Buyers Guides Graphics Cards

Best Budget Graphics Cards to Buy in 2024

Best Budget GPUs to Buy in 2023 Feature Image

Introduction

It’s no secret that graphics cards have become expensive. We’ve seen a number of GPUs release from both AMD and NVIDIA at extortionate price points. NVIDIA started this pricing war with the release of their 4090 and 4080 SKUs, with AMD countering later on with the Radeon 7900 XTX and XT GPUs. The majority of these cards released for over $1000, with the 7900 XT being the only card sitting below this. These are of course, the top-end GPUs, but many of the other options that we’ve seen release in the past are equally poorly priced.

So what are your options if you’re looking for a budget GPU? Are you forced to grit your teeth and buy a pricier GPU? Or are there some worthwhile options for those on a more restrictive budget. In this buyers guide, we’ll be answering these very questions with a roundup of the best budget graphics cards to buy in 2023. We’ll be taking a look at some of the best options on the market right now, catering to a varying range of budgets and use-cases.

Best Budget Graphics Card to Buy: AMD Radeon RX 6700 XT

Sapphire Pulse Radeon RX 6700 XT

📸 View the AMD Radeon RX 6700 XT gallery.

Our pick for the best budget card to buy is the Radeon RX 6700 XT. It is one of AMD’s best graphics cards on the market, and is geared towards consumers looking to play modern triple A titles at 1080p or 1440p. This card is pricier than some other options on the market right now, but despite this, it is still an incredibly competitive choice that’s likely to last you for quite a few years to come.

Features: 4.2/5

Performance: 4.7/5

Value for Money: 4.6/5

Our Verdict: 4.5/5

Skip to the full testinggallery and where to buy the AMD Radeon RX 6700 XT. ⬇️

Suggested Article: Best Budget Intel 13th-Gen Motherboards to Buy in 2023

All Budget Graphics Cards in our Roundup

NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050

AMD Radeon RX 7600

AMD Radeon RX 6650 XT

AMD Radeon RX 6700 XT

1. NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050

Best Budget

MSI Gaming X 3050 - Feature Image

8GB

Video Memory

1.76GHz

Boost Clock

2304

CUDA Cores

550W

 Recomm. PSU

NVIDIA’s RTX 3050 has been one of our top recommendations for quite some time, due to its hardy performance capability within 1080p games at high settings. The RTX 3050 was one of NVIDIA’s last budget cards to release within the RTX 3000 range. This card comes in at an MSRP of $249, but can be picked up for slightly lower than this dependent on the AIB that you’ve chosen.

Performance wise, the RTX 3050 is more than capable of handling Esports-style 1080p games, with room for some modern titles. However, the weaker VRAM capacity will hinder this GPU in some of the more modern games that demand stronger hardware from your PC.

DLSS is one of the pillar technologies that comes with NVIDIA’s ‘RTX’ graphics cards, with RTX 3000 GPUs getting access to the second revision (DLSS 2). This allows you to alleviate some of the stress on your graphics card through the use of AI.

The biggest disadvantage that this card has versus other options, is the lack of VRAM. While the 3050 will be able to handle current-gen games without any problems, modern games will pose more of an issue for this GPU, as more VRAM becomes a requirement.

Although we’re not likely to see an RTX 4000 variant of the ’50’ SKUs, NVIDIA is likely to discontinue this card in the relatively near future. This means that for those looking to pick up a budget card, you’ll want to do it fast, as stocks aren’t likely to last.

Pros

Cons

Our Ratings:

Features: 4/5

Performance: 4.2/5

Value for Money: 4.1/5

Our Verdict: 4.1/5

Where to Buy

Buy the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050 on:

$313.71 at Amazon
Last updated: 2024-07-17 05:47:08 ET

2. AMD Radeon RX 7600

Best for 1080p Gaming

Gigabyte Gaming OC RX 7600 Resized

8GB

Video Memory

2.62GHz

Boost Clock

2048

Stream Processors

550W

 Recomm. PSU

Next up is the Radeon RX 7600 from AMD. The Radeon 7600 didn’t get the greatest reception during the initial release, but I believe this card to be one of the best priced options right now. The 7600 comes in with an MSRP of $269, making it one of the cheapest cards, but also incredibly strong when looking at the performance metrics. VRAM is an issue on this card (much like the 3050), but consumers can expect solid performance in current-gen 1080p games, with decent legs at a 1440p resolution too, making this card multi-faceted.

Much like the RTX 3050, the Radeon 7600 suffers from having less VRAM. This means that this GPU isn’t likely to cope with the performance demands of modern games.

Although the 7600 has some decent legs at a higher 1440p resolution, consumers can expect to see weaker framerates. If you’re looking to hit that 144Hz sweet spot at 1440p, you’ll want to look at a stronger graphics card.

