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10 Best Graphics Cards For Photoshop Lightroom & Illustrator 2022

Updated on August 14, 2022

Graphics processing units (GPUs) are heavily taxed by Photoshop, Lightroom, and Illustrator. Graphics performance will suffer if the GPU is underpowered. That is why these programmes can only be used on high-end PCs.

However, upgrading your GPU doesn’t always necessitate purchasing a new computer. Any PC with a graphics card upgrade slot can be used for this purpose. For a graphics card, there are things to consider.

Later, we’ll talk about that. Here are all the top 10 best graphics cards for Photoshop, Lightroom, and Illustrator:

ZOTAC Gaming GeForce RTX 3060 Twin Edge OC 12GB GDDR6 192-bit 15 Gbps PCIE 4.0 Gaming Graphics Card, IceStorm 2.0 Cooling, Active Fan Control, Freeze Fan Stop ZT-A30600H-10M
ZOTAC GAMING GeForce GTX 1650 OC 4GB GDDR6 128-bit Gaming Graphics Card, Super Compact, ZT-T16520F-10L
XFX Radeon RX 580 GTS XXX Edition 1386MHz OC+, 8GB GDDR5, VR Ready, Dual BIOS, 3xDP HDMI DVI, AMD Graphics Card (RX-580P8DFD6)
MSI Gaming GeForce RTX 3070 LHR 8GB GDRR6 256-Bit HDMI/DP Nvlink Torx Fan 4 RGB Ampere Architecture OC Graphics Card (RTX 3070 Gaming Z Trio 8G LHR)
VisionTek Radeon 5450 2GB DDR3 (DVI-I, HDMI, VGA) Graphics Card - 900861,Black/Red
ZOTAC Gaming GeForce RTX 3060 Twin Edge OC 12GB GDDR6 192-bit 15 Gbps PCIE 4.0 Gaming Graphics Card, IceStorm 2.0 Cooling, Active Fan Control, Freeze Fan Stop ZT-A30600H-10M
ZOTAC GAMING GeForce GTX 1650 OC 4GB GDDR6 128-bit Gaming Graphics Card, Super Compact, ZT-T16520F-10L
XFX Radeon RX 580 GTS XXX Edition 1386MHz OC+, 8GB GDDR5, VR Ready, Dual BIOS, 3xDP HDMI DVI, AMD Graphics Card (RX-580P8DFD6)
MSI Gaming GeForce RTX 3070 LHR 8GB GDRR6 256-Bit HDMI/DP Nvlink Torx Fan 4 RGB Ampere Architecture OC Graphics Card (RTX 3070 Gaming Z Trio 8G LHR)
VisionTek Radeon 5450 2GB DDR3 (DVI-I, HDMI, VGA) Graphics Card – 900861,Black/Red
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Best Graphics Cards for Photoshop Lightroom & Illustrator

1. ZOTAC GeForce RTX 3060 Twin Edge

ZOTAC Gaming GeForce RTX 3060 Twin Edge OC 12GB GDDR6 192-bit 15 Gbps PCIE 4.0 Gaming Graphics Card, IceStorm 2.0 Cooling, Active Fan Control, Freeze Fan Stop ZT-A30600H-10M

Based on NVIDIA’s Ampere, ZOTAC’s GeForce RTX 30 Series is designed for gamers. Just as well for Photoshop and Lightroom and Illustrator as a gaming graphics card. PCI-e 3.0, PCI Express 4.0, and 12 GB of DDR6 GDDR6 are all included in this model.

RT cores and Tensor cores have been improved, and new multiprocessors have been added, making this a high-performance graphics card. 2x more throughput is provided by the RT cores of the 2nd generation.

A 2x increase in performance is provided by third-generation (or “third-gen”) tensor cores. Because your graphics card supports Ray tracing, you get real-time rendering of cinematic quality. You’ll be able to get the greatest results while editing your images and videos with this.

NVIDIA DLSS AI rendering is used in the graphics card. By utilising artificial intelligence, it is able to increase frame rates while maintaining the same level of quality. Display resolutions and other options can be tweaked to absurdly high levels.

The IceStorm 2.0 powerful cooling technology ensures that you won’t have to worry about overheating. 11-blade fan with active control and a freeze-fan-stop are included. A wide aluminium array heatsink and an improved heat pipe layout are also included.

