Best Graphics Card for 1080p Gaming 2016

best GPU for 1080p gaming under 300

Few years ago 1080p gaming was thing for the High ends.The graphics card for 1080p gaming were expensive. If your system can play games in 1080p,you must be coolest among PC gamers. But now it has gone mainstream, 1080p 60fps is a norm now. The graphics cards which are capable to run games on Ultra setting at the rate of 60 fps are now quite affordable. And 1440p is also now a possibility.

Display resolution used by steam community July 2016
Steam hardware survey

Every PC gamer want to play their games on ultra-settings at buttery smooth 60fps. And according to recent Steam Hardware Survey over 35% of the whole Steam community are already playing games at 1080p and the number are growing every month.

John cena surprised by steam survey

So do you want to join them? Without breaking your bank. Then you are at the right place. I will show you the best GPU’s are capable for 1080p 60fps gaming currently available in the market.

So let’s get started.

5.EVGA GeForce GTX 970 4GB FTW (ahun 3.5 GB)

EVGA GTX 970 FTW for 1080p gaming

The GTX 970 was launched back in September of 2014(yes, it’s old) but still it is quite a performer, and still is relevant choice. This card is based on Nvidia’s Maxwell microarchitecture (GM 204 chip) on 28 nm manufacturing process by TSMC which is quite power efficient. Back in the days the cards was targeted towards the Mid end, but now for the current price it is a good option for 1080p gaming.


CUDA cores1664
Clock speedBase:1216 MHz Boost:1367 MHz
Memory4 GB GDDR5, 256 bit memory bus, 7Gbps bandwidth.
Display Ports1 x Dual-link DVI-I 1 x Dual-link DVI-D 2 x HDMI 2.0 1 x Display Port 1.2
Power Supply requirement500W (145W TDP) 2X 6-pin
Warranty 3 Years


This card is originally targeted towards 1440p (which it does) gaming, but it was not able to hold stable framerate of 60fps in most of the next generation titles. So it makes it up in the 1080p list. The EVGA FTW editions comes with factory OC out of the box and with a non-reference EVGA ACX 2.0 cooling solution which is 26% more cooler and 36% quieter than its previous generation.

upfront view of GTX 970

The GTX 970 was a very controversial card because of it 3.5 GB GDDR5 VRAM issue(0.5 GB memory is slower or disabled) but still it is great performing card. Now let’s get on with the in game benchmarks shall we.


The Nvidia Maxwell architecture performs well in DX11 titles but not so in DX12 and Vulkan. Nvidia claims it fully support the newer API’s but not so in parallel task like Async compute. Taking aside the cons, the card still performs like a charm in 1080p. If you are on a tight budget and supports the Green team then this can be your card. Or you can scroll down below for more in the list.


Gpu under 300 amazon


4. MSI R9 390 Gaming 8GB

MSI R9 390 competitor of 970 under $300

The R9 390 comes from the Red Team (AMD) which was launched as a competitor to the GTX 970 .This card was very competitively priced and performed well. The R9 390 was developed AMD’s GCN 2.0 (Hawaii pro) micro architecture on 28 nm manufacturing process by TSMC. It was also targeted towards the Mid-range and suitable for 1440p gaming. Even if it was targeted to 1440p, it performs excellent for 1080p gaming.

Stream processor2560
Clock speedBase:1000 MHz Boost:1060 MHz
Memory2 x Dual link DVI-D 1 x HDMI 1..4a 8 GB GDDR5, 512 bit memory bus, 6Gbps bandwidth
Display Ports2 x Display Port 1.2
Power Supply requirement750W (275W TDP) 6+8 pin
Warranty3 Years


The MSI Gaming edition comes in nice Red & Black design (quite a looker). Those who choose red theme for a system build, should take a look at this card. The MSI Gaming edition comes with 3 factory OC setting out of the box. The MSI’s Twin Frozr V cooling solution offers up to 23% cooling than the reference.

MSI TwinFrozer 5 cooling solution

The R9 390 comes with 8GB GDDR5 of VRAM and has higher bandwidth interface (512 bit) which helps it to handle high quality textures into its buffer. So we can see this card performs well in more memory hungry titles.


