If you have a desktop computer, you can significantly increase its performance with a budget graphics card.
We have listed the best budget graphics cards here. Budget cards are suited mostly for casual and moderate gamers.
If so, you’ll love this list of the best graphics cards under $200:
5 Best Graphics Cards Under $200 – 2018
I played GTA V, Warhammer End Times, Wolfenstein: The New Order, and some other 2015 titles on the card. I could play older titles at 1080p 60fps.
But new titles like GTA V and Doom 2016 need some graphics adjustments to run as smoothly.
This card comes with different fans, and I got Boost Clock 1468 MHz with two fans. It’s beefy and cools easily. There’s some mild overclock that I enjoyed.
It’s surprisingly quiet too, compared to older versions. Overall, this is a great card for those on a budget.
But I wouldn’t recommend it for gamers buying the latest 4k titles.
Zotac is not well known as EVGA for budget graphics cards, but I was curious to try. My impression is that this card performed really well considering the price tag and the specs.
The card performed especially well with slightly older games like Skyrim, Doom and Bioshock Infinite.
I recently played Resident Evil 7 and it worked fine on medium graphics settings on 1080p.
Performance wise, this does not work as well as EVGA or Asus listed below for new games. But if the title is older than 2015, this card should work quite well.
I played such graphics intensive games like Titanfall 2, GTA V, 2016 Doom, and Rise of the Tomb Raider without experiencing any lag or picture quality issues.
I can play all the titles I own at the highest graphics setting with this card. It comes with a 3D active fan, and it’s really good at keeping the card cool.
The card is about 17cm in size, which is very compact and is perfect for crammed bases. It has one-click super overclocking too.
Dual fans are authentically pleasing, and their main advantage is the overclock ability.
If you have your CPU in a confined space, a dual-fan graphics card like this one will provide more nonstop gaming time.
This card comes with an 1809 MHz boost clock and is VR ready. It has two HDMI ports as well to directly connect a headset or monitors.
The fan works incredibly quietly, considering that there are actually two fans. Games played as smoothly as expected. Impressively, streaming games performed the best.
The card requires only 75w of power. Connecting the power supply is rather easy because it only needs a PCIe cable.
Pair this graphics card with a processor like a Core i5 and you can enjoy a surprisingly powerful gaming machine. This graphics card is speedy enough to play the entire Battlefield series.
Note that this is a full height duel slot card that doesn’t come with a low profile bracket. You will have to remove the PCIe covers to attach this card.
Tips for Buying a Good Graphics Card with a $200 Budget
When shopping around for the best graphics cards under $200, keep the following tips in mind:
Instead of fussing about the RAM memory, what you need to pay attention to is bandwidth.
GDDR5 graphics cards (as most listed above are) is offer twice the performance a DDR3 card does when the clock rate is the same.
Even if a DDR3 card has 4GB of RAM, it still won’t be good as a GDDR5 with a 1GB of RAM.
Most graphics cards under $200 support 1920×1080 resolution. If you need to run anything higher than, you will need a higher end graphics card with more bandwidth.
If you plan on running 4K games, the above-listed cards may not suffice. But that largely depends on the game settings as well.
Your processor matters. The above graphics cards are supported by newer quad-core or more processors.
But if you run older processors like Intel Pentium dual core, you won’t be able to enjoy the optimal performance the graphics card can deliver.
So, make sure you don’t need to upgrade the processor before buying a sleek new graphics card.
Check the cooler on the graphics card. If the cooler is a reference cooler, make sure the vents are on the back of the card, so the heat is not redirected at your computer.