Pros

Cons

Our Ratings:

Design: 4.4/5

Performance: 4.4/5

Value for Money: 4.5/5

Our Verdict: 4.4/5

Where to Buy

Buy the AMD Radeon RX 7600 on:

$249.99 at Amazon
Last updated: 2024-07-17 05:47:08 ET

3. AMD Radeon RX 6650 XT

Best Value

8GB

Video Memory

2.64GHz

Boost Clock

240mm

GPU Length

500W

 Recomm. PSU

For our third selection we’ve picked out one of AMD’s best cards from the Radeon 6000 range – the RX 6650 XT. During the initial launch of this card we were disappointed about the performance metrics of this GPU versus the competition. However, after some driver updates and optimisations, the 6650 XT became one of the best budget/mid-range graphics cards from the Radeon 6000 line-up. This card is pretty cheap as well, sitting around the $250 mark dependent on where you buy it from, and is more than capable in games at both 1080p and 1440p.

The 6650 XT is somewhat of an underdog when it comes to performance. The driver improvements and optimisations make this GPU incredibly strong at both a 1080p and 1440p resolution.

AMD’s 6650 XT is an extremely well priced card right now, with many AIBs coming in with a price point under the new Radeon RX 7600. If you’re looking for a cheap 1440p capable GPU this card is well worth picking up.

A consistent problem with budget GPUs is the use of 8GB of VRAM. If you’re the kind of consumer that plays triple A titles on the regular, you’ll want to consider looking at stronger alternatives that can meet the performance demands of modern games.

If you plan on playing the majority of your games at 1440p, it could be worth using FSR. But keep in mind that this tech won’t give you the returns that DLSS does when it comes to reducing performance overhead at a higher resolution.

Pros

Cons

Our Ratings:

Features: 4.2/5

Performance: 4.5/5

Value for Money: 3.8/5

Our Verdict: 4.2/5

Where to Buy

Buy the AMD Radeon RX 6650 XT on:

4. AMD Radeon RX 6700 XT

Best for 1440p Gaming

Sapphire AMD Radeon RX 6700 XT Resized

12GB

Video Memory

2.58GHz

Boost Clock

267mm

GPU Length

650W

 Recomm. PSU

For our last selection, we’ve picked out the 6700 XT, an old card that has been revitalised in the market. The 6700 XT has faced a mass of price drops in the past few months, placing it around the $350 mark, with many AIB options sitting well below this price point. Looking at performance, the 6700 XT is one of the most capable budget/mid-range cards that you can pick up right now. Consumers can expect excellent performance both at 1080p and 1440p without any problems, making this GPU ideal for those with a high refresh rate display. The Radeon RX 6700 XT is more expensive than most other budget cards, but it sits at a more than reasonable price point considering the available performance metrics.

If you plan on playing any games at 4K, the Radeon 6700 XT is unfortunately not quite strong enough. You’ll want to take a look at some stronger options if you’re playing games at a 4K resolution.

Although this card is pretty cheap in comparison to the alternatives on the market right now, but it is still a $300 card, which might be too much to spend on a GPU for the majority of consumers.

Pros

Cons

Our Ratings:

Features: 4.2/5

Performance: 4.7/5

Value for Money: 4.6/5

Our Verdict: 4.5/5

Where to Buy

Buy the AMD Radeon RX 6700 XT on:

$273.99 at Amazon
Last updated: 2024-07-17 05:47:08 ET

How We Tested the Best Budget Graphics Cards

In order to test and evaluate the best budget graphics cards, there are a number of factors that we take into account, these are:

  • Performance
  • Architecture
  • Thermals
  • Aesthetic
  • Value for Money

Frequently Asked Questions

RR-Question-Mark New

Do I Need a Good Graphics Card for 4K Gaming?

Yes you do. While there are some lower-end GPUs that can cope with a 4K resolution, you are likely to need a strong (and expensive) GPU to handle this higher resolution.

RR-Question-Mark New

Which is Better, DLSS or FSR?

DLSS on the whole is better when it comes to upscaling. There’s fewer latency problems, and DLSS also offers more of a performance bonus in comparison to FSR.

RR-Question-Mark New

Will My GPU Affect 1080p Gaming?

Not as much as your CPU. 1080p is a low resolution for gaming, and therefore has less pixels in comparison to higher settings. Your CPU will make more of an impact on 1080p gaming than your GPU will.

editor
Jay Harris is an expert in everything PC hardware! With a degree in Cybersecurity, and a PC hardware background Jay has all of the technical knowledge required to make informed recommendations. Jay is an avid keyboard builder and gamer, with a major passion for tech. In fact, Jay's personal rig boasts a white RX 7900 XTX graphics card, inside of the Lian O11D Mini - a true enthusiast's dream!