2. ZOTAC GeForce GTX 1650 OC 4GB

ZOTAC GAMING GeForce GTX 1650 OC 4GB GDDR6 128-bit Gaming Graphics Card, Super Compact, ZT-T16520F-10L

This graphics card from Zotac is exceptionally compact in comparison to others. With NVIDIA’s Turing architecture and a vast quantity of RAM, this is a completely new graphics generation.

One of the greatest graphics cards on the market has a long list of impressive options. 896 CUDA cores, Boost Clock 1620MHz, Memory Clock 12GB/s, and PCI Express 3.0 are all included in this model.

As far as I can tell, the graphics card in issue supports HDCP, Triple Display, and OpenGL 4.6. While the device itself only consumes 75W of electricity, a 350W power source is recommended. The low power consumption of this graphics card appeals to a wide range of customers.

As a graphics card, the Zotac GeForce GTX 1650 OC is capable of 4K resolution. It’s just 5.9 inches long, but it’s compatible with 99.9% of PCs. Therefore, the chances of your machine being compatible with the software are quite high.

A single fan serves as the only source of cooling for this graphics card. Despite its small size, the fan boasts a set of narrow blades with a diameter of 90mm. A heating disc in the shape of a sunflower is included for even distribution of heat.

The visuals also showcase a brand-new Zotac Firestorm user interface. Using this easy and intuitive interface, you can simply adjust settings and monitor the health of your computer’s components.

3. XFX Radeon RX 580 GTS XXX Edition

XFX Radeon RX 580 GTS XXX Edition 1386MHz OC+, 8GB GDDR5, VR Ready, Dual BIOS, 3xDP HDMI DVI, AMD Graphics Card (RX-580P8DFD6)

XFX’s graphics card is ranked third on this list of the top graphics cards for Photoshop, Dreamweaver, and Illustrator. Powered by the latest Polaris architecture, this Radeon RX 580 graphics card has 8GB of VRAM.

The Next FinFET 14 process technology, 4th Gen GCN graphics cores, new multimedia cores, and a completely new display engine are all included. Improved performance and efficiency are provided.

The graphics card has a real clock speed of 1366 MHz, a memory clock speed of 8000 MHz, a memory size of 256 bits, and a stream processor count of 2304 streams. Furthermore, it employs the XFX True Clock Technology that’s hardware-controlled, making it a standout.

This technology ensures that the graphics card is constantly running at its best speed. XFX True Clock Technology XFX Zero dB Auto Load Sensing Fans are also included.

Fan noise is minimised thanks to the autoload detecting fans, which drop RPM when necessary to avoid overheating. It can go as low as 0 RPM, but it can also accelerate up as needed.

You can edit 4K pictures and videos with this graphics card. With the 3-year guarantee, the XFX Radeon R580 GTS comes with the XFX warranty. You’ll be compensated if the card has any manufacturing flaws.

4. MSI GeForce RTX 3070 LHR 8GB

MSI Gaming GeForce RTX 3070 LHR 8GB GDRR6 256-Bit HDMI/DP Nvlink Torx Fan 4 RGB Ampere Architecture OC Graphics Card (RTX 3070 Gaming Z Trio 8G LHR)

Another Nvidia Ampere-based graphics card has been released. The new SM has a 2X increase in FP32 throughput. Second generation RT cores and third generation tensor cores are also included.

In order to improve performance, DLSS AI acceleration is employed on this graphics card’s 8GB VRAM memory. Lightroom’s video editing capabilities will benefit from the highest possible video quality and frame rate.

Ray tracing is also supported for high-quality rendering at the cinematic level. The MSI dragon centre programme allows you to effortlessly control and monitor various system parameters. MSI’s graphics card software is easy to use, with a user-friendly interface.

A thermal technology called Tri Frozr 2 is used on this graphics card. In order to keep things quiet while you’re working, the system makes sure that the fan speeds don’t get too high.

The deflectors and Airflow Control help to improve the airflow dynamics and direct the air to the areas that need cooling the most efficiently. Precision-machined core pipes distribute heat uniformly over the heatsink, ensuring maximum cooling efficiency.

