Best graphics cards 2020: Nvidia RTX | RX Series | Radeon VII | GeForce GTX

Get the best GPU for you with the help of T3's best graphics card of 2020 buyer's guide

Best graphics cards best GPU Nvidia AMD Radeon
(Image credit: Nvidia)

Shopping for the best graphics card of 2020? We're here to help you pick through the wealth of cards on offer to find the top choice for your budget, your demands, and your current setup.

From state-of-the-art Nvidia graphics cards with advanced ray tracing technology, to graphics cards comparisons in terms of benchmarks, and onto analysis of budget AMD graphics cards that deliver incredible bang for your buck, we've got a fantastic selection of top pixel-pushers and a suite of useful information to help you find the perfect one for you.

With this guide to hand, finding the out and out best graphics card for gaming, or the best graphics card on a budget or best cheap graphics cards, or the best graphics card for price spent will be easier than finding another fake news "Half-Life 3 confirmed" report online.

That's because searching for the right graphics card often mean trawling through specs and benchmarks for hours on end, as well as dealing with buckets of confusing jargon, but not only have we picked out the key graphics card models you need to know about in this guide, but we've also explained why they've been chosen.

In other words, we've done most of the hard work of choosing the best graphics card for you: you can simply get on with making the right choice for you and then benefiting from the higher frame rates, additional processing power and a far more immersive and spectacular gaming experience.

And, right now is a great time to be shopping for a graphics card deal. Major online GPU retailers like Amazon and Walmart have plenty of bargains on offer, while more specialist computer hardware stores like Newegg.com, Overclockers.co.uk and Scan.co.uk are slashing prices as new 2020 cards arrive.

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The best graphics cards to buy in 2020

Best graphics cards AMD Radeon RX 5700

The AMD Radeon RX 5700 delivers incredible bang for your buck.

(Image credit: AMD / MSI)

1. Best graphics card for most people: AMD Radeon RX 5700

Fantastic gaming grunt at a super affordable price point

Specifications
Stream Processors: 2,304
Core Clock: 1,465 MHz (1,725 MHz boost)
Memory: 8GB GDDR6
Memory Clock: 14Gbps
Power Connectors: 1 x 8-pin and 1 x 6-pin
Outputs: 1 x DisplayPort 1.4 with DSC, 1 x HDMI with 4K60
Reasons to buy
+Very strong performance+Incredibly affordable price point

With almost unbelievable benchmark scores and a price point that sits very firmly at the affordable end of the market, the AMD Radeon RX 5700 is the hot new thing in graphics cards. Retailing for nearly a quarter of the cost of high-end cards like the Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Ti, the 5700 doesn't miss a beat, and at a 1440p resolution allows modern AAA games to be run at high if not max settings.

Indeed, the RX 5700's benchamark performance has been so strong that it has even eclipsed the other mid-range GPU king, the Nvidia GeForce RTX 2060, which is at least in part thanks to an extra 2GB of VRAM. What is worth noting here, though, is that while the RX 5700 out-performs the 2060 in terms of speed, it does not feature its real time ray tracing capabilities.

This lack of ray tracing aside, though, and there literally isn't anything to dislike about the AMD Radeon RX 5700 — and especially not its low price point. And, for that reason, we find it easy to recommend as the best graphics card for most people.

Best graphics cards GPU Nvidia AMD Radeon

If money is no object, then the Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Ti is the best graphics card to buy today.

(Image credit: Nvidia)

2. Best no-compromise graphics card: Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Ti

The best graphics card for raw performance

Specifications
Stream Processors: 4,352
Core Clock: 1,350MHz (1,635MHz boost)
Memory: 11GB GDDR6
Memory Clock: 14Gbps
Power Connectors: 2 x 8-pin
Outputs: 3 x DisplayPort 1.4, 1 x HDMI 2.0, 1 x USB-C
Reasons to buy
+4K, 60 fps gaming prowess+Nvidia ray tracing support+Dual fan cooling system

The Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Ti is without question the top of the pile when it comes to the best graphics cards of 2020: it's the most powerful card you can buy right now, with support for 4K resolutions at 60 fps, Nvidia's latest ray tracing technology, and just about all the extras you could ask for.

It's quite simply a powerhouse, with a size to match its performance. The GeForce RTX 2080 Ti comes so highly recommended because of the improvements Nvidia has made with its Turing architecture, wringing every last drop of 4K performance out of this particular model.

You get  11GB of GDDR6 VRAM, 4,352 CUDA cores and a boost clock of 1,635 MHz packed in here, with Nvidia's first ever self-implemented 90 MHz factory overclock reaping substantial benefits. RT and Tensor cores come built in to handle ray tracing and deep learning algorithms respectively.

