Windows 11 Gaming Thermal Performance

I still need to completely verify it by running several other games, but initial testing has demonstrated vastly improved thermal performance when gaming under Windows 11.

Under Windows 10 if I fired up pretty much ANY game in Steam the fan would ramp up and temps would normally sit around 60 C. Now, Windows 11 seems to have a gaming mode which disables unnecessary processes and allows the game to have priority. I played a game for about 15 minutes that would normally cause the computer to heat up, and instead the temps stayed around the usual 40 C.

I’ll report back after testing some more. Just thought I’d share the observation.


Interesting, seems Microsoft has done some more aggressive management of tasks.

Interesting. I will probably test to see how this will fair with my bit of “expertly minimized background activity system”.
To give you a rough idea, I can have such a system stay awake (not sleep/hibernate, or away mode) continuously for a week (as a wifi router), with browsers and stuff open and still runs ok. Although eventually the memory buildup became a problem but it’s a restart away anyway.
Look, 5 days. I’ll do it this weekend. see how long I can keep it going.


You do realize that this does not necessarily mean more measurable game performance, right?
Anyway, I’m doing the bench on a Pentium 6405U with 16GB of DDR4 @ 2400 (highest supported speed)
The “benchmark” is the World of Tanks Encore RT. I did minimum and medium settings. This test generate a single score. Higher is better.
All tests are run at 1366x768 (native resolution).
Both system is restarted prior to bench. The boot drive is different (both SATA m.2 SSD), but the drive where the game is installed is the same.
Windows 11 is run without back cover. The slight difference in airflow should not matter on a system that never overheats.
So far, I have find interesting discoveries:
The memory speed seem to be slower (e,g, tanks would appear to glitch around more and they would take a bit longer to be visible) on Windows 11. Graphics is extremely very slightly faster (on low)
There is more than enough cooling power for the system (thermo is configured to have discrete graphics, which is absent)

On the Windows 10 it did:
17157, 18231, 17773 minimum
3468, 3496, 3583 medium
On the Windows 11 it did:
18058, 17921, 17787 minimum
3211, 3344, 3372 medium

So, the best conclusion from these data is no conclusion.
However, if we must draw a conclusion then it is this:
Windows 11 use a tiny bit more resource, and this is not evident on minimum graphics settings where perhaps few calculation is needed. However on medium, Windows 10 see about 3% more performance. However this is a very minimum replay, which means there is no overlay, and there is only a few tanks.
Actual gameplay feature a lot more tanks, overlays and server connection, and thus even though 15-20 fps on medium is considered “good performance”, you wont be doing half as much in the actual game.

Yes, it is pretty well known that Windows 11 sees a slight hit to gaming performance. My concern was thermals. If playing the same game on Windows 11 versus Windows 10 nets be significant thermal savings, I consider that a win, as the game is still absolutely playable. I mean we are talking about a difference of a couple to 15 FPS. If you are already seeing over 100 FPS, does it really matter?


No, if you are seeing over 100 fps then 105 vs 120 wouldn’t matter. But also no, because if you are seeing 100 fps, turning on vertical synchronization will cap the framerate to 60 fps which, despite seemingly a downgrade, will limit the amount of work the GPU need to do and therefore improve thermos and improve the longevity of the display panel (which is designed to run at 60 Hz or below). Likewise, if you set your display to a lower refresh rate (40Hz for example), you will see even better thermo results.

The case I am talking about is when the GPU is unable to deliver 60 fps to even match the native screen refresh rate and therefore improvements to thermal is negligible (and in fact made worse because Windows 11 have additional overheads)

However, Windows 11 have a better built-in “game mode” that pauses/slow some more unimportant background tasks (windows update to a lesser extent) which can help speed things up.

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I had to change my setup since Cyberpunk and Farcry keep maxing / throttling my cpu. Besides that, no other heat issues.

Notice the cooling pad under the laptop and the laptop stays open so heat can escape.

DannyT, is that your phone being used a temp monitor? If not what is that?

@2disbetter, Yes, I use a mobile phone to monitor my laptop using Remote System Monitor while it sits on a wireless charger dock.

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