4 Best Graphics Cards Under $100
Graphics cards can be expensive! From the $1,300 RTX 2080 Ti to all the way down to the $150 GTX 1650. These necessary pieces of hardware can be brutal on the budget and usually hog up most of the available cash.
So, if you’re on a super tight budget and are looking for decent value graphics cards under $100, there are plenty of options out there that will give you a great gaming experience.
In terms of general performance, most of the GPUs that we’re going to be discussing today are great 1080p medium settings GPUs. We’re also going to be discussing a lot of older cards. Although they might have some age to them, the performance they offer has stood the test of time and has proven them to be great budget-focused cards.
Let’s discuss some of these cards and go over exactly what they offer you and how much of your hard-earned cash they will cost.
Nvidia GeForce GTX 780
Based on the fully unlocked Kepler base GK110 chip, this card offers some excellent 1080p performance almost six years on from release. With performance almost identical to the newly released GTX 1650, this card can chew through modern gaming workloads and all at acceptable frame rates.
With three gigs of GDDR5, this card will also last you longer than cheaper 700 series cards. The general core configuration of this GK chip also allows you to get into some very light content creation on the side. You can also attach dual monitors using GTX 780 Ti.
For less than $100, 1050 Ti killing performance can be yours, and although Kepler hasn’t aged as well as Maxwell, it still gets the job done and will allow you to get some great FPS numbers at a great price.
AMD Radeon R9 390
The features and general hardware specs of this card are incredibly impressive for the prices at which it can be found. The R9 390 was the AMD flagship GPU back in mid-2015, and for less than $100, a very capable 1080p focused card can be yours.
Featuring the Granada GPU and eight gigs of GDDR5, the R9 390 offers performance that competes with the more expensive RX 570 and beats out the latest entry into the NVIDIA GTX lineup. However, this card can be power-hungry. When considering its price point, it’s hard to beat in terms of modern and future values.
With this enormous amount of VRAM, this card will last you for years to come, and the general specs of the Grenada graphics core will also keep the R9 390 in contention into the 2021s. Once again, for less than $100, this card is an incredible value, and it’s also relatively common and easy to find on second-hand sites.
AMD Radeon RX 470
Another card that you should try to keep an eye out for is the somewhat modern AMD RX 470. With the core configuration identical to the RX 570 and performance that edges out the GTX 1650. This budget GPU performs excellently in 1080p gaming scenarios.
With either 8 or 4 gigs of GDDR5, this card is also relatively capable of delivering 1080p gaming into the future and is also a great entry-level content creation card. For its price, the RX 470 is a fantastic GTX 1650 substitute, and the different aspects of the AMD Ellesmere chip give this older card an edge in terms of general compute and video encoding.
If you’re looking for a great budget graphics card, then the RX 470 is easily one of the best options available, especially if you can find it at or below the $80 mark.
NVIDIA GTX 970
This graphics card was incredibly popular back in its heyday, and it remains to be one of the best-selling gaming GPUs of all time. The NVIDIA GTX 970 is still a very capable Maxwell era card. Although there was some controversy surrounding the memory configuration in 2019, it remains a king of value.
A price closer to the $100 that you can find one for is still a steal when it comes to 1080p gaming. While the GM 204 chip isn’t as modern as any of the Pascal or touring offerings and Maxwell, in general, is starting to age a bit.
In terms of modern AAA games, the GTX 970 still has plenty of power under the hood to push 1080p at 60fps. In terms of newer budget offerings from Nvidia, the GTX 970 is at the king of the pack being roughly 15% ahead of the latest GTX 1650 and over 31% ahead of the last-gen budget king, the 1050 Ti.
If you’re looking for a very capable NVIDIA GPU to complete your budget rig, then you couldn’t go wrong with the GTX 970.
Wrapping up our group of GPUs, we’re going to be closing out on something that’s a little bit out of the ordinary. Our choice of the AMD Ryzen 3 2200 G may leave you scratching your head as the Ryzen line comprises CPUs. But what makes this special is its integrated Radeon Vega 8 graphics.
While this budget CPU, you won’t be tackling 4k gaming, but if you’re looking to get into some E-sports titles, then the 2200 G is a fantastic choice and will save you a ton of money.
Not only do you get a very capable quad-core Ryzen CPU clocked at 3.5 gigahertz, but you also get a competent integrated graphics solution. With eight mega compute units clocked up to 1,100 megahertz, this chip isn’t packing tons of graphical horsepower under the hood, but it’s able to tackle 900p gaming with ease.
If you’re looking to get into PC gaming and want room to not only upgrade in the future but also save you some money, then going with the Ryzen 3 2200 G or even the Ryzen 5 2400 G would bring you a great and relatively inexpensive gaming experience that leaves the door open in the future to getting more performance.