Are you tired of receiving hefty energy bills? Maybe it’s because your Computer has been consuming a lot of power during your online gaming sessions. Streamers and competitive gamers spend hours on their computer, which is high power-consuming activity. Ultimately almost every user is looking for the best low power graphics card because GPUs consume a lot of power and contribute approximately 50% of your computer’s power consumption. Buying a low-power GPU can help you reduce your energy consumption. Not everybody is making big bucks in this industry. Entry-level streamers require a feasible solution that has the best of both worlds, powerful performance, and efficient consumption.
We have observed some of the best graphics cards without external power. These GPUs require no power connection from your PSU to support their operation. They solely draw power out of your motherboard, which means they are efficient performers. We will help you decide on a GPU that can allow you to play AAA title games like CyberPunk 2077, The Witcher 3, Red Dead Redemption 2, and GTA V at reasonable frame rates. Streaming and gaming is a highly process-intensive activity, and to keep your hardware from bottlenecking; you need the perfect match when running on a budget. We have compiled a list of the best low-power graphics card that can get the job done. Let’s start with quick shopping tips:
Quick Shopping Tips:
Power Consumption: This is the most important factor that our complete reviews revolve around. Your GPU needs to consume the least power to give the best possible FPS. Be sure to check it in specs so that you might be able to pick the best low power graphics card.
PCI Express: The version of the PCIe slot on your motherboard should be compatible with the GPU. It can be the next generation like PCIe 4.0 supported but cannot be lower than the GPU PCIe generation. Otherwise, you will face bottlenecking.
Cores: The number of cores has the most significant impact on your GPU performance, according to renowned publisher Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). The number of cores can improve performance by 125.8%—target buying higher core GPU.
Core Frequency: Core frequency also has an impact on your performance if increasing clock speed can improve performance by 16.2%. Some graphic cards offer overclocking options that will come in handy for some users.
Memory Size: Higher memory size can allow greater depth of view in-game. Like you can load a larger map at once that allows better performance in open-world games like GTA V and CyberPunk 2077.
Best Low Power Graphics Cards at a glance:
- ZOTAC GeForce GTX 1650
- MSI GeForce GTX 1650
- MSI GeForce GTX 1050 Ti
- ASUS Radeon RX 460 4GB
- Gigabyte Geforce GTX 1050 Ti
- Biostar Radeon RX 550
- Asus GeForce GTX 1050 Ti
- MSI Radeon RX 550 AERO
The Best Low Power Graphics Cards You Can Buy Today
Best Premium Low Power Graphics Card
Brand: ZOTAC | Chipset Brand: NVIDIA | Cores: 896 Units | Core Clock: 1665 MHz (OC) | Memory Type: GDDR6 | Memory Speed: 12 Gbps | Memory Width: 128 bits | Memory Size: 4 GB | Max Resolution: 7680 x 4320 | Power Consumption: 75 Watts | PCI Express: 3.0 | Dimensions: 11.5 x 8.9 x 2.28 inches
REASONS TO BUY
✓ It runs silently with two 80mm fans
✓ Power-efficient with no power connection
✓ Supports connecting three monitors simultaneously
REASONS TO AVOID
✗ No Scalable Link Interface (SLI)
✗ The latest games lag at great graphic details
With the maximum number of cores in a small-sized graphics card, ZOTAC GeForce GTX 1650 takes the top spot in our list of reviewed products as the best graphics card without external power. This small powerhouse only uses 75watts of electricity to provide 67fps on a game like Shadow of the Tomb Raider at 1080p resolution. This game is a real test for GPUs as it is well optimized for computer platforms and very hardware demanding due to the graphical details.
The GTX 1650 low profile version means optimized to take up less space and give out maximum output. With a similar chipset, we have seen better clock speeds. This GPU with 1665 MHz underperforms compared to the SUPER version of this same GPU. It’s not made for 4K gaming as the GPU lacks the latest graphic-intensive games' performance. The memory clock speed is also limited by PCIe 3.0, but this is the best premium low-power graphics card for a budget gaming PC.
This GPU produces little to no heat inside the chassis. The 40mm twin fans work with shallow noise levels and keep your computer silent even under gaming. This is a perfect graphics card for SFF chassis that cannot hold large GPUs. This 160mm length GPU can easily fit inside any modern chassis that run Mini-ITX cards. The requirement for PSU is also not high enough. A 300watt power supply is enough to power this graphic card via the motherboard. It’s an excellent choice for online games that are less graphic intensive, like DOTA 2, CS: GO, and PUBG, etc.
