Last Updated August 15, 2021
- What Is Ping in Gaming?
- 5 Reasons Why Ping Is So High
- What Does Ping Mean in Gaming?
- What Does Latency Mean in Gaming?
- Difference Between Ping and Latency in Gaming?
- What Do The Terms “Low Ping” & “High Ping” Mean?
- What Does Lag Mean in Competitive Gaming?
- Top 5 Reasons That Your Ping Is So High
- How To Reduce Ping?
- What’s The Fastest Wifi Routers
- Most Frequently Asked Questions
If you’re a gamer, you’d know how frustrating lag can be during online games. The main reason behind your lag in online games is high ping. But what exactly is ping? Read on to find out what it is.
What Is Ping in Gaming?
Every online gamer must’ve experienced lag and FPS (frames per second) drop in their games for no reason. However, there is a very solid reason behind this lag and FPS drop, and that is “ping.” This ping is related to your internet connection. We’ll discuss in detail what it means and how to get it under control to enjoy your games.
5 Reasons Why Ping Is So High
There are five main reasons why your ping gets high during online games. These five reasons are:
We’ll discuss each point in further detail, but let’s answer a few more critical questions first.
What Does Ping Mean in Gaming?
When you’re playing an online game, your computer sends a signal to another computer somewhere in the world (which is usually the game server). That computer responds with a signal of its own. This signal is referred to as “ping.”
The word “ping” was first used during World War II. In World War II, the submarines would send a sonar signal out in the ocean to measure the distance between them and the enemy ships or vessels under the sea, much like how bats do with their echo. This sonar signal was called ping, but now in the modern world, this word refers to the signal which is used to determine if the other computer is online or not.
In much simpler terms, suppose you’re playing an online game, which is either DotA 2 or League of Legends on your computer. However, you’re not exactly playing it on your computer; let us explain what exactly is going on.
The game server decides how much damage you’re doing to the enemy units, whether you’re moving or standing still, or whether you’re alive or not in a game. You might be wondering how a game server would do that.
In real-time, the game server is receiving packets of information from your PC about how you’re moving, what buttons you’re pressing, and then the server basically draws you doing the task in the actual game that is running on the server and sends a signal back to your PC to let you see what you’re doing.
So, ping is actually the delay that takes place between the receiving and sending of these packets of information between the game servers and the gamers’ PC.
There is another factor at play here called “lag compensation.” If the entire game worked around the ping principle, it would look slightly buggy, and the characters would appear to teleport from one place to the other. To make things smoother, this lag compensation smoothes out the movements, so your character would look as if moving from one place to the other by walking instead of teleporting.
Keep in mind that lag and FPS drops aren’t only caused by a bad internet connection. It could be your gaming PC or GPU. For this reason, you can check out our pre-built Intel system and AMD gaming Desktop PCs to enjoy your games at maximum FPS. These pre-built gaming PCs come pre-assembled, so you won’t have to worry about putting anything together.
What Does Latency Mean in Gaming?
Now that you know what ping is let’s move towards “latency.” Latency is basically the time it takes for the ping to return to the gamers’ PC after making a successful round from the game servers. Latency is measured in milliseconds (ms). If your latency is high, your ping would also be high naturally; the same goes for low latency. You would’ve also heard phrases like high ping or low ping, but those are slightly different from high latency and low latency; we’ll discuss that further in a while.
The lower your latency is, the smoother your game would be. In simpler terms, latency is the amount of time that it takes for your data to travel from your PC to the game server and then back to you.
Difference Between Ping and Latency in Gaming?
In terms of gaming, ping and latency can have a very similar effect on your online games. Still, in nature, they have very different meanings.
Ping is the signal that your PC sends to the gaming server, and the server returns the signal to you. While latency is the time, it takes for your signal to arrive back to you after going through the game server.
Your game will most likely start lagging, and you’ll start experiencing FPS drops if either the ping or the latency is too high. The easy way to fix your latency and ping is to turn off any downloads and close all the apps and browsers that might be using the internet behind your game. You can also turn off the Wi-Fi of your mobile phone to reduce the latency and ping. Using a wired connection instead of Wi-Fi is also a good idea.
You can also use Fastest Wifi Routers for Gaming, which are specifically designed for gamers and streamers, to reduce ping and latency and improve your online gaming experience.
What Do The Terms “Low Ping” & “High Ping” Mean?
The terms “low ping” and “high ping” are fairly common in the gaming community, and if you’ve been part of this community, you must’ve heard them at least once.
