How To Choose Graphics For PC (Video Card)
All PCs come with the ability to display basic graphics. But to play the latest games with full graphic effects as well as use dual monitor displays and high-end digital displays, you often need to purchase an "add-on" video card, also known as a graphics accelerator card. There are many different types of video cards available. Here is how to find the best one for you.
1. Decide what you want and need to do with the video card. Video cards range broadly in price from as much as 2,00,000/- for Titan Z, the latest and greatest, to 2000/- for a low-end card. To choose the right one, you need to know how you want to use it. Do you want to play demanding games at maximum resolution and max settings or just play old games? If you chose to play demanding games, you will need to purchase a high-end card, usually 19,200/- or higher. If you just need to display your PC screen on two monitors or drive a high-end DVI monitor or TV, you can purchase a lower-end card. Keep in mind that the cost-to-speed ratio steadily drops after the cards reach the 9600/- mark i.e the prices follow an exponential curve with the most economical (more bang for buck cards) in the middle or 12,800 range.
2. Know what type of slot you will be using. Video cards can plug into three different types of slots on your motherboard. In order of highest performance, the slot types are PCI Express, AGP, or PCI at the low end. If your PC is more than 5 years old, it may only have a PCI slot. Some PCs today have AGP slots; AGP cards are usually 1400-2800 Rs. cheaper than PCI equivalents and perform 2-4 times faster, but are now rapidly superseded by the PCIe standard. If you bought your PC recently, it may have the newer, faster PCI Express (PCIe) slot.
3. Choose a chip brand (the two most most popular being either ATI or nVidia). These companies make the GPU (Graphics Processing Unit) that is on the graphics card, while another company will make the rest of the graphics card (memory, fan, VGA/DVI connectors). There are two leading companies that make the graphics chips that go into video cards. Many years back, Nvidia was the leader in this space, but in the past four years AMD/ATI chips and drivers caught up with Nvidia in terms of performance for price. Although, recently AMD/ATI has lost some ground again in some people's opinions. Either is fine, but it is really up to the user to research the specs for the particular card they wish to purchase. You can find reviews and descriptions of the leading chips and video cards available in all the major PC magazines online and in print. You can also go to manufacturer's websites, such as the one for Diamond Multimedia, for more information on the available video cards.
4. Choose a manufacturer. Many video cards are available from multiple manufacturers. Some examples are XFX ,EVGA, Sapphire technology and Asus. Different manufacturers offer different levels of warranty and customer support as well as different game bundles depending on the product. Many cards go on sale from time-to-time, especially at back-to-school and holiday time so be sure to shop for the best deal.