esc
- Open the Startup tab where you’ll find all the programs.
- Press Disable for all such programs and restart.
Disable Real-Time Protection
To disable real-time protection and scanning of your antivirus, you can follow the method below:
- Go to Start, type Windows Security and select Virus & Threat Protection.
- Click on Manage settings and disable Real-time protection.
Optimize Game Settings
Unfortunately, you may need to wait for the game manufacturer to provide you with optimization options. You can look for new game versions to optimize them as per your needs.
Is 0% GPU usage normal?
0% GPU usage isn’t a normal and can indicate issues with your Winows operating system. Your GPU should show at least 1-5 % of usage even if the load isn’t much.
The scenario can be different if you own a dual GPU setup. In laptops, the dedicated GPU can show 0% usage while performing light tasks.
The integrated GPU will show the actual usage at that time. If you’re playing games or watching high-resolution videos, the dedicated GPU will also show some percentage of usage. Otherwise, it could be a faulty sensor.
You first need to check the integrated GPU usage and then confirm whether the sensor is working properly or not.
Why does my GPU usage drop to 0 while gaming?
Your GPU usage drops to 0 while gaming due to the integrated graphics, CPU bottleneck, driver issues or unoptimized games.
If your device has integrated graphics, chances are there that it’s being used during gameplay instead of the GPU.
You can fix this issue by following the method below:
- Go to Start > Control Panel > System.
- Select Hardware.
- Open Device Manager > Display Adapters.
- Right-click on the display adapter and click on DISABLE.
If the CPU slows down, it can impact your GPU usage and drop it to 0% while gaming. To fix this issue, you can try increasing the game resolution from the game settings, closing all your background apps or overclocking your CPU.
Here’s how you can overclock the CPU:
- Go to Settings > Update & Security.
- Select Recovery > Restart now.
- After the restart, go to Troubleshoot.
- Go to Advanced options > UEFI Firmware Settings.
- From BIOS, choose Advanced CPU Core Settings.
- Adjust the CPU multiplier manually and restart your device again to resolve the CPU bottleneck
If you’ve recently updated the drivers and are facing this issue, maybe the driver is causing a low performance of your GPU. To fix the problem, you can try going back to the previous drivers by uninstalling the new driver and installing an earlier version.
Some games with bad optimization may depend on your CPU, causing a low GPU usage during gameplay. You can either install fixes provided by the game developers or upgrade your CPU to resolve it.
Is low GPU usage while gaming normal?
Low GPU usage while gaming is normal for eSports games. For AAA games, the GPU usage should be 90-100%.
So the answer depends on which game you’re playing. If you’re playing eSports titles and there’s a low GPU usage, I’ll say it’s normal and there’s nothing to worry about it.
If you’re playing AAA games and the GPU usage is significantly low, you have a CPU bottleneck issue. In this case, your CPU isn’t feeding data to your GPU.
To resolve this problem, you can try removing the CPU bottleneck by following the methods I’ve explained in the above answer.
Does low GPU usage mean bottleneck?
Though a low GPU usage could mean a CPU bottleneck during AAA gaming, it doesn’t always mean the same.
A low GPU usage during low tasks such as browsing the internet or working on MS office apps doesn’t mean a CPU bottleneck. On the other hand, if you’re playing high-end games such as Resident Evil 3, Age of Empires IV, and others, a low GPU usage signifies a CPU bottleneck.
You can try optimizing your game and removing the CPU bottleneck to avoid the low GPU usage issue during games.
Can low GPU usage occur when there’s no CPU bottleneck?
Yes, low GPU usage can occur even when there’s no CPU bottleneck due to outdated GPU drivers, outdated chipset drivers, corrupt windows registry, third-party programs or real-time protection by antivirus.
GPU drivers settings, modded BIOS and unoptimized games can also cause low GPU usage.
The above reasons can lead to low GPU usage while the CPU is performing well. You first need to find the reason behind the low usage of GPU by checking all the above factors.
Once you’ve found out what the reason is, you can follow the steps mentioned above to fix the issue.
Can a slow GPU bottleneck CPU?
Yes, a slow GPU can bottleneck the CPU. In fact, one of the main reasons for CPU bottleneck is the slow performance of GPU.
For instance, suppose you’re running an application that’s data-intensive and your CPU can’t transfer the data quickly to your GPU, it’ll end up in a CPU bottleneck because of the slow performance of your GPU. It happens the most during video games that require a high GPU performance.
Why do I have low CPU and GPU usage while gaming?
You have a low CPU and GPU usage while gaming because of CPU bottleneck, integrated graphics, driver issues or unoptimized games.
You can fix these issues by overclocking or upgrading the CPU, reinstalling drivers and adjusting your game settings.
Overclock or Upgrade CPU
Based on your device’s motherboard company, the BIOS may give you two options such as OC Level function and Automatic Overclocking.
Here’s how you can overclock your CPU:
- Go to BIOS by pressing the Del
- Set your CPU multiplier to overclock.
- Adjust the CPU voltage to the desired level.