If your ping is below a certain range or threshold, it is considered low. High ping means that your ping is higher than the expected playable ping’s range or threshold. High ping makes your game lag and might even make games unplayable. On the other end, low ping makes your game smoother and easy to play.
20ms ping or below is ideal for gaming. It is a perfect range, and you can play games incredibly smoothly without any delays.
Ping between 20ms to 50ms is also considered great. You can play games smoothly and without any delays at this range as well.
The game is playable at this range, you might start noticing minor FPS drops or lags on screen, but it isn’t much to affect your gameplay. It might still be slightly disadvantageous in a first-person shooter or real-time strategy game. If you like playing first-person shooter games, check out our headphones buying guide to get your hands on outstanding headphones that will make it incredibly easy for you to listen to your opponent’s every move.
You will start noticing much more delays at this range. The game is still playable enough. This range is considered average in terms of gameplay.
Ping higher than 150ms is considered high ping. You will notice delays and lag. All multiplayer games would become incredibly difficult to play against players who have lower ping than you. It might still work for turn-based games, but anything other than that can be annoying and frustrating.
What Does Lag Mean in Competitive Gaming?
Lag in professional or competitive gaming can make all the difference in the world between a win and a loss. The player with a higher ping will be at a massive disadvantage against a player with a lower ping because the player with lower ping will move faster than the player with a higher ping.
Lag and high ping can also cause crashes and disconnects at crucial moments, making the game incredibly difficult for the player to win. You can also learn to build a gaming server at your home to play with your friends and avoid such situations while also making the game fair for everyone.
It is for this reason that most competitive and professional tournaments are held on Local Area Network (LAN) to remove this delay problem and keep the game fair. While there are also other reasons at play for lag, such as a weak GPU or a weaker gaming PC, it can also be your internet connection. You can build a Budget gaming PC by following our detailed beginner buying guide
Top 5 Reasons That Your Ping Is So High
There are 5 top reasons behind your ping being high during online games. We’ll be going through each reason in detail to give you a better idea of what it is and how to counter it.
1- Your Geographical Location
Your geographical location plays a huge role in determining your ping to the game server. For example, if you live somewhere near the gaming server, the signal from your PC will take less time to travel from your computer to the gaming server and then back to you, resulting in lower ping. Likewise, you would have a high ping if you live somewhere far away from the gaming server.
You will also have high ping if you’re playing on Wi-Fi while sitting somewhere far away from your router. The best way to deal with this situation is to get a wired connection or sit somewhere close to the router. If your PC doesn’t have a good Wi-Fi card, you can check out our Best PCIe Wi-Fi Cards to find the perfect one for your Gaming PC for smoother gameplay.
2- Your Internet Speed
If you have a high-speed internet connection, you’ll be able to transfer data faster, which means that you’ll have a lower ping. Bad internet speed will affect the rate at which you transfer data, so your ping will be high, and you’ll suffer lag in your online games. A good broadband connection that uses cable or fiber will greatly reduce your ping.
A wired connection will make your games smoother. It is also a good idea to turn off Wi-Fi on other devices in your house so they don’t eat up your internet speed, and you can have a peaceful lag-free gaming session with your friends.
3- Not Enough Bandwidth
Bandwidth also plays an important role in reducing the ping and latency in your games. For example, you have multiple internet users at your home who are using the internet at the same time as you’re gaming, then there might not be enough bandwidth left for you to enjoy your games peacefully in low ping.
The best way to deal with this is to check your bandwidth before starting an online match and ask others who are using the same connection to not use streaming services or download heavy files.
4- Firewall Settings
All the internet packets that go in and out of your PC go through the firewall first. This process takes milliseconds, but that is exactly what increases your ping and latency. You can turn off your Windows firewall and disable any antivirus to stop your PC from doing this, which will lower your ping. Keep in mind that disabling your antivirus and firewall is dangerous and might expose your computer to potential threats.
The other way to go around this is to make an exception in the firewall for the game that you’re playing. This will stop your firewall from checking the packet that the game sends out and receives to reduce your ping. If you have a low-end laptop or PC, you can follow these easy 8 ways to speed them up even further to reduce lag.
5- Your Internet Service Provider (ISP)
The most important reason for your high ping is usually your ISP. If your ISP is not good enough or isn’t offering proper download and upload speeds, it would be better to select a new ISP.
When it comes to latency and ping, you have to consider both the upload and download speed. That is because you’re sending data out from your PC to the game server, which is equivalent to uploading, while also downloading the data from the game server, which is equivalent to downloading.
