The best Nvidia graphics cards are in large part, the best graphics cards money can buy, a trend that looks set to continue as we enter a new decade. They’ve always been one step ahead of their bitter rivals (AMD) and continue to release bigger and better GPUs year in, year out.
One drawback a lot of people consider when it comes to Nvidia is the conception that Nvidia GPUs are pretty expensive – which can be the case, but not always.
They have flooded the market in recent years with high-performance GPUs that branch out across the entirety of the price spectrum. It doesn’t matter whether you’re looking for a budget card to boost your APU build or the latest high-end model for a powerful new gaming build; Nvidia has it all.
We’ve decided that we will be looking at only the best Nvidia graphics cards on the market today. We’ll be explaining exactly what to look for in a new GPU, and how certain specifications affect the overall performance of that card.
So, let’s jump straight into it!
Our Top Picks
Best Nvidia Graphics Card: First Look
Whether we’re reviewing a new monitor or the best Nvidia graphics card, choosing the right hardware can always be a tricky task.
It requires hours of product research, performance benchmarking, and reviewing user feedback to get anywhere close to a definitive conclusion on what to recommend.
If you aren’t tech-savvy and struggle to put the time aside to go through the above requirements, you may end up purchasing a GPU that simply isn’t right for you.
Fear not though, friends! Here at WePC, we like to take the stress of research away, and transform the whole process into an easy-to-follow, complete buyers guide. That’s right, our team of PC enthusiasts has done all the hard work for you!
Testing the products we recommend is a huge part of the overall selection process in our best of guides. It’s a way to make sure what we recommend is, without a doubt, the best option in its specific category.
To be sure a product is “the best,” it must show excellent performance in our tests, and display better qualities and features than the competition it faces.
Most of the products we recommend here at WePC have gone through a strict testing process that involves everything from the price and performance, to build quality, efficiency, and aesthetics. Each product is pushed to the limit to see how it performs under intense stress to make sure it warrants our coveted top spot.
Doing this enables us to provide you with the most accurate review of how the product performs and, ultimately, whether it’s worth your hard-earned cash.
So, we’ve ran through the specs. What else should we – as buyers – consider before finalizing our purchasing decision?
Unfortunately, there are a few more things to consider than just the specs. Understanding how your GPU works through the specifications is just one part of choosing the right GPU for your specific needs.
Luckily, we’re going to break down the most important areas of a graphics card so you know exactly what to look for when the time to upgrade comes.
So, let’s get straight into it.
Let’s be honest: One of, if not the most important aspect of any hardware component, is its price. Yep, whether you’re looking for a new gaming mouse or a high-end motherboard, price is always the number one factor when it comes to purchasing.
The two most important things to consider when referencing price are; understanding whether or not your GPU is good value for money, and how much to actually spend on a GPU. Luckily for you, we’ll be giving you the answer to one.
This article will showcase some of the best value for money graphics cards the market has to offer. That means you’ll only have to concentrate on figuring out how much to spend on one.
If you’re new to PC building, then you might not realize the importance of a GPU when it comes to gaming. The GPU is the number one component that affects how well your build can perform games. For that reason, we always recommend spending a large amount of your budget on the GPU.
If you’re building a PC in the region of $1,000, you’d be expected to put at least $400-$500 aside for the graphics card. Yes, 50% of the overall budget.
Performance is a key area in a new graphics card for a number of reasons – two of which have already been discussed in the above section.
Most people reading this will probably advise you to get the most powerful and just be done with it. Which, if truth be told, is something I might say after a beer or two.
However, that isn’t always the best way to go.
Before you start the search for your new GPU, you must first consider the performance power required to achieve what you’re looking to do. Let me explain.
If you’re a video editor looking to do some light photoshop and a bit of casual old school gaming, you aren’t going to need a 2080Ti. On the other hand, if you’re looking to build a powerhouse PC that has the sole purpose of playing AAA titles in 4K, then you might want to consider that 2080Ti after all.
Be sure to set some performance goals before searching for your next GPU so you don’t get lured into buying something grossly more powerful than your needs require. If you don’t, you might end up spending a shed load more money than you need to.
Finally, comes size. You might not think size matters too much, but it can be a little problematic if upgrading an older PC to newer components.
When we talk about size, we’re talking about the physical dimensions of a component. Modern GPUs can be extremely large, especially if you buy one with a specially designed cooling system. Be sure to check the dimensions of the GPU before purchasing to ensure it definitely fits inside your case.
Next comes the specifications. One of the most important things you can do (as a buyer) before looking for new hardware is to physically learn what each of the specifications means.
Having a greater understanding of how certain hardware works will ensure that you make the right choice when it comes to purchasing time.
That being said, below are the most important GPU specs that we feel are most impactful when it comes to general performance:
First up, we have the clock speeds.
Clock speed refers to the speed in which your microprocessor operates at. It basically refers to how fast your GPU can perform tasks and instructions.
All graphics cards are clocked at different rates, meaning they have different levels of ability when it comes to performing tasks. As a general rule of thumb, a GPU with a higher clock speed is usually faster at performing instructions than something slower.
