Gaming For PC (GFPC)

Best Graphics Cards For Gaming [2023 Guide]

best graphics card

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Our list of the best graphics cards for gaming

best gaming GPU

Gamers will agree that nothing comes before the best graphics card as the core of any gaming PC. Even the fastest CPU won’t be able to do much unless it features a powerful GPU pushing pixels. As a result, most game lovers are investing in a reliable graphics card that can support their gaming needs. 

Well, unfortunately, there isn’t a single graphics card that will work for everyone. Nonetheless, we’ll try our best to offer relevant solutions and alternatives for various views and budgets. Besides, our post reviews the top 5 gaming graphics cards featuring some of the quickest, most outstanding value, and the best card for a specific budget. Indeed, whatever your needs, we can help.

Our ranking of the top graphics cards considers the whole system, as opposed to our GPU benchmarks hierarchy, which rates every card just on performance. Although the weighting becomes more arbitrary, price, availability, performance, functionality, and efficiency are all crucial factors.

Review of the Top 5 Gaming Graphics Cards

Gaming Graphics Cards

Still uncertain which graphics card is best for gaming? In general, some variables will determine the ideal graphics card for gaming. It’s crucial to consider factors like gaming preferences, screen resolution, and interest in glitzy features like DLSS and ray tracing.

A Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 or AMD Radeon RX 6600 XT, for instance, will suffice if all you want to do is play the newest demanding games at 1080p with high settings. Instead, you should probably get a card like the RTX 3080 Ti if you want to play everything at its highest possible resolution and with ray tracing.

So, let’s discuss our top 5 picks of graphics cards for any gaming needs.

1 – Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080

Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080

The best graphics card for most gamers and those with larger budgets is the Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080.

First, on this list of the best graphics card for gaming, the Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 has made 4K gaming much more affordable. Previously, to attain decent frame rates with the RTX 2080 Ti, you had to fork out more than $1,000/£1,000. However, owing to the RTX 3080 in this latest generation of Nvidia graphics cards, the cost of 4K gaming has decreased by almost half.

The RTX 3080 delivers a performance gain of between 50-80% over the RTX 2080 and between 20-30% over the RTX 2080 Ti while maintaining the exact pricing as the RTX 2080. This gaming upgrade is one of the most significant leaps in GPU history in terms of power. 

Even though it still costs more than other cheap GPU alternatives of this generation, it is still a fantastic bargain and an incredible powerhouse of a graphics card. However, if you often play video games of a lower quality, we wouldn’t commend it.

Pros

  • Performance over RTX 2080 has dramatically improved.
  • Cooler elements
  • Excellent for both current and upcoming 4K gaming
  • DLSS is a noteworthy aspect.
  • AV1 and HDMI 2.1 decode
  • NVIDIA Broadcast rocks.

Cons

  • Strong power draw (Needs 320W or more of electricity.)
  • They are still quite pricey and challenging to locate for a fair price.

Verdict

The RTX 3080 is an excellent choice for most people because of its strong Ampere performance and affordable pricing. It provides additional NVIDIA technologies like RTX ray tracing and Deep Learning Super Sampling. It allows you to choose FHD, QHD, or UHD resolutions at a high frame rate (DLSS). It outperforms the RTX 2080 and RTX 2080 Ti in raw performance.

2 – Radeon RX 6800 XT

Radeon RX 6800 XT

Second, of these top 5 gamers’ graphics cards is the Radeon RX 6800 XT.

The “Big Navi” Radeon RX 6000 GPUs from AMD, based on RDNA 2 technology, provide a ton of power, making them one of the best alternatives available. Particularly in 1440p and 4K games, the RX 6800 XT will often run on par with the RTX 3080, with each card varying in performance dependent on other aspects. Between the RTX 3070 and RTX 3080, the RX 6800 XT is more power-efficient.

Its basic specifications are outstanding, and its enormous 16GB of VRAM will prepare it well for the future. 8GB of RAM may not seem impressive if you’re purchasing a new gaming GPU today, intending to keep it for the next five years. 

Ray tracing, which was previously exclusively available from NVIDIA, is one significant improvement with these GPUs. The AMD cards may suffer a more pronounced performance drop, but your games look nicer. Put it down to NVIDIA’s extra time for development. While AMD is working hard to catch up, this is typically still the case.

AMD’s Smart Access Memory (SAM) may improve performance in certain games. Although not substantial, the improvements are discernible in several titles. To determine the true impact of Smart Access Memory, we ran benchmarks. Since then, NVIDIA has enabled Resizable BAR Support for its GPUs, nullifying this argument.

Don’t want to violate your warranty by overclocking? Another helpful enhancement that will accomplish its objectives without endangering your system is AMD’s Rage Mode. Finally, AMD has added new and old FidelityFX Super Resolution (FSR) and Radeon Super Resolution to its GPUs.