- Configure CPU’s voltage mode, AVX offset, LLC and other features.
- Reboot your device.
If the above steps don’t work for you, consider upgrading the CPU.
You can reinstall your GPU drivers to fix the low usage issue. Here’s how you can do it:
- From the search bar, go to Device Manager.
- Navigate toUtility>Display Adapters.
- Right-click on the GPU and select Properties.
- In the Properties window of the graphics driver click the Driver tab and uninstall the GPU drivers.
- Look for the latest updates of the driver or the ones most suitable for your device.
- Download and install the new updates.
Adjust Your Game Settings
You can try fixing some game settings such as increasing the resolution and others to improve the GPU performance when there’s no CPU bottleneck.
Why is my GPU usage low while playing Call of Duty Warzone?
Your GPU usage is low while playing Call of Duty Warzone because your graphics drivers are outdated, Windows isn’t updated, graphics is wrongly set or game settings aren’t optimized.
- Graphics Drivers Are Outdated: If you have an outdated graphics driver, Warzone won’t play properly. You need to update your graphics drivers by visiting NVIDIA or AMD website or installing a driver updater.
- Windows Isn’t Updated: If you haven’t updated Windows for a while, it can lead to low GPU usage during Warzone. Here’s how you can update Windows easily:
- Press the Win button and click on the gear icon to go to Settings.
- Go to Update & Security > Windows Update > Check for updates.
- Download and install the updates and restart your device.
- Graphics Is Wrongly Set: If you’re using an NVIDIA graphics card, wrong settings can cause this issue. Here’s how you can fix it:
- Go to NVIDIA Control Panel by right-clicking on the desktop.
- Click on Manage 3D settings > CUDA-GPU > your graphics card name > OK.
- Click on Set PhysX Configuration in the left panel and select your GPU from the dropdown list.
- Game Settings Isn’t Optimized: Here’s how you can optimize your game settings:
- Right-click on the desktop and select Display settings.
- Click the Graphics settings link and press the Browse
- Go to the location whereWarzone is installed and select exe.
- Select Options > High performance > OK.
Why is my GPU usage low while playing Minecraft?
Your GPU usage may be low while playing Minecraft due to third-party programs, antivirus, and CPU bottleneck.
- Third-Party Programs: Third-party programs can cause low GPU usage. You can turn them OFF by following the steps below:
- Go to Task Manager (Ctrl+Shift+Esc keys) > Startup.
- Disable all third-party apps and restart.
- Antivirus: The long antivirus scans can lead to low GPU usage during Minecraft. Here’s how you can fix it:
- Go to Start>Windows Security>Virus & Threat Protection.
- Click on Manage settings > Disable Real-time protection.
- CPU Bottleneck: If you have a CPU bottleneck issue, here’s how you can increase the game speed:
- Go to Settings > Update & Security > Recovery > Restart now > Troubleshoot > Advanced options > UEFI Firmware Settings > Advanced CPU Core Settings.
- Adjust the CPU multiplier manually and restart the system.
Why is my GPU usage low while playing Halo Infinite?
Your GPU usage can be low while playing Halo Infinite due to outdated graphics drivers, outdated Windows, graphics settings or unoptimized game settings.
- Outdated Graphics Drivers: Outdated graphics drivers can make the GPU usage low while playing Halo Infinite. You can update your graphics drivers via the NVIDIA or AMD website.
- Outdated Windows: Outdated Windows can lead to low GPU usage during Halo Infinite. Follow the instructions below to update Windows:
- Go to Settings > Update & Security > Windows Update > Check for updates.
- Download and install the updates and restart your device.
- Graphics Settings: Wrong graphics settings can cause this issue. Here’s how you can fix it for NVIDIA:
- Right-clicking on the desktop and selecting NVIDIA Control Panel.
- Select Manage 3D settings > CUDA-GPU > your graphics card name > OK.
- Click Set PhysX Configuration and choose your GPU.
- Unoptimized Game Settings: You can try optimizing your game settings by following the steps below:
- Go to Display settings > Graphics settings > Browse.
- Open the location where Halo Infinite is installed and click exe.
- Select Options > High performance > OK.
Why is my GPU usage low while playing Age of Empires IV?
Your GPU usage is low while playing Age of Empires IV due to CPU bottleneck, third-party programs or antivirus.
- CPU Bottleneck: Here’s how you can increase the game speed by fixing the CPU bottleneck.
- Open Settings > Update & Security > Recovery > Restart now > Troubleshoot.
- Select Advanced options > UEFI Firmware Settings > Advanced CPU Core Settings.
- Adjust the CPU multiplier and do a system restart.
- Third-Party Programs: You can turn the third-party programs off by following the steps below:
- Open Task Manager (Ctrl+Shift+Esc keys)and click the Startup
- Disable all third-party apps and restart.
- Antivirus: During Age of Empires IV, here’s how you can stop the antivirus scan:
- Open Start > Windows Security > Virus & Threat Protection.
- Click Manage settings > Disable Real-time protection.