This is just one of the factors that go into your GPU’s overall performance though. We also have to take into consideration the GPU’s VRAM, CUDA cores, transistors, and cooling.
Next, is the GPU’s VRAM. VRAM works in the same way as your system’s RAM. It provides your GPU with data that can be accessed immediately and in any order.
The VRAM has a direct correlation with the GPU’s performance. A GPU with more accessible RAM has the ability to handle much more demanding tasks such as higher resolution gaming and rendering.
CUDA cores are Nvidia’s answer to AMD’s stream processors. CUDA (Compute Unified Device Architecture) is a programming language that can be manipulated to perform tasks with greater performance.
Every Nvidia GPU comes with a set number of CUDA cores, with some GPUs having access to more CUDA cores than others. Most of the time, more CUDA cores translate to higher performance.
The only time this is not the case is when a GPU is using an outdated architecture.
Finally, we have cooling.
As you will soon see, there are a ton of different cooling solutions to choose from:
- Metal heatsink
All provide different levels of cooling and should be seriously considered before purchasing a new GPU.
When performing stressful tasks (like gaming or video editing) a GPU can generate large amounts of heat. To ensure the card is running at optimal levels, you want the GPU to be as cool as possible. That’s why cooling is so important.
Generally speaking, a triple-fan cooling design is best for low temps. Having said that, GPU fans usually just spread the heat around the PC making the other components hotter. A blower-style fan will suck the air through the GPU and disperse it out the back.
All cooling designs have different results so just be sure to consider this before your next purchase.
Now that we’ve seen the best Nvidia graphics cards the market has to offer, let’s discuss the age-old topic of Nvidia Vs AMD.
It’s a battle that’s as old as time, and one that has – in recent years – become much closer.
Historically, as I’m sure you’re all aware, Nvidia has been the dominating force in the GPU market. They have forever been the go-to brand when it comes to the most powerful cards you can buy.
However, ever-since AMD decided to go and release their new range of NAVI cards, the gap between the two giants just got a little closer.
As far as the top-end of the spectrum goes, Nvidia is still dominating thanks to the likes of their 2080Ti and RTX Titan GPUs. However, when you get down to the more affordable price points, AMD starts to come into their own. Just take their fan-favorite RX 5700XT as a prime example. Many are choosing this over Nvidia’s alternative (2070).
As we go down the list of GPUs, you see a much more evenly matched battle. Even a couple of years ago would have seen a complete overhaul in Nvidia’s favor. But not anymore.
It’s a great time to be a PC builder as both the CPU and GPU markets are packed with great options for all price points. The tight competition between Nvidia Vs AMD is only likely to drive prices even lower as well!
Our 5 Best Nvidia Graphics Cards
Without doubt, the highest performing consumer-grade GPU
Real time ray-tracing
4k gaming at ultra settings
Limited amount of games with ray tracing
The number one pick has to go to the hugely popular 2080Ti. It’s the most powerful consumer-grade GPU on the market, and nothing in its price range gets close to it.
We’ve decided to go for the ASUS ROG Strix GeForce RTX 2080Ti for a number of different reasons that we will discuss shortly. But first, the design.
The 2080Ti from ASUS is outfitted with ROG Strix design and performance traits. With a sleek case and RGB lighting in multiple zones, the 2080Ti looks absolutely superb in almost any build.
However, the 2080Ti is by far the largest card in this list. It takes up 2.7 slots and measures in at a pretty impressive 305mm.
As far as specs go, you can expect a boost clock speed of 1650MHz straight out of the box. It comes with 11GB of GDDR6 RAM which is exactly what you need when looking to perform 4K gaming.
The cooling design is one of the best we’ve seen on any 2080Ti as well, with a triple Axial-tech design that helps the 2080Ti to operate at the lowest temps possible. It won’t just run cold either, but quietly too, with the 2080Ti outfitted with 0DB technology, as standard, for an all-round quiet experience.
One of the best features of this card is the dual BIOS setup it comes equipped with. This allows users to have two different configurations going at any one time – with the ability to switch between the two when necessary.
Ultimately, if you’re looking for the best Nvidia graphics card for gaming, look no further. The 2080Ti will be able to achieve 1440p gaming at well over 100FPS, and 4K gaming in ultra at 50-60FPS.
Be aware though, if you are interested in this graphics card, be ready to fork out for it!
Great in-game performance
Very high build quality
Very efficient cooling
Few RTX-enabled games to enjoy
ASUS’s second entry into this list takes the form of the ROG Strix 2070 Super. A card that offers stellar gaming performance out of the box at an extremely affordable price point.
At first glance, you might not notice any difference between this and the 2080Ti – and that’s because there isn’t one. It looks almost identical in both size and design. It comes sporting the same triple-fan cooling design and RGB – which we absolutely love.
It’s when you look at the specs that you begin to see the major differences between these two cards. The 2070 Super not only comes with real-time ray-tracing support, but also has the same 0Db technology, Axial-tech fan design, 2.7 slot design, Aura sync, ASUS FanConnect II, and more. I mean the list really does go on.
