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Steam Deck gets FSR 3.0 and Frame Generation for free with this user-created mod

A must-have Steam Deck mod?
Last Updated on June 17, 2024
Steam Deck closeup showing display and trackpad, taken by PCGuide
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The Steam Deck might be about to experience a significant performance upgrade thanks to a clever mod and the latest upscaling technology. A YouTuber recently showcased a method that utilizes FidelityFX Super Resolution (FSR) 3.0 with Frame Generation to achieve a smoother gameplay experience in Hogwarts Legacy on SteamOS, the Deck’s operating system.

To cut to the chase, the mod in question can be found at Nexus Mods here; we’d recommend following the video tutorial below to install it correctly. We will first warn you that it’s only recommended for single-player games, as multiplayer games with anti-cheat software may not take kindly to the mod.

FSR and Frame Generation

For those unfamiliar, FSR (FidelityFX Super Resolution) is an image upscaling technology developed by AMD. It takes a lower-resolution image rendered by the GPU and stretches it to a higher resolution, minimizing quality loss while boosting performance.

FSR 3.0 is the latest iteration of the tech, with 3.1 soon on the way. Back in January, AMD also introduced its answer to Frame Generation feature, known as Fluid Motion Frames (FMF). This technology essentially creates new frames in between the ones rendered by the GPU, further boosting frame rates and potentially achieving smoother gameplay.

Best mod on the market?

The YouTuber’s method leverages a free mod that translates DLSS, a similar upscaling technology by Nvidia, into FSR functionality. This allows the Steam Deck, equipped with AMD hardware, to benefit from FSR’s Frame Generation on games that only support DLSS natively, like Hogwarts Legacy.

The FSR and Frame Generation Mod in action – Video Source: Grown Up Gaming

While the video mentions achieving a “60/Ultra experience,” clarification is needed. The YouTuber ran the game at medium settings with DLSS set to Ultra Quality. The mod then translated this into FSR with Frame Generation. The actual frame rate achieved seems to be closer to 48-58 FPS, which is still a significant improvement over the typical 45 FPS experienced on the Steam Deck without the mod.

An exciting development, but room to improve

This development is exciting for several reasons. Firstly, the ability to utilize FSR 3.0’s Frame Generation on previously incompatible hardware broadens the Steam Deck’s capabilities. Secondly, the reported minimal input lag, a potential downside of Frame Generation, suggests a near-seamless experience for single-player games like Hogwarts Legacy.

However, it’s important to address some points. The performance improvement seems significant but is not quite reaching a consistent 60 FPS. Additionally, mods can be unpredictable and may introduce unforeseen issues. It’s also worth noting that FSR 3.0 with Frame Generation is still a relatively new technology, and its effectiveness might vary across different games and hardware configurations.

Overall, this news is a positive step for the Steam Deck’s future. The potential for FSR 3.0 mods to unlock smoother gameplay experiences, especially on demanding titles, is a major boost for the portable gaming device. As the technology matures and modders switch up their techniques, we might see even greater performance improvements for the Steam Deck.

Tom is a tech writer with a detailed view on ensuring the best buying advice, most useful information, and latest news makes its way into PC Guide's articles.