It's ray tracing abilities are second to none, too, allowing for gorgeous and immersive in-game lighting and reflection effects, which are generated in real time. It's a card that is design to assault 3DMark, as well as any game, no matter how graphically demanding.

The only downside to this GPU is its high price point. However, if you can afford it, then this is the best graphics card you can buy today.

best graphics cards geforce rtx 2070 super

The best QHD graphics card on the market is the Nvidia GeForce RTX 2070 Super.

(Image credit: Nvidia)

3. Best mid-range graphics card: Nvidia GeForce RTX 2070 Super

The best graphics card for QHD gaming

Specifications
Stream processors: 2,560
Core clock: 1,605
Memory: 8GB GDDR6
Memory clock: 14Gbps
Power connectors: 6 pin + 8 pin
Outputs: 1 x DisplayPort, 1 x HDMI, 1 x DVI-DL
Reasons to buy
+Superb 1440p performance+Strong ray tracing ability+Mid-tier price point

The Nvidia GeForce RTX 2070 Super improves on the original 2070 in every way. Naturally, it delivers excellent gaming performance at 1440p, allowing games to run at very high frame rates with all settings jacked up to maximum. But it also does this while also delivering genuine ray tracing chops, too, which is like the cherry on top of the tasty GPU cake.

Key, though, to its positioning in our best graphics cards list is its price, which is smack bang in the middle of market cost-wise. It's literally half the cost of the Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Ti, which means you don't have to leave your bank account thoroughly broken in order to ring it up. It also would easily fall into a sub-1k gaming PC build, which is something we like to see here at T3.

In a direct bang for your buck showdown, then our top-rated card, the AMD RX 5700 still wins due to it costing significantly less than the 2070, while still giving it a run for its money in terms of performance (admittedly without any ray tracing capabilities). However, if you are looking to game at QHD resolutions and want a feature-packed and future-proof GPU, then the 2070 Super is a top choice.

Best graphics card AMD Radeon VII GPU

(Image credit: AMD / XFX)

4. AMD Radeon VII

The best graphics card for creatives

Specifications
Stream Processors: 3,840
Core Clock: 1,400MHz (1,800MHz boost)
Memory: 16GB HBM2
Memory Clock: 2Gbps
Power Connectors: 2 x 8-pin
Outputs: 3 x DisplayPort 1.4, 1 x HDMI 2.0
Reasons to buy
+Packed with 16GB of VRAM+Keeps pace with the best GPUs+Capable of 4K output

Invest in the AMD Radeon VII and you're not going to be disappointed: it fully earns its place on our best graphics card 2020 list. It might not quite match the grunt of the Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Ti, but it's still going to display your favourite titles in stunning detail and at excellent frame rates.

The first GPU to be producing using AMD's 7nm lithography process, the focus of the card is on speed and and memory (all 16GB of it) – even without the cutting edge AI and ray tracing of Nvidia's top-end cards, it's a worthy high-end entry from AMD.

With so much VRAM on board, this is going to appeal to creative types as well as gamers – those who need to work with lots of large files at the same time through the course of their day. It's perhaps a little overpriced for what you get, but the benchmarks are hard to argue with.  

With 3,840 of AMD's Graphics Core Next (GCN) cores on board, and a maximum boost clock of 1,800 MHz to take advantage of, the AMD Radeon VII is worth some serious consideration for gamers and creatives wanting top-level performance from their next graphics card.

Best graphics cards

(Image credit: Gigabyte)

5. AMD Radeon RX 570 8GB

The best graphics card at a super-low price point

Reasons to buy
+Really good 1080p performance+A range of choices available+Comes at some very decent prices

Take a look at the AMD Radeon RX 570 8GB and it's not difficult to see why it's made it into our best graphics cards of 2019 list: you get very decent gaming performance for not all that much money, and this card epitomises why AMD is so often favoured by gamers looking for value for money.

Shopping in the mid-range part of the market does of course mean a few compromises in terms of power, but if you're content with 1080p gaming then the 2,048 stream processors, 1,244 MHz core clock boost speed, and 8GB of on-board memory will do you proud.

Do some shopping around and you should be able to get an RX 570 card for a very decent price – you've got plenty of options to choose from, so it's a card that would suit those who like to put a system together to their exact specifications.

The Polaris architecture isn't AMD's most recent or best-performing architecture any longer, but we reckon that this is still going to get you some very good frame rates in your favourite games, at a price level that's not going to feel like daylight robbery.

best graphics cards RTX 2080 SUper

(Image credit: Nvidia)

6. Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Super

The best graphics card for top-end features at a slightly lower price

Reasons to buy
+Some of the best frame rates around+Overclocking is easy to do+Great ray tracing ability

The Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Super makes it on to our list of the best graphics cards in 2020 because of its quality power and performance at a high, but not flagship card level. It performs very well in benchmarks and is more than enough to max out all modern AAA games at QHD+ resolutions, but costs hundreds less than the Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Ti.