These technologies counter NVIDIA’s DLSS, DSR, and DLDSR. They generally do an excellent job of enhancing performance in most games now available. See our comparison between AMD FidelityFX Super Resolution vs. NVIDIA DLSS for more details.

The RX 6800 XT, which should cost less than the RTX 3080 once stock and pricing settle, is unquestionably a fantastic alternative if you’re on Team Red and want a GPU that can handle 1440p and 4K gaming. Check out our selection of the top motherboards and power supplies for the AMD Radeon RX 6800 XT if this is the card you want to set up your system.

Pros

  • The RTX 3080 offers comparable raw performance.
  • Huge 16GB of VRAM
  • Reduced power draw
  • The Radeon Super Resolution and AMD FidelityFX Super Resolution technologies
  • Outstanding for 1440p or 4K gaming

Cons

  • When compared to NVIDIA, ray tracing performance isn’t nearly as good.
  • FSR 2.0 requires broader adoption

Verdict

The AMD Radeon RX 6800 XT is a little cheaper and offers performance comparable to most other potent and best gaming graphics cards on our list.

Although it costs a little less than the RTX 3080 and doesn’t use as much power, AMD’s “Big Navi” RX 6800 XT compromises performance for efficiency. Its 16GB of VRAM is excellent for future-proofing and has many features that gamers will like. Just keep in mind that its ray-tracing capabilities aren’t as sophisticated.

3 – GeForce RTX 3090 Ti

GeForce RTX 3090 Ti

The GeForce RTX 3090 Ti is the fastest graphics card, which is ideal for creators.

There’s no disputing the level of performance that the new BFGPU update can give us the most potent GeForce GPU ever introduced to date, even if the RTX 3090 Ti is likely to be complete overkill for many PC gamers.

What distinguishes the new Ti edition from the original model, introduced almost two years ago, is an increase to 21 Gbps adequate memory and 1,008 GB/s bandwidth, 256 more CUDA cores, eight additional Tensor cores, and two additional RT cores. The RTX 3090 Ti now has even more frames to work with in the newest games, and the 24GB GDDR6X VRAM practically future-proofs this model for many years.

In our research, we discovered that the RTX 3090 Ti was the only graphics card that could compete with it in challenging ray-traced games and our suite of benchmarking applications. In all but one of the games we tested it at, this massive video card achieves frame rates far more than what’s needed even at 4K60. 

In 1440p, with all the sliders turned up to their maximum, it easily exceeds 100 FPS. For those who want the best while driving Ampere GA102 to its ultimate limits in 2023, there is some real power behind the hood.

Remember that the RTX 3090 Ti has a starting MSRP of $1,999, so the additional performance of this most recent Nvidia flagship graphics card isn’t cheap. Without a doubt, it’s a huge expenditure that will probably only be desirable to PC gaming fanatics who want to keep on the cutting edge. But the RTX 3090 Ti will undoubtedly find a market for people who can afford it and appreciate its benefits as a productivity video card and a gaming video card.

Pros

  • Simply the fastest GPU
  • 4K and maybe 8K gaming
  • Workloads for creating content might benefit from 24GB.
  • Adoption rates for DLSS are still high.

Cons

  • The 3080 costs more than twice as much but delivers 20–30% better performance.
  • Excessive power needs
  • Titan cost sans Titan upgrades
  • The Ada architecture from Nvidia is arriving

Verdict

With 24GB of GDDR6X VRAM stacked on top of its physically massive GPU, the RTX 3090 Ti can perform design and development tasks. For 4K gaming, it will perform roughly 10% better than the RTX 3080, but it also costs more than twice as much. The most excellent candidates for this card are professionals or individuals with unlimited funds.

4 – GeForce RTX 3060

GeForce RTX 3060

The GeForce RTX 3060 comes next on our list of the best graphics cards for gaming. Indeed, this gaming card is worth all the praises. 

The processing power reductions may have gone too far as we get closer to Nvidia’s desktop Ampere lineup’s lowest pricing and performance rung. This is the first GA106 card, which is much better than the RTX 3050 but still a significant step down from GA104. With a 12GB VRAM, it has a 192-bit memory interface. Overall performance is comparable to the RTX 2070 because of the 26% fewer GPU cores and lower memory bandwidth than the 3060 Ti.

cheap GPU

If ray tracing and DLSS are disregarded, the RTX 3060 performs on par with AMD’s RX 5700 XT, which was released 18 months later. Not precisely a world-shattering invention, but that’s par for the course in popular parts. However, the 3060 can compete with AMD’s RX 6800 when using DXR and DLSS.

Pros

  • Excellent price for its performance
  • 12GB VRAM
  • Mining has been throttled to keep it in gamers’ hands.
  • There are practical and small designs accessible.

Cons

  • Launch pricing seems quite unlikely
  • Not the best value for mining
  • A significant decline from 3060 Ti performance
  • The EVGA card has some noise.

