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The recently announced NVIDIA RTX 3000 Series graphics cards are a marvel of computer graphics technology. Featuring up to 200% performance increase over the RTX 2000 Series GPUs, and being almost twice cheaper, the upcoming NVIDIA Ampere graphics cards offer unbeatable price-to-performance ratios. However, for many casual and mainstream users, these cards are still quite expensive, as their prices range from $500 to $800, depending on the AIB partner model.
Achieving pleasant gaming experience, however, doesn’t have to be expensive. Most gamers nowadays still prefer to play their games at 1080P resolution, and don’t lust for latest state-of-the-art computer graphics technologies such as ray tracing, or AI-enhanced resolution upscaling. In fact, gaming with ultra settings and 60 FPS at Full HD resolution has never been cheaper. Most of today’s entry-level and mid-range graphics are capable enough to offer you enjoyable gaming experience, for a very reasonable price. Although they might not be able to offer you the maximum image fidelity, they will surely enable you to play the latest PC games with favorable performance.
In this article we will explore which are the best graphics cards that cost less than $200, and are able to deliver good performance in 2020. Our list will include both NVIDIA’s and AMD’s GPUs, as well as custom-made models of these cards produces by various authorized AIB partners. Some of these cards come with additional features such as uniquely designed coolers and PCB layouts, while some of them come with RGB lightning, and dedicated software utilities. Take a look, and decide which one best suits your needs.
Best Power Consumption:
Best Overall: XFX Radeon GTS RX 580 XXX 8GB
Boost Clock: 1366 MHz | Memory: 8GB GDDR5 | Length: 270 mm | Power Connectors: 1 x 8-pin | Outputs: 3 x DP, 1 x HDMI, 1 x DVI
- Great performance in 1080P gaming
- Great price-to-performance ratio
- 8GB of VRAM
- Somewhat power-hungry
The Radeon RX 580 is not a very recent graphics card. In fact, it is now three years old. However, it is dirt cheap, and it offers absolutely amazing performance for playing games at 1080P resolution. This model made by XFX is no exception, and unlike other AIB partner models of the RX 580, it features enhanced cooling solution, as well factory overclocked core and memory clocks straight-out-of-the-box.
For a price below $200, the Radeon RX 580 is the unbeatable budget GPU king. This card is about 4-5% faster than the famous GeForce GTX 1060, and 3% faster than the new GeForce GTX 1650 SUPER which features only 4GB of VRAM. It also offers practically the same performance levels as the Radeon RX 5500 XT, but for a significantly lower price. With ultra settings enabled, this card can easily run Battlefield V at 1080P resolution with 70 FPS on average, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt with 65 FPS on average, and Shadow of the Tomb Raider with 60 FPS on average.
In latest titles Radeon RX 580 can struggle a little bit, but provided you lower down the graphics settings, it can achieve favorable results. For example, the RX 580 can run Red Dead Redemption 2 at medium settings with more than 75 FPS on average, and Metro Exodus with 60 FPS on average. On the other hand, in eSports titles, such as League of Legends or Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, this card can easily push frame rates above 100 FPS with all settings set to ultra.
Paired with a FreeSync capable monitor, such as LG 27MP59G-P, RX 580 can offer ultimate tear-free 1080P gaming experience. For a price under $200, the Radeon RX 580 is absolutely the best. The card features 8GB of VRAM, which still makes it much more future-proof then the GeForce GTX 1650 SUPER, and frequent driver updates seem to be improving the performance of this card even more. In short, for the price it asks, there is really no serious contender to the Radeon RX 580.
Best Budget: XFX Radeon RS RX 570 XXX 8GB
Boost Clock: 1264MHz | Memory: 8GB GDDR5 | Length: 243 mm | Power Connectors: 1 x 6-pin | Outputs: 3 x DP, 1 x HDMI, 1 x DVI
- Very good performance
- Great for playing eSports titles
- 8GB of VRAM
- Dirt cheap
While NVIDIA dominates with its cards in mid-range and high-end GPU segments, the AMD is an absolute king in the budget 1080P graphics card segment. Here we have another Radeon card, which is called RX 570. This model made by XFX features 8GB of VRAM, as well as double dissipation cooling design and dual BIOS feature, which is great for cryptocurrency mining.