In terms of the headline features of this newest Nvidia series – deep learning AI processing and ray tracing support – you do get them here, just on fewer cores than you'll find on the Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Ti up near the top of this list.

The new and improved design on show here is another point in the positives column for the Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Super, and thanks to its Turing architecture, it is ideal for VR applications, too.

best graphics cards

(Image credit: Nvidia)

7. Nvidia GeForce RTX 2060 Super

The best graphics card for cheap RTX gaming

Reasons to buy
+Good mid-range performance+Ray tracing capable+Prices continue to fall

It might be more of an entry-level RTX card, but the Nvidia GeForce RTX 2060 Super is still a force to be reckoned with, and well worth considering if you're in the market for the best graphics card of the moment – especially if your budget won't stretch to the cards higher up on this list.

While it definitely won't push on much past 30 fps at QHD resolutions in many modern AAA games, and is best used for gaming at 1080p or a tad higher with high settings turned on, that's going to be plenty for most folk, and you do get the latest in ray tracing and deep learning processing from the Nvidia lab, too.

Although the card could be said to be slightly pricey for what it is, you're getting a big performance jump over the previous generation, which means this is still money well spent.

Built with 12nm technology, this is quite simply a stunning mid-range card, with gaming powered by 1,920 CUDA cores, a maximum boost clock speed of 1,680 Mhz, and up to 6GB of VRAM on board.

The only consideration you have to factor in is that the AMD RX 5700 outperforms this card in terms of raw grunt at a similar price point. The AMD card, though, doesn't come with ray tracing support, so it really depends on what you value more when making a choice.

Best graphics cards

(Image credit: MSI)

8. AMD RX Vega 56

A great graphics card for 1440p play on a budget

Reasons to buy
+1440p resolutions at a fair price+Attracting plenty of special deals+Overclocking made easy

If you're looking to hit 1440p resolutions with your games without spending a huge amount of cash along the way, then the AMD RX Vega 56 is one of the best graphics cards you should be considering, marrying performance with value.

Not only is it a card that offers excellent value for money right from the off, it's also a card that's attracting its fair share of deals and discounts, so you might well be able to pick it up for less than you originally thought.

With a boost clock of speed of 1,520 MHz, there's also the option of a 50 MHz overclock right out of the box, which is sure to please those of you looking to get the very best frame rates that your system can handle – and this is a card that excels at heat management, too.

While it might be showing its age just a little when compared with the newer cards on the market, this is still a very decent proposition for gaming in 2019, even on the best titles that the market can offer.

best graphics cards

(Image credit: XFX)

9. AMD Radeon RX 590

Another GPU that delivers mid-range excellence at a good price

Reasons to buy
+Excellent performance up to 1440p+Won't break the bank+Noticeably improved efficiency

It might not be one of the newest graphics cards around any more, but the AMD Radeon RX 590 is certainly able to still pack a punch – it's one to weigh up if the prices on the top-level Nvidia cards are leaving you a little dizzy.

Built on 12nm, you get 2,304 GPU cores, a top boost clock speed of 1,545MHz, and 8GB of (GDDR5) VRAM to power through your games with, making this undoubtedly one of the best AMD graphics cards you can pick up right now.

While there's not a massive performance boost over the cards that came before the Radeon RX 590, there is a performance boost, and you're not going to be left disappointed by the frame rates you're getting out of this card (especially at the sort of prices it's now going for).

More than specs, this is a card about improved thermals and efficiency, and it holds up very well against both Nvidia and other AMD cards at this particular price point. Hands down one of the best graphics cards of the moment.

best graphics cards

(Image credit: Gigabyte)

10. Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 Ti

Another excellent 1080p GPU at a very low price point

Reasons to buy
+Quiet and efficient+Very decent 1080p performance+Appealing discounts

Admittedly we're delving a little way into the past with the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 Ti but we'd say it's worth it: this card represented excellent value for money when it first appeared on the scene and that's even more the case now. If you're wanting to build a killer rig for less, pay attention.

The quietness, efficiency, and 1080p performance of the GeForce GTX 1050 are still as impressive as they were when it first came out, and while 4GB of VRAM isn't top drawer these days it'll still get you by.

Not everyone needs the very top-end graphics card hardware of course – indeed most gamers go for budget or mid-range cards – and with that in mind the GeForce GTX 1050 Ti is a very good deal indeed, even with newer models on the market.

The Pascal architecture still holds up well even without the very latest in ray tracing and the other technologies ushered in with Turing. Make sure you do your research before buying, as this is available at some very appealing prices.

Best graphics cards

(Image credit: Nvidia)

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