Best graphic card under $500 – Reviews & Buying Guide [UPDATED 2023]
The world of 4K gaming is fast expanding, and with it comes an increasing number of options for graphics cards. Keeping up with the most recent technological developments might be challenging, but happily, we are here to assist you. You have arrived at the right location if you are looking for the best graphics card available for less than $500, capable of gaming at 1440p and 4K resolutions.
What can you expect from a graphics card that costs less than 500 dollars?
When looking for a graphics card that costs less than $500, you should make a few considerations first. First things first, think about how you will be putting the card to use. If you are a gamer, you will need a card capable of handling graphically demanding games. However, an architecture card with fewer capabilities will be used in more casual situations. Second, remember to consider how much space is available on the card. The more significant the amount of memory, the better the performance; nevertheless, this also leads to higher prices.
All of these cards can play 4K games. However, specific settings may need to be turned down. The most optimal experience for gaming in 4K resolution may be had with a graphics card that costs more than $500.
The Best Graphics Card for Playing Games at 1440p or 4K for Less Than $500
You’ve come to the correct place if you’re seeking a graphics card that can play the most recent games on the highest settings, but you don’t want to empty your bank account. We have compiled a list of the top five graphics cards that cost less than $500 and still deliver outstanding performance without breaking the budget.
At this price point, there is a large selection of excellent solutions available, regardless of whether you want a card from AMD or Nvidia. The following list provides our top five recommendations for the finest graphics cards available for less than $500 in 2022 and 2023.
1. ASUS TUF Gaming NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 V2 OC Edition
One of the graphics cards that have had the most success thus far on the market is the ASUS TUF Gaming NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 V2 OC Edition. It is available at a very reasonable price and possesses outstanding performance. You need to be aware of a few things before you purchase it.
The ASUS TUF Gaming NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 V2 OC Edition may not be suitable for your display of choice. To achieve the whole 4K experience, you’ll need a monitor compatible with DisplayPort version 1.4a. Additionally, this card has a base clock demand of up to 320W and requires two 8-pin PCIe power connectors to function correctly.
This card model has a front panel with many outputs, including HDMI 2.1 and DisplayPort 1.4a. HDMI 2.1 can support bandwidths of up to 48 Gb/s and a wide range of higher resolutions and refresh rates. These include 8K at 60 frames per second, 4K at 120 frames per second, and even 10K resolutions.
You can play games like Fortnite, Apex Legends, Minecraft, PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, Grand Theft Auto V, League of Legends, Overwatch, and Rainbow Six Siege with this best-performing card.
2. GIGABYTE GeForce RTX 3070 Gaming OC 8G
The GIGABYTE GeForce RTX 3070 is a perfect choice for gamers looking for the highest possible performance from their affordable graphics card. Memory is of the GDDR6 variety and has a boost clock speed limit of 1725MHz. Additionally, there is one HDMI port and three DisplayPorts on this board.
The GIGABYTE GeForce RTX 3070 is an excellent option for gamers looking for the highest possible level of performance from their graphics card. It has a memory capacity of 8 gigabytes of GDDR6 and a max clock speed of 1725 megahertz. Additionally, there is one HDMI port and three DisplayPorts on this board.
Gamers interested in achieving the highest possible level of performance need to go no further than the GIGABYTE GeForce RTX 3070. It features a memory capacity of 8 GB GDDR6 and a faster core clock speed of 1815 MHz. Because it also comes equipped with three DisplayPorts and one HDMI port, this card is an excellent option for gamers of all stripes.
3. MSI Gaming Geforce RTX 2070
If you’re a gamer searching for a high-end alternative that won’t break the budget, the MSI Gaming Geforce RTX 2070 is a great midrange graphics card to consider. Suppose you are a gamer who wants to play the newest game patches at high resolutions and framerates. This product is a fantastic alternative because it provides outstanding performance and functionality.
The graphics card utilizes the Turing architecture developed by NVIDIA and comes equipped with 2,304 CUDA cores and 8 gigabytes of GDDR6 memory. The memory clock is clocked at 14000MHz, whereas the boost clock is clocked at 1620MHz. In addition, it supports real-time ray tracing, a new graphics rendering technique that creates more realistic lighting effects in games. Additionally, the MSI Gaming Geforce RTX 2070 includes three DisplayPort 1.1 connectors.
They are identical in terms of the CUDA shader cores they possess, the total quantity of memory they offer, and the base memory clock speed they provide. Maximum digital resolution is 7680 by 4320 pixels. The top bus per clock cycle speed that can be increased differs between the two options. MSI’s variant’s boost clock speed is 120 MHz faster than EVGA’s variant’s boost clock speed.
4. ASUS Geforce GTX 1070
GDDR5 is the technology used for Asus’s VRAM, just like it is used for 1070 GPUs. It has a memory bandwidth of 256 bits and the same capacity as the 2070s in our list, which is 8 gigabytes. In general, ASUS brags about its unique patent-protected design of fans, which generates an air pressure of 105% and maintains an excellent GPU so that it may continue to function without interruption.
