How to choose the best graphic card for its price? Which graphics card is better – AMD Radeon or NVidia GeForce? What should be the type and amount of video memory? How to choose a graphics card – with active or passive cooling? Is there enough power for games built-in hybrid video processor (APU) or better to choose low-cost budget gaming graphics card?
The answers to these and other questions can be found in the article and the specific model of the best graphics cards in 2016 – at the end. There’s also – results of performance tests in the overall ranking of all modern graphic cards Asus.
List of the most well-known manufacturers of gaming cards unchanged for several years – it is Asus, Gainward, Gigabyte, InnoVision, MSI, Palit, PowerColor, Sapphire, Zotac and others. All these manufacturers are testing the graphic card before sending it on sale, so in the first year of operation the proportion of defective cards for internal reasons is low and about the same for all manufacturers – from 1 to 3%. Engineering defects, savings as a cooling system and components actively “climbs sideways” later, when the radiator graphics inevitably covered with large or not very layer of dust, thermal paste between the chip and heatsink will lose some of their properties and components, working in extreme conditions without safety margin, start one after the other to fail.
According to current statistics, as well as reviews and personal experience, the best graphics card makes the Asus, which almost all models with active cooling as low as 75 USD the most quiet, reliable and durable. The main reasons for the high quality of Asus graphics cards – a decent electronic components, proven branded cooler and intelligent cooling system, often virtually silent. Also very good video produced by Gigabyte and Gainward, who according to statistics are also very few returns for the first six months of work. Graphics cards of some other manufacturers (especially powerful overclocked models) often fail from overheating after the second or third year of life because of the accumulation of dust on the radiators or after stopping the defective fan.
The amount of video memory is misleading many buyers, as it is believed that the longer it – so definitely better graphics card. In fact, the graphic card performance is largely dependent on the GPU and the video memory only stores the data for it, although its volume is insufficient graphic card does not reveal its full potential.
Tests cards show that at almost standard for modern monitors Full HD resolution games on ultra maximum quality settings must be no more than 4 GB of memory, and the presence of only 2 GB of memory usually does not affect the frame rate or reduces them slightly. Naturally, at such high quality settings can only expensive video secondary and tertiary level, but cheaper models need to reduce the quality settings, and / or resolution, which makes the memory requirements even lower. In most cases, low-budget graphic cards enough 1-2 GB graphic card average – 2-4 GB, as the most powerful gaming graphics card is enough 4-6 GB.
At a resolution of Ultra HD games on ultra maximum quality settings must be up to 6 GB of memory, respectively, required a very powerful graphics card with 8.6 GB of memory. Since the price of the entire system (including the expensive computer and 4K-display ) is obtained simply sky-high, and the revolutionary difference in the realism of the game compared to the Full HD is not, at the present time (late 2016) of not more than 2% of gamers the world play in the resolution of Ultra HD.
Video memory type is only important when choosing an inexpensive budget graphics card, since almost all models at a price above $ 100 Use a fast DDR5 memory or HBM. In the case of graphics cards and DDR3 DDR5 on the same video chip, it is better to buy in the DDR5, since a small overpayment for faster memory offset by significantly higher production rates. Buy video to graphics memory HBM does not make sense, since currently DDR5 opportunities still enough for modern chips and the price of similar speed for the graphic card on its basis is much lower.
It is worth noting that buying a video game from any manufacturer and any price with memory type DDR3 is not recommended, since its performance by modern standards, will definitely be low. Naturally, cheap DDR3 graphic card with a smart video memory 4 GB – it is primitive bait for simpletons and decent power should not expect from them.
The endless competition between the two brands – the Radeon and GeForce – only win customers, as chipmakers need to constantly or increase productivity, or to reduce the price of graphics chips, though not as fast and strong as we would like. Although the performance of high-end graphic cards NVidia GeForce significantly higher than AMD Radeon, but the tests and the results of a comparison of average prices to more realistic for the mass buyer price categories show that the balance of performance, price varies significantly over time and is different for different chips from different manufacturers.
For example, if in 2014-2015 the average power of Radeon graphics cards was higher than the GeForce by 10-25% for the same money (except for budgetary graphic cards), then at the end of 2016 the situation has changed significantly and the ratio of price-performance leading GeForce in almost all price categories. Since the situation is changing quite fast, then when choosing a graphic card is not necessary to particularly pay attention to the developer of the chip (AMD or NVidia), the main thing – how can a high ratio of performance and price of a particular video. Currently, the most profitable to buy graphic cards GeForce GTX1060, moreover, a good balance of performance and price in its price range graphic cards on chips Radeon R7 250, GeForce GTX750Ti, GeForce GTX1070 and GeForce GTX1080.
You can get acquainted with the theoretical performance graphics chips , to find a certain performance rating graphics chip in comparison with others, and to determine more precisely what to buy, or at the end of the article immediately to choose the best graphic card in terms of price, quality and performance.
And Intel, and AMD is actively producing the so-called hybrid processors (APU), which combine on a single chip processor and graphics card. As for the latter uses a relatively slow operational DDR3 and DDR4 memory , the capacity of the built-in graphics processor may not be very high by definition. Thus, the performance of the best graphics cards built into the latest processors AMD FM2 + and Intel LGA1151, will be approximately equal to the discrete graphics cards on chips NVidia GeForce GT730 or AMD Radeon R7 240, which is low cost – 70 USD Naturally, the weaker processors have even more weak graphics card.
