Best Budget Graphic Cards for Esports

This article was written by Jacob Curulli for Flaktest Gaming –
It is reproduced here with permission.

Clock speed, RAM, CUDA Cores, SLI, Cooling?? Don’t care about any of that and just want to know what graphics card you need to buy to play the most popular esport titles? You’ve come to the right place.

Popular esports titles

Some of the most popular esports titles at the moment are: Overwatch, League of Legends, DOTA 2, Hearthstone, Counter strike : Global Offensive, and Rocket League. There are of course many more, but we’ll focus on these titles as they are a good representation of the types of games you’d come across in an esports tournament.

Part of the popularity of these games is due to the fact that they are able to run on computers with older components, they aren’t always as pretty as titles like Destiny or Far Cry, but they are accessible.

Let’s take a look at the recommended computer specifications for some of these titles, this is not the minimum specs – we want to be able to run these games at 60fps 1920×1080.

Game CPU Memory GPU
Overwatch Intel Core i5 or AMD Phenom II X3, 2.8 GHz 6 GB Nvidia GeForce GTX 660 or ATI Radeon HD 7950
Rocket League 2.5+ GHz Quad core 4 GB NVIDIA GTX 660 or ATI 7950
League of Legends 3 GHz processor 2 GB Nvidia GeForce 8800/AMD Radeon HD 5670
CS:GO Intel Core™ 2 Duo E6600 or AMD Phenom™ X3 8750 2 GB Video card must be 256 MB

It would seem that a machine with at least an Intel Core i5 and 6GB of Ram would be able to easily run any of the currently popular esports titles.

What FPS (Frames per second) do I need?

There are many, many opinions on what is the optimal frame rate for gaming. However, It is commonly accepted that 60FPS is the ideal number you should aim for. Any lower and motion starts to look choppy and generally unwatchable. Any frame rate higher that 60fps requires much better hardware, an expensive computer monitor, and usually – if you are just starting out your gaming adventure – isn’t worth the cost right away.

Here is a great video from gameranx explanaing what FPS actually is, and why it matters to gamers.


Show me the cards!

Gigabyte GeForce GTX1050 OC 2GB GDDR5
With a clock speed of 1518Mhz this card will pump out more than enough frames to keep you above 60fps @ 1920×1080.

Cost: $209.00


ASUS GeForce GTX1050Ti Cerberus OC 4GB GDDR5

If you would like to run your graphic settings higher, and get great performance in titles like Battlefront 2 then the Asus GTX1050Ti Cerberus is a great pick.

Cost: $299.00