When the heat is turned on, the Zero Frozr feature kicks in and keeps the fan running even when it’s set to a very low temperature. Thermal pads on the graphics card help distribute heat more effectively. This MSI GeForce RTX 3070 LHR graphics card is very immune to overheating.

5. VisionTek Radeon 5450 2GB DDR3

VisionTek Radeon 5450 2GB DDR3 (DVI-I, HDMI, VGA) Graphics Card - 900861,Black/Red

This graphics card from VisionTek provides both value and functionality. It’s hard to believe that the VisionTek Radeon 5450 2GB DDR3 graphics card measures only 5.9 inches in length by 0.6 inches in height.

GPU-accelerated rendering works well in Photoshop and Lightroom on a Radeon 5450 graphics card with 2GB of RAM. In addition to DVI-I, HDMI, VGA, and DisplayPort are also supported. The graphics card can be installed with only 1GB of system RAM.

The graphics card’s AMD Avivo HD Video & Display Technology is fascinating. Players will appreciate the improved image processing offered by the 5000 series graphics processors.

This tool has made it a simple to apply hefty effects and filters to photos and videos. It’s also worth mentioning AMD PowerPlay Technology.

AMD PowerPlay Technology is a wonderful benefit when dealing with graphics-intensive programmes since it balances performance and power.

VisionTek Radeon 5450 2GB DDR3 graphics card comes with a three-year limited warranty if registered within 30 days of purchase. If you do not register, the guarantee is only good for one year.

6. ASUS GeForce GTX 1050 Ti 4GB

ASUS GeForce GTX 1050 Ti 4GB Phoenix Fan Edition DVI-D HDMI DP 1.4 Gaming Graphics Card (PH-GTX1050TI-4G) Graphic Cards

This is a well-known graphics card that is also one of the most durable. It is 2x longer than other graphics cards because to the inclusion of a twin ball-bearing design.

It also has a sturdy backplate that shields the graphics card’s delicate components from damage. The circuit board is likewise protected by this.

NVIDIA chipset with a clock speed of 7008 MHz and PCI Express 3.0 Interface are found on the graphics card. It’s compatible with NVIDIA GPU Boost, which adjusts clock speeds based on how much work you’re doing.

The airflow performance of two optimised fans is doubled. Because of the improved cooling, you don’t have to worry about your computer overheating when using intensive effects and graphics.

The fans’ lifespans are likewise longer. The International Protection Marking (IPM) has verified them to be dust-resistant (IP code). It’s a guarantee that the fans will work even in the most extreme conditions.

If you’re using your graphics card at full capacity, you won’t have to worry about it consuming a lot of power or making much noise.

A low-cost option for Photoshop, Lightroom, and Illustrator users is ASUS’ GeForce GTX 1050 Ti 4GB.

7. EVGA GeForce RTX 3070 Ti FTW3

EVGA GeForce RTX 3070 Ti FTW3 Ultra Gaming, 08G-P5-3797-KL, 8GB GDDR6X, iCX3 Technology, ARGB LED, Metal Backplate

8GB of onboard RAM is included in EVGA’s latest graphics card, which features an upgraded RT Cores and Tensor Cores, respectively. Fast because of the G6X RAM and strong multiprocessors. The I/0 data rate is also rather high.

For example, this graphics card’s 19000MHz memory clock is one of the fastest in the industry, and its 6144CUDA cores are one of the most impressive. It also features an impressive 1860MHz boost clock.

This graphics card, like the majority of the rest, is built on NVIDIA’s Ampere Architecture. DLSS AI Acceleration is used to boost frame rates. The quality of high-resolution photographs isn’t sacrificed in the process of making edits with this technique.

3D rendering and 8K editing are no match for the graphics card. Several state-of-the-art features guard against excessive heat. Enough airflow is ensured via a 180-degree heatpipe and ventilation chambers surrounding the heatsink.

Additional cooling is provided by three fans that keep the graphics card from making too much noise. Fan power is automatically cut off when the temperature dips below 55 degrees Fahrenheit, making your system completely silent.

8. MSI GeForce GTX 1660

MSI Gaming GeForce GTX 1660 Ti 192-bit HDMI/DP 6GB GDRR6 HDCP Support DirectX 12 Dual Fan VR Ready OC Graphics Card (GTX 1660 TI VENTUS XS 6G OC)

MSI’s GeForce GTX 1660 is ranked second in this list of the best cards. In order to run this graphics card, you’ll need at least a 450W power supply. This MSI GeForce GTX 1650 card uses 1.4 times less power than the competition.