Built-in Intel CPUs previous generations graphics (HD Graphics Ivy Bridge, Haswell, 2500, 3000, 4000, 4400 and 4600) have significantly lower performance than AMD in the same class, and can be called only conditionally budget gaming. And only the graphic card Intel HD Graphics 530 and Iris, which are used in many models of the latest generation of Intel processors, have no less capacity than any built-in graphics cards in AMD processors. It is worth noting that with a limited budget for a gaming computer is more profitable to buy mid-range AMD CPU and graphics card than for the same money to use weaker hybrid card in fast, but still very expensive processor Intel.
So does it make sense to buy PCs with hybrid processors? Yes, first of all because of the low price and high reliability, as embedded in the latest processors from AMD or Intel graphics though very much inferior to discrete gaming card, but come with a good fast processors almost free and the performance will be enough for normal operation with a huge margin, and for most modern games at the minimum and sometimes medium quality settings (AMD – the 4-core processors; Intel – processors with Intel HD graphics graphics card 530 and Iris). In the future, if necessary, can be installed in your computer more powerful gaming graphics card, the prices of which are constantly falling, and the possibility of growing.
It is very important – to achieve maximum performance integrated graphics needs dual-channel mode memory (installed on the system memory module 2 identical to 2, 4 or 8 GB each) and its frequency – the higher, the better.
Powerful gaming card is not small. Large radiator and high-quality cooler (usually too large) – is the main guarantee of the reliability and durability of the graphics card, as in most cases, fatal damage connected with overheating. For this reason, it is very difficult for a reasonable price to collect a powerful gaming computer , which is a compact, quiet and reliable.
Should I choose a gaming graphic card with passive cooling (usually in the title contains the words Silent or SL)? Definitely – not recommended, since it is usually chips graphic card with passive cooling to reduce heat generation operate on lower frequencies, or for similar cards used culling chips, which have not passed the tests under normal operating conditions, so the power of graphics cards with passive cooling and reliability lower than those with active, moreover, they often work in extreme temperature conditions, it does not add them to days of life.
In the low-cost or low-profile graphics cards, which in principle can not be powerful, often set very small fan running at high speed with an unpleasant buzzing sound, and because of rapid wear often have few resources, so for maximum reliability and silence is very important that the cooler size as large as possible. Overclocker overclocked model (in the title is usually present
OverClock, OC, O) – a model of powerful gaming graphic cards operating at increased frequencies from nominal. This gives significant performance boost, but at the same time often reduces several times the expected life of the graphics card service, because many of its components (graphics chip, memory, power components) operate at much inflated frequencies and limiting modes. If the frequency greatly inflated the nominal, it is strongly recommended not to buy, because it is better to choose a graphics card for a new chip and productive than work for stranded to limit old. Working on too overclocked graphics cards like the nitrogen injection in racing cars – the finish line will be reached more quickly, but not the fact that many times, as it quickly destroys the engine.
In order not to get lost in hundreds of models from different manufacturers, the choice of the best gaming graphics cards in its price range made by Asus graphics cards as having a very good value, quality and performance. Other manufacturers of graphics cards with similar characteristics (chip type, amount and frequency of memory) will have similar results. All models are sorted by performance, and very important is the efficiency (the ratio of performance and price) – the higher it is, the better buy. Red among the low-cost budget graphics cards marked those buying pointless, since you can get them almost for free as a part of some hybrid AMD processors or Intel at the price already from 70 USD (E.g., Intel Pentium G4500, AMD A8-7600 and others). Prices are quoted in Russian rubles and approximately only need to determine the efficiency, in fact, prices may vary in different regions and countries, but the overall balance of price / performance is about the same.
The table cards are present only those models that are marketed or sold at the end of 2016. Data on the availability and prices are from the popular price aggregators, information about the performance of the majority of graphic cards is taken from the Computer Cupermarketa NICS , where you can also view the prices and tests of graphic cards from other manufacturers.
710-1-SL or SL–710-1 BRK – one of the cheapest graphics cards available in the market, the possibility of which, however, is enough not only for all the usual problems, but also to run all the old and simple majority of new games on the minimum quality tinctures (often buy them to replace the failed graphic card on older computers);
DUAL-GTX1060-3G or much weaker –RX470-4G-STRIX GAMING – the best graphic card for the average gaming computer, the performance of which will be sufficient for almost all modern games at medium and maximum quality settings, and DUAL-GTX1060-3G – inclusive ultra.
DUAL-GTX1070-8G– best graphics card for powerful gaming computer, it will be “too tough” almost all modern games at ultra maximum quality settings.
GTX1080-8G-STRIX-GAMING – a very powerful gaming card, the performance of which is sufficient not only for all modern games at ultra maximum quality settings, but also in the future (at least 1-2 years).
GIGABYTE GV-N1080XTREME W-8GD – has a good balance of performance and price, but works at increased frequencies, which may affect its expected lifetime.
Now in the wake of the popularity of tablets , but even a modest budget graphics cards in gaming opportunities leave behind all the modern luxury and powerful tablets. The situation is unlikely to change in the near future and therefore only powerful gaming graphics cards in PCs can recreate all the realism of the game, inherent in its developers. It is worth to remind that, due to expected lower reliability is better not to choose a highly overclocked graphics cards (OverClock, OC), a graphic card with passive cooling (Silent, SL) and a graphics card with a small cooler.