1142 ratings
Shadow map mod V4 - a solution for terrible performance and input lag!
By I am not a spy... and 1 collaborators
This mod improves fps and reduces input lag by modding certain game settings that are not accessible. Like lowering shadow map, disabling chromatic aberration, and reducing some post processing effects.
Hello everyone.
Since payday 2 caused a lot of performance issues for a variety of people, I have been looking for different ways to improve performance for payday 2. I have tried a variety of fixes mentioned on this forum and even some for other games. But nothing seemed to work. So I decided to open up payday 2 and see what kind of settings they were running. Comparing the PC settings and console settings, they put a lot more pressure on PCs. The biggest thing that stood out was the shadow map. The shadow map they have set for PCs is 4096x4096, which is huge compared to console shadow map of 1024x1024. Reducing the shadow map to 1024x1024 allowed me to use a higher resolution with better performance. And when I limited my frames to 30, the input lag was little to none.

I urge everyone who is experiencing bad performance in Payday 2 to try this out. I am sure that you will see a significant improvement in performance of the game. If this mod did not give you a huge performance boost, you can add me, and we can work something out.

Change log
Version 4 (Current, Compatible with Patch 35)
Version 4 download[dl.dropboxusercontent.com]. (Recommended)
Version 4 (Disabled Anti-Aliasing) download[dl.dropboxusercontent.com].
*Lowers the shadow map from 4096 to 1024
*Removes Chromatic Aberration
*Reduces blooming and lens flare effects.
*Reduces other post processing effects
*Lowered number of particle instances from 50 to 10
*Disabled debug related rendering
*In the world scene, disabled "fog_processor" and "hdr_post_processor" (which lowers the amount of fog and disables HDR)

Version 3
Version 3 download[dl.dropboxusercontent.com].
*Lowers the shadow map from 4096 to 1024
*Removes Chromatic Aberration
*Reduces blooming and lens flare effects.
*Reduces other post processing effects

Version 2
Version 2 download[dl.dropboxusercontent.com].
*Lowers the shadow map from 4096 to 1024
*Removes Chromatic Aberration
*Reduces blooming and lens flare effects.

Version 1
Version 1 download[dl.dropboxusercontent.com].
*Lowers the shadow map from 4096 to 1024
How to install this mod
  • You will need the latest version of Payday Bundle Modder to apply the mod. Download the "pdmod_tool_v1.15_fix1.zip" from here[bitbucket.org].
  • After downloading the tool, extract it to another folder and then run it.
  • You will be presented with this warning, Press OK.

  • In the Options/About section of the tool, press the "Browse..." button and point it to your Payday 2 assets folder. (By default it should be located at "C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\SteamApps\common\PAYDAY 2") Like so:

  • Then the tool will say that the game version changed, press OK.
  • Now, you have to download the latest version of the Lower Shadow map mod, available here[dl.dropboxusercontent.com].
  • After downloading the mod, go to the "Apply Mod" tab in the Bundle Modder, and press "Open Mod"
  • Select the downloaded mod and press Open.
  • Now you should see mod's name, author, and the description. Press "Apply Mod"

  • Now your Payday 2 should be patched. Next, launch Payday 2 with fraps (or anything that shows you your frames per second) Like so:
  • According to your frames, you want to limit them to the nearest possible frame rate limiter (or lower). NOTE: IF YOU DO NOT REACH 30 FRAMES IN MAIN MENU, LOWER YOUR RESOLUTION.
    You want to go to Options -> Video -> Advanced -> Frame Rate Limit.
    My fps in my previous screenshot is 37. So I would limit my frames to 30.
    You want to keep your frames above the frame rate limit, if your frames go below the frame rate limit, you will receive mouse lag.
    So, if you receive steady frames above 60, limit your frames to 60, 45, or 30.
    If you receive steady frames above 45, limit your frames to 45 or 30.
    And if you receive steady frames above 30, limit your frames to 30.
    IMPORTANT!!! Make sure to disable vsync, it will decrease your frames!!!
  • And you are done! Mouse lag should be reduced, and frames should be steady. If you still have problems, take a look at the Additional tips section or you can add me on steam.
  • And finally, rate, comment, and favorite this to let others know that this works!
Additional tips
At the resolution of 800x600, I receive steady frames above 60, so I could run the game with my frames limited to 60 with no mouse lag. You want to play around with resolutions until you get steady frames above 30, 45, or 60. You DO NOT want to have Vsync enabled, anywhere in game or in Catalyst/Nvidia control panel. Only use the frame rate limiter in game.

