Best Graphics Cards

At the time of purchase, PC gamers need to know what the best GPU for the money is. And if you don’t have the time to research the benchmarks, fear not, we've compiled a simple up-to-date list of the best GPUs for gaming at the most popular resolutions, virtual reality, and eSports.

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Best GPUs For Gaming

11/19/2017 Update: reviewed the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 Ti (not listed), and modified the AMD Radeon RX 580 entry (no recommendation changes).

10/2/2017 Update: added the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 to the Best eSport & HD recommendation and replaced the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 6GB with the AMD Radeon RX 580 as the Best FHD & Good QHD recommendation.

9/14/2017 Update: modified the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 and Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 entries (no recommendation changes).

MORE: Desktop GPU Performance Hierarchy Table

MORE: All Graphics Content

The past few weeks were characterized by slowly receding graphics card prices. Today, cryptocurrency mining doesn’t seem to have the chokehold on supply that it used to, and models previously coveted for their memory performance are accessible to gamers once again.

Before we discuss the resulting impact on our recommendations, though, there’s an entirely new product to consider: GeForce GTX 1070 Ti. What’s this card’s purpose? Well, Nvidia didn’t seem to like where its GTX 1070 landed against AMD’s Radeon RX Vega 56. As a remedy, GTX 1070 Ti uses a near-whole GP104, GTX 1080’s vapor chamber cooler, and GTX 1070’s memory subsystem to match or beat the competition. Check out our opinion in Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 Ti 8GB Review: Vega In The Crosshairs. Unfortunately, the very slim difference between GeForce GTX 1070, 1070 Ti, and 1080 make it difficult for Nvidia’s latest to distinguish itself. A case can be made for spending less on 1070 (after all, you won’t give up much performance) or a little more on 1080 (for a few extra frames per second). GTX 1070 Ti kind of is what it is.

AMD, which launched Vega 56 at a price it wasn’t able to deliver until recently, and perhaps anticipating a wave of positive reviews favoring GTX 1070 Ti, set off on its own quest to keep gamers away from GeForce cards. In an email sent just before Nvidia’s embargo, it drew attention to Vega 56 boards available right at $400. If you were waiting for prices on Vega 56 to come down and took the opportunity to buy one, congratulations. Unfortunately, those were very temporary price breaks, and now Vega 56es are back up to $470. For $30 more, you’re better off with GeForce GTX 1080.

We’re still fans of GeForce GTX 1070 close to $400, though the cheapest models are priced ~$410 right now. Again, much above that and you might as well look at GTX 1070 Ti/Vega 56, too.

A couple of Radeon RX 580s in the $250 range have us once again leaning AMD’s direction over GeForce GTX 1060 6GB for max-quality 1080p performance.

If you’re willing to dial down the details a bit, GeForce GTX 1050 Ti remains a FHD favorite for ~$155.

From there, GeForce GTX 1050 and Radeon RX 560 continue sharing a spotlight for eSports gaming. We nearly nudged Nvidia’s card aside in favor of the two RX 560s selling for $100 on Newegg…but that was before noticing they come with 896 Stream processors instead of the 1024 we expected. Apparently, Radeon RX 560D cards are leaking out without distinctive naming, creating confusion amongst value-seekers. We’d really like to see AMD take steps to clarify the difference.

MORE: AMD Radeon RX 480 Roundup

MORE: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 Roundup

Good @ 720p & eSports

MORE: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 Roundup

MORE: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 Roundup

Best @ 720p & eSports

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Good @ 1080p

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Best @ 1080p | Good @ 1440p

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Best @ 1440p & SLI | Good @ VR

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Good @ 4K | Best @ VR

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Best @ 4K

MORE: Best Virtual Reality Headsets

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