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NBA 2K21: Increase FPS and performance

There are players experiencing low fps and performance issues while playing NBA 2K21 . So I provide you with this performance guide to help you tweak the game with your system.

NBA 2K21 fps boost guide

How to improve performance in NBA 2K21

1) GPU drivers

It is highly recommended to update your graphics card drivers to improve performance.

For Nvidia GPUs, you can get the drivers at https://www.nvidia.com/en-us/geforce/drivers/
For AMD GPUs, you can get it at https://www.amd.com/en/technologies/radeon-software

2) NVIDIA Control Panel & AMD Radeon Settings

Nvidia users:

  • Open NVIDIA Control Panel
  • Go to the Adjust image settings with preview tab.
  • Click the “Use my preference emphasizing
  • Put the bar in Performance mode.
  • Apply
Nvidia Performance mode
  • Click the Manage 3D settings
  • Click the Program Settings
  • Click the Add
  • Select the NBA 2K21 from the list, then click on the “Add Selected Program” button.
  • After that, apply the settings below
    Low Latency Mode: Ultra
    Max Frame Rate: 60
    Power management mode: Prefer maximum performance
    Texture filtering – Quality: High performance
    Vertical sync: On
  • If you have a notebook, make sure you have selected the “High-performance NVIDIA processor” on preferred graphics processor.
High-performance NVIDIA processor
  • Apply and close the NVIDIA Control Panel.

AMD users:

There are a few tweaks for AMD users as well. You can start by adjusting the Texture Filtering Quality. Launch the AMD Radeon Adrenalin software, then set the Texture Filtering Quality to Performance.

Just follow these steps: AMD Radeon Adrenalin Software > Gaming > Graphics > Advanced > Texture Filtering Quality > Performance

And also: AMD Radeon Adrenalin > Graphics > Games > NBA 2K21 > Radeon Chill > Enabled > Min & Max FPS > 60

3) Fullscreen optimizations & High DPI scaling

You might face performance issues if the full screen optimization for NBA 2K21 is enabled on Windows 10.

  • Go to the folder where the game is installed ( Steam Library > Right-click on NBA 2K21 > Manage > Browse local files )
  • Then right click on NBA2K21.exe
  • Select Properties
  • Go to the Compatibility tab.
  • Tick the Disable fullscreen optimizations
  • Then click on the “Change high DPI settings” button.
  • Under the “High DPI scaling override” section, tick the “Override high DPI scaling behavior
  • Use the “Scaling performed by:” drop-down menu and select the “Application”
  • Click on the OK and again OK.
high DPI scaling behavior

4) Windows 10 Graphics Settings

By adjusting the Windows 10 graphics settings as follows, you can fix the problems experienced when the Windows GPU selection does not work properly.

  • Enter graphics settings into Windows search box, then select Open once the results populate.
  • Click the Browse button under “Graphics performance preference” in the window that appears.
  • Select the NBA2K21.exe, then click Add.
  • After that click on the Options button.
  • A new window will popup, select the High performance in the Graphics preference page.
  • Then click Save button.
  • Restart your PC.

5) Power Options

Low energy (power saver) mode may cause performance issues while playing NBA 2K21, especially on a laptop. You can improve the performance by changing the power plan on your system.

  • Type Power into the Windows search box
  • Select the Power & sleep settings
  • Click the Additional power settings
  • Select the High performance (or Ultimate Performance if you have) on the Preferred plans section.
  • Click on the OK

Note: If the CPU temperature gets too high and you experience frame rate drops, set it to Balanced.

6) Increase Priority

You need to adjust this setting every time you enter the game.

  • Launch the game.
  • Simultaneously press the ALT and TAB keys to minimize the game.
  • Open the Task Manager
  • Click on Details Tab
  • In the list, find the NBA2K21.exe
  • Right-click on the NBA2K21.exe and Set priority to High.

7) Basic Tips

8) Best Graphics Settings for Performance

To improve performance and avoid crashes, you should set the Refresh Rate to 60.0Hz even if you have a 60+ Hz (120, 144, 240 Hz) monitor. It may also work to leave Dynamic Vertical Sync turned on. Give it a try.

Minimum SystemPerformance
Window ModeFull ScreenFull Screen
Anti-aliasing Level11
Refresh Rate60.0Hz60.0Hz
Vertical SyncOffOn
Dynamic Vertical SyncOffOn
Overall QualityLow
Shader Detail LevelLowLow
Shadow Detail LevelMediumHigh
Texture Detail LevelLowHigh
Player Detail LevelLowMedium
Crowd Detail LevelLowLow
Media People Detail LevelLowLow
Hair Detail LevelLowLow
Ambient OcclusionOffOff
Volumetric LightingOffOff
Temporal Anti-aliasingOffOn
Depth Of FieldOffOff
Motion BlurOffOff
Floor ReflectionsOffOff
Mirror ReflectionsOffOff
Buffer Count33
Max Anisotropy11
Allow Compute ShadersOffOn
Shader PreloadOnOn

9) How to Reduce Ping and Fix Lag

You can fix your high ping issue in NBA 2K21 by using an application that I will explain how to use it below.

  • Go to the ExitLag page
  • Click on the “FREE 3 DAYS TRIAL” button.
  • Create an account and verify your email account.
  • Download and install the ExitLag app.
  • After logging into the Exitlag application, select NBA 2K21 in the list.
  • Select a game region closest to the server you're playing.
  • Click on the APPLY ROUTES button.
  • You can play the game now.