If you’re signing up for a deal with your ISP, be sure to check both the upload speed and download speed of the connection, since most of the time, when ISPs talk about the connection speed, they’re referring to the download speed of the connection since regular people don’t use the upload feature that much.
You will need an even higher upload speed if you intend to do live streaming of your games. Also, having a wired connection will also positively affect your upload and download speeds. Live streamers should also check out our reviews for the best live stream Webcams for perfect streams.
Most of the time, a 25Mbps connection is enough for regular gamers. But, if you’re a professional, you should consider getting a 1Gbps broadband connection for ideal uninterrupted gameplay.
How To Reduce Ping?
The best way to reduce ping is to get a wired connection. If you have a router in your home, you can use an Ethernet cable to connect your PC to the router. Your internet connection should also offer you sufficient upload and download speed. If you’re not getting the promised upload and download speed on your connection, you should contact your ISP to get it fixed.
You can also try connecting to servers that are closer to your geographical location on the map. Most new modern games have servers in each continent, so if you’re living in Asia, you should try joining the Asian server instead of EU and American servers and you’ll notice a visible reduction in your ping.
Lastly, it is also important to make sure your PC isn’t using the internet behind the game. You should check if there are any downloads running in the background or windows updates. These processes consume bandwidth and you won’t be able to enjoy your online games smoothly with a download running in the background.
What’s The Fastest Wifi Routers
Lag in online gaming can cause so much frustration. However, you can say goodbye to lag while gaming by using a Fast Gaming Wi-Fi Router. These routers are designed specifically for gamers and streamers. They come with pre-programmed settings which effectively reduce your ping in online games.
If you don’t have an Ethernet connection, or can’t use one because of how far you are from the router in your house, you can use one of the best PCIe Wi-Fi cards to keep enjoying your online games without any lag.
You can pair these fastest PCIe Wi-Fi cards with a gaming router for the best online gaming performance. They work better than most stock Wi-Fi cards and can easily reduce your ping by a huge margin.
There are thousands of Wi-Fi routers available on the internet, and finding the best one can be quite difficult. For this reason, we’ve put together some of the best gaming Wi-Fi routers out there for your convenience. You don’t have to go anywhere else, just pick one of these gaming routers down here and you’ll be good to go.
Most Frequently Asked Questions
Q1- How many Mbps do I need for gaming?
A- For regular gaming needs, 25Mbps is considered enough. If you intend to do streaming or have multiple internet users at your house, you should go for a 1Gbps connection. If you’re the only one using the connection at your home, a 3Mbps connection should also suffice.
Q2- How to lower ping?
A- There are several ways to lower your ping mentioned above. However, the best way to reduce ping is to get a wired connection instead of using Wi-Fi to play online games.
Q3- How to check your ping?
A- Most online games display your ping right before you start the game or during the game. You can also use any speed test tool on the internet to get an idea about your average ping for that location.
Q4- How to see your ping in Fortnite?
A- You can check your ping in Fortnite by going to the Settings>Game UI tab. Scroll down till you find HUD options and check “Net Debug Stats” on. Apply the changes, and you’ll be able to check your current ping in the game.
Q5- How to fix ping spikes Windows 10?
A- Disabling Automatic Windows Updates can fix several ping spike issues on Windows 10. Go to Settings> Update and Security> Delivery Optimization> Advanced options. There, you’ll have to limit the amount of data used by the Windows for updates in the background.
Q6- How to do a ping test?
A- You can perform a ping test on a specific IP address by using Command Prompt. Open Command Prompt>Type “ping”> Type the IP address after ping (e.g. ping 192.xxx.x.x)> Press “enter”.
Q7- How to reduce ping in CS: GO?
A- To reduce ping in CS: GO, try closing any background apps and your browser. Restart your router and use a wired connection. You can also follow the tips mentioned in the article above to reduce your ping and packet loss in the game.
Q8- What is the ping of death?
A- Ping of Death is a type of DoS attack which stands for Denial of Service. Ping of death occurs when the attacker or hacker tries to crash and overload your computer by sending oversized data packets to your computer.
Q9- What is a good ping speed?
A- Anywhere under 100ms is considered good ping speed. Anything between 100 to 150 is still playable, but it isn’t considered good. Ping above 150 is considered too high and bad for gameplay.
Q10- Does faster internet lower ping?
A- Yes, with a faster connection, you’ll be able to transfer more data between your computer and your game server, which means slightly reduced ping in online games.