If the one device that’s supposed to process your graphics sits idle and the CPU does all the heavy lifting while you play Minecraft, the game won’t run smoothly.
But lucky for you, in this post, I will guide you on the tried and tested troubleshooting ways to fix Minecraft not using your graphics card issues and find out the reasons behind it.
Keep reading the whole post and precisely follow the instructions to solve your problem.
How to Make Minecraft Use GPU
To fix Minecraft not detecting the external GPU, make sure to select the dedicated Nvidia or AMD graphics card for Minecraft. Also, set the Java SE binary and the Minecraft Launcher to run in High-performance mode, and the game will start to use the dedicated GPU.
Setting the external GPU as the default graphics processor can be tricky for some users. However, to use the external GPU setup when playing Minecraft, players must first enable it. The GPU is reverted to its native state when the user runs Minecraft.
Here are the steps to fix Minecraft not using GPU issues:
1. Select NVIDIA GPU
If you are an NVIDIA graphics card user, but it is not working with Minecraft, you can change the setting in the NVIDIA Control Panel.
Here’s how to select Nvidia GPU for Minecraft:
- Open the Minecraft Launcher and start any world.
- Press the Windows key or minimize the game.
- Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc to open the Task Manager.
- Right-click on the OpenJDK Platform binary and choose Go to details.
- Right-click on javaw.exe and click on the Open file location.
- Close Task Manager and Minecraft.
- Copy the file path to javaw.exe.
- Right-click anywhere on the desktop and select NVIDIA Control Panel.
- Select Manage 3D settings from the left menu, go to the Program Settings tab, choose High-performance NVIDIA processor from the dropdown list and click on Add.
- Click on the Browse button.
- Paste the file path to Java in the top bar, select javaw.exe, and click on Open.
- Click on Apply at the bottom-right corner.
Upon right-clicking on the desktop, if you don’t see any options for Nvidia, you need to perform the steps that will fix NVIDIA Control Panel missing issue.
However, in case the whole graphics driver is missing, you need to fix the Nvidia graphics driver not detected in Windows 10 and Windows 11 by enabling the driver, updating it to the latest version, and checking the BIOS settings.
A High-performance NVIDIA processor context menu option is also available with NVIDIA laptops. Open the context menu by right-clicking the Minecraft icon.
Then, under the Run with Graphics processor context menu submenu, select the High-performance NVIDIA processor option.
2. Select AMD GPU
You can use your AMD graphics card as a GPU in Minecraft if you have one.
Here’s the process to select the AMD graphics card to play Minecraft:
- Right-click on the desktop and select AMD Radeon Settings.
- Go to Preferences and choose Radeon Additional Settings.
- Select Switchable Graphics Application Settings from the left bar and click Add Application.
- Choose javaw.exe, set it to High performance and click on Apply.
3. Select High-Performance for Java SE Binary
This fix is compatible with both the Java and UWP/Bedrock/Windows 10 editions of Minecraft. The setting app in Windows 10 allows you to choose a high-performance GPU for Minecraft. Whether you have an NVIDIA or AMD GPU, it will work.
Here are the steps to select High-performance for Java SE binary:
- Open Task Manager with Minecraft running in the background.
- Go to the Details tab, right-click on javaw.exe and click on the Open file location.
- Copy the file path to javaw.exe.
- Close Task Manager and Minecraft.
- Click on the Windows icon and select Settings.
- Choose System.
- Scroll down and click on Graphics settings.
- Select Desktop app and click on the Browse button.
- Paste the java folder path in the top bar and paste Enter.
- Choose javaw.exe and click Add.
- Select OpenJDK Platform binary from the list below and click on Options.
- Choose High performance and click Save.
For Windows 11 users, check out our in-depth guide on how to set the default graphics card on Windows 11.
Use Task Manager to see if Minecraft is using the GPU or not.
- Select a world in Minecraft and wait for it to load. Reduce the game’s size.
- Select Task Manager from the context menu by right-clicking the Taskbar.
- Look for Minecraft in the Processes tab.
- Select your GPU Engine column. It should say GPU 1 instead of the onboard graphics card to show that it uses the GPU.
If the integrated graphics card is set as default, Minecraft will put pressure on the CPU.
But after going through the steps in this article, Minecraft will use the dedicated GPU, and the CPU usage will remain low & stable.
In case your game is still lagging even with the discrete graphics card, you can fix Minecraft stuttering by updating the graphics driver, enabling v-sync, allocating more RAM to Minecraft, and lowering the rendering distance.
Why does Minecraft use an Integrated Graphics Card instead of a GPU?
Minecraft uses an integrated graphics card instead of the dedicated GPU because after updating the graphics driver, the graphics setting reset automatically. Most of the time, laptops cause this issue because of dual graphics cards containing an integrated and discrete GPU.
Besides, there can be other reasons for Minecraft not using the GPU.
Here’s why your GPU is not being used in Minecraft:
- Applying the wrong graphics settings.
- Setting the integrated graphics card as the default graphics processor.
- Playing games in Power saving mode.
- Outdated graphics driver.
- Bugs or malware installed in your Minecraft application.
Many people are confused with GPU configurations and the many options to convert from an integrated to a dedicated GPU for improved graphics output.
What does a GPU do for Minecraft?
The GPU is responsible for the visual appearance of a game; when you’re in an active game, the image that’s rendered changes all the time.
Not only does the game environment change as you play, but it also adapts to changes caused by your interactions with other game elements. There are many moving parts, and each one affects the display on the screen.
If GPU processing takes much longer, for example, when you shoot an arrow from a bow at a target, the effect, such as releasing a trap or pressing a switch, will take a long time to appear. However, you won’t notice it happening and will only notice the result.
Consider Minecraft’s sand. Allowing a sand chunk dangling in the air to just fall is enjoyable, but without a GPU, the drop may be slow or even grind the game to a stop.
Minecraft starts as a simple game, but it has since evolved to the point where playing without a graphics card is no longer an option. The developers are still working on it, and some of the new features will require a GPU or a capable GPU.
Why is Minecraft using CPU instead of GPU?
Minecraft is using CPU instead of GPU because you have set the integrated graphics card as the default processor, you are playing games in Power saving mode, or a graphics driver update has changed the settings to use the integrated graphics.
How do I force Minecraft to use my GPU?
To force Minecraft to use your GPU, open the NVIDIA Control Panel, go to Manage 3D settings > Program Settings, add javaw.exe, choose High-performance NVIDIA processor and apply the changes.
How do I enable RTX graphics in Minecraft?
To enable RTX graphics in Minecraft, open Settings in Minecraft, go to Advanced Video, and toggle on the DirectX Ray Tracing option.
Is Minecraft harder on the CPU or GPU?
Contrary to other games, Minecraft is harder on the CPU. So, a better CPU will offer smoother gameplay.
After following the steps above, I hope you can set Minecraft to use a discrete GPU rather than an integrated one. When you play Minecraft, you’ll notice an apparent improvement in graphical performance. For other games, you can enable dual GPU graphics settings in the same way.
I hope you find this post helpful. Feel free to share your experience with your friends and other readers.