The Best Graphics Card For Your Money – Q4 2017 (Part Two)

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Kicking off from where we last left off, this the continuation of the best graphics cards for your money. Above and beyond the Rs. 40,000/= mark, you’re looking at a graphics card to pretty much max out everything and the kitchen sink at full HD and even touch on higher resolutions such as 2K or even the awe inducing bring-everything-to-their-knees 4K resolution.

Best Graphics Cards for Rs 40,000/=

Maximum settings (Ultra – 50+ FPS) on all the latest games at 1920×1080. Good performance (High – 40+ FPS) on all the latest games at 2560×1440. Entry level performance (low/medium – 30 FPS) at 3840×2160.

At 40k, you come across the oddball in the current graphics card lineup – the GTX 1060 3GB. Nvidia unintentionally (on intentionally) doomed this card from Day 01 with its unconventional naming. Even though it’s a GTX 1060, it’s not exactly a variant of the original GTX 1060 (the 6GB version), featuring 10% less cores and half the memory capacity.

If you’re thinking “well, 10% is not much”, keep in mind that this is a similar performance gap between the GTX 970 and the GTX 980. By the same logic the GTX 970 would be a GTX 980 3.5GB. This has led to the GTX 1060 3GB being disregarded as a lesser variant of the GTX 1060 instead of the capable card it is.

Naming aside, we have an extremely powerful card in our hands. At a 1080p resolution, this card breezes through any game thrown at it on the highest possible settings. However, if you even think about pushing that resolution beyond 1080p or the AA slider beyond the standard 4x limit, then this card is going to tank harder than Reinhardt charging off a cliff. The 3GB memory buffer is currently on the edge of what’s required for maxed out 1080p gameplay and will surely become a bottleneck in the next 12-18 months.

Enter the RX 570. While it trades blows with the GTX 1060 3GB at its best and draws 30-40W more on average doing it, it does come with an extra 33% VRAM – immediately making it a contender in this price bracket. Traditionally, AMD has been stronger than Nvidia at higher resolutions, and the same holds true with the RX 570. However, the extra compute performance AMD has dumped into the RX 570 has made it into a popular target for cryptocurrency miners making the availability scarce and the prices increase due to demand.

So what do we pick? If you strictly plan to stick with a 1080p monitor and tend to upgrade graphics cards every 18-24 months, then we’d recommend the GTX 1060 3GB. It is at present the faster card for 1080p gaming, but it is also at the end of its tether of what it can offer. The RX 570 seems to be the card for the long haul, with its superior high-resolution performance and AMD’s tried and tested Fine Wine technology that sees its cards age better than the competition.

Best Graphics Card for 40,000 Q4 2017
Best Graphics Cards for Rs. 40,000 in Q4 of 2017

Best Graphics Cards for Rs 50,000/=

Maximum settings (Ultra – 60+ FPS) on all the latest games at 1920×1080. Great performance (Ultra – 40+ FPS) on all the latest games at 2560×1440. Average performance (medium – 40+ FPS) at 3840×2160.

50k puts us amidst another solid red vs green battle. The RX 580 and the Nvidia GTX 1060 6GB. Both cards available starting just under 50k. Both cards are so even performance wise, you can just pick one blindfolded and walk away happy with the result.

If you are picky, a few things you can consider while making your decision. The RX 580 comes in two flavors – 4GB and 8GB. Unlike the GTX 1060 3GB and 6GB, both of them carry the same silicon, but with slightly lower memory and core clocks on the 4GB version. This disparity can be overcome by tweaking the clocks using the AMD Radeon Wattman utility built into the AMD driver itself.

Power draw wise, the RX 580 draws around 40W more on average than GTX 1060. We’re not calling this one. Since you’ll get pretty much the same performance out of both, just get whichever one makes you happy for whichever reason listed above.

Best Graphics Cards for 50,000 Q4 2017
Best Graphics Cards for 50,000 Q4 2017

Best Graphics Card for Rs 80,000/=

Great performance (Ultra – 50+ FPS) on all the latest games at 2560×1440. Good performance (high – 40+ FPS) at 3840×2160.

