What is GPU Scaling and How Does it Work in 2023?

GPU scaling provides amazing fine-tuned graphics and visual output no matter what resolution you are working with. You will notice a big improvement in your graphical experience as a result of this.

Gamers want to be able to enjoy the most realistic graphics possible. This permits us to have an entirely separate reality to experience. Because of the advancements in technology in the past several years, observing blurry or distorted image output, as well as poor image resolution, has become common. All of these issues can be resolved with the use of GPU scaling. So, let us go into the specifics about what is it and enabling GPU scaling.


What is GPU Scaling?


Generally speaking, when we talk about GPU scaling, we are referring to a technical capability that allows you to make adjustments to the aspect ratio of a game based on the resolution of your monitor to obtain a high-quality visual output. For example, a graphics processing unit (GPU) is a playing games more enjoyable and engaging.

Is It Necessary to Use GPU Scaling?

On a 16:9 or 16:10 screen, if you play old games that have a 5:4 or 4:3 aspect ratio, or use applications that have similar aspect ratios, the overall visuals output will be poor or pixelated due to the aspect ratio used. Here is where the GPU scaling feature comes into play. They work out the kinks to make them seem great on widescreen monitors, television screen monitors, and displays

Three Different GPU Scaling Modes

Depending on whether you are using GPU scaling AMD Radeon Graphics to scale your GPU, you will have a choice between three different scaling options.

  • Keep the Aspect Ratio in Check.
  • The image should be scaled to fill the entire panel.
  • Trimmings should be centered.

Check the Aspect Ratio

This option allows you to play the game in full-screen mode without the aspect ratio changing as you increase the resolution of your computer’s video card. The surplus background will be covered with black bars or a background pattern to make it more visually appealing.

Scale Image to Full Panel Size

It is a feature that allows you to expand an image to fit the entire screen. Typically, this results in poor image output and poor graphics output because the game’s previous aspect ratio was not adhered to.

Centered Trimmings

Using centered trimmings disables scaling by displaying the image’s original screen resolution in the middle of the display, rather than the edges. A backdrop pattern or black bars are placed all-around image to give it a more professional appearance.

What are the Advantages and Disadvantages of GPU Scaling?

Consider that you are playing your favorite video game when you realize that the picture has been stretched and that the aspect ratio has been incorrectly set, resulting in a poor gaming experience.
At this point GPU scalability becomes critical. Enabling GPU scaling, like any other technical solution, offers several advantages as well as disadvantages to consider.


  • GPU scaling allows you to adjust the resolution of your monitor so that it displays the video output at the highest possible quality.
  • There are numerous scaling choices available. Options include scaling the resolution to match the screen, maintaining the aspect ratio, and placing black bars in either a horizontal or vertical position on the screen, among others.
  • In general, GPU scaling is advantageous for vintage games and for older games that do not have the proper aspect ratio.

The following are some examples of how these choices make GPU scaling advantageous for online gamers:

This scaling mode allows you to maintain the game’s aspect ratio while playing in full-screen mode, even if the graphics are scaled up to a higher resolution. Along with helping to keep the aspect ratio intact, it also helps to fill in the surplus backdrop with vertical black bars.

When the image is smaller than the resolution of your screen, it is beneficial to use centered trimmings. By selecting this scaling mode, you will be able to center the image on the screen and fill in the black bars surrounding it.

This type of scaling mode will cause the image to be stretched to fill the entire screen. However, because the scaling is done from a different aspect ratio when the image is mounted to the full panel size, it frequently results in a poor image and poor graphics output. Although stretching may not be recommended if you are concerned about image quality, it is still an option available to you, which is an advantage in this situation.


  • One of the drawbacks of GPU scaling is the presence of a minor input lag, which can be distracting. If, for example, you want to use GPU scaling, you will need more processing time than if you just want to display an image “as is.”
  • When watching movies, the extra time it takes appears to be insignificant; but, when playing games, the reality is much different.
  • A condition known as input lag is created in this situation since the delay is immediately noticeable. It is essentially the time lag that you may encounter between the resultant on-screen action and pressing the button that prevents you from acting or playing swiftly in the game. When this occurs, you must choose if the implications of input lag as a result of GPU scaling are worth more than the consequences of not scaling the image.
  • Furthermore, it may not be appropriate when it comes to testing the performance of games at lower resolutions than the native resolution. The use of display scaling rather than GPU scaling may be more appropriate in this situation.
  • As previously said, GPU scaling is perfect for playing older games. In contrast, if you’re playing brand-new games, there’s no purpose in using it because it will just produce input lag, which will negatively impact your overall gaming experience.

Enabling GPU Scaling and Selecting the Scaling Mode that You want to Use

The approaches adopted for GPU scaling are to be enabled within Radeon Settings. The GPU Scaling option would not be available if any of the following conditions are not met:

It is necessary to make use of a digital link. A digital connection is one of the following types of connection:

DVI HDMI DisplayPort / Mini DisplayPort DVI HDMI DisplayPort / Mini DisplayPort

The display must be configured to its native resolution and refresh rate to function properly.

It is recommended that you install the most recent supported graphics driver for your AMD Graphics device.

Follow the procedures outlined below to enable GPU scaling:

  1. Select AMD Radeon Settings from the menu bar of your desktop to open RadeonTM Settings.

2. From the drop-down option, choose Display.


3. The GPU Scaling feature must be enabled.


4. Select the needed mode from the Scalability Mode drop-down menu.


5. Exit the Radeon Settings window to exit.

Frequently Asked Questions:

  1. Does GPU scaling affect performance?

    The ability to scale graphics and picture output on the GPU allows you to enjoy finely tailored visuals and image outputs regardless of the resolution. You’ll notice a big improvement in your graphical experience as a result of this. Gamers want to be able to enjoy the most realistic graphics possible. This permits us to have an entirely separate reality to experience.

  2. Should GPU Scaling be on or off?

    In most cases, removing GPU scaling is as good as activating it, unless you’re playing a game that needs a special resolution or aspect ratio than your monitor’s resolution. The outcomes will be hit or miss at best, no matter what you do.

  3. Does GPU scaling improve FPS?

    Unfortunately, the GPU scaling will have an impact on the frame rate during gameplay. The reason for this is that when you enable GPU scaling, the GPU must work extra hard to stretch a lower-aspect-ratio game to pass at a higher aspect ratio than it would otherwise.

  4. When should you use GPU scaling?

    If you play a game that is older or that is not as popular as they once were, you may encounter terrible visuals. Graphics in games that are played in 5:4 or 4:3 aspect ratios will not appear good on higher screen sizes, such as 16:9 or 16:10, and will be distorted. This is the situation in which GPU scaling in gaming is required.

Conclusion: What is GPU Scaling?

Generally speaking, GPU scaling is not enabled for games that run at a resolution that is equal to or higher than the monitor’s native resolution. Enabling GPU scaling will theoretically result in an input lag of roughly 1ms or less because the GPU will need to process the images to fit the scaling mode, but this will be minimal.

While this may not be noticeable when watching videos, gamers will undoubtedly notice delays of a fraction of a second or more from the time they clicked on the mouse or hit the dash button to dodge an assault when playing video games.

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