This guide will show you how to optimize Steam in order to get the best performance and responsive gameplay.
Steam is the primary games launcher in 2021 and most competitive games rely on the platform for updates and content downloads.
Steam is also a mature platform at this point which means there is a lot of legacy features built-in over the years.
Because of its size, and the need to work for everyone there is a lot of functionality that’s unnecessary for competitive gamers.
Luckily there are optimizations that can be done to streamline the platform and its overall impact on your system.
- What is Steam?
- How To Optimize Steam
- Optimize Steam Final Results
In this post you will learn the following
- What is Steam optimization
- Why it’s important to configure Steam properly
- How to set up Steam for reduced Input-lag and increased performance.
What is Steam?
Steam is the first and largest game launcher on the PC platform. It is developed and run by Valve, the makers of Half-Life and Dota 2 amongst many.
Early on during the days of Counter-Strike 1.6, Valve realized the potential of a centralized launcher for game servers and other social activities.
Valve became the first company to launch a unified games launcher and has since been the main competitor to Microsoft and Sony for the PC platform.
You can download Steam here and get started right away.
What is Steam optimization?
Ways to configure settings for performance and responsiveness in games by deactivating bloated functionality and disabling visual effects.
There are settings inside Steam that should be configured for increased responsiveness and reduced Input-lag.
Extra features such as the built-in browser should be disabled to reduce the number of background apps that help with Frame-timing.
Why it’s important to optimize Steam
Configuring Steam for performance works by limiting extra processes and services which may cause Input-lag and Frame-timing issues during gameplay.
Because Steam is usually running in the background while playing games its footprint should be minimized.
Over the years Steam has accumulated a lot of features like in-home streaming and various social features that may be turned off for increased performance.
How To Optimize Steam
Most configuration is done inside the Steam client using the settings menu.
Enable all the performance-enhancing features to limit the number of visual effects and bandwidth stealing features.
These features are completely unnecessary and are only used for marketing, really.
Steam In-Game settings
While the feature is great for staying up to date with your friends, all kinds of overlays on top of games are always a bad idea.
Just like In-home streaming, Big Picture is awesome if you keep the computer close to your TV and want to kick back for an immersive experience.
Additional features will impact the overall performance of your computer.
Disable Steam from starting with your computer in order to limit startup time.
Limits the graphics overhead from the various visual improvements.
The in-home stream can be great for casual gaming on the couch.
However, the feature itself is adding some extra processes which will interfere with raw performance for competitive games.
Disable Family Library Sharing in order to limit interruptions during gameplay.
Disable Steam Cloud sync to avoid various configs from transferring over to your main gaming station.
Disable the built-in browser
Optimize Steam Final Results
If you follow the guide above you should have a great starting point for an advantage while gaming.
Combine these tweaks with other PC optimizations to reduce input lag and avoid frame timing issues.