If you are using a full HD monitor, this is not for you. If you are planning to spend this much on a graphics card, take a long hard look at your monitor setup and make sure you aren’t wasting so much performance on inadequate screen real estate. After all, it’s not really what you put in your PC that matters, but what they put out on your display. If you are sitting in front of a full-HD display right now and contemplating spending Rs 80k on graphics, we’d strongly advise looking at a monitor upgrade first.

At the 80k price point, you are left with a solitary choice – the GTX 1070. Budget offerings start at around Rs 80,000/= and the higher end cards with RGB lighting and back plates go for around Rs 85,000/=. AMD’s closest competitor, the slightly faster RX Vega 56 tends to cost 90k+ plus due to its limited availability even though they share the same MSRP, making the GTX 1070 our only option for an 80k budget.

Best Graphics Card for Rs. 80,000 in Q4 of 2017
Best Graphics Card for Rs. 80,000 in Q4 of 2017

Best Graphics Card for Rs 100,000/=

Great performance (Ultra – 60+ FPS) on all the latest games at 2560×1440. Great performance (Ultra – 40+ FPS) at 3840×2160.

The 100k price point brings us the latest duel in the Red Vs Green saga. The brand new GTX 1070Ti vs the Radeon RX Vega 56. The Radeon RX Vega 56 was long overdue when it released a few months ago, and Nvidia promptly responded by providing their own alternative for this tiny niche, the GTX 1070Ti.

So which of these do we pick? Neither. While most GTX 1080s sell for around 110k or more, there’s one solitary offering providing killer value at just 105k – the Palit Super Jetstream. Keep in mind that this is no bottom of the bin model either – the Super Jetstream holds its own very well against its more expensive Strix, G1, and Gaming X competitors, making this an easy pick.

Best Graphics Card for Rs. 100,000 in Q4 of 2017
Best Graphics Card for Rs. 100,000 in Q4 of 2017

Best Graphics Card for Rs 150,000/=

Great performance (Ultra – 90+ FPS) on all the latest games at 2560×1440. Great performance (Ultra – 60+ FPS) at 3840×2160.

So you want to drop a fortune on your gaming system with a graphics card to match. What do you get? The Titan XP is currently the fastest gaming graphics card available, but it also costs an eye-watering Rs 325,000/=, making it a difficult recommendation. Our recommendation instead goes to the flagship of the Nvidia consumer product stack, the GTX 1080Ti.

If you’re splurging on a 150k graphics card, we would strongly recommend a good monitor setup to go along with it. 4K UHD is the in thing right now so you’d be well served with the 4K panel. However, the best gaming experience right now can be obtained by pairing up a high-end graphics card with a high refresh rate 2560×1440 or 3440×1440 ultra-wide monitor. With high refresh rate 4K monitors still in their early stages and requiring an ungodly amount of graphics horsepower to run, these options offer the best balance between a sharper image and smooth gameplay.

Best Graphics Card for Rs. 150,000 in Q4 of 2017
Best Graphics Card for Rs. 150,000 in Q4 of 2017

What about Dual Graphics Card setups?

Dual graphics card SLI and crossfire setups have always been a staple in our best graphics card roundups, something which is notably absent this time around. What happened? Are there no good value options anymore?

The value and performance still exist. Dual RX 570s will smoke a GTX 1080. A pair of GTX 1070s will trump a GTX 1080Ti for a little bit more. The reason that we no longer recommend a dual card system is support.

Support for Dual Graphics Card Setups is dying (Image credits: Tech Hive)
Support for Multi-Card setups is dying (Image credits: Tech Hive)

Support for multi-card graphics setups is being killed from pretty much every angle. Nvidia no longer supports more than 2 cards in SLI, and have limited SLI to cards faster than the GTX 1070. AMD has officially dropped the Crossfire branding, and most AAA titles over the past few months have foregone multi-card support completely.

So while a multi-card setup still looks cool and offers a decent performance bump in supported titles, going forward we aren’t too optimistic about running more than one card in your setup. Stick to the fastest single card you can afford.

 

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