Nvidia GeForce Experience is an incredibly powerful (and convenient) piece of software – and you likely already have it installed. You see, GeForce Experience is usually installed when you first download drivers for your Nvidia graphics card.
However, this piece of software has changed so much over the last few years, both in its general user interface and in the scope of what it can do. Whether you just want a frame rate counter in the top left corner of your screen, a place to download new drivers as they come out or even if you want to record your gameplay, GeForce Experience can do it all.
Because of how many things this software can do, it can be hard to get to grips with everything you can do with it. Luckily, we went ahead and put together a little guide to all the things you can do with this software, and we'll even help you figure out where to download it if your drivers didn't come with it. One thing to note before we begin though: this software only works with Nvidia GPUs, so if you have Radeon graphics, you're out of luck.
How to download GeForce Experience
If your graphics driver didn't come with Nvidia's GeForce Experience, don't worry: you can download it manually. All you have to do is go to the Nvidia GeForce Experience page, and click 'Download Now'.
Once it's finished downloading, go ahead and run the GeForce Experience .exe file to start installation. Once the program is installed you'll either have to create an Nvidia account, or log in with an existing one. Luckily, you can sign in with either Facebook or Google so you can save some time.
When that's done, a dialogue page will open up, asking you to take a tour. If this is your first time with GeForce Experience, we recommend going through it, but it isn't totally necessary.
How to install graphics drivers with GeForce Experience
One of the best parts of GeForce Experience is that new graphics drivers are always only a couple of clicks away. Nvidia will put out new graphics drivers every couple of weeks for major game releases, so its a good idea to check in regularly to make sure your drivers are up to date.
With GeForce Experience, it's extremely easy to do this. Just open the program, click the 'Drivers' tab and click the "check for updates" button. Usually, GeForce Experience will automatically check for new updates, but it never hurts to be careful.
If your graphics driver is up to date, you'll see a message at the top of the screen that says "You have the latest GeForce Game Ready driver". If not, you'll see a message that mentions the latest driver with a big green 'Download' button next to it. Click that and wait for the driver to download. Once the driver download has completed, two more buttons will appear: "Express Installation" and "Custom Installation". For most users, we recommend going with the "Express Installation".
Installing your driver will take a few minutes depending on your hardware, and you may need to restart your PC when it's done. Then, after that, congratulations, you've updated your graphics card driver.
How to optimize your games with GeForce Experience
The ability to download drivers on GeForce Experience is definitely enough for us to always have the program installed, but there's another marquee feature: game optimization. With GeForce Experience, you can optimize your games with a click of the button, so you can get the best balance of performance and visual quality without spending an hour toiling over graphics options.
The best part is that when you open GeForce Experience it will scan your PC for installed PC games automatically, and new games will be added to your library. And, if you don't want to wait for the next time you open GeForce Experience, you can do a manual scan by clicking the three vertical dots in the top right hand corner and selecting "Scan for games".
When the game you want to optimize is in your GeForce Experience game library, just hover over it with your mouse and select "Details". In this screen, you'll see all the in-game settings and their current value, along with the recommended value for each. If you want to quickly and easily optimize the game, just click the "Optimize" button, and it will automatically change all the settings to their recommended values.
You can further refine how these settings are optimized by clicking the little wrench icon and choosing your resolution, display mode and the position on the slider between quality and performance.
And, if you just don't have time for any of this, you can simply click the three vertical dots in the top right corner of the library screen and select "Optimize all games" to get it all done automatically.
How to use GeForce Experience to record your gameplay
Whether you want to record an entire gameplay walkthrough, or just capture that killstreak you just achieved, GeForce Experience can get it done.
Once you're in-game, just hit the GeForce Experience hotkey – Alt+Z by default – and the GeForce Experience overlay will appear on screen. Once that's open, you'll see several options appear on the screen.
With Instant Replay, Nvidia ShadowPlay will record the last several minutes of gameplay when you hit a certain hotkey. You can open the settings to configure Instant Replay, changing the amount of time captured, the quality of the video, resolution, frame rate and bitrate. We'd recommend leaving most of the settings the way they are, and just changing the amount of time recorded. If you want to save a clip of your gameplay, all you have to do is hit Alt+F10 by default, and it will save it to the gallery.
If you want to manually record your gameplay, you can do that with GeForce Experience, too. Just click the record option in the GeForce Experience overlay, and you'll be able to start the recording. If you just want to use a hotkey without going into the overlay, you can do that too, by hitting Alt+F9 by default.
Finally, you can stream using GeForce Experience. You'll be able to broadcast your gameplay to Facebook, Twitch or YouTube. You can adjust broadcast settings by clicking the 'Broadcast LIVE' button, and then selecting Settings. The settings aren't as exhaustive as something like OBS or XSplit, but GeForce Experience has the benefit of being extremely easy to use. Once you've configured your stream settings, you can start broadcasting by clicking 'Start' or hitting the hotkey Alt+F8.
And, of course, you can take screenshots with GeForce Experience. You can capture a simple screengrab with Alt+F1, but if you really want to take things to another level, you're going to want to use photo mode.
You can enter photo mode by hitting Alt+F1 or selecting the 'Photo mode' option in the GeForce Experience overlay. In this mode, you can add filters and even upscale your screenshot in a higher resolution using AI. That's not all, in certain games, you can use Nvidia Ansel technology to move the camera to capture the best image possible.