The Best Budget Graphics Cards Under $200 for 2018


(Top-Rated Entry-Level NVidia & AMD
Graphics Cards for 1080p Gaming)


Last Updated: Dec 10, 2017

Buying a graphics card with a budget of around 100 to 200 dollars will land you a GPU capable of very nice 1080p (full HD) gaming performance, and excellent performance for lower resolutions and older/less-demanding games.

However, deciding which exact GPU to get in this particular price range can be a little confusing. Fear not as we're here to help you make the right choice: we've rounded up what we currently see as the best graphics cards under $200 from both NVidia and AMD, and more importantly we'll share our thoughts as to why they were chosen. 


Related: Best Cheap Graphics Cards Under $100

Related: Video Card Buyer's Guide


One thing to keep in mind with the following GPU recommendations before continuing - if we suggest a certain brand or sub-model of a particular card, it was selected due to pricing/features/availability considerations at the time of writing, but feel free to get the same card from another brand if you find a better price or it has certain features (or aesthetics) that you like better.

Without further ado, let's get into the best graphics cards under $200 when building or upgrading a budget/mid-range gaming PC. We've broken up our recommendations into 3 parts: the best NVidia card under $150, the best AMD card under $150, and the best value card overall under $200.



Best Budget NVidia Graphics
Card Under $150:


Zotac GeForce GTX 1050 2GB

We've recommended the 1050 in our Entry-Level Budget Gaming Desktop Build for a while now and for good reason. It's good for gamers on a tight budget and will allow you to play classic or modern games quite well in 1080p, and very well in lower resolutions.

It's also enough graphics power to enjoy many popular eSports titles such as CS:GO, DOTA 2, League of Legends, etc. It's obviously not a high-end card though, and only has 2GB of video memory, so whilst it's enough for a basic gaming experience you can't expect to play graphically-demanding games at 60FPS on high settings.


NOTABLE FEATURES: (see full specs here)

Model:

Video Memory:

Base Clock Speed:

Architecture:

DirectX / OpenGL Versions:

Connectors:

Multi-Monitor Support:

Multi-GPU Support:

Recommended Minimum PSU:

Zotac GeForce GTX 1050 Mini

2GB (GDDR5)

1354 MHz

NVidia Pascal

12 / 4.5

HDMI, DVI Dual Link, DisplayPort

Up to 3 Displays

No

300 Watt







Best Budget AMD Graphics
Card Under $150:


MSI RX 560 4GB

For AMD fans, in this price range the latest card is the RX 560 which is neck and neck with NVidia's 1050 in terms of performance and value for money. Either GPU will serve you well for decent 1080p gaming, so picking between them will come down to current pricing and whether or not you can find one at a good deal.

Also, certain games will run at slightly higher FPS (frames-per second) with the 1050, and ditto for the 560, so that may be something else to keep in mind if perhaps you'll only be playing the same games over and over. Although the difference in FPS won't be anything crazy, if you're a picky gamer it may influence your buying decision. As an example, it's proven that AMD cards generally perform a bit better with CS:GO (Counter Strike Global Offensive), whereas NVidia GPUs thrive more with Overwatch.

Another thing to keep in mind the RX 560 comes in both 2GB or 4GB versions, but I'd stick with the 4GB as it's usually only 10-20 bucks more, even though you could get away with the 2GB version if you'll solely be sticking to less demanding games or you don't mind turning down the settings in some of the more demanding games when playing in 1080p in order to achieve smooth performance.


NOTABLE FEATURES: (see full specs here)

Model:

Video Memory:

Base Clock Speed:

Architecture:

DirectX / OpenGL Versions:

Connectors:

Multi-Monitor Support:

Recommended Minimum PSU:

Multi-GPU Support:

MSI RX 560 AERO ITX 4GB OC

4GB (GDDR5)

1196 MHz

GCN 4.0

12 / 4.5

HDMI, DVI Dual Link, DisplayPort

Up to 3

400 Watt

CrossFire (2-Way, bridgeless)







Best Budget Graphics Card Under $200:


Zotac GeForce GTX 1050 Ti 4GB Mini

In the popular price tier of $150 to $200, when on the hunt for the best bang for your buck GPU you basically have two options and they're both NVidia. There's the GTX 1050 Ti which usually goes for a bit over $150 or so at the moment, and the GTX 1060 3GB which is the next best NVidia graphics card and can be found for a little under $200.

Basically it comes down to how much you're willing to spend on your card; if it's less towards the $150 mark then get the 1050 Ti. Otherwise, if you wanna throw a bit more at your graphics card budget, get the 1060.

But overall, if I had to pick just one in terms of overall value for money, the 1050 Ti wins and is all the gaming performance you really need for a smooth 1080p (full HD) gaming experience with 60FPS+ maxed out in most modern games. Plus, the 1050 Ti has more VRAM (video memory) than the 1060's 3GB which won't make a whole lot of difference in most games, but will definitely help a little.

You'd only need to spend the extra on the 1060 over the 1050 Ti if you wanted to almost guarantee getting 60FPS+ on every game out there in 1080p (on high/ultra settings). For example, whilst a 1050 Ti gives 60FPS (high/ultra settings) in most games in 1080p, when it comes to the most graphically-demanding games of all such as The Witcher 3 you'll drop below 30/40/50 FPS etc, whereas with a 1060 3GB you'd be getting a lot closer to 60.

If you're wondering about AMD in the $150 to $200 category, they should have a competing graphics card in this price range right now, however their RX 570 (and other cards) are currently overpriced at the time of writing due to the bitcoin/crytpocurrency mining boom.

Hopefully this wrap of the best budget graphics cards under $200 helps you pick the right card for your budget; if you wish to take your GPU hunt further don't miss our full graphics card buying guide for 2018 which summarizes the main key points you need to know as a gamer.


NOTABLE FEATURES: (see full specs here)

Model:

Video Memory:

Base Clock Speed:

Architecture:

DirectX / OpenGL Versions:

Connectors:

Multi-Monitor Support:

Multi-GPU Support:

Recommended Minimum PSU:

Zotac GeForce GTX 1050 Ti Mini

4GB (GDDR5)

1303 MHz

NVidia Pascal

12 / 4.5

HDMI, DVI Dual Link, DisplayPort

Up to 3 Displays

No

300 Watt












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