Updated on August 14, 2022
The greatest graphics cards are the beating heart of any gaming PC, blasting forth wonderfully rendered pixels to your screen. While there is no one-size-fits-all answer, we’re here to separate the must-haves from the want tobes. Some people want the quickest graphics card, while others want the best value, and many more want the best card at a particular price. Balancing performance, pricing, functionality, and efficiency is critical since no other component has as big of an impact on your gaming experience as the graphics card.
Whereas our GPU benchmarks hierarchy rates all cards solely on performance, our ranking of the top graphics cards attempts to consider the entire package. Price, availability, performance, features, and efficiency are all essential considerations, but the weighting becomes more subjective. With cryptocurrency and Ethereum miners presumably still snatching GPUs and ongoing supply chain difficulties, reasonably priced graphics cards appear to be out of reach.
Except you might look for the Radeon RX 6500 XT, GeForce RTX 3050, or Intel Arc Alchemist. Although the first two are already available (and sold out), AMD and Nvidia have theoretical MSRPs of $199 and $249, respectively. With bitcoin mining revenues declining, GPU prices are following suit, but there is still a long way to go until graphics cards revert to pre-pandemic levels. That hasn’t happened yet, but we’re at least moving in the right direction.
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Graphics Card Deals
GPU prices have been plagued by supply shortages, price gouging, and scalping for over a year. If you’re looking for a good price on a new graphics card, we recommend visiting our RTX 3080 deals, RTX 3070 deals, and RTX 3060 deals pages, where we advocate many ways to save money on either the graphics card itself or a prebuilt system that contains it. In general, the best deals will cost only 25–50% more than the advertised MSRPs. If you’re looking for a whole system upgrade, you might want to consider getting a pre-built PC, as these usually offer lower GPU pricing.
|GPU||Performance Rank||DXR Rank||Value Rank – eBay (MSRP)|
|Nvidia GeForce RTX 3090||2 – 124.6 fps)||1 – 75.7 fps||13 – $2,341 ($1,499)|
|AMD Radeon RX 6900 XT||1 – 128.4 fps||4 – 49.5 fps||11 – $1,421 ($999)|
|AMD Radeon RX 6800 XT||3 – 122.9 fps||5 – 45.8 fps||10 – $1,176 ($649)|
|Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080||4 – 114.5 fps||2 – 66.6 fps||12 – $1,440 ($699)|
|AMD Radeon RX 6800||5 – 110.1 fps||7 – 39.1 fps||9 – $1,033 ($579)|
|Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070||6 – 98.4 fps||3 – 49.7 fps||8 – $988 ($499)|
|AMD Radeon RX 6700 XT||7 – 95.0 fps||9 – 30.5 fps||6 – $783 ($489)|
|Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 Ti||8 – 90.3 fps||6 – 43.3 fps||7 – $847 ($399)|
|AMD Radeon RX 6600 XT||9 – 84.0 fps||10 – 24.1 fps||4 – $568 ($379)|
|Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 12GB||10 – 69.4 fps||8 – 31.9 fps||5 – $636 ($329)|
|Nvidia GeForce GTX 1660 Super||11 – 44.3 fps||N/A||3 – $422 ($229)|
|Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 Super||12 – 33.1 fps||N/A||1 – $265 ($159)|
|AMD Radeon RX 5500 XT 4GB||13 – 36.2 fps||N/A||2 – $277 ($169)|
Please keep in mind that the prices for the majority of graphics cards are still significantly messed up right now. We’ve included the most recent eBay average pricing, which are what we’d expect to pay right now, as well as the official launch MSRPs. The majority of these cards cost at least 50% more than the official MSRPs, and in some cases more than twice as much.
While we sorted the cards above in order of performance (taking into account both regular and DXR performance), we’ve sorted the cards below in order of performance as well as our own subjective rankings. This subjective viewpoint takes into account performance, price, power, and features as well as our own preferences. Furthermore, considering the current costs, it’s difficult to determine how to rank anything.
Best Graphics Cards for Gaming 2022
Best Graphics Card Overall, for 4K and More
REASONS TO BUY
REASONS TO AVOID
Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 3080 incorporates the new and improved Ampere architecture. It’s more than 30% faster than the previous generation 2080 Ti and allegedly $500 less expensive. The new RTX 3080 Ti was unable to replace the incumbent because to its substantially higher price. This is the card to get if you’re serious about maxing out all graphics settings and playing at 4K or 1440p – it’s normally overkill for 1080p gaming, although enabling all ray tracing effects in games that allow it makes 1080p still doable.
If you missed out on the first set of RTX GPUs, the RTX 30-series might be just what you need to get on board the ray tracing train. The RTX 3080 is your best alternative for playing ray traced games without breaking the bank, with potentially double the ray tracing speed of Turing and titles like Cyberpunk 2077 utilising even more ray tracing effects.
Ampere also incorporates improved DLSS tensor cores, a technique that will almost surely emerge in future games now that it does not require per-game training by a supercomputer. We’re seeing a lot more games utilising DLSS 2.0 these days, which is facilitated by the fact that it’s only a toggle and UI update in Unreal Engine and Unity to get it working. Nvidia’s RT and DLSS performance is also substantially faster than AMD’s new RX 6000 cards, which is fortunate given Nvidia sometimes falls behind in traditional rasterization speed (which is what our raw numbers are based on).
The RTX 3080’s most difficult part will be finding one in stock at a fair price. For example, the average eBay price over the last month has been more over $1,440. However, considering the higher prices of the 3080 Ti and 3090, this is our current top pick for a fast GPU.
Best AMD GPU, Forget About DLSS
REASONS TO BUY
REASONS TO AVOID
AMD’s Radeon RX 6800 XT is the best GPU for Team Red. Although the RX Radeon 6900 XT is technically 5-7% faster, it costs 54% more. That’s not a great value, especially since you don’t get any additional VRAM or other perks. In terms of performance and functionality, the RX 6800 XT exceeds and outperforms the previous iteration RX 5700 XT. It now supports ray-tracing (through DirectX Raytracing or VulkanRT) and performs 70-90 percent faster in our tests.
Before its release, the enthusiast community dubbed the GPU ‘Big Navi,’ and we received exactly what we expected. Navi 21 is more than double the size of Navi 10, with twice the shader cores and RAM. Clock rates have also been boosted to 2.1-2.3 GHz (depending on the card model), which is 300 MHz faster than the highest clock rates we’ve ever seen from a reference GPU. And AMD did it all without considerably boosting power requirements: the RX 6800 XT has a 300W TDP, which is somewhat lower than the RTX 3080’s 320W TDP.
The massive 128MB Infinity Cache boosts AMD’s speed tremendously. It improves effective bandwidth by 119%. (As stated by AMD). We expect that few, if any, games will demand more than 16GB in the coming years, putting the 6800 XT in a solid position.
What’s not to appreciate about that? Ray tracing performance is, to put it mildly, mediocre. Perhaps because modern games are more likely to be optimised for Nvidia’s RTX GPUs, but the 6800 XT is only slightly faster than the RTX 3070 in ray tracing performance, and it lags behind by up to 25% in some titles. And that’s without DLSS, which can increase RTX card performance by 20-40% even in Quality mode (sometimes more). Despite the fact that AMD is developing FidelityFX Super Resolution to compete with DLSS, it is not yet accessible, despite the fact that it is sorely needed.
Pricing and availability, as with other modern GPUs, remain awful. The average selling price for an RX 6800 XT on eBay last month was around $1,200. Although this is potentially superior to the RTX 3080, it is still more than double the AMD MSRP.