If you’ve been unhappy with the performance of your graphics card lately, you might want to check out Nvidia’s latest beta driver. This is a hotfix driver, which is pretty unusual for Nvidia, but it can be helpful if you’ve been dealing with micro-stuttering, both in games and on the desktop. The update addresses four issues in total, but to get it, you’ll have to dig a little deeper than the standard path of updating your drivers.
Nvidia typically bundles bug fixes with its usual Game Ready drivers, as urgent hotfixes tend to be few and far between. However, this time, Nvidia chose not to wait any longer and pushed four updates for its GPU range. The new driver version, 551.46, may fix annoying stuttering issues.
According to Nvidia, the hotfix addresses intermittent micro-stuttering in games that occurs when using vertical sync (V-Sync), as well as when scrolling in web browsers “on certain system configuration.” It’s also said to fix a stutter issue in Red Dead Redemption 2 that’s present on some Advanced Optimus notebooks running Vulkan. Lastly, Immortals of Aveum fans should see an improvement during longer gameplay sessions, as Nvidia is said to have axed various stability problems with this update.
Nvidia also quietly added support for the freshly released RTX 4080 Super, which was not present in the previous version of the driver this hotfix was based on (551.23).
If you normally use GeForce Experience to get new drivers, be mindful that this patch won’t be suggested to you by default. This is because it’s a hotfix driver, which, as Nvidia itself has said, has not been tested as thoroughly as a regular driver update.
“To be sure, these hotfix drivers are beta, optional, and provided as is. They are run through a much abbreviated [quality assurance] process. The sole reason they exist is to get fixes out to you more quickly. The safest option is to wait for the next WHQL-certified driver,” said Nvidia.
Given the above, if you’re not experiencing the issues outlined by Nvidia, you might as well sit this one out. After the driver’s gone through sufficient testing, it’ll likely appear as a Game Ready patch. If you do want to try it out for yourself now, head on over to Nvidia’s website and download the beta version, but be ready to roll back the GPU driver if anything else goes wrong.