I have not tested performance on any other system, but I would assume that nvidia, and even Intel HD 4000 will receive better fps than with vanilla game. Please provide some feedback, to let everyone know that this works.
Comparison (Vanilla vs Modded)
Main menu

Safehouse spawn

Safehouse outside back

Safehouse out front

Safehouse basement

Safehouse weapons and mask storage
How to remove this mod
If you want to remove this mod, you can go into your Payday 2/assets folder and open up a folder called "asset_backups". This folder should contain these 2 files "3b6c2da5af6f2e42.bundle" and "3b6c2da5af6f2e42_h.bundle". You want to copy them both into your assets folder, overwriting the files. (Or you can verify game cache)
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: I installed the mod, and I did not see any improvement in FPS or input lag. Did I do something wrong?
A: If the PAYDAY Bundle Modder applied the mod correctly and you're still receiving bad performance, odds are that your payday uses your integrated graphics card instead of your dedicated graphics card. I do not have a solution for this, a few people have reported this problem and said that nothing helped them. I myself only have an integrated card, so I couldn't help you. Sorry.

Q: I downloaded the mod and I cannot use it with the tool. What is wrong?
A: Some web browsers attempt to apply proper file extensions to files. So, it will change the extension of the mod from .pdmod to .zip. The tool will ONLY read .pdmod files. So you should change the extension to .pdmod. Here's a little tutorial on how to change file extensions[www.mediacollege.com].

Q: I downloaded the mod and it's a passworded zip file. What are you hiding?
A: The mod has been passworded because people have been extracting the mod contents rather than using them with the tool. This has been implemented in the Bundle Modding Tool a long time ago and hasn't changed since. With that said, if you wish to extract the files you may search for the password.

Q: A patch was released and the mod doesn't work anymore. What can I do to fix this?
A: It is likely that steam patched the mod files. You can download the latest version of this mod and apply it to your game. It is vital to check whether or not the version of the mod is compatible with the current patch. Some patches could change modded files, so I will need to make them "current patch ready".

Q: Can this mod get me in trouble?
A: I don't see why it would, but in the event that OVERKILL says otherwise I'm sure they will make a public statement of some kind, and remove the guide. This doesn't alter gameplay in any way, it's only client side, and does not affect other players in a party.

Q: At the download page for the pdmod_tool there are multiple downloads, what are they?
A: The downloads on Zwagoth's bitbucket page are some of his projects that he's working on. This includes the bundle bundle tools, map viewer, sound converter, and various other patches. You only need the "pdmod_tool.zip" to apply this mod.

Q: The PAYDAY Bundle Modder is giving me an error. How can I fix it?
A: You can add I am not a spy... for assistance.

Q: I cannot download the PAYDAY Bundle Modder. Help me!?!?!
A: You can add I am not a spy... for assistance.

Q: Can I download a mod that only removes chromatic aberration?
A: Yes, There is a patch to remove only chromatic aberration. It is availible to download on Zwagoth's bitbucket page at https://bitbucket.org/zabb65/payday-2-modding-information/downloads under the name "payday2_no_chromatic_abberation_patch.zip".

Q: I cannot find my PAYDAY 2 folder. Help?
A: By default your PAYDAY 2 folder should be located at "C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\SteamApps\common\PAYDAY 2"

Q: What about disabling Anti-Aliasing? It could improve frames for some.
A: In my research with the engine settings, I have found that disabling Anti-Aliasing does not give a frame boost. Instead it makes the game look bad, with no real performance boost. So I decided to leave this option off.

Q: I have a suggestion that might improve performance even further. How can I suggest it to you?
A: If you have any suggestions, you can post them in the comments. I will look at them and test them to see if they have any significant impact on the performance.

Q: How can I thank you? I threw my money at the screen, but nothing happens.
A: The best thing you can do is to let others know that this mod works. Spread the word.
Zwagoth - For the tools he provided.
I am not a spy... - For the mod and research.
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Is there any way I can modify the Mod so It can deactivate just the options I want?
_FrostBite_Senpai_ Dec 25 @ 8:57am 
Works amazing w/ Intel HD Graphics 4600 Thanks!
AhmadYas Dec 25 @ 3:59am 
Works perfectly, you are awesome! :D
Ban Hammer Dec 24 @ 2:17am 
Works perfectly! Went from 5-15 fps to 20-35 fps! Now I can play little bit better than before.
iTzxMoskiTo Dec 21 @ 6:16pm 
after = 15-18 later = 20-30 nice!
Thiago Dec 19 @ 5:46pm 
well, here the mod still working normally
Nutso Dec 16 @ 8:03pm 
@Jason Todd
The update removed all mods but I redownloaded it using the same instructions and it seems to be working fine.
Manxy Dec 16 @ 5:16pm 
new update with new LOD system can anyone still use this mod without problems or is it broken now?
Dude Dec 10 @ 4:11pm 
I can't do heists that are longer than 1 day because this mod causes my game to crash when loading. Please someone update this so I can play. I can't play Payday 2 without it.
wtrippe11 Dec 4 @ 11:19am 
i have the modder tool but cant download the mod, whats up?