The graphics card is an important component in the PC. It is time to know how this essential component works on a PC. So what is graphics cards and how to choose the graphics card?So begin the article.
1. What is graphic card? Without graphics card, no display. Graphics card is computer component who makes the connection between the computer and the screen. In a physical way, the graphic card through the connectors such as (VGA, DVI, HDMI) converting the digital data of the computer into signals by the display device.
The graphics card provides complex calculations of image processing, especially 3D image rendering and video games. For this purpose, it has its own processor (the GPU forGraphic Processing Unit) and its own RAM (GDDR) to store the textures and images being processed. A powerful graphic cards that allows among other things, a high resolution, a high number of frames per second, the multiplication of polygons, transparency effects, shadows management. The interest of the graphics card is also to relieve the processor of the computer, free then to go about other tasks.
The efficiency of the GPU/video memory tandem depends on their operating frequency and the volume of data they can exchange. So a graphics card is characterized by the type of connector that connects it to the PC. Older cards are equipped with an AGP connector when the PCI-Express 16X, which allowsfaster transfer, is adopted by an old standard.
2. Which graphic cards are suitable for you?
Along with the processor and the storage unit, the third component to improve or renew the PC is usually the graphics card. Knowing which card to buy and how to choose it properly is not as simple as it seems. Take a look at our guide to purchasinggraphic cards with tips. Before considering the price and specifications of graphic cards to renew your PC, it is essential that you take a first step in checking the compatibility of your current computer. And it's not just about connectors. The power supply, the motherboard and the PCI slots are the first elements to check compatibility with the graphics card of you want.
(1)Graphic card size The first thing that you should observe in your current team is the issue of size, connections and configuration. The question of size is so basic that we could forget about it: the current graphics cards have a considerable size and may not have a place in the tangle of current components that we have connected to our motherboard. The most complete models, for example, usually require the space of two PCI-e slots.
Another direct check would be that of the power supply. Depending on the model we choose, today's most powerful cards are avid consumers of energy and need a source that provides its because they are not powered by the connection port but have dedicated power connectors. And attentive to the number of connections of 6/8 pins that we have available for the most powerful graphics.
(2) Graphics card with other component or system
The desire to have the bestgraphic performance faces the reality of the budget we have and the fact that the graphics card is not the only component of our gaming system or work with video / photo. In many cases, renewing the graphics card usually means investing an important amount in adapting other components to the future reality of our PC.
It will be useless to acquire a high-end card if neither memory nor processor is balanced and will complement the new beast of the team. Even the monitor can be a bottleneck that requires a renovation. It will be throwing the money to invest in a graph to play 4K if our flat screen is only 1080p and we will not buy a new one.
Test equipment When choosing a graphics card, it must be taken into account that there are other components, from the processor to the monitor which make up the complete system
If your aspiration is to have the best graphics to play, there is no doubt: you must buy the latest generation and the most advanced model that you can afford.
(3) Power and speed of a graphics card
In each model ofgraphic card there are innumerable characteristics that mark us the power and performance of it. The most direct is the TFLOPS of gross power, the CUDA cores or the speed / frequency of operation.
If you compare this data within the same generation you can have a basic overview of the level of performance of each model. In all three cases a higher frequency, number, TFLOPS or CUDA cores indicates a more powerful model.
(4) The amount and type of memory
Although the gross power will make a good part of the decision when choosing a newgraphic card for our PC, the value to which we must pay more attention is the type of memory that includes the card and the bandwidth of it (measured in GB/s).
The type of memory of a graphics card and its bandwidth is even more decisive than the gross amount of it
When choosing the amount of RAM, always look at the type and bandwidth over the amount because you prefer to have a faster memory than more GB of one with less bandwidth. If we are talking about the same type of memory and bandwidth, then yes, you can start to value choosing a model with more GB especially if you are going to work with several monitors or very high resolutions.
(5) HBM VS GDDR5
The memory section is one of the most different between manufacturers and ranges, and the current struggle between NVIDIA and AMD is partly due to the use of the HBM / HBM2 type of the latter, and preference (due to price and times) of NVIDIA by the GDDR5 / GDDR5X. Typically, the HBM type is present in the upper range and the GDDR is in the lower range.
Connectors, power and video outputs
The following specifications or features to evaluate and compare between graphics cards are simpler.They have to do with the consumption, cooling, connectors or video outputs offered to the user.
If we refer to food and consumption, the way it needs to be connected depends on the range. We can find cards that are fed directly from the connection slot while current high-end cards are common that have their own power connections (we must check to have three connectors in the power supply)
The figure that marks the maximum consumption, Overclocking possibilities and power requirements, as in the processors is the TDP. And look at the standard cooling systems because they will depend on the noise at full performance of the graphics card.
Regarding the outputs and connectors, we should pay particular attention to whether there iscapacity to use more than one monitor, the maximum resolution allowed, as well as the compatibility or the available connectors.
(6) Customized graphics cards
With each presentation of the graphics cards of the two brands AMD and NVIDIA, the hardware manufacturers complete thegraphic cards with customized editions in different aspects and which often include interesting improvements.
The most common and which are not mere appearance (such as lighting and customization) have to do with cooling,connections / outputs, power and even speeds thanks to serial Overclocking values. Here you must assess if the extra price is relevant to the use that you are going to make of that improved graph.
In some specific cases, the user of a PC intended for video editing or 3D creation needs agraphic configuration composed of more than one dedicated graphics unit.
That possibility of combining severalgraphic cards in a single PC has a different denomination depending on whether we choose an AMD or NVIDIA. In the case of the first we would be referring to compatible cards with crossfire, while those of NVIDIA are SLI.
Finally, if you are looking for something very specific, you should pay attention to the proprietary technologies of each manufacturer. FreeSync, Ansel, Game Stream and other similar ones are added to that. Although they are not at the level of what you should look at first in agraphic card it can be of value.
(7) Integrated graphics
Both the AMD and Intel processors include processor-associated GPUs that provide us with sufficient performance. And we can always add one when necessary.
The current level of the integrated GPU in the Intel and AMD chips makes dedicated graphics of less than is as have better performance now.
The range of entry ofgraphic cards under 100 dollars is now reserved for updating or improving equipment whose processors do not include a built-in level GPU or to which we want to take advantage of multimedia for a longer time, compact multimedia systems or equipment where the size of the graph is a problem.
A true reflection of this situation in the lower range is that the options, especially with Intel, have been reduced almost entirely.