Online gaming is increasingly drifting towards PC gaming more and more. The reason behind the shift is that many of the games that can be played using a games console can also be played on a PC. Although games consoles such as PlayStation are trying their best to ensure games are exclusive to their console, there is no denying the fact that PC games are becoming much better. One of the reasons for this is because graphics cards have become so advanced.
In fact, there are several reasons an increasing number of gamers are turning to their PC as their main source of gaming entertainment.
- Graphics cards are affordable and offer graphics equal to games consoles
- Many console games are eventually released on PC
- You do not have to consistently swap your PC for a new model
- PCs are easily upgradable with affordable memory and graphics cards
Our main focus, however, is graphics cards. We are going to take a look at some of 2018s latest graphics cards that are popular among gamers and designers.
Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060
When it comes to buying the best graphics card, this Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 gives you both performance as well as a good price. This is crucial when you are looking to mix it up on a budget that allows you to also play games with high-quality graphics.
It has full HD 1080p with some overclocking too as we tested this card which was up to 1440p. on top of this is has 4k gaming. The only downside is that SLI is not supported meaning you will only be able to use just the single card.
Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 Ti
Of course, Nvidia will dominate this list and this is why the second graphics card in our scopes is the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 Ti. You will get Titan X-like gaming performance with 4k gaming.
It totally wipes out the Titan XP nowadays as it now claims the top spot for having the best GPU due to its much higher CUDA coupled with high-speed video memory. It may not quite reach the standards of having two GTX 1080s in SLI chugging away in your PC, but if you are looking for affordability and performance then the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 Ti as lone is more than enough.
AMD Radeon RX Vega 56
For those that are looking for full HD gaming, then this is the card for you. It runs quicker when we compared this to its competitor the Nvidia GTX 1070. However, as a gamer, you may be disappointed to learn that due to the huge popularity in Bitcoin mining this is also popular within the cryptocurrency industry.
That is not great news when it comes to price because digital currency miners tend to be able to splash out without thought and so this card is in high demand.
Unfortunately, high demand means price hikes and so you will need to splash out. For the price, it is probably a little overkill if you are an HD gamer, but if you are not worried about price then go for it. You will have a graphics card already prepped for the future and this is the perfect card for 144-to-240hz monitors. You will also be able to max this card out with its 1080p performance and you will get up 1440p overloading out of it.
The only downsides are that it does consume a lot of energy and with that, it can get quite hot, so you will need a state of the art cooling system, which kind of adds to the cost of owning one. Weighing it up, this is not a budget graphics card simply because of the price and the additional cooling it needs.
Zotac GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Mini
On top mini graphics cards and we then start to look at the Zotac GeForce GTX 1080 Ti Mini, which weighs in at 211 x 125 x 41mm and is perfect for 4k gaming despite losing maybe a few frames per second. This has a core clock of 1,506 and comes with an amazing 11GB GDDR5X. its memory clock runs at 10Gbs and steam processes at 3,584. Not bad at all for a mini card! Outputs come it a 3 x DisplayPort 1.4, 1 x HDMI 2.0b, 1 x DL-DVI-D with 2 x 8-pin power connectors. For those building a microATX or if you are working on a mini-ITX project, then you have the perfect solution here. You will have a small component that gives you performance.
Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050
Not all of us can afford to splash out on the lavish graphics cards mentioned above or maybe we are not that dedicated to gaming. As a result, in comes the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050. Now if only has 2GB of video memory, but when it comes to gaming performance and affordability this card really does the job very well indeed.
That is if you are Ok with a medium experience game playing experience. One of the secrets to some of the MOBA gamers being so much quicker when playing free games like League of Legends or Dota 2 is that a lot of gamers have forked out on the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 just to give themselves that slight advantage as far frames per seconds are concerned. It is also a popular card for games such as Overwatch thanks to its very nice 60fps mark.
In addition to the advantages of price and reasonable performance is that this is also a relatively small graphics card. If you are building a small gaming machine, and the price is a concern, start with the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 and then work your way upwards. The great thing about this card is that once you are done with it, there is a huge demand on places like eBay where you can offload it if you are seeing the benefits of faster gameplay and want to be even faster!
Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 Ti
Sports fans should not overlook the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 Ti. This is another amazingly well designed Nvidia graphics card. It is a solid 1080p performer and has great overclocking that comes in useful when you are playing intensive sports games as well as e-sports games. It is not too pricey either retailing at around $220 if you look in the right places.
It is potentially an upgrade for the aforementioned Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 too playing at 60fps and higher at times. It just seems to give you that little bit more potency especially when you are playing games such as Dota 2, which is becoming increasingly more demanding on graphics cards.
What are you looking for?
When it comes to finding the right graphics cards for your gaming experience, it really depends on what you are looking for. If you want to build a mini PC that can be portable just like a games console, then mini graphics are certainly the way forward.
However, you may be looking to be a little sharper at the e-sports game you love the most. In MOBA games such as Overwatch, Dota 2, and League of Legends just that little extra speed on your graphics card can give you the edge; especially if you are playing at a high level on any of these games.
Affordability is nearly always the main point to cover for many of us. With an affordable graphics card replacing your PCs current standard graphics card, you can still see the difference in gaming performance.
The small investment in a card such as the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 would most certainly put you ahead of many other online players – this is particularly true if you are playing in South East Asia where many of the players are using standard laptop or PC cards. You will be slightly ahead of them because the feed from the game will be coming to you that split second sooner.
That is as long as you also have a decent enough internet connection to back up the investment you are making.