These days, computers and laptops are required to handle workloads such as watching high-definition videos, 3D modeling, and intense gaming. To handle these tasks like a pro, your computer should have an efficient graphics processor.
There are different types of graphics processors out there and you need to choose one that suits your requirement. If your needs are as simple as minimal photo editing, light gaming, streaming live videos, and browsing the web, then the graphics system that was integrated into the processor should be enough.
If you have complex requirements, then you might have to upgrade to a separate GPU. For instance, if your requirements include intense photo and video editing, playing blockbuster games or mining crypto currencies, then you need a discrete graphics card.
Graphics cards are of two types
The graphics cards are of two types - gaming-oriented cards and workstation-oriented cards. The first one is optimized to deliver the best frame rates and realistic details and high resolutions. The other one is designed to deliver maximum precision and stability and is optimized for 3D rendering workloads.
Gaming-oriented graphics cards
The typical mainstream gaming cards those are available right now can drive most games at the FHD 1080p resolution and a frame rate of 60 fps. Only a high-end graphics card can render QHD 1440p resolution and a higher 120 fps frame rate.
Also read: How to select a CPU for your PC
If you are interested in gaming at 3840×2160, then you need to have two high-end graphics cards. This is where the NVIDIA SLI and AMD Crossfire come into play. These are similar technologies those let users pair two to four graphics cards in the same system. This way, it is possible to achieve higher graphics performance than using a single graphics card. This practice has its own set of limitations. Increasing the number of graphics cards in your system might not really increase or improve the performance.
Workstation-oriented graphics cards
Unlike the above-mentioned category of graphics cards, the workstation graphics cards are largely optimized to render accuracy instead of speed. These are meant for the OpenGL based workloads. Such workloads are widely used in multi-platform application programming to render 3D graphics in several professional applications including Siemens NX software and Solidworks. Such optimizations make the workstation graphics cards unsuitable for the workloads such as gaming.
Once you know your requirements, you can check the internet for the best graphics card in the market based on performance data, ability to handle other workloads, power consumption, and noise levels.