When speaking of its performance, the RX 570 is on par with the old GeForce GTX 1060 6GB, and is about 1-2% slower than the new GeForce GTX 1650 SUPER. This card can run Gears 5 at Full HD resolution with ultra quality settings at 60 frames per second, as well as Far Cry 5 at 65 FPS on average. However, the card is perfectly suited for playing latest free-to-play eSports titles such as Apex Legends, and Fortnite, as well as competitive shooters like CS:GO and Rainbow Six Siege.
For a price well below $200, this card offers 8GB of VRAM, and is a much better option than the costlier GeForce GTX 1650 SUPER which features only 4GB of VRAM. In some games, this card even outpaces the latest budget Radeon RX 5500 XT graphics card, which is based on AMD’s new Navi architecture. When considering its compute power, this card is also great for cryptocurrency mining, which means it can pay itself off, provided that you’re into cryptocurrency mining.
For a price less than $170, the Radeon RX 570 is a true bargain. In our opinion, this card virtually has no flaws, as it’s the best budget 1080P card currently available on the market. With a power consumption of 150 W, it will be great for an installation into a small HTPC computer, and we only wish it offered the same performance level as the RX 580 for the same price.
Best Power Consumption: ASUS TUF Gaming GeForce GTX 1650 SUPER OC
Boost Clock: 1770 MHz | Memory: 4GB GDDR6 | Length: 206 mm | Power Connectors: 1 x 6-pin | Outputs: 1 x DP, 1 x HDMI, 1 x DVI
- Solid performance at 1080P
- Very energy efficient
- ASUS’ model comes factory overclocked
- Only 4GB of VRAM
- Could be cheaper
If, somehow, you really don’t like buying AMD’s graphics cards, then this GeForce GTX 1650 SUPER overclocked model made by ASUS might satisfy your appetites. Featuring factory overclocked core and memory clocks, as well as high-quality sleeve bearing designs and protective backplate, this GTX 1650 SUPER AIB model is one of the best NVIDIA’s graphics cards that you can find for less than $200.
The refreshed GeForce GTX 1650 from NVIDIA’s SUPER lineup is a pretty solid card for 1080P gaming. The card is slightly faster than the well-known GeForce GTX 1060, and in most cases it is on par with the Radeon RX 580. In certain games it even performs slightly better than the Radeon RX 580, but that’s only in a few titles such as The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, and Assassin’s Creed Odyssey. In short, the card can run most PC games with ultra settings and at 1080P resolution with average 55-60 frames per second.
Compared to the Radeon RX 580, and the RX 570, the GeForce 1650 SUPER comes with some serious caveats. First of all, the card features only 4GB of VRAM, which by today’s standards is not enough. Even though it packs a very fast GDDR6 memory, the 4GB of VRAM will become obsolete very soon, so buying this card might not be worth it. Secondly, the card costs around the same as the Radeon RX 580, which is a bit disappointing considering the lack of VRAM and the overall performance. In short, if you are really on a budget, it would be a much better choice to get yourself the Radeon RX 570, or the Radeon RX 580, provided you have a few dozen dollars to spare.
Best Cooling: XFX RX 5500 XT Thicc II Pro 4GB
Boost Clock: 1845 MHz | Memory: 4GB GDDR6 | Length: 281 mm | Power Connectors: 1 x 8-pin | Outputs: 3 x DP, 1 x HDMI
- Very good performance at 1080P
- Very energy efficient
- Custom AIB cards feature good cooling solutions
- Supports PCIe 4.0 x8 interface
- Only 4GB of VRAM
- Costs roughly the same as Radeon RX 580
The Radeon RX 5500 XT is a mid-range graphics card by AMD, which was launched in December 2019. This is the only card on our list which is built upon latest 7 nm manufacturing process, which means it is much more energy efficient compared to other cards, and features latest computer technologies, such as at PCI-Express 4.0 x8 interface.
