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What’s a good ping speed for gaming and how to test it

Ping is directly related to online gaming performance. In fact, a lower ping can be the difference between rising in the leaderboards and falling behind. So, what is a good ping speed for gaming? Here’s everything you should know.

Ping test depicting a great ping

What is ping in gaming?

During live games, ping helps gamers understand how fast their computer is communicating with a gaming server. When playing an online game, such as Apex Legends, a ping test can help a player determine if they will experience dips in responsiveness during gameplay. In other words, ping speed measures how many milliseconds (ms) it takes for network devices to ‘talk’ to each other.

What is a good ping for gaming?

Ping requirements vary from game to game. Some games may be unplayable at pings above 200ms. You should always strive for the lowest possible ping that your environment can provide. That said, there’s a general range that can help determine the strength of your speed. Keep in mind that every additional 50ms can be a disadvantage.
 

  • Less than 20ms - Great: This is optimal for gaming. Visuals are crisp and actions are quick. You should not experience any lags or glitches during gameplay.

  • 20ms - 50ms - Good: This is the most common range for gamers. You should still experience smooth and responsive gameplay.

  • 50ms - 100ms - Fair: This is the average range for gamers who are connecting to international servers. You may experience occasional lag depending on the game and your settings.

  • 100ms - 300ms - Poor: Lags and delays are common but do not completely disrupt gameplay. You’re likely to encounter dips in performance and in-game responsiveness.

  • More than 300ms - Unplayable: There is noticeable lag, long delays in response, inconsistent movements and lost shots. Ping in this range will likely be more frustrating than rewarding.

Ping ranges by genre of game:

  • First-person-shooter (FPS) and racing games: Since timing is vital in FPS and racing games, you should aim for a ping of less than 50ms to stay competitive with other players.

  • Massively multiplayer online (MMO) games: MMO games are one of the only genres where ping can be a little higher without the game becoming unplayable. Some of these games can even be playable up to 250ms or higher. That said, those looking to engage in real time player vs. player (PvP) scenarios should aim for a ping less than 150ms.

  • Real-time strategy (RTS) games: While RTS games are playable just under 200ms, ideally, you should aim for less than 150ms for the best gaming experience without response issues.
Gaming latency leads to fewer FPS

How to test my ping?

If you’re wondering how to conduct a gaming ping test, there are two easy options:
 

  • Checking in game: Most online games, especially FPS games, allow you to check the ping directly in game. Go to the game settings and look for an option like “display performance stats” or “display network options.” Note: the wording may vary game to game. This in game ping test will give you the most accurate measure of network performance for the specific game and server you are playing on.

  • Internet ping test: Checking your ping on the internet is another easy option. To conduct the ping test online simply go to one of the many online ping testing sites and hit start. The tool will find servers proximate to you and give you averaging you can expect with playing online games.

How to fix high ping

Here are some of the best ways to improve your ping right now:

 

  • Select a game server that is closest to you: Location matters when you’re playing online games. Picking the closest server to you can allow faster communication between your computer and the server.

  • Close background applications: Turn off programs or processes that occur in the background. Some of these applications can take up memory or initiate processes that need to access the internet.

  • Turn off updates: Time updates for when you aren’t using your computer. Updates that occur while you are in game can compete for bandwidth or try to download files at inopportune times.

  • Use a wired connection: Wireless connections suffer packet loss from encryption technologies and servicing multiple devices at once. Get a stronger and faster connection by using an ethernet cable when playing online games.

  • Gamers benefit from higher-bandwidth internet plans: Sounds obvious but having a higher-bandwidth internet plan can may be the number one thing you can do to improve your overall gaming performance.

No matter what game you’re into, making these adjustments to your setup will reduce ping and help you get the most out of your experience.
 

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