Nvidia’s New Hardware Accelerated GPU Scheduling Feature – Is It Worth Enabling?


    Nvidia’s latest driver update has added several exciting new features including the much-awaited DirectX 12 Ultimate support, and the latest GPU scheduling feature for the Windows 10 May 2020 Update. Nvidia claims it to improve performance throughout applications on Windows. But the question is – by how much?

    It’s hard to tell the performance impact it would have from the vague information given by Microsoft, but it shifts the scheduling load from the CPU to your dedicated video card, easing off the load from the CPU and reducing CPU, RAM usage in the process.

    “This new feature can potentially improve performance and reduce latency by allowing the video card to directly manage its own memory,” says Nvidia.

    The update is currently only available for the buggy new Windows 10 v2004 update, and I haven’t received that update yet, (luckily?). So, not being able to test it on my new GTX 1660 Super rig, I went on a bit of research to measure the performance boost from several different sources.

    Santiago Santiago on YouTube has compared the performance effect of the new feature on a Ryzen 5 3600, GTX 1660 Super. Here are some screens from the video to help you directly see the performance impact in some of the games.

    • Hardware accelerated GPU scheduling
    • Hardware accelerated GPU scheduling
    • Hardware accelerated GPU scheduling
    • Hardware accelerated GPU scheduling
    • Hardware accelerated GPU scheduling
    • Hardware accelerated GPU scheduling

    Keep an eye on the CPU and RAM usage in the comparisons. Clearly, Red Dead Redemption 2 has the biggest effect in resources, with there being an almost ~3GB of difference in RAM usage with hardware scheduling enabled. More often than not, the CPU usage is comparatively lesser than normal as well. The same applies to most games, with less noticeable differences however.

    Hardware accelerated GPU scheduling
    Here’s how it affects an i9 9900k coupled with a GTX 1650 Super. Thanks to Wccftech.

    Seemingly it has more of an effect on CPU-bottlenecked systems. A post on Reddit explains how the HAGS update fixed constant stuttering on a GTX 1080 system powered by a 4C4T i5 6600k. Clearly limited by the CPU, the new GPU scheduling API helps lift off some load from the CPU during intense battle royale sessions in Warzone.

    While many users are enjoying more available RAM, some didn’t notice any change while some are experiencing stutters during gameplay or even while watching videos on YouTube.

    Is it Worth Enabling?

    So overall, the question again arises: Should you enable HAGS? Well, it depends on your build and the apps you use. Hardware-accelerated GPU Scheduling clearly isn’t a silver bullet which will solve your game performance woes. But it’s worth a shot if you’re facing any stuttering or any such issues. If you’re bottlenecked by your CPU, it’s totally worth a shot. You can always turn it back off with one click if it doesn’t help.

    Hardware accelerated GPU scheduling

    To enable the new feature, simply go to your Display Settings > Graphics Settings and just enable Hardware accelerated GPU scheduling. Again, you need to be on the latest v2004 Windows update, and a compatible Nivida card to enable this feature.

    There’s no word yet on AMD support, but an AMD employee told fans on reddit to “please be patient”.

    Tell us how hardware scheduling works for you in the comments.


    1. Saying “~3GB of difference in RAM usage” is meaningless without telling us if HAGS uses more or less RAM than software scheduling.

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