Dolphin is a very demanding program, so configuring Dolphin the right way is very important to run games smoothly. This performance guide will show a "quick and dirty" example of how to speed up Dolphin.
Dolphin has three configuration related buttons: Config, Graphics and DSP, which will open the options described below.
- Enable Dual Core - provides a significant speedup if your CPU supports it. Note: some games don't work with it.
- Enable Idle Skipping.
- If you're using a x86 build, using JITIL experimental recompiler may result in a small speedup, but some games may have issues. Note: Don't use JITIL with x64 builds, it's slower than the regular JIT recompiler.
- From the three backends available, Direct3D9 is the fastest and most reliable, OpenGL is the most accurate, and Direct3D11 is somewhere between these two. It is recommended that you use Direct3D9 unless you encounter problems. Note: OpenGL is the only backend available on Linux and Mac OSX.
- Setting the "Fullscreen resolution" to your monitor's native display resolution is recommended. However, a lower "Fullscreen resolution" may boost performance for users with inferior graphics cards.
- Set Internal Resolution to "Auto - (Multiple of 640x528)". If the emulation suffers from slowdowns, change it to "1x Native (640x528)", and go up from there until you can find the highest setting without slowdown.
- Checking "Skip EFB Access from CPU" can provide a speed boost. However it provides this boost at the sake of emulation accuracy, breaking many games and removing most effects. It is not recommended.
- Make sure that "EFB Copies" is set to "Texture", and change it to "RAM" only when running a game that requires it. You can also check "Enable cache" when using EFB to RAM to gain a small speedup.
- If you have a CPU with more than two cores, enabling "OpenMP Texture Decoder" might result in a speedup.
- DSP HLE emulation is the fastest DSP Emulator Engine, however it is frequently unreliable. DSP LLE recompiler is more accurate and is required by some games, but it requires a DSP dump to be placed in the "Sys\GC" folder, and is much more CPU intensive. For systems with three or more cpu cores, LLE's performance tax can be eliminated by enabling the "DSP LLE on Thread", with few side effects.
- On Windows the XAudio2 back end is currently the best one because it provides some improvements over DirectSound, but some games may have sound issues with it (the same applies for the ALSA backend on Linux).
 The Gamespeed is too fast!
Some games may run too fast on modern systems. There are four ways to slow the Gamespeed down to normal:
- Framelimit set to "Auto" (recommended)
- Framelimit set to "Audio"
- Framelimit Off + Enable V-Sync (with a 60Hz monitor refresh rate)
 How can I play in 720p or 1080p?
To play in 720p go to "Graphics -> General" and change the Fullscreen resolution to 1280x720 or higher. For 1080p simply choose 1920x1080 or higher. Also, go to "Graphics -> Enhancements" and use at least "2x Native" for 720p or "3x Native" for 1080p.