As you can see R9 390 performs well in DX11 titles but outperforms Dx12 and Vulkan. This is because AMD’s GCN architecture. It was designed with parallelism in mind. The instructions are executed in parallel by Asynchronous Engines (ACE). They work in combination with Graphics Command Processor which are into graphics chip based on GCN architecture .Which significantly increases performance on AMD’s GPU.

But there is not always sunshine, there are some caveats. AMD GPU tends to get hotter and produces more heat than its Nvidia counterpart (GTX 970). So if you live in cold country don’t mind to look over AMD’s video card, it will warm you up.

AMD temperature are fine

Ha Ha! (Joke’s aside), still this cards performs well and even better in DX12. If you want your system to be future proof don’t mind considering this card even if it is old


Amd gpu under 300


XFX RX 470 4GB video card under 200 dollar fullhd gaming

The RX 470 is one of the latest and greatest AMD has to offer period. This chip is based on a slightly cut down version of the Polaris 10 chip based on GCN 4.0 architecture on 14 nm FinFET manufacturing process by Digital Foundries. This card is target under $250 category (the aftermarket ones), and will be able to play games at 1080p 60fps.


Stream processor2048
Clock speedBase:1226 MHz
Memory4 GB GDDR5, 256 bit memory bus, 8Gbps bandwidth.
Display1 x DVI-D 2 x HDMI 2.0b 2 x Display Port 1.4
Power Supply requirement400W (120W TDP) 6-pin
Warranty3 Years


The XFX RS 470 comes in a nice black design (which justifies black edition ofcourse) which is quite familiar from its predecessor design. For a system black and white theme system it will nicely blend into it. The cooling solution offered by XFX consist of a copper block which is connected to the GPU die, in combination with dual copper heatpipes that takes the heat away from the GPU through the aluminum fins than it is cooled by two 90mm fans .which are detachable using XFX’s Hard Swap technology.

RX 470 cooper block and cooling solution
Cooper block ,heat pipes and aluminum fins


This version of the card comes with 4GB of GDDR5 memory at 7 Gbps, for the price it is good. It has 256 bit memory interface which can handle 1080p gaming like a charm. Now let’s get on with the benchmarks.


The performance of the RX 470 is quite surprising as it is on par with the reference RX 480. Thanks to the Polaris architecture and 14 nm FinFET fabrication. The GCN 4.0 delivers great power efficiency compare to its previous generation’s architecture. As GCN 1.0 cards were performing well with Dx12 and Vulkan with GCN 4.0 it got better. With Async compute, AMD still has the upper hand in Dx12 and Vulkan supported titles.


If you are looking for under $250 graphics card for 1080p 60fps and 1440p gaming. This is the card you need go for.


graphics card under 200


2. Zotac GeForce GTX 1060 AMP edition

nvidia GTX 1060 video card for 1080p games pascal architecture

The GTX 1060 is a target towards mainstream market. This GPU is based on Nvidia’s latest Pascal architecture (GP 106 chip) on 16 nm FinFET manufacturing process by TSMC. This is the smallest and cheapest card Nvidia has offered in this generation of video cards period. Same as its predecessor this GPU is quite power efficient and offers great performance per dollar.

CUDA Cores1280
Clock speedBase:1556 MHz Boost:1771 MHz
Memory6 GB GDDR5 ,192 bit memory bus, 8Gbps
Display1 x DVI-D 2 x HDMI 2.0b 3x DisplayPort 1.4
Power Supply requirement400W (120W TDP) 6-pin
Warranty3 Years

The Zotac AMP edition comes with a mono chrome matte design which blends into any system’s color scheme. This card comes with Zotac’s Icestrom cooling solution which consist of aluminum fins which spreads through the entire length of the card in combination with dual copper heat pipes to take the heat away from the GPU, which are than cooled by two 90 mm fans. The bummer in the design aspect is it doesn’t comes with a back plate.

zotac icestrom graphics card cooling solution

The GTX 1060 comes with a 6GB GDDR5 of VRAM at the rate of 8 Gbps out of the box with 192 bit memory interface which is enough but game requiring higher bandwidth requirement may suffer in future. And also at 1440p gaming.

