To start off with, we would like to say that for the purposes of this article a graphics card is only really useful to someone looking to play games ( we are not considering ‘professional’ graphics cards like AMD FirePro and Nvidia Quadro cards). Although, there are a number of other purposes a graphics card may come in handy for such as Folding at Home (mainly Nvidia cards) or running multiple monitors.
However, in this article we will be focusing on graphics cards for gaming and how you would go about picking one. When you pick a graphics card these days the choice isn’t a simple as it may first appear, there are a multitude of factors that need to be taking into consideration to make sure you get the most out of your graphics card. We will be taking each of those factors and dissecting the main issues behind them further. The factors we think are important when choosing a graphics card are:
- The power supply requirements
- The number of screens you will use and at what resolution
- The performance of the rest of your system, the CPU in particular
- The amount of space in your case
We do not necessarily think your budget is an issue that is important when choosing a card, at the end of the day you make the ‘selection process’ of your graphics card using your budget and the performance figures of the potential candidate cards. Once you have narrowed down your choice to a handful of cards then it is important to consider the above criteria to then figure out which one is the most appropriate for you, note the card with the ‘fastest’ performance is not always the best card to get in most cases.
When it comes down to the question of ‘AMD or Nvidia?’, we don’t think this is a criterion that bares consideration. A graphics card is a graphics card and both AMD and Nvidia have their own unique perks but no one brand of card brings significant advantages over the other when it comes to gaming.