6 Best PC Graphics Cards for Gaming, Tested and Reviewed

<p>A computer’s graphical processing unit (or GPU) allows powerful PCs to act as a powerhouse for video editing, rendering, and—most crucial to us—<a href=”https://www.esquire.com/lifestyle/g14381053/best-video-game-gamer-gifts/” target=”_blank”>gaming</a>. Spending smart on a graphics card is vital to building a gaming PC—having one that offers 4K picture, DLSS support, ray tracing, and a way to keep itself cool and quiet while doing all those things is ideal. </p><p>We’ve selected the six best graphics cards for every type of gamer’s needs. Each one has its advantages and has earned its place due to our tried and true testing process. These are the best graphics cards for PC gaming, reviewed by the Esquire editors. </p>”/>

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AMD Radeon RX 7900 GRE

Radeon RX 7900 GRE

Some gamers will tell you that the AMD Radeon series are simply a better value than GeForce cards. It’s hard to argue. The Radeon RX 7900 is an outstanding choice for GPU. At it’s current price on Amazon, it only clears our “budget” category by a couple hundred dollars. For one of the best cards for gaming at 1440p resolution, that’s not just hard to argue—it’s an impossibly good value.

While it lags behind GeForce in terms of 4K framerates and lighting effects, the RX 7900 GRE is AMD’s best GPU for high-intesity 1440p gaming. It’s true that many folks don’t even have a 4K monitor, so support for these higher resolutions isn’t always what a dedicated gamer is looking for. If precision, accuracy, and a smooth experience overall is more important to you than *actual* graphics, this is the pick for you.

RAM Size 16 GB
GPU Clock Speed 1705 MHz
Memory Clock Speed 18 Gbps
Outputs ‍DisplayPort 2.1(3x), HDMI 2.1

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Best Budget GeForce GPU

Nvidia GeForce RTX 4060

GeForce RTX 4060

If you’re in the market for a PC that’s under $1000, you’ll want to budget around $300 of that to a graphics card that will last you. The GeForce RTX 4060 is currently less than that total and more powerful than anything at its price range. If you’re gaming in 1080p still, or just don’t need the a gaming PC that can melt AAA games into molten gold, it’s hard to go wrong with an RTX 4060 card.

It’s an older generation of one of the best and most ubiquitous graphics card out there, so the only downside is that it’s a little bit outdated. Do you know how many great video games come out every year that you’ve missed? It’s a lot.

RAM Size 8 GB
GPU Clock Speed 1830 MHz
Memory Clock Speed 17 Gbps
Outputs DisplayPort 1.4a (x3), HDMI 2.1

Best Intel GPU

Acer Predator BiFrost Intel Arc A770

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Predator BiFrost Intel Arc A770

Compared to Nvidia and AMD, Intel makes pretty low-end graphics cards. But that doesn’t mean you can’t find a great mid-range GPU with the Intel name on it. Take this Arc A770, which is a better graphics card than either of our “budget” picks for a price that’s not that much higher. It houses a really solid GPU that runs many a smooth 1440p game and even supports ray tracing in some instances.

It’s a good graphics card (Intel’s best currently), but it’s one built for tinkerers. You can tell by how much more power you can get out of this by overclocking. If you plan on boosting anyway, it’s worth looking into this alternative to AMD and Nvidia graphics.

RAM size 16 GB
GPU Clock Speed 2200 MHz
Memory Clock Speed 18 Gbps
Outputs HDMI, DisplayPort (3x)

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What To Consider in a PC Graphics Card


Consider these important factors when looking for the best graphics card for your PC gaming rig.

Monitor Resolution: Is your monitor 1080p, 1440p, or 4k? The answer to this question helps you determine which graphics card features you need.

Compatibility: Not all PC parts are made equal. Before buying a GPU make sure the graphics card is compatible with your motherboard.

Frequently Asked Questions


What is DLSS?

The Nvidia GPU options we’ve recommended above promote their DLSS 3 technology. This is essentially rendering games that can normally only run in HD to 4K using AI upscalling. It can also improve framerates and add ray-tracing features. You can read more at Nvidia.

Nvidia or AMD: Which brand is best for graphics cards?

Most graphics cards are either Nvidia (typically GeForce) or AMD, but if you’re starting from scratch which is the smarter one to choose? Naturally, that depends on your needs.

Let’s break it down to just what consumers need to know; Nvidia graphics cards are higher-end, while AMD cards are more affordable. In general this means if you are searching for the best in 4K graphics, ray-tracing, and other fancy lightning features you should go with Nvidia. If saving money is your priority, AMD cards tend to be more affordable and the ones we’ve highlighted get excellent performance out of games running at 1080p and 144op. Your ultimate choice between Nvidia and AMD comes down to your budget and preference of performance versus graphics.

How We Tested Graphics Cards


Here at Esquire, we take a generalist approach to product testing. That means we test our favorite tech by using it exactly the way we would at home. We’ve gamed on PCs and we’ve got a network of contacts, colleagues, and industry insiders that know what they’re talking about. Together we’ve found the graphics cards that are worth the hard-earned money of the gamers in our readership.

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Why Trust Esquire?

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We’ve been testing and reviewing the latest and greatest products, gadgets, and tech for years. Our team of experts has collective decades of hands-on experience with all types of PC gaming components and accessories. We have tested and reviewed the best processors, SSDs, and gaming monitors. From controllers to gaming laptops, I’ve personally tested and reviewed some of the best PC tech around.

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