Best GPU for Gaming: How to choose the right one for your PC


One of the most crucial parts to have the best PC gaming experience is by having the best graphics card that caters to your needs. You might be needing a monster video card or just an affordable one with decent displays. The plethora of graphics cards that range from standard to the highest resolution in the market also come in different price ranges. That said, how do you choose the right and best GPU for gaming? What do you even have to consider before buying one?

Before really diving into the qualities and features of GPU to purchase, it is important to know what kind of gaming computer you are building. Is it a laptop or a desktop PC? If gaming is your priority for building one, know that different GPUs are required for each type. This ensures that your unit is working properly and will allow you to play the games you want with optimized features and performance.


Budget

Let us be real here. Price definitely plays a huge influence on your decision when choosing the best GPU for a gaming PC. There are indeed GPUs with fancier features and it’s easy to get hung up on those. Remember however that most graphic cards were based on similar standards. This means that there isn’t really much of a big gap between the standard GPU to the fastest one in the market. It’s okay to be frugal. 


Power

Power supply and space are crucial for serious gaming units. The bigger the better is not necessarily always true. Make sure you have enough space in your PC case to accommodate the graphic card. This also means having an equally good RAM. Consider the power supply and appropriate power connectors. Most gaming cards consume more than 75W than the x16 PCIe slot provides. Depending on your card, you might need 6- and 8-pin varieties or even 12-pin connectors. 


Memory 

As mentioned, RAM is crucial for choosing the best GPU for gaming. It determines how much your graphics card has to work with. Simply put, the more RAM your card has, the better graphics you will get. A gaming resolution at 1080p preferably requires 8GB or more. If you’re gaming at the highest resolution such as 4K, then you should go for higher than 8GB but not more than 16GB. Best image quality allows you to play and experience games better. 

HDD or SDD? It really depends on what unit you are settling with  - desktop or laptop. The most important is to have at least 1TB. There is definitely a difference with the pricing as well as loading and booting times.


Bandwidth

Memory bandwidth determines the speed of your data transfer between GPU and connected system. The bandwidth should be proportional to the processing power of the card. The higher the resolution, the higher the bandwidth it requires. The higher the bandwidth, the faster things are loaded and unloaded to the memory and displays information on the screen. 


Shader Cores

Upgrading your graphics card also means considering the right shader core. A GPU core is like a pipeline that is responsible for processing all the data in and out of your GPU. One of the things affected by bandwidth is the shader cores. They provide clearer and lifelike image graphics especially in the variations of light and dark angles of 3D objects. Depending on your choice of the brand  - AMD or Nvidia they may call shader cores differently.

Nvidia - CUDA Cores
AMD - stream processors



Clock Speeds and cooling

Input lag, frame rate, and latency are heavily influenced by clock speed. A standard GPU can read 64 bits at a time and is measured in Mhz. Clock rate and interface width significantly affect RAM bandwidth which in turn affects graphics processing. Choose a GPU with a clock speed of 3.5 GHz to 4.0 GHz for gaming. This speed allows your PC to run smoothly and in better performance when playing.

Is GPU cooling necessary? Yes. It’s probably one of the essentials when choosing the best GPU for gaming. That is because the heat could destroy your computer hardware and other components beyond repair. Without cooling, your GPU could easily overheat and liquify any soldering in your hardware. It also affects your gaming experience as the GPU reduces in speed when it is heating. You need to make sure that your case has enough space for the hot air to flow out to speed up the cooling.

Power, bandwidth, memory, clock speed, cooling, shader cores, and price are the things you need to consider before purchasing the best GPU that is compatible with your gaming computer. Now that you have the fundamental knowledge, use these as your checklist for compatibility.

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