Verdict

The GeForce RTX 3060 12GB is an excellent device for general gamers if it can get close to its original $329 price. However, given that its performance falls in the middle of the RTX 2060 Super and 2070 Super, it is an implausible scenario in the current market, even with lower mining performance.

5 – NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Super

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Super

One of the most affordable 1080p gaming graphics cards is the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Super.

Not everyone feels the urge to play video games at a resolution greater than 1080p. Displays are less expensive; generally speaking, fewer pixels allow for a significantly greater frame rate. NVIDIA’s GTX 1660 Super should be a good choice if you don’t want to spend too much money on a GPU. 

It isn’t an RTX card. Thus, it lacks specialized ray-tracing cores, but it is theoretically compatible with an updated driver

Although DLSS 2.0 is not officially supported, individuals have managed to make it function with a little amount of tinkering. Because it continues to be built on Turing’s design, it is still quite power-efficient. This GPU is also at the top of our list of the best inexpensive graphics cards.

It can outperform even the 8GB version of the AMD RX 5500 XT in raw performance because of its 6GB of GDDR6 VRAM (the standard GTX 1660 utilizes GDDR5) and relatively high memory bandwidth of 336GB/s. Almost any game with high settings will have reasonable, fluid frame rates at 1080p.

Pros

  • Supports fluid 1080p gameplay
  • EVGA produces high-quality goods; I had an EVGA 560 Ti for 7.5 years, and it never let me down. Therefore, I again chose EVGA for my (eventually) fresh build.
  • Moderate power draw
  • Reasonably low prices
  • 2 quiet fans (don’t get a version with only one).
  • Up to 20% quicker than the GTX 1660 standard

Cons

  • No separate RT cores
  • Just 6GB of VRAM

Verdict

The NVIDIA GTX 1660 Super is perfect for any custom PC builder wishing to construct something affordable. It has a fair price and offers a smooth 1080p performance.

FAQs

How many types of graphics cards are there?

Regarding gaming PCs, integrated graphics and dedicated graphics cards are the two most significant kinds of graphics cards. The former is less powerful and is often built as an APU or SOC onto the CPU chip. 

All the models mentioned above are separate dedicated graphics cards that plug into the PCIe Express connection on your computer. Many of these cards only take up two slots, but some, depending on size, may need three slots.

Which brand of graphics cards is the best?

Nvidia vs. AMD: Which is the most incredible graphics card brand? It is a perennial debate that is probably never going to be resolved. Since both AMD and NVIDIA are now essentially on an equal footing, what is best for one person may not be for another.

Nvidia will likely have the advantage for you if you like ray tracing. In contrast, AMD used to be superior to those on a tight budget.

Is a GTX or RTX graphics card better?

It all depends on what you’ll do with your graphics card when deciding which is preferable, RTX or GTX. A Nvidia RTX graphics card is something you should get if you like playing the most recent video games that use ray-tracing technology. These graphics cards include RT Cores that make real-time ray-tracing possible at speeds up to six times quicker than conventional GPUs, resulting in breathtaking in-game graphics with lighting reminiscent of a movie.

In contrast, Nvidia GTX graphics cards may significantly enhance gaming performance. Turing architecture, which uses less energy and provides more excellent frame rates per second, is a characteristic of these graphics cards. GTX cards are terrific for both immersive and competitive gaming. They also work well with old-school titles with beautifully rendered pixel graphics.

The Nvidia RTX range of graphics cards will be the best option for you if you want a more visually stunning gaming experience. Instead, you should choose a Nvidia GTX graphics card if aesthetics is less essential to you than gaming speed.

Are upgrades to graphics cards still required?

Determining whether your GPU needs to be upgraded might be difficult. Of course, it’s time to update if your GPU shows aging indications, such as screen glitches, PC crashes or whining. Do you need a new GPU if your old one is still functioning well?

What you want to play and at what resolution will depend on the game you want to play. Suppose you built a PC specifically for low-impact indie games and were happy with its performance. 

In that case, you’ll undoubtedly discover that it struggles to run a hot new AAA title that caught your attention. The resolution is the same. To use the higher resolution display, you’ll probably need a new GPU if changing your gaming monitor from 1080p to 1440p or 4K.

Every time a new generation of graphics processing units (GPUs) is introduced, the previous model seems unreasonably dated. Consider the situation when your computer has an NVIDIA GTX 980. Even though the RTX 30-series GPUs have just been announced, this GPU is four generations behind them. An upgrade could be alluring given how much better RTX 30-series cards are than even 20-series cards.

Finally, if you can’t afford to stay up with technology, you shouldn’t change your GPU without upgrading the other parts of your PC. An AMD RX 5700 XT GPU can’t reach its full potential when combined with 8GB of RAM and a 4th Gen Intel Core i5 CPU. 

Additionally, your system may not get enough power from its power supply unit (PSU), or its cooling system may not be robust enough to keep it operating at peak performance. To prevent the system from being clogged with upgrades, always make sure you upgrade.

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