A video card is one of the most expensive elements of a personal computer. Many advise when choosing this part to pay attention to the frequency of operation, bus width, memory size and a number of other parameters. Before starting our review, let’s dwell on these characteristics in more detail and try to find out which of them are most important, which are secondary, and which can be neglected altogether.
Key video card selection options
First of all, regardless of the type of product, you should take a look at the requirements for the power supply of this element. If his power is not enough, she is not able to unleash the full power of all potential. For work or for demanding games, you may need two or more video cards, in connection with which, the power supply must have an appropriate supply of work resources.
Equally important are the connectors for the connection, which are located on the video card. If the motherboard has a different connection jack, you need to immediately purchase the appropriate adapters. The frequency of the GPU is very important – the larger it is, the higher the speed of information processing will be, it turns out that this parameter directly affects performance.
For players, another key point will be the bit depth of the video memory bus – it ranges from 64 to 768 bits. For an office personal computer, the minimum value will be quite suitable, and for gaming machines, you need to purchase a card with a bit capacity of at least 256 bits.
The last parameter that will play an important role for both players and people involved in working with graphics (designers, game developers, photographers, and so on) is the amount of video memory. At this point, the resolution of the monitor will directly affect – the larger it is, the more carefully you should treat this item. Although today in computer stores you can find quite cheap models that can support high screen resolution.
When compiling our rating of the best video cards of the year (only the most modern models were included here, as more and more new models are released annually), we took into account not only user reviews but also professionals, for whom computer performance plays an important role. In addition, the price-performance ratio of the model also seriously affected the list of models included in our rating. So, let’s start the review of the most popular video cards.
10. MSI Radeon R7360 OC
This is one of the most budget models, characterized by fairly modest characteristics. Appearance is quite modest – the motherboard is made of black PCB PCB, the cooler is also placed in a plastic casing painted in the same color. The overall dimensions of the device are small – 165x110x37 grams, so the video card can easily fit even in a fairly compact system unit. Her weight is also small – 348 g. All microchips are located on the front side of the device. To reduce the cost of the device, the developers decided not to add a backplate. This solution has a practical side – the card will not get too hot during operation.
Here, the PCIe power connector, through which only 75 watts of power will be transmitted, is not enough for the full functioning of the product, so there is one more slot with six PCI Express pins, which adds another 75 watts of power. The video card will work well with a 500 W power supply. The internal filling is quite simple – there are 4 memory chips, each of which is 512 MB, and they are divided into two pairs. In turn, they are connected to a 64-bit controller. The cooling system includes a cooler, a fan with a diameter of 9 cm and a radiator made of aluminum alloy.
Reliable cooling system
Compatible even with weak power supplies
Despite the cooling system, when fully loaded, decently heats up;
You won’t be able to play demanding games.
9. GIGABYTE GeForce GTV 750 Ti
This video card is an affordable option for those who like powerful games or are somehow connected with graphic editors. It is made on the basis of the graphic core GM107 Maxwell. It is made on the basis of liquid crystals, each of which has 1870 million transistors. The amount of memory is quite significant – 2 GB at a clock frequency of 5400 MHz. Electricity consumption is not too large, which is due to the low power of the device – only 55 watts. The bus width is 128 bits at a core frequency of 1025 MHz
This model is by far the most productive in its price segment. If desired, it can be quite rigidly dispersed, thereby increasing the level of productivity of the device. The highest limit of the video card is 1294 MHz. The cooling system is quite powerful, so that the design will not get very hot during operation. It is manufactured using WindForce 2X technology, which is used in the development of professional video cards with a high degree of power.
High level of performance;
It almost does not heat up.
Due to the low power, this device will not allow you to fully enjoy the most modern games, especially at maximum graphics settings.
8. MSI GTX 950 Gaming 2G
This model is a fairly budget version of the device, which allows you to work with graphic programs. It takes an intermediate place between the primary and middle class of video adapters. The base frequency of this video card is 1102 MHz, it can also be overclocked to 1279 MHz. The model is equipped with the latest Twin Frozr V cooling system. It includes several aluminum plates of small sizes, and nickel-plated heat pipes with a diameter of 6 mm are used to accelerate heat transfer. This slightly increases the overall dimensions of the video card, but allows you to effectively remove excess heat. Due to this, it is possible to significantly extend the life of the model. In addition, the heat pipes are in direct contact with the processor chip.