The listed RX 5500 XT Thicc II Pro model by XFX features very efficient double-slot cooling solution, and it comes with 4GB of GDDR6 VRAM. There is also a model with 8GB, however, it costs more than $200, so we didn’t list it here. In terms of performance, the Radeon RX 5500 XT is a solid 1080P gaming graphics card, as it’s 4-7% faster than the RX 580 on average. It can run Battlefield V on ultra settings with 75 FPS on average, and Shadow of the Tomb Raider with 60 FPS on average.
In most cases, the 4GB model is fast as the 8GB model, however, in some games which are hungry for VRAM, like Resident Evil 2, it can be up to 8 percent slower than the 8GB model. Even though the card is very energy efficient (consumes 130 W of power under full load), the 4GB model costs roughly the same as the Radeon RX 580, which features 8GB of VRAM, and offers practically the same performance. In short, the Radeon RX 5500 XT is a solid buy, provided you are looking for a brand new card, however, its price-to-performance ratio pales in comparison to Radeon RX 580.
Best for HTPC: Gigabyte GeForce GTX 1650 D6 OC 4G
Boost Clock: 1635 MHz | Memory: 4GB GDDR5 | Length: 170 mm | Power Connectors: None | Outputs: 1 x DP, 1 x HDMI, 1 x DVI
- Extremely small
- Draws power from PCI slot
- Very bad performance
- Only 4GB of VRAM
- Costs too much
Last but not least, we have the GeForce GTX 1650 (non-SUPER) graphics card. The above listed super-compact model made by Gigabyte features factory overclocked core clocks, as well as 170 mm long PCB layout, which makes this card ideal for installation in small and compact HTPC cases.
The non-SUPER GeForce GTX 1650 is designed to be a successor to widely popular GeForce GTX 1050 Ti. For a price below $170, this card might prove very appealing to many gamers and mainstream users who have limited budget. Unfortunately, in terms of performance, the GeForce GTX 1650 is a big let-down. In most games, and at 1080P resolution, the card is unable to hit 60 FPS mark with ultra settings enabled. In Battlefield V, for example, the card can barely maintain 50 FPS on average with all settings set to ultra.
Compared to other cards, the GeForce GTX 1650 is up to 40% slower than the GeForce GTX 1650 SUPER, and up to 24% slower than the Radeon RX 570, which costs roughly the same, and features 8GB of VRAM. Overall, the GeForce GTX 1650 is a pretty obsolete graphics card, which offers very bad performance for the price it asks. The only good thing about this sub-$200 card is that it draws power from the PCI slot itself, which means it doesn’t require any cable connection to the power supply unit. If you are in a search for a very cheap, yet capable card, then the Radeon RX 570 is the better choice. In case you prefer buying only cards made by NVIDIA, then GeForce GTX 1650 SUPER is a way to go.
Achieving the pleasant 1080P gaming experience isn’t too expensive these days. Most present-day entry-level, and mid-range graphics cards which cost less than $200 offer very favorable performance in variety of PC games. Most of these cards don’t come with any extra features such as RGB lightning, or support for ray tracing rendering, however, they make the job done in the graphics department. For a price less than $200, only a few GPUs are able to offer 8GB of VRAM, which is by today’s standards considered to be mandatory.
Depending on your budget and preferences, choosing any of these cards will be a good option, however, our opinion is that Radeon RX 580 and RX 570 offer unbeatable price-to-performance ratios in this sub-$200 GPU market segment. We hope our buying guide helped you in search for the information you were looking for. If you still feel confused, and need advice about buying, feel free to post comment below. We will try to help you.