It features a Boost Clock of 1830 MHz and a 192-bit memory interface. It’s fast. It utilises NVIDIA Architecture and NVIDIA Turing shaders for maximum speed.

The graphics card’s RGB lighting capability for the Dragon Center is one of a kind. With so many lighting effects and colours at your disposal, editing photos and movies has never been easier.

Similar to MSI’s Twin Frozr 7 Thermal Design, this card follows suit. The heat sink receives air from a standard fan blade, while the dispersion blade accelerates the flow of air.

Even when the system is running at maximum capacity, the heatsink is kept at a manageable level. Zero Frozr technology automatically turns off the fan as the load drops, making life even easier.

9. MAXSUN AMD Radeon RX 550

MAXSUN AMD Radeon RX 550 4GB GDDR5 ITX Computer PC Gaming Video Graphics Card GPU 128-Bit DirectX 12 PCI Express X16 3.0 DVI-D Dual Link, HDMI, DisplayPort

It has a 4GB memory capacity in MAXSUN’s AMD Radeon RX 550. The usage of Microsoft DirectX 12 (DX12) technology ensures high frame rates and quick performance. This card size is flexible enough to work in almost any occasion.

This graphics card has three video outputs: DVI, HDMI, and DP. In addition, it has 512 stream processors, a memory speed of 6000MHz, and a 50W TDP. An X16 3.0 PCI Express x16 interface is also included.

The AMD Radeon RX 550 of the MAXSUN can handle 4K video and photo editing with ease. Aside from that, this graphics card has been tweaked for compatibility with Windows 7 and 8. (Windows 7, 8, and 10).

The addition of the Vulkan API is to blame for this. In terms of overall performance, the Vulkan API allows close control over the hardware. The finest graphics card API available is Vulkan.

This programme can be used to adjust the settings of the graphics card. Use the ALT+R keys to edit from within Photoshop or Lightroom.

Because of AMD Radeon Chill, you won’t have to worry about overheating. This power-saving feature alters the frame rate based on the amount of work you put in within a given period of time. Battery life is conserved by automatically lowering the frame rate when you aren’t using the device as hard.

10. PowerColor Hellhound Spectral White AMD Radeon RX 6700 XT

PowerColor Hellhound Spectral White AMD Radeon RX 6700 XT Gaming Graphics Card with 12GB GDDR6 Memory, Powered by AMD RDNA 2, HDMI 2.1

In tenth place on the list is the PowerColor Hellhound Spectral White AMD graphics card. The white design of the graphics card quickly sets it apart from the competitors.

One of the most powerful graphics cards on the market is packed with 2560 stream processors, 12GB of GDDR6 video memory, 2424MHz game clock, and up to 2581MHz boost clock. High-quality polymer capacitors and two 8-pin PCI-E connectors let you maximise your computer’s performance.

To help dissipate heat, it has a nickel-plated copper base and a triple fan design. This card has a long lifespan because to the cooling fan’s dual ball bearings, which provide four times the life of a single bearing.

When the card’s fan kicks on, a white LED light illuminates, making it stand out from the crowd. A simple switch can turn off LED lights. At temperatures below 60 degrees, the quiet fan technology begins to operate. As a result, the fan’s power consumption and noise level are both reduced.

How To Select The Best Graphics Card

Graphics are not something that can be purchased off the shelf. The most crucial thing to consider is whether or not it will function with your computer.

Think about the following things:

Check to see if you can improve your graphics card.
Laptops typically use graphics cards that are soldered directly to the motherboard. You can’t get rid of these cards. Laptops, particularly Macbooks, are the most common source of this issue.

Determine the sort of motherboard slot your graphics card is plugged into by reading or opening your system’s manual. See if you can get a better graphics card for your computer.

Graphics card sizes can also vary. Check your case’s measurements against the dimensions of the graphics card before purchasing one.

Graphics cards’ power usage also vary. If you look at the unit’s label or the system’s documentation, you’ll find this info. Before you acquire a new power supply, make certain that the capacity is compatible with the one you currently have.

