Opera GX is a web browser built with gaming performance in mind. While other browsers aim to become as lite weight as possible, as they develop and add-on's start to build up, they inevitably require more of your computer's resources.
Opera’s chosen method to tap into the gaming market is simple and effective and works by providing their users with the ability to hard-limit the resources used by the browser, placing the power back into gamers hands. Within the browser is a function named “GX Control”, which is a sort of control panel. Within GX Control is a set of limiters that gamers can use to ensure more resources are available for actual gaming. Gamers can limit the following:
Of course, in theory the lower you set these limits, the slower the actual browser will perform. In our tests on a normal low-end workstation laptop we found that even when the CPU and memory limits were set to the harshest possible, the browser still performed to an acceptable level, with no noticeable slowdowns. The goal however is to ensure that the browser uses the least amount of your computers resources as possible, so that the remaining resources can be assigned to the game you’re playing, thereby increasing the gaming performance and lowering the risk of stutters or lag.
Besides the performance benefits, the Opera GX browser also has some other handy features.
Opera GX integrates the Twitch streaming platform, making it easier than ever to keep up to date with the channels you follow. You can now who's online and choose to receive notifications whenever someone you follow goes live.
The Opera GX browser also ships with a few other features, although I don’t see these as gaming related and so I’m only going to touch on them briefly.
GX Corner – The GX Corner displays game specials from numerous online stores, as well as a game release date calendar.
GX Sound – Rubén Rincón and the band Berlinist collaborated to create a set of sounds within the browser. These are turned off by default.
GX Design – The browser allows for some basic theming of the interface, such as changing the colors, background images and tone.
Integrated messaging – The main selling point for the non-gamer Opera browser is the built in Whatsapp chat support, which is far smoother than using Whatsapp web.
Free VPN – While this feature is not gaming related, it does set the browser apart from other browsers, as the VPN can be enabled using a quick switch, its free, unlimited and no log-in is required. I did a speedtest with a 100mbps fibre line, and with the VPN connected I reached a stable download speed of 40mbps which is decent. Switching between regions is also very quick and allows viewers to watch region locked content from the likes of Netflix and Disney+.