The diameter of the fan is large enough – 100 millimeters. The shape of its blades is special, due to which it is possible to increase the flow of air passed through the video card and make the area of airflow much wider. The cooler is closed with a special plastic casing. There is no protective plate on the back of the device, which allows you to make the overall dimensions and weight of the video card less. The interface provides five digital outputs at once, providing a resolution of up to 4096×2160 pixels. All connectors are closed with special plastic plugs.
Reliable cooling system;
Long service life.
The price is a bit high.
7. GigaByte Radeon RX 460 1212Mhz PCI-E 3.0
This video card is a fairly high-quality product, which can be attributed to the middle price segment. It is quite suitable not only for demanding games, but also for organizing a home theater where you can watch movies in high quality such as HD or Blu-Ray. On the back panel there is only all the most necessary outputs that are encountered, moreover, often. The cooling system here is WindForce 3X: it includes three small diameter copper tubes. With their help, it is possible to effectively remove heat from the processor of the video card. This allows you to protect the video card from overheating even at sufficiently high loads.
Powerful fans practically do not make noise – they will not be heard if the cover of the system unit is removed. Electricity consumption is quite modest, so this model will be perfectly combined with a weak power supply unit of a personal computer. In the factory, the video card is overclocked up to 1212 MHz, which will be enough for modern demanding games, so you won’t have to overclock it yourself. According to user reviews, this video card has an ideal price-quality ratio.
Works great with videos or graphic files of any quality;
Even the most demanding games go at maximum settings;
Excellent value for money.
The software is not too good – drivers periodically fly off, moreover, they will need to be updated manually;
Under excessive load, the video card may become very hot.
6. Sapphire Nitro Radeon RX 470
It has a fairly powerful Polaris 10 core, which includes a 256-bit bus, the graphics memory of the device can be 4 or 8 GB, depending on the version. The cooler is open here, placed in a plastic casing, and the fan itself protrudes slightly outside the case, which allows you to capture a larger stream of air and direct it to the most heated elements. On the back of the case, there is a reinforcing plate in which holes are located that are responsible for optimizing the movement of airflows. The video card even has a backlight, which, if desired, can be customized – the kit includes appropriate software that helps you work with it.
The board itself also has a button that allows you to select the backlight mode or completely disable it. The application also allows you to adjust the speed of rotation of the fans, put it directly dependent on the heating temperature and so on. Cooling is carried out using a radiator with two platforms – one of them is in direct contact with the processor and memory cover, the other part is designed to lower the temperature of power transistors. The core frequency is 1260 MHz, the power is 150 W, and the energy consumption is not too high.
Does not heat up;
No noise during operation;
High level of performance;
Good memory capacity and bus capacity.
5. Radeon RX 470
This is one of the most discussed video cards on the Internet – some users say that this model is not only excellent in performance and performance, but also at a reasonable cost, others say that this video card is close in its characteristics to the premium segment designs. In any case, users agree that this device is quite good. The appearance is attractive, the latest cooling system is DirectCU II, which makes the video card much quieter and more efficient than earlier models. The fans here are typical: their diameter is 95 mm, they completely close the video card. Overall dimensions are small – 240 mm long, only 114 mm wide. A backing plate is not provided on the reverse side, however, there is an additional stiffener.
On the back of the case are all the necessary connectors for connecting to a personal computer. The degree of power consumption is only 120 watts, so the device will not be too demanding on the power supply. There is an attractive LED backlight for the logo of this model. Using color, you can determine the degree of heating of the video card. The total memory of the device is 4096 MB, the operating frequency is 1650 MHz. The model perfectly withstands significant loads – it pulls even fairly demanding games, and at the highest settings.
Removable coolers of the cooling system are very convenient to clean;
Supports any even the most demanding applications and games;
There is a backlight that allows you to determine the temperature of the device.
During operation, it will make quite a lot of noise.
