How to Get PCSX Games to Run as Fast as Possible

By Doug Vintage

PCSX is a PlayStation 2 emulation application for Windows operating systems. The current version of PCSX, known as PCSX2, features an array of options to optimize the performance of the application on different machines. Each computer uses a different hardware configuration, so PCSX2 users are required to define an initial settings profile after installation. It is possible to maximize the performance speed of PCSX2 by tweaking the emulation settings and applying "Speedhacks."

Step 1

Click "Config" in the main PCSX2 tool bar. Select "Emulation Settings" from the Config drop-down menu.

Step 2

Select the "EE/IOP" tab. Click both of the "Recompiler" toggle buttons underneath the Emotion Engine and IOP headings. Select "Chop Zero" under the Round Mode heading. Click the "Normal" toggle button in the Clamping Mode section.

Step 3

Click the "VUs" tab. Click the "Restore Defaults" button at the bottom of the VUs window.

Step 4

Select the "GS" tab. Click the "Disabled" button underneath the Frame Skipping heading.

Step 5

Click the "Speedhacks" tab. Click the "Enable Speedhacks" toggle box at the top of the window. Set the "EE Cyderate" slider to a value of "1." Set the "VU Cycle Stealing" slider to a value of "2." Click each toggle box underneath the Other Hacks and microVU Hacks headings to enable all available Speedhacks. Click the "OK" button at the bottom of the window to apply the changes and return to the main PCSX2 window.

Step 6

Click "Config" in the main PCSX2 tool bar. Highlight the "Video (GS)" entry and select "Plugin Settings" from the drop-down menu. Select "Direct3D9 (Hardware)" from the Renderer drop-down box. Click "OK."

Step 7

Test the performance of the application using your preferred game. Exit the game to return to the main PCSX2 menu. Return to the Video Plugin Settings menu and select "Direct3D10 (Hardware)" from the Renderer drop-down box.

Step 8

Test the speed of the game a second time. Select the faster of the two Direct3D plug-ins after determining which one provides the best overall performance. Select "Exit" from the System drop-down menu to save and close PCSX2.

Tips & Warnings

  • Use the "Presets" slider at the bottom of the Speedhacks tab in the Emulation Settings menu to alternate between different default configurations. Each game behaves differently when using the various Speedhacks, so find which preset provides the best performance for the game you're playing.

References & Resources