Graphics Shootout: 17 Cards for a Better Gaming PC

Review: How much video card do you need? Which ones deliver the most bang for the buck? In our sort-of annual graphics card roundup, we evaluate 17 cards that cost from $80 to $600. (ExtremeTech)

If we have learned anything from our collective years of testing and writing about PC hardware and related technology, its this: Not everyone has the same needs and budget.

Sure, those brand-new, high-end graphics cards make all your games run fast with all the settings cranked way up, but the vast majority of PC enthusiasts dont have $600 to drop once or twice a year.

Similarly, those $100 cards offer tempting savings, but will they get the job done? Can you really play that game thats giving your current video card so much trouble?

Once or twice a year, we try to solve this dilemma with a big video card roundup. This time, we took 17 currently available cards representing the range of price points from $80 up to $600.

Well show you benchmarks with 3DMark06 and a sample of games that are representative of the graphics-card-stressors of the day. Well show you which models deliver high fames-per-second per dollar, and just plain high frames-per-second.

Ultimately, we hope to arm you with the information you need to figure out exactly which graphics card is right for you.

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