But, how does it performs?

The GTX 1060 performs like a beast in almost all titles. And in some titles even matches the performance of GTX 980. The performance is on neck to neck with the RX480 and in some titles out performs it as well. Nvidia has greatly improved its Pascal architecture in power requirement and efficiency form its predecessor. And this card also overclocks quite well.

But there are some caveats, the GTX 1060 works on a 192 bit memory interface which is quite low compare to other cards in the list but its sufficient for 1080p gaming. The other major problem is that this card doesn’t support SLI, which is quite a bummer for people planning for multi GPU setups while Dx12 supports multi GPU natively. Nvidia claims that Pascal supports Async compute but guy over at PC Perspective has analyzed that the support is only at the software level not at hardware level.  This card also prices bit higher than its direct competitor.

nvidia video card under 300

1. Sapphire Nitro + Radeon RX 480 8GB

Sapphire Nitro RX480 Grahics card under 300

The RX 480 is the most powerful GPU in the Polaris architecture offer by AMD. This card is built upon the full Polaris 10 chip based on GCN 4.0 architecture on 14 nm FinFET manufacturing process by Digital Foundries. This card is targeted towards the mainstream market (under $300) by AMD to give most bang for your buck to the consumers. It offers great value and efficiency for the price thanks to Polaris architecture and 14nm FinFET.


Stream processor2304
Clock speedBase:1208 MHz Boost:1306
Memory8 GB GDDR5, 256 bit memory bus, 8Gbps
Display1 x DVI-D 2 x HDMI 2.0b 2 x Display Port 1.4
Power supply requirement400W (150W TDP) 8-pin
Warranty3 Years


The Sapphire Nitro Edition comes in a mono chrome design which is suitable for system with any color scheme. The Sapphire Dual X cooling solution consist of aluminum fins which spreads though out the length of the PCB. The aluminum heat pipes take the heat away from GPU , which are than cooled by two 95mm fans. This card also comes with a back plate for better cooling of the PCB and an illuminated RGB Sapphire Logo on the side. And like other Aftermarket cards this is also comes overclocked out of the box.

Nitro RX480 Dual X cooling solution


This card comes with 8 GB of GDDR5 VRAM at the rate of 8 Gbps (4 GB version is also available at 7 Gbps) .It use 256 bit memory interface which is quite good compare to it’s competitor. This higher bandwidth helps to play games at much higher resolution (1440p).

Let’s take a look at the performance.

For the price it performs quite well, but this card shines in Dx12 and Vulkan titles.The RX 480 is based on GCN 4.0 architecture which supports Asynchronous compute on the hardware level, so that’s why it performs so well. The GCN architecture is designed to execute instructions in parallel which is handled by ACEs in the GPU. Asynchronous compute is built-in feature in DX12 & Vulkan which helps this card and other AMD cards to perform well.


The RX 480 is a great card but it has its own flaws. Like other GCN architecture it produces more heat under heavy workload. But it is under the normal limit. This card comes overclocked out of the box so the overclocking headroom is quite low (compare to GTX 1060).This is due to the drawbacks of GCN, which is not a good news for overclockers.


If you want to use a card for long term which is fully compatible with newer APIs (Dx12 & Vulkan) and offer the best value for money. Then this is the card you need to go for .This card is ideal for 1080p 60fps gaming and capable to run some games at 1440p. And offers some future proof ness to your build with the large amount of VRAM and faster memory.

Graphics card under 300 for 1080p



So these are the graphics cards which are able to play games at a stable 1080p and buttery smooth 60fps on ultra-settings. Now immerse yourself into games as if you are in the games and experience the glory of PC gaming.

So, On what resolution and graphics settings are playing your favorite games at ?

Which graphics card you are using?

Tell us in the comments below

Hope you have enjoyed it

So that’s all folks, catch you all later.

He is the founder of Tek Grains , he is a gamer by heart, loves technology and likes to help people. He is a Pc enthusiast and helps people over the internet to build their system.

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