Buyers will be pleased with the high 1830MHz boost clock speed right out the box. This is paired with 8GB of GDDR6 VRAM, 2560 CUDA cores, and a ton of I/o versatility.
From a gaming standpoint, the 2070 Super does fall massively short of the 2080Ti. But that’s not a bad thing. It’s still the second most powerful consumer-grade gaming card in this list and gives out fantastic 1440p gaming at well over 100FPS. You will probably struggle to get 4K ultra gaming out of this thing, but at lower settings, we feel it’s definitely a solid choice.
Overall, this is another fantastic GPU from ASUS, and one that offers many of the same features as the 2080Ti, but at a fraction of the price.
It’s the editor’s choice and for good reason.
Very good gaming performance in 1080p and 1440p
Based on new Turing architecture
Very efficient cooling
Outperformed by RX 5700XT
Few RTX-enabled games to enjoy
Next up comes out mid-range pick; MSI’s RTX 2060 Super, a card that has become increasingly popular thanks to its very reasonable price tag and excellent aesthetics.
For me, the 2060 Super is one of the most attractive cards on this list and comes out of the box offering a superb design that is sure to increase the overall look of any build. It has multiple RGB zones that can be altered in MSI’s user-friendly software, alongside fan speeds, clock speeds, and more.
The MSI 2060 Super sports a very attractive 1695MHz clock speed. Pair that with the 8GB of GDDR6 of VRAM and superb cooling design, and you will soon realize this is one of the best 2060s money can buy.
From a gaming standpoint, you can expect to achieve excellent FPS figures from both 1080p and 1440p in most games. More demanding titles may be a struggle for the 2060 Super in ultra settings, but generally, we can expect 60FPS and above. It comes with 2176 CUDA cores and much lower power consumption than the above cards in this guide.
If what you’re looking for is a powerful, reasonably priced GPU for any 1080p and 1440p needs you might have then I feel there is no better option than our best value pick, the 2060 Super.
Excellent build quality
Based on new Turing architecture
Great cooling from EVGA
Aesthetically very pleasing
Doesn’t come with RTX support
Next up is our budget pick, the 1660 Super Sc Ultra Gaming from EVGA.
This card is by far the most affordable in this guide, but don’t let that fool you; It still offers up a brilliant array of features and great gaming performance at both 1080p and 1440p, especially for its price.
You always get quality when you purchase EVGA which is one of the great things about this brand, and EVGA did not skimp on the build quality when it came to the 1660 Super.
Aside from a sturdy build, the 1660 Super also offers up excellent aesthetics and cooling thanks to its dual-fan design, which is optimized to keep your GPU at the lowest temps possible whilst under stress.
You can expect 1408 CUDA cores, a 1830MHz Boost clock speed, 6GB of GDDR6 VRAM and a bunch of I/O outputs from the 1660 Super.
Put all these factors together and what you have is a great little gaming GPU, ideal for people looking to play lesser intensive AAA titles in 1080p/1440p. For me, this is the perfect card for someone looking to take there competitive esports gaming to the next level.
It won’t damage your wallet too badly, but it will offer you up some great new features – and its VR ready for when you want to dip your toe in that pond.
Massive 24GB of GDDR6 memory capacity
Excellent build quality
4608 CUDA cores
Overkill for most
Finally, we have the enthusiasts pick; The all-singing, all-dancing, RTX Titan.
The RTX Titan has been around for a little while now and is showing absolutely no signs of dropping in price. Bummer. However, just because it’s the most expensive, doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the best for your specific needs.
Before we touch on that though, let’s take a look at the design and some specs.
For me, this is one of the best looking cards available right now. It just screams class. It comes with a gold front panel that sits 2 x 13-blade fans which have been designed to produce 3x more airflow than other cooling options on the market. And you’re gonna need them.
The Titan comes with an impressive array of specs which include 4608 CUDA cores, a 1770MHz boost clock, 24GB of GDDR6 VRAM, and 18.6 billion transistors. Put all that together and you have what we like to call, the ultimate enthusiast pick.
Even though this card can perform gaming to a very high level, it’s not necessarily what it’s built for. This card has been built for professionals looking to render extremely large models or 8K video editing. You have the ability to run complex, multi-application workflows with little to no fuss.
Ultimately, what you’re looking at here is one of the most powerful GPUs on the market. All that power doesn’t come cheap though. It currently retails at an eye-watering price that almost doubles the 2080Ti’s.
So, there you have it; our comprehensive guide to the best Nvidia graphics cards money can buy.
Unlike the AMD graphics card roundup, this was a much easier selection process. Nvidia has very clear standout GPUs in all price points, so making sure we chose the right ones simply came down to brand, cooling, and build quality.
Hopefully, this article will be a guide for your next Nvidia graphics card purchase.
If you feel there is anything we’ve left out of this guide, feel free to drop us a comment in the section below. Better still, head on over to our Community hub where you can discuss everything GPU related with like-minded people!