Whether you normally spend hours slugging away on new-releases or pass your time on some of the older games, you need to do yourself a favor by getting the right graphics card for your system. That’s one important way to ensure you are not shooting yourself in the foot even after getting all the necessary components for a great gaming station.
Indeed, the uninitiated usually believe graphic cards are usually considered important for graphic designers and video editors—but serious gamers need not make that same mistake.
Because, not only will the right graphic card ensure that your videos and games look good, they also play a huge part in delivering a more immersive, and smoother gaming experience as well. Seriously, it is nigh impossible to overestimate the importance of the right graphics card to secure the quality of your gaming.
Fortunately, there has never been a better time to get one for yourself, thanks to the ongoing rivalry between the top three manufacturing giants: AMD, Nvidia, and, now, Intel. In their race towards creating the best, most powerful graphics cards for gamers, the winner is you and other gamers out there who are now spoiled for quality choices.
In particular, the best AMD graphics cards offer a lot of power for less than what an Intel graphics card costs. It doesn’t matter where you intend to put your graphics card—in a gaming PC or in your laptop meant for video editing or graphic design, you are sure to find an affordable AMD graphics design that would fit your requirements.
Affordability is only one of the reasons why AMD graphics cards are enjoying so much popularity though. These graphics cards seem tailored to dethrone the competition in terms of price, performance, and overall value. What you get is a set of mid-range cards that effectively punch above their price class.
When it comes to Nvidia vs AMD, if we can presently lay claim to the overall best graphics cards available on the market today, it is AMD that offers the best price to performance ratio. So read on for our selection of the best AMD graphics cards in 2021 if you are interested in getting powerful performance without spending a fortune.
Best AMD Graphics Cards
|Product||Key Features||Our Rating|
|Red Dragon Radeon RX 5700 XT||• 8GB GDDR6|
• HDMI/ DisplayPort x3
|AMD RX 5600 XT||• 6 GB GDDR6|
• Supports 8K resolution
|AMD Radeon RX Vega 64||• 8GB 2048-Bit HBM2|
• 4096 Stream Processors
|AMD Radeon VII||• 16GB HBM2 memory|
• Triple fan cooling system
|AMD Radeon RX 560||• 4 GB DDR5|
• Full 1024 Stream Processors
|AMD Radeon RX 570||• 4GB 256-Bit GDDR5|
• Boost clock 1250 MHz
|ASUS TUF AMD Radeon RX 5600 XT||• 6 GB GDDR6|
• Dual ball fan bearings
|XFX Radeon RX 580 GTS||• 8 GB GDDR5|
• VR Ready
|AMD Radeon RX 5700||• 8 GB GDDR6|
• 2304 stream processors
|AMD Radeon RX 5500 XT||• 8 GB GDDR6|
• 1408 stream processors
The Red Dragon Radeon RX 500 XT is one of the best overall graphic cards on the market across all brands, and that is largely due to the sheer force of its performance.
But it has other things going for it besides being a darling while at work. For example, it is nearly as fast as the RTX 2070 Super, lagging behind by a mere 4%, and price-wise it is within the same mid-range as the AMD Radeon RX 5700.
There are a lot of custom models of these graphics cards, some more expensive and others less expensive, but they all deliver pretty much the same level of top-notch performance. So you can simply go with whatever agrees with your budget without having to worry.
Like all other AMD graphics cards, for now, the Red Dragon RX 500 XT does not support ray tracing. However, due to the overachieving tendencies of AMD’s superb RDNA architecture, this graphics card can still deliver performance that is similar to graphics cards of other brands like Nvidia and Intel that offer features like ray tracing. And all this while exerting less of a burden on your pocket.
And AMD seems bent on delivering year after year. The Red Dragon RX 500 XT upgrades all that we came to expect with previous generations so that we now have smooth operations at 1440p and 1080p while using 75W less power.
Much of that efficiency is due to the RDNA architecture and the 7nm FinFET manufacturing process that is becoming popular among graphics card manufacturers. The Red Dragon RX 500 XT is a great option for you if you are just getting into the field of graphics cards and are looking for high performance without the need to understand the nitty gritty.
What happens when you set out to create the outright best graphics card for 1080p gaming? You create the AMD RX 5600 XT, that’s what happens. And its performance was boosted even further when AMD decided to boost its clock speed and memory performance in a bid to compete with the Nvidia OG RTX 2060.
If you are a fan of 1080p gaming—like the rest of the world—you may want to take a look at this graphics card and all that it has to offer you as a gamer.
You want to be vigilant while purchasing though. Not every piece of AMD GPU hardware that was shipped received the upgrades to their clocking speed and memory performance. So you want to check out the downloads section of any card you are thinking of buying to make sure that it has had the BIOS update to 14Gbps and higher GPU frequencies before you commit to a purchase.