Best Flagship Low Power Graphics Card
Brand: MSI | Chipset Brand: NVIDIA | Cores: 896 Units | Core Clock: 1860 MHz (OC) | Memory Type: GDDR5 | Memory Speed: 8Gbps | Memory Width: 128 bits | Memory Size: 4 GB | Max Resolution: 7680x4320 | Power Consumption: 85 Watts | PCI Express: 3.0 | Dimensions: 6.7 x 1.7 x 2.7 inches
REASONS TO BUY
✓ High performance at low temperatures
✓ It offers marvelous results for a low profile card
✓ Supports 1860MHZ Boost Clock on 8Gbps Memory Speed
REASONS TO AVOID
✗ No backplate
✗ No GDDR6 support
MSI is known to give high-end products to its users. This graphics card consumes 85 watts with fast connectivity of PCIe 3.0. The incredible 1860 MHz core clock ensures that all your AAA title games run smoothly under high resolution. MSI GeForce GTX 1650 4GT LP OC is the GTX 1650 every low power user should buy. It is the best graphics card without external power connection from the PSU. The GPU comes with two fans to ensure that the GPU temperatures are kept under control and there is no throttling effect.
It runs but hotter than the other GTX 1650 graphic cards, but it’s worth the performance. If you fit it inside a well-ventilated chassis, then heat production won’t bother you as much. The older generation of memory that is the GDDR5 might be let off for some people, but it should bother you as long as the job is done. The market segment that MSI has targeted makes it an excellent choice for entry-level computer gamers. The hardware doesn’t support DLSS or ray tracing, which is a demanding feature of modern games.
The heat sink is part of an air-based cooling system that eliminates any chances of coil whining. It’s a simple design, and the efficiency of the GTX 1650 chipset makes it a staggering high performing machine with low noise. The GPU has VESA adaptive sync, which the older GTX 1050 with a similar price did not have. This graphic card not only consumes low power but almost consumes no power when under idle condition. The fans stop to stop further power consumption. It is indeed the best flagship low-power graphics card.
Best Overall Low Power Graphics Card
Brand: MSI | Chipset Brand: NVIDIA | Cores: 768 Units | Core Clock: 1493 MHz (OC) | Memory Type: GDDR5 | Memory Speed: 7.11 Gbps | Memory Width: 128 bits | Memory Size: 4 GB | Max Resolution: 7680x4320 | Power Consumption: 75 Watts | PCI Express: 3.0 | Dimensions: 9.01 x 1.54 x 5.16 inches
REASONS TO BUY
✓ Low Noise Fan Operation
✓ No external power required
✓ 1080p at 60FPS on AAA titles
REASONS TO AVOID
✗ No support for 4K@144Hz
✗ Not feasible for crypto mining
This graphic card is the most stunning in terms of looks in our list of reviews. MSI has introduced three modes in their MSI GeForce GTX 1050 Ti. OC mode, gaming mode, and silent mode have different clock frequencies. It supports 4K@60Hz since it has an HDMI 2.0b. It’s a compact design and comes overclocked right out of the box. The 4GB memory size is high enough to support a larger field in open-world games like The Witcher 3.
Anything above 60Hz is not possible with this GPU, and the HDMI version does not support 8 K resolution. The power consumption as compared to GTX 1650 is slightly higher. It doesn’t come with a backplate. It doesn’t support SLI, so it’s not the best for future compatibility even though most users won’t use this option, but it’s worth knowing. It runs fairly hot on OC mode. The overall performance vs. price is not the best in business.
The price for this chipset is reasonable, being an SFF graphic card of high performance. It comes with G-sync capability to ensure that your monitor Hz and GPU FPS exactly overlap to avoid screen tearing. The MSI gaming app is an exclusive addition that allows you to monitor and control your graphic cards via a mobile app or computer application. It can give 55 fps on 1080p resolution running Metro Last Light at very high-quality AF 16x. We call it the best overall low-power graphics card.