4. ROG Strix GeForce GTX 1060
This model features a well-developed cooling system, which can significantly extend the life of this design. It belongs to the middle price segment, but it has significant dimensions – it is more than 300 mm long, 122 mm wide, and its thickness is 40 mm with a weight of more than 1 kilogram. The design is rather modest, on the sides, there is a casing made of plastic, which will partially cover the elements of the cooling system, but will not block the airflow. The design provides special slots for connecting additional fans, there is also an eight-pin type connector for power system equipment, and there is also an LED indicator.
Energy consumption is not very high – 120 watts, so this video card will work reliably even from a system power supply of 400 watts. The video card is made on the basis of the most modern Super Akkiy Power II and Auto-Extreme technologies, thanks to which it is possible to guarantee high performance with low energy consumption, due to which it is possible to ensure a low operating temperature. The design is characterized by the excellent build quality. There are also solid capacitors, inductors, and transistors that increase the efficiency of this device.
Low electricity consumption
The model is capable of producing the highest resolution – 1920×1080 pixels;
Great cooling system.
In some models, chokes begin to squeak after a while.
3. 8192Mb ASUS Radeon R9 390X PCI-E
The top three video cards are opened by this rather popular model, which has become so widespread not only due to its beautiful appearance, but thanks to a fundamentally new cooling system and product quality. The design of the cooling system is changed from a structural point of view. It includes three fans at once, there are two heat pipes with a diameter of 10 mm. This device looks technologically and stylishly, the build quality is high, extraneous creaks, backlashes and other manufacturing defects are completely absent. The main ports are closed with special plastic plugs. All fans of the cooling system have an ergonomic shape of the blades, which ensure the passage of the maximum amount of air through the video card. On the back, there is a reinforcing plate,
On the front side of the board are all the main elements of the video card – 16 video memory chips are provided here, thanks to which 8 GB of memory is formed for data storage. The rated operating frequency here is 1500 MHz. The power system is in contact with the radiator of the cooling system through a special thermally insulating gasket.
It looks attractive;
The nominal frequency can be greatly increased by acceleration;
Pulls even the latest games.
The kit does not include an adapter;
Drivers are rarely updated;
It makes a lot of noise, especially if you disperse it.
2. Gigabyte GeForce GTX 1080
Second place in our review of the best graphics cards, this model took only due to the relatively high cost. It is capable of supporting software such as DirectX 12, so thanks to this model you can easily play the most demanding games even at high settings. If desired, this model can be used to organize a home theater, as it is capable of delivering video in resolutions up to 7680×4230 pixels. The design looks quite stylish, it is placed in a black case, diluted with orange stripes, and they are also found on the cooling system. The latter occupies the entire front side of the device, the back is a metal plate with thermal insulation. It not only protects the video card from damage, but also helps to distribute heat,
In the lower part of the casing are slots through which heated air will escape. The overall dimensions are small – the device is 282 mm long, 105 mm wide, and 41 mm thick, the weight of the video card is 873 grams. Four monitors can be connected to it simultaneously. Energy consumption is increased compared to other models that are included in our review of the best video cards – 180 W, so the device will be best combined with a power supply with a capacity of 500 watts or more. The power connection connector has a light indicator, which, if necessary, allows you to quickly identify problems associated with connecting an additional power cable.
High build quality;
Performance is at a good quality level;
The product does not heat up even under the influence of strong physical exertion.
1. Titan X
The recognized leader in our ranking of the best video cards of the year is precisely this model, especially since, judging by the feedback from users, it is a universal design capable of working with both graphic programs and modern demanding games that require a significant amount of resources. The response time here was made as low as possible, so the matrix will quickly transmit a signal to the device’s monitor. Even according to the results of overclocking the video card and increasing its resources, during operation there are completely no extraneous sounds. The cooling system here is quite high-quality, in addition, the developers approached its organization in an innovative way – instead of the classic heat pipes, an evaporation chamber was installed, which is able to divert a decent amount of excess heat.
The heat diffuser and the radiator case are not soldered, therefore, if necessary, it is possible to supplement the cooling system with an additional water block. On the side of the case is the manufacturer’s logo with a backlight, the brightness of which can be controlled using special software. There is no fan backlight, in principle, this is even for the best.
Provides the highest resolution;
Universal model – can be used both for graphics and for games;
Reliable cooling system.
A bit noisy.
Author bio: DailyNewsScoop