Apart from performance, the RX 5600 XT makes sense to buy because its prices can go really low sometimes, as opposed to comparable products from other brands. If you see one, it wouldn’t hurt to check out the specs and price to see if they agree with you.
The AMD Radeon RX Vega 64 has a few years on it, but it still delivers enough performance to merit a place on our list of best AMD graphics cards. As far as 1440p gaming is concerned, this is still one of the best choices of graphics cards you can give yourself.
Even though it uses a little more power than some of the newer graphics cards on the market, and can get a little bit toasty while working, in terms of performance this card delivers better than many others.
You can rest assured that with this card under the hood, you would be able to max out any game in your catalog and still be able to get 60 frames per second. And also, given the age and presence of newer AMD models like the Radeon VII, you should have no problem finding sweet deals for the AMD Radeon RX Vega 64. How cool is that?
The AMD Radeon RX Vega 64 is able to elevate its performance once it enters turbo mode, and in this scenario, it outperforms its peers from other brands like Nvidia. This is a high-end graphics card that has the potential to sort out all your graphics related problems.
And it does that for cheaper than its Nvidia and Intel rivals. Even though during these turbo sessions it consumes about 30 more watts of electricity because the fans get ramped up for improved performance.
Not every entry from AMD into the graphics card market is a mid-range price high performer. There are some like their flagship AMD Radeon VII that are priced at a premium. But the good thing is these premium pieces also go on to deliver quality that is on par with all that you would expect at such lofty prices.
Indeed, while the AMD Radeon VII does not come with any new and unexpected ray tracing technology or AI capabilities, manufacturers put a focus on raw power and insane amounts of video memory. And the resulting performance has been enough to establish this graphic card as one of the best for gaming, in the minds of the gaming community.
Indeed, this graphics card comes with a massive 16GB of video memory or VRAM, and a high boost clock rate of 1,800Mhz. This is a profoundly powerful graphics card by any standard, boasting enough potential to cause fans to overlook whatever shortcomings it might have.
Ever since the advent of the AMD Vega 64 at CES 2017, Nvidia had somewhat taken over the high-end graphics market with its Turing architecture. The AMD Radeon VII was AMD’s attempt at reclaiming some share of their market, and it must be said that they largely succeeded in that task.
There are simply too many things done correctly here to dispute that opinion. Not only does the AMD Radeon VII does exceptionally well with 4K gaming, but it also gets top marks in content creation.
Its 16Gb of HBM2 memory ensures that it can hold its own and keep up against its much more expensive competitors, making it a strong contender for one of the best graphics cards available this 2021.
If you’ve got the budget to match its premium price, you should not hesitate to check out this beauty by AMD.
Nothing makes more sense than going for a nice budget graphics card option when your budget is limited. It even makes more sense to not break the bank when there are a lot of low-cost, quality AMD graphics cards like the AMD Radeon RX 560 available for you to choose from.
Now, at the price for which it goes, you shouldn’t expect heaven and earth with this gaming graphics card. But it does pack enough of a punch to live up to the legacy left by its predecessors, particularly the Radeon RX 460.
When the Radeon RX 460 launched, it marked a shift in the manufacturing focus of AMD who had not released a mainstream graphics card for years up to that point. There was a lot of excitement for the product and its capabilities, especially with the shift to 14nm FinFET technology.
The Radeon RX 560 just about outstrips whatever was achieved at that time, thanks to a few factors like the three billion transistors it packs into 123 square millimeters of die space. Also, the repackaging of AMD’s GCN architecture to boost power-sensitive applications plays a crucial role.
This may not be the most powerful graphics card out there, but it is still fairly commendable and also quiet while in operation. It is able to serve up frame rates of 1920 x 1080 in the newer games, and you can get even better performance if you are willing to adjust some of the settings to medium presets.
You can consider AMD the king of the mid-range gaming card, and it is because of graphics cards like the AMD Radeon RX 570 that pundits say so. While this graphics card costs much less than many you would come across out there, it is perfectly capable of holding its own with the AAA PC titles in your catalog, running 60 frames per second.
Be sure to go for the 8GB model, rather than the 4GB model for more performance, though.
The AMD Radeon RX 570 is a strong performer that would work well for anybody building their own mid-range PC rig meant for 1080p gaming. While a cut below the RX 580 graphics card, the RX 570 is still able to deliver similar levels of performance when compared to the three gig version of the GTX 1060 which is the most popular gaming graphics card today. And it is cheaper too, so a great choice for those looking for value for money instead of just becoming part of the crowd.
It is also possible to overclock the AMD Radeon RX 570 so that it performs at the level of the AMD Radeon RX 580. Given this fact, the price advantage is again highlighted because the RX 570 costs less than the RX 580. But you don’t need to do that unless you want to, given the stellar performance the RX 570 exhibits right out the box.
