How to Choose GPU for Games

Are you thinking of buying a graphics card for games or professional work? If yes, here the troubles begin: which video card is better to choose and what to look for when buying a graphics card for a computer. A graphics card for office work and games are significantly different. But when choosing any graphics cards for Fortnite games or personal computers, you will have to pay attention to it.

And now, let’s talk about some other characteristics in more detail.

Processor Addiction

The choice of a video card, by and large, depends on the characteristics of the central processor, especially when it comes to gaming video cards. all because FPS in latest generation games, out of other traits, is affected by the number of processor cores and clock speed. By the way, the optimal gaming computer should have at least 4 cores. In other words, a new video card should be bought for a processor that is already on the computer.

Motherboard Compatibility

The correct graphics card should be motherboard compatible. It can be determined by checking the type of connector. So, there are two types of graphics cards: PCI-Express and AGP. In modern models, they often use PCI-Express with different versions of slots: 1.0, 2.0, 2.1, 3.0, and others. But before choosing a graphics card, you need to check which of the connectors is suitable for the motherboard.

Power Features

Another important factor is power. Some very powerful graphics cards require additional power supplies. This means that the video card will have to be mounted in the motherboard and connected using an extra cable to the PC power supply. For such video cards, it is essential to have a special additional connector, and the power of the power supply must meet these requirements.

Graphics Card Options

An adequate choice of a video card is determined by the tasks that it has to perform. In short, an integrated chip is quite suitable for simple work. But for multimedia applications, you need a video card that can play the desired video format, and for 3D video games or professional, 3D graphics, you will need a more powerful graphics card. 

And now look at the details of parameters on whose basis you can choose a video card.

Type and Size of Memory:

Beginners make mistakes in determining the total power of the graphics card by the parameters of local memory. It only indicates how much data can be stored, but does not affect the frame rate. The most common version of local memory is 1 GB – enough to solve simple problems. Or you can go for the budget version with 512 MB memory.

The gamers are increasingly choosing cards not with 2 GB or 3 GB, but prefer more powerful features – in 4 GB or 8 GB. But it makes no sense to buy a video card with a huge RAM if the graphics processor is weak. More important than the amount of RAM is its type. There are several types: GDDR3, GDDR4, GDDR5, GDDR5X.

Without going into detail, let’s say that the higher the memory number, the better the video card’s performance. However, for it to work at full capacity, is not only the amount of memory important but also the speed of writing/reading data. Today, the best is GDDR5 and GDDR5X.

Data Bus

Video Cards with 256-Bit Memory Bus. A data bus is a channel for exchanging data between a video processor and memory. The amount of information transmitted over a certain unit of time depends on the bus bandwidth. Today, manufacturers offer a very wide memory bus width: from 32 bits to 512 bits. The most popular budget options are 64, and 128 bits, of the more expensive ones, are 256, 384, and 4096 bits.

DirectX Supports and Shaders Version

Many computer games use so-called DirectX technology. The first thing to understand: the higher the version (DirectX 9, DirectX 10, DirectX 11, DirectX 12), the better the image in the game. That is, video cards that support DirectX 11 are much better than those that are compatible only with DirectX 9.

In the new generation of video cards, shaders are also more modern. And I must say that shaders are very important when choosing a graphics card. In particular, for gamers, since you can’t play modern games with the old version of the Shader Model, you also need to understand that changing shaders alone does not work out – only with the video card.

The Presence of Video Connectors

Video connectors, of course, do not affect performance in any way. But the availability of the necessary ports is an important point that you should also pay attention to when buying a graphics card. Typically, manufacturers supply latest GPU with the following ports:

  • HDMI – for transmitting high-definition digital signal;
  • DVI – for transmitting digital video;
  • VGA (D-Sub) – for transmitting an analog signal;
  • Mini Display Port – for digital signal transmission,  characterized by a wider data channel than DVI or HDMI.

Type of Cooling System

The more powerful the video card, the more important it is to have the right cooling system. Overheating of the graphics card causes defects in the picture. Therefore, it is important to take care of the availability of good coolers. They are reference and non-reference. About cooling systems, there is usually one fan shifted to one side. Such a cooler distills hot air from the back of the computer.

In a non-reference system, there are 2-3 fans installed in such a way as to drive away warm air directly from the video card. The advantage of this option is quieter operation. Besides, you need to know that the cooling system in video cards is active (with fans) and passive (completely silent). But the latest options are only suitable for weak video cards that do not need powerful cooling.

Used Technologies

Manufacturers NVIDIA and AMD / ATI use technologies that allow you to install simultaneously from 2 to 4 video cards in one system. And we are talking about SLI in NVIDIA, and CrossFire on ATI video cards. But the dual-chip system provides some requirements.

In particular, video cards installed in SLI mode must match their parameters with the motherboard. This technology allows you to increase gaming performance and increase the number of ports for the monitor. But installing two video cards does not guarantee that computer performance in games will double. NVIDIA’s Boost technology helps control the temperature of the GPU, thereby increasing its performance.