Other aspects of the situation should be examined.
It is possible to buy graphics cards in a variety of combinations. Even if some features are more significant than others, they should all be evaluated. Some of the most significant graphics card and computer performance characteristics are listed here.

Below is an illustration of the GPU’s RAM (Random Access Memory) capacity. A graphics card with at least 4GB of memory, preferably 6GB or more, is necessary for 1080p output at high settings.

The more RAM a computer has, the better it performs. Aside from RAM speeds, there are a number of other factors that might affect the performance of the computer.

The memory’s ability to store information quickly.
It is possible to gauge the RAM speed of a graphics card, often known as its memory or bandwidth. When it comes to memory, this is crucial because cards with the same amount of memory but different speeds may function rather differently…

Device that aids the user
Your graphics card may require a certain power source to work properly. Graphics cards have a wide range of power consumption, as previously mentioned.

For most dedicated graphics cards, a PCIe slot’s 75 watts is not enough power. Connecting the power supply directly to the GPU through a 6- or 8-pin connector provides more power.

GPU thermal design capacity (TDP) (TDP) measures how much electricity and heat a GPU uses. The higher the TDP of a graphics card, the more power it consumes.

Most GPUs come with a recommended maximum power consumption listed by the manufacturer. The thermal design power (TDP) of your computer can tell you how much cooling you need.

Graphics card length and the number of PCI-e slots it occupies in a computer case are utilised to determine its performance. ‘ Aside from the fact that it will fit in your case, your graphics card’s dimensions are important for a variety of reasons.

Ensure that your PC’s motherboard has enough space for your new graphics card before you buy one. PCIe slots, the bulk of which are 16x, are used by the vast majority of discrete GPUs on the market today. Multiple slots are available for installing graphics cards.

Examine any GPU-linked peripherals, especially if a PCI-E slot is required. The components you wish to install should be compatible with the case you choose. Poor cooling and performance can be caused by a lack of space.

Make sure you meet the program’s prerequisites before you enrol.
Because of advancements in computer technology, a wider range of graphics cards are now compatible with the majority of software. Still, there are a few graphics cards that don’t play nice with each other.

Depending on the version of Adobe’s software, Photoshop, Lightroom, and Illustrator have different GPU requirements. To get the best graphics card, you must also take this into account.

The GPU requirements for Photoshop, for example, are as follows:

Possibly in 2014 or 2015, it was released.
Graphics are handled by a VRAM graphics processor with a memory of 512 MB. you can find everything you need to get started working with Photoshop right here
Photoshop requires at least 2 GB of VRAM for maximum performance. The more VRAM you have, the better your graphics card will function.

Adobe also keeps track of Photoshop’s list of unsupported graphics card series. Here are a handful of them:.

There are a few different generations of NVIDIA GeForce cards, with the earliest being the NVIDIA GeForce 1700, with the latest being the NVIDIA GeForce 9000.
Consider the Price
Consider your financial situation before deciding on a card. Adobe programmes function smoothly on a graphics card with a budget of less than $500.

A $1,000 graphics card isn’t out of the question despite this. If you have the money, a high-capacity graphics card that excels your current needs is an alternative. This could have a positive impact on future applications.

Is it Necessary to Have a Graphics Card in Your Computer?
It is claimed that graphics editing software such as Lightroom, Photoshop, and Illustrator are not dependent on a graphics card. What do you think about getting a graphics card? It’s an unequivocal yes!

Using these design tools without a high-end graphics card is still viable but with lower efficiency. Additionally, you won’t be able to take advantage of the game’s full potential without a graphics card.

Several advanced functions necessitate the use of a GPU. A good illustration of this is the use of GPU acceleration. GPU acceleration is the use of both the GPU and the CPU to accelerate video playing in real time. This feature is highly handy in video editing.

The performance of 4K and 5K televisions can be substantially enhanced by the use of a high-quality graphics card. You can get away with a low-end graphics card if you only use these programmes for the most basic tasks.

The quality of these editing programmes isn’t solely determined by their visuals, as should be remembered. Among the most important considerations are memory, storage, write, and read performance.

In a nutshell
Work in Photoshop, Lightroom, and Illustrator will go more quickly and smoothly if you have the best graphics card available.

To be sure your graphics card will work with your computer, make sure to read the specifications and requirements carefully before making your purchase.