There are probably plenty of brands and companies that manufacture GPUs, but two companies worth noting are NVIDIA and AMD. These two game-changers often breed new innovative GPUs that take graphics to another level, although there could be a third noteworthy company of GPU coming up - Intel’s Xe Graphics but that's for next time.
How Many GPU Manufacturers Are Available & Which One Suits You?
Let’s take a look at NVIDIA’s GPUs. The alphabets, ‘GTX’ and ‘RTX’ represent the generation of the product. The first two digits, ‘10’, 16’, ‘20’ and ‘30’ are like the model number - the higher is it, the better. Then we reach the last two digits where it signifies the level of the product; 50s are Low-End; 60s are Mid-Range and 70s are High-End. As for the 80s and beyond? They are the best of the best.
Moving on to the additional alphabets tailing at the back, Ti and SUPER. Both essentially mean better variants of the GPUs - Ti means they are the more upgraded advanced version whereas SUPER means even more upgrade with higher boost clocks and speed.
So to simply break it down to you, here’s how to read them:
For the RTX2000 series, they do not offer cards under 50 because they come with Ray Tracing (new tech that makes your game look realistic). Hence, it also explains why they are ‘RTX’.
This also applies similarly to the new RTX3000 series that was recently released by NVIDIA.
With more upgrades, this means that the 2080 Ti is much faster than 2080. It is also worth noting that the Ti is faster than SUPER however, there is a price to pay. So it is up to you to decide if the higher frames are worth the extra bucks forked out.
These parallels are somewhat similar to AMD’s graphics cards naming as well. The only difference would be the alphabets at the front signifies the series. For instance, the Radeon RX series is a more high-end series compared to R6. Following the series name, the first number indicates the generation number and the remaining numbers represent the model.
So looking at AMD RX5700 for example, we got the generation number ‘5’, the model number ‘700’ and upgraded variants of ‘X’ and ‘XT’. Similarly to NVIDIA - the higher the number, the better it is.
What Kind Of Games Do You Play & What Do They Need?
- ResolutionIf you try to write with a wide general audience in mind, your story will ring false and be bland. No one will be interested. Write for one person. If it’s genuine for the one, it’s genuine for the rest.
- Refresh RateTaking cues from our previous video’s analogy about sports cars in a bumpy, traffic jammy, speed limit imposed roads - what good is all the phenomenal cosmic power of an RTX3080 when your monitor is a potato. It will only cap your gaming experience to 1080p and 60Hz when it can be so much more.
- Ray TracingIt is arguable that better gaming experience comes with realistic lighting effects that are produced by ray tracing rendering technique. But if most of your games are not very demanding e.g. Minecraft or Dota, an RTX card would be an overkill. Unless, well, if you think that lighting effects worth your bucks - go for it.
Is Your Central Processing Unit (CPU) Up For The Power?
Do You Have The Required Connections; Ports?
Is Your Power Supply Sufficient For The GPU?
You will also need to get the right type of power connectors but not to worry. Power supplies these days tend to be modular, so you can easily attach the corresponding power pins to suit your needs.
I know we are spoilt for choices when it comes to choosing the shapes, sizes and designs of a GPU. Be it compact, low-profile, single-slot, dual-slot, or even triple-slot - we have to make sure it fits our desktop case.
NVIDIA GeForce RTX3080 - The best of the best!
AMD Radeon RX5600XT - The best, affordable 1080p graphics card.
NVIDIA GeForce GTX1650 SUPER - The best budget graphics card.