Fans of ASUS will be happy to hear that the ASUS 1070 comes optimized for the ASUS X99 A II motherboard. This is excellent news for ASUS users. If you are considering purchasing a graphics card for gaming, the additional piece of beneficial information is that this one is reasonably priced.
The graphics processing unit (GPU) is compatible with virtual reality (VR) gaming and features HDMI connections that are suitable for use with VR. This is designed for professionals who enjoy demonstrating their skills. The technology known as Nvidia Ansel takes screenshots as the game is being played. It makes use of XSplit Gamecaster for those of you who are interested in customizing the performance of your GPU according to your preferences. It provides options that are simplified for beginners, as well as ones that are significantly more complicated and customized for experienced overclockers.
5. Gigabyte GeForce GTX 1070 G1
Since Gigabyte has previously released another variant of the GTX 1070, we have already seen it. These graphics processing units (GPUs) are available for purchase for less than $500. Since I have already stated that graphics cards based on the Pascal architecture are among the most effective GPUs for gaming, I will only compare the two distinct iterations of the 1070 GPU manufactured by the same company, Gigabyte. The name “G1” is given to one of the versions, and “Windforce” is the name given to the other.
In addition to that, its cooling system is designed with three separate fans. It stands to reason that a more significant number of fans will result in more effective ventilation.
The G1 offers slightly improved performance and cooling at a lower price and has a 17mm smaller hardware size, which can come in handy for those with a tighter space available in their system. This is the bottom line for choosing between the two Gigabyte variants: the G1 offers slightly improved performance and cooling. If you are already thinking in gigabytes, the decision is not a difficult one to make. The variant with Windforce is the one to choose.
6. Zotac GeForce GTX 1070 AMP Extreme
The AMP extreme model of Zotac’s gaming computer also uses the three-fan cooling technology. Zotac provides some aesthetics in addition to all of the technical specifications that come with a GTX 1070. It utilizes a carbon fiber exoskeleton within the outside casing, providing you with adjustable LEDs around the outer case that may change colors. Additionally, it has a color-changing feature. Zotac also offers specialized software developed solely for the corporation, which can assist you in conveniently configuring the settings that you want to carry out, including overclocking securely. Because it has been overclocked, it has the finest GPU for gaming.
When it comes to the 1070 series, the most important takeaway is that nearly all computer hardware manufacturers already provide graphics card price in the sub-$500 price bracket that exhibit only minute variations in performance from one another. These 1070s have one of the best graphics processing units (GPUs) for gaming and also one of the best GPUs for editing 4k video.
The compatibility of a product with the buyer’s system should be the purchaser’s first concern. For instance, if you already own an ASUS X-99A II motherboard, you should use the Asus product variant. In addition, the dimensions of these GPUs and the cooling systems are of the utmost significance. So you can determine whether or not the graphics processing unit (GPU) will even fit inside your system.
Aside from hardware compatibility and that some GPUs have company-made software for improved management, performance tweaking, and overclocking, other factors include: The performance you receive from the 1070s will be very similar. The complete version of the 1070 graphics card size, combined with its ability to be overclocked, clearly places it among the top GPUs currently available on the market.
Things To Consider When Buying A Graphic Card Under $500
When looking to purchase a graphics card, keep the following in mind:
You’ll need more performance if you push more pixels, so ensure you have enough. A top-of-the-line GPU is not required for gaming at 1080p resolution.
2. Power Supply Unit
Check to see that your power supply has adequate power and the appropriate 6- and 8-pin connector (s). For the RTX 3060, for instance, Nvidia suggests a power supply unit (PSU) with 550 watts, and you’ll need a minimum of an 8-pin connector and maybe a 6-pin PEG connector as well.
3. Video Memory
The minimum requirement for video memory is a card with 4 gigabytes. However, models with 6 gigabytes are considered an improvement, and 8 gigabytes or more is strongly suggested. Few games can consume 12GB of video memory (VRAM), although this is more of an exception than the norm.
4. Free-Sync Or G-Sync
Your GPU’s frame rate will be synced with your screen’s refresh rate using a technology that supports variable refresh rates. G-Sync and displays that are compatible with G-Sync are supported by Nvidia (for recommendations, check our list of the Best Gaming Monitors). At the same time, AMD’s FreeSync technology is compatible with Radeon cards.
5. Ray Tracing, DLSS, and FSR
Ray Tracing, Deep Learning Super Sampling, and Frame Scaling Ray tracing is a feature supported by the most recent generation of graphics cards and can improve the game’s aesthetics. DLSS quality is an intelligent upscaling and anti-aliasing feature that can enhance performance while maintaining the same level of image quality. However, this feature is only available on Nvidia RTX graphics cards. In addition to providing upscaling and augmentation for a diverse selection of games, AMD’s FreeSync Rescaler (FSR) is compatible with practically every GPU.