Best All-Rounder Low Power Graphics Card
Brand: ASUS | Chipset Brand: AMD | Cores: 896 Units | Core Clock: 1256 MHz (OC) | Memory Type: GDDR5 | Memory Speed: 7 Gbps | Memory Width: 128 bits | Memory Size: 4 GB | Max Resolution: 5120 x 2880 | Power Consumption: 75 Watts | PCI Express: 3.0 | Dimensions: 7.6 x 1.4 x 4.7 inches
REASONS TO BUY
✓ Power Friendly
✓ Fast enough for 1080p in many games
REASONS TO AVOID
✗ Doesn't overclock well
✗ Performance has limits, even at 1080p
If you are searching for a GPU made for ultimate value, Radeon RX 460 is the best choice. ASUS has come up with the cheapest possible solution for this GPU, ASUS Radeon RX 460 4GB graphics card. It has a patented fan design that allows 30% better cooling performance. In terms of aesthetics, this GFX card has an RGB lit logo. The card is part of the ASUS ROG series, making you part of the republic of gamers. The 75watt power consumption is exactly what your economically feasible computation device needs. It is the best graphics card without external power.
Even though the GPU can give out 40 plus FPS on the screen, it lacks the G-syncing Nvidia offers. It has excellent value, but you will find problems while moving your mouse around when it comes to the smooth gameplay required for competitive gaming. First-person shooter rapid movements tend to produce a lot of tearing across the display. Nvidia has G-Sync to cope with this issue. While AMD FreeSync is only available for high-end GPUs. It’s still the best all-rounder low-power graphics card, in our opinion.
It comes with direct contact heat pipes, which Asus calls Direct-CU II. The fan noise is equal to none with the patented wing-blade design. There are two heat pipe loops on a heat sink that allow proper heat transfer to keep the GPU running cool, i.e., under 60°C. The GPU supports the latest DirectX 12. The GPU can maintain 40 plus fps on games like GTA V, Overwatch, and PUBG. It is the right choice for low-end gaming computers looking to run games on a 50Hz monitor. It is overclocked out of the box and has an ARGB.
Best Mid-Range Low Power Graphics Card
Brand: Gigabyte | Chipset Brand: NVIDIA | Cores: 768 Units | Core Clock: 1455 MHz (OC) | Memory Type: GDDR5 | Memory Speed: 7 Gbps | Memory Width: 128 bits | Memory Size: 4 GB | Max Resolution: 7680x4320 | Power Consumption: 75 Watts | PCI Express: 3.0 | Dimensions: 6.77 x 4.45 x 1.18 inches
REASONS TO BUY
✓ Remains cool less than 60°C
✓ High-Quality material selection
✓ Offers silent operation even in heavy loads
REASONS TO AVOID
✗ No SLI support
✗ Larger size than its competitors
If you are looking to connect up to four monitors, consider buying Gigabyte GeForce GTX 1050 Ti. As the name suggests, this graphic card can fit the smallest of enclosures. With a small form factor and 167mm length, it can push out solid frame rates with low power consumption. The excellent price/performance ratio also offers cool performance literally. The GPU maintains less than 60°C irrespective of the amount of stress that you put it in.
The card is brilliant for low power users, but it has no SLI option to boost its performance. Even though it can run AAA titles but the FPS is limited; you might have to reduce the graphic detail to improve performance. As far as 30-60fps gaming is concerned, you won’t have to worry. It is an expensive version amongst the GTX 1050 Ti versions, mostly due to Gigabyte’s high-end material. We consider it the best mid-range, low-power graphics card.
It comes with preinstalled overclocking profiles which you can select with a single click. It comes with an XTREME Engine Utility that allows you to monitor the GPU vitals and performance statistics on screen. Gigabyte has used high-quality transistors and MOSFETs to ensure long-term reliability and operability. It has the ability to connect Dual-link DVI-D, DP, and two HDMI ports. Aesthetically the graphic card is subtle, with one fan operating as the heat dissipating agent. It’s an excellent choice for entry-level gamers or online players.
Best Budget Low Power Graphics Card
Brand: Biostar | Chipset Brand: AMD | Cores: 512 Units | Core Clock: 1183 MHz (OC) | Memory Type: GDDR5 | Memory Speed: 6 Gbps | Memory Width: 128 bits | Memory Size: 4 GB | Max Resolution: 4096 X 2160 | Power Consumption: 50 Watts | PCI Express: 3.0 | Dimensions: 6.75 x 4.12 x 1 inches
REASONS TO BUY
✓ Only 50w power consumption
✓ Allow 4K resolution for low-end games
✓ AMD Radeon Free-sync Technology Capable
REASONS TO AVOID
✗ No PCI-E 4.0
✗ Small form factor
Biostar is not one of the mainstream graphic card manufacturers, but they provide the most economical performance in our graphics cards list. The Biostar Radeon RX 550 is a powerful low power gpu, with only 50 watts of power consumption. Although it is a low power gpu, the 