Gigabyte Radeon RX 6600 XT Eagle 8GB Graphics Card

Everything You Need to Know About Graphics Cards

Graphics cards are one of the most important elements if you’re looking to buy the ultimate gaming PC or even build one yourself. Also referred to as a graphics processing unit (GPU), graphics cards play a crucial role in impacting a PC’s gaming performance. 

If you’ve clicked on this article, you’re probably going to want to find out more about graphics cards or perhaps you’re searching for an answer to a particular question.  

In this guide, we break down everything you need to know about graphic cards, from what exactly is a graphic card and what it does, along with how to check what graphics card you have and whether it needs an upgrade. 

All this and so much more, basically if you’re looking to find out all the basics on what you need to know about graphics cards you’ve come to the right place. If this sounds interesting, have a scroll below…

What is a Graphics Card?

A graphic card is an expansion card and additional processor that is responsible for converting data from a CPU into an image that can be displayed and rendered on a monitor screen. It is a complex circuit board that has several components, including RAM and processor and they can vary in size, shape, and functionality depending on the one you choose. 

There are typically two types of Graphics Cards, an integrated graphic card, and a discrete graphics card. The first is a card that is already ingrained into the motherboard and unfortunately cannot be upgraded or replaced. This is more common in portable computers such as laptops and old and outdated PCs. 

The more complex and popular option amongst gamers is the discrete graphic card which is a portable card that is not already installed and can slip into a space on the computer called an expansion slot which is situated on the motherboard. These can be updated and upgraded making them perfect for those gamers who want to level up their user experience. 

What does a Graphics Card do?

The main task of graphics cards is to process an extensive level of image data which can help perform tasks in the monitor. This not only makes consumer use easier and more aesthetically pleasing but also allows for increased speeds. They are also beneficial for newer and complex gaming and applications, which require more processes to be run, as they can crunch the data smoother and quicker. 

This is why graphics cards are so important due to the increasingly high-end graphics in modern-day games that are only further progressing and becoming more challenging for monitors to handle without the Graphics Card.

What to look for in a Graphics Card 

There are multiple aspects and key elements you should look at when investing in a graphics card, some of which can make or break your experience. Below we have listed some of the most important elements to look for when buying a graphics card.

Graphic and Memory Amount – One of the crucial things you need to look for in a Graphics Card is to look at the Graphic and Memory Amount. These come in all shapes and sizes, but we’d recommend getting them with a minimum of 6GB of memory if you want things to run smoothly. 

If you’re running gaming programs on your PC in either 1080p or 4K resolution, you’ll want this to be slightly higher – your best bet is to splash out a little bit more and get yourself a memory card of either 8GB or 10GB.

Ports: HDMI, DVI and Display Port

Your PC’s monitors will typically support one of the three ports: HDMI, DVI and Display Port. It is extremely crucial that your graphic card has a connector to the correct type of port otherwise it simply won’t work. 

This means you will have to go back out into the market and buy yourself a new connector adapter, or in a worst-case scenario, even have to buy a completely new display. Both of these can be pretty pricey so we’d suggest avoiding this where you can.

The Graphic Card’s form factor

This one is to avoid the frustration of receiving your graphics card and it not being able to fit in your case. We’ve heard this happen on multiple occasions and it really is a big disappointment when you have the excitement of adding a new element to your PC and then it physically doesn’t fit. 

That’s why it is super important to look at how long, thick, and tall the card is and compare this to the space you have on your device. 

Other things you should look for in a Graphics Card:

  • Clock Speed – different graphics cards will have different clock speeds, and this can affect your frame rates and user enjoyability. Looking into the clock speed is a perfect way to upgrade the functionality of your PC.
  • TFLOPS – This gives you an indication of the GPU’s theoretical performance and compares the speeds on a chip compared to others.
  • Memory Speed – This is another element that can affect the speed of a card- which is always an important element when looking for a graphics card.
  • Power Connectors – All the good gaming graphics cards will require a PCle power connector so it’s definitely worth looking into getting one of these and looking into which pin variety will best fit your needs. 

Which companies sell graphics cards? The two big boys on the market: AMD vs Nvidia 

When it comes to graphics cards there are two main competitors on the market AMD and Nvidia and many articles will debate which company sells the better graphics cards

However, we can appreciate that both excel in terms of creating excellent graphics cards and would highly recommend searching through both companies if you’re considering buying one. 

That being said, here are some key things we can distinguish between the companies to help you choose which one to go with. We found that AMD has the edge on power consumption and efficiency along with being marginally cheaper in this sense.

In terms of featured technology overall, Nvidia’s are slightly superior across the board. But when it comes to pricing and availability AMD tends to be the better option with slightly lower prices and a tad high accessibility. 

Overall, people in the tech world find it really hard to split the two, so don’t worry too much about which company to choose from, as both are experts in the field when it comes to graphics cards.

How to check the Graphics Card you have

Checking what Graphics Card you have is a pretty simple task to complete so you don’t have to worry about much about finding this out. On most occasions, you just need to follow these steps:

  • First things first, power up your PC and head to the search menu where you can type in device manager. 
  • After you click enter on this feature your Control Panel’s Device Manager will appear. 
  • Once it has appeared look for display adaptors and click the drop-down button.
  • Here you should find specifically your graphics card details including its company, type, and model.

How to upgrade your graphics cards

We’ve previously discussed how to find and what to look for on the market when it comes to graphics cards but now you’ve picked the perfect one for your PC you’re going to need to know how to successfully upgrade the graphics card and install it. To replace it you will physically have to go inside the laptop you can choose to do this yourself or get a professional to do it. If you choose to do so yourself there are plenty of video tutorials that will walk you through this, but we will quickly run through the steps here as it isn’t too complex.

First, you will need to uninstall any old graphics card drivers, after this power off and remove all the cables from your PC and make sure your power supply unit is set to 0. Now it’s time to make sure it’s all clean and safe to install the new card so have a good dust around the area. 

Then physically replace the graphics card by unscrewing any slots and unplugging any remaining power connectors. Now gently push down on the catch removing the old card and replacing it with the new one. 

You can now screw back up the new card and make sure it is secure by reconnecting all the cables and connectors. Now the exciting part is powering on the PC and if everything’s gone smoothly so far. You can then download the latest drivers recommended by the chosen card company you went with. 


So, there you have it, that’s our ultimate guide to everything you need to know about graphics cards. We’ve delved into a plethora of the key aspects you should know about when it comes to graphics cards, we’ve tried to put it into plain English as we know the technological language can sometimes confuse people. 

We hope this guide has helped you out or perhaps solved a problem or question you’ve been trying to figure out. If you have any questions about any of the things we’ve talked about in this article you can drop them down below in the comments section and we will try to help you out!

Contact Us
Select the fields to be shown. Others will be hidden. Drag and drop to rearrange the order.
  • Image
  • SKU
  • Rating
  • Price
  • Stock
  • Availability
  • Add to cart
  • Description
  • Content
  • Weight
  • Dimensions
  • Additional information
Click outside to hide the comparison bar