The ASUS TUF AMD Radeon RX 5600 XT comes with 6GB of GDDR6 memory to boost its performance. With a base clock speed of 1660MHz which can go as high as 1770MHz when overclocked, this gaming graphics card has more than it takes to accommodate 1080p gaming.
The 2.7 slot design on the card acts as a major heat sink that keeps the card cool when under operation, and especially during overclocking. This is one of the major reasons for the high-performance capabilities of the ASUS TUF AMD Radeon RX 5600 XT, and one of the reasons why, more than a few times, it has been proclaimed to be the king of budget graphic cards.
The XFX version of the Radeon RX 580 GTS is widely considered as one of the best from that stable. And it is not hard to see why with the sleek, black design and dual fans. This graphics card would feel right at home when put into any high-end PC.
The dual BIOS feature that is incorporated into the setup also makes this card ideal if you do other stuff on the side besides gaming, like crypto mining. Simply switch the card between gaming mode and mining mode whenever you want to change hats.
All in all, the XFX Radeon RX 580 GTS is a great option to go for if you are in need of sheer power and class in your PC gaming rig, without the high costs that come with other gaming graphics cards.
The AMD Radeon RX 5700 was released to the public only recently, and it has already been touted by many as the best AMD graphics card on the market. Previously, that title was held by the Radeon RX 590, but not anymore.
What’s more, you can get this graphic card for much less than you would have to pay for the same value as other brands. This mid-range graphics card offers 1440p gaming at Max or Ultra settings—something that was never mainstream until now.
With the AMD Radeon RX 5700, you would have no problems playing all the PC games you love at 1440p, even with all the settings turned on. You could finally stop having to compromise and start enjoying the full experience while playing the newer, heavier games.
The AMD Radeon RX 5700 also brings about 2GB more of VRAM than the Nvidia GeForce RTX 2060 even though they both cost the same price, further bolstering its position as the best value for money offer you can have.
In spite of all its merits, however, it must be said that the AMD Radeon RX 5700 is not exactly perfect. It has its flaws. For example, fans are yet to see the ray tracing for which they’ve been clamoring for quite some time now. But then again the gaming market is one of the most demanding and most difficult to satisfy.
Full marks for this AMD graphics card.
The AMD Radeon RX 5500 XT has one fundamental similarity to the AMD Radeon 5600 XT: they were both built with 1080p gaming in mind. In some ways, this purpose, noble as it is, counts against the Radeon RX 5500 XT because it means this is not the most powerful graphics card out there. Not by a long shot.
However, it was never meant to be. That’s not what was in the manufacturer’s mind when they set out to make a card specifically aimed at the 1080p audience. And also, given its price tag, and the performance it does manage to deliver, a lot can be said in favor of the AMD Radeon RX 5500 XT.
This is a game you can play your 1080p games on largely without trouble; although the more demanding titles would require you to tone some things down a little.
Gamers on a budget could very well leverage the power of this graphics card to get the best gaming experience that can be had on a budget. This is a graphics card that holds its own against more costly rivals, making it an easy choice if you are on a budget.
The AMD Radeon RX 5500 XT can run most games at 60 frames per second, so the majority of your catalog should be covered by this.
In contrast to higher-priced AMD entries like the AMD Navi which are able to go head to head with similarly priced rivals from Nvidia, the AMD Radeon RX 5500 XT takes a different approach in beating its rivals on price and performance.
And this works, because at the lower price ranges, the competition is tough. Nvidia has made it a point to flood that bracket with so many graphic cards to make it difficult for any to stand out and shine.
It is therefore truly a testament to its quality that the AMD Radeon RX 5500 XT is able to go even lower in price and outperform rivals like the GeForce GTX 1660.
While this is not the most exciting graphics card out there, as earlier mentioned, it does offer better value for money than pretty much all its similarly priced rivals available on the market.
What to Take Note of When Buying an AMD Graphics Card
When buying an AMD graphics card, there are a few things you need to keep in mind to ensure a favorable outcome:
The more pixels you game at, the more performance and power you need, and vice versa. Going for the best of the best AMD card might sound nice, but generally, you don’t need a top-shelf gaming graphics card to play at 1080p.
Graphics cards require energy to operate optimally, and the same is even more true when you overclock. So you need to make sure you have an adequate power supply for whatever graphics card you intend to go for. For example, Nvidia recommends a 650W PSU for their RTX 2070 Super, as well as specific connectors for best results. When buying your AMD card, double-check the power requirements and make sure you can comply, before making a purchase.
While 4GB is available, it is the minimum. You would do better with a 6GB option or even better still with an 8GB graphics card. Games today are heavier and more demanding than in previous years.
AMD graphics cards work with PCs that support FreeSync technology. If your PC or G-sync monitors support G-sync, you would need to look for something else.
Typically, you need to take a very good stock of your needs before you commit to a purchase. But you are likely to find the AMD card you need in our list of best AMD graphics cards, no matter what budget you happen to have.