With the best graphics card, you'll get all the visual prowess you want, but without ruining your bank account. GPUs come out in waves, a bit like buses when you've been waiting for half an hour already, so knowing the best one isn't always easy.
After all, we'll regularly get four or five new ones from a company like NVIDIA simultaneously, which makes knowing the best graphics card, much like choosing the best NVMe SSD, a lot harder unless you're all in on the tech scene.
The good news is that there are tiers to most things in life, and because we want your life to be a lot simpler, we've gone ahead and weighed the performance, price, and features of some of the best GPUs on the market to find the absolute elite options out there right now.
Realistically, there are two brands that dominate here, but there are several options available from both companies, each with its own distinct benefits. So, without further delay, let's get into some of those options.
Best graphics cards
1. GeForce RTX 4090
Best graphics card overall
Boost Clock: 2,520 MHz
VRAM: 24GB GDDR6X 21 Gbps
Ultimately, the best GPU right now is the GeForce RTX 4090, which is an absolute monster in every single respect. Being so powerful does mean you need a fast CPU and a sizeable PSU to get it to work, but if you've got a good PC, then you'll be fine.
This thing can kick out 4K visuals with no issues, and will potentially even have the capacity to go beyond that too, thus futureproofing your setup. It's absurdly quick, can do ray tracing with ease, and the sizeable visual RAM allows it to tackle content creation with no problems.
It's pretty pricey, but if you really want to make sure you get the best graphics card, then this is the one you should be shopping for.
Read More: Best full tower PC cases
2. Radeon RX 7600
Best value graphics card
Boost Clock: 2,625 MHz
VRAM: 8GB GDDR6 18 Gbps
The Radeon RX 7600 is very budget-friendly, yet is still capable of some fairly decent output and can hit 1080p and 60 fps, which is more than enough for most video games.
It packs in a fair amount of power for the price too, which is what makes it such great value. It's not going to blow anyone away, but the price makes it an exceptional choice for a first PC for a younger gamer, one built mostly for indie games, or just anyone on a strict budget.
If you want great value overall and don't mind taking a hit to the potential of the GPU, then this is the one for you.
Read More: Best PC cooling fluid
3. Radeon RX 7900 XTX
Best AMD graphics card
Boost Clock: 2,500 MHz
VRAM: 24GB GDDR6 20 Gbps
Despite being fairly pricey, the AMD Radeon RX 7900 XTX isn't just a needlessly complicated name; it's also a very powerful GPU that'll have your jaw-dropping when you're playing games.
While it can't handle ray-tracing as well as the upper-end NVIDIA options, it has a sizeable visual RAM to work with and is very good at doing basically everything else, with boost clock speeds up to 2,500 MHz.
If you want to make sure you're maxing out graphics settings in games, or you just want a reliable, fast, and powerful GPU, then this is a great choice if you can afford it.
Read More: Best gaming PCs under 500
4. GeForce RTX 4070
Best midrange graphics card
Boost Clock: 2,475 MHz
VRAM: 12GB GDDR6X 21 Gbps
The midrange is a comfortable range for GPUs, because you'll usually get great power without having to spend your life savings on a single component. For this category, we've selected the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4070, which is still replete with modern features like DLSS 3 and more, but doesn't cost too much.
As long as you don't mind sticking to 1440p gaming, the RTX 4070 is an impressive card that can handle most games at high frame rates. While we'd like a little more VRAM ideally, it's enough to get the job done at the moment and should last a few years too.
So, don't be afraid to go for the midrange here, because it's still great at doing everything you'll need it to.
Read More: Best compressed air for PC
5. GeForce RTX 4060
Best budget NVIDIA graphics card
Boost Clock: 2,460 MHz
VRAM: 8GB GDDR6 17 Gbps
While the Radeon 7600 is a great budget option, if you specifically want a budget NVIDIA GPU, then you'll want to go for the RTX 4060.
While there are technically cheaper RTX cards out there, the most recent generation offers a fair bit more speed than the last generation, and also generally costs less as well. We're not sure how that's possible, but we're not going to question a good thing.
While you're never going to max. out any settings with this, the RTX 4060 can handle 1080p easily while providing a fairly fast performance as well. It's also quiet, which is handy if you're in a smaller room and want to avoid annoying anyone nearby.
Despite the drawbacks, the power-to-price ratio is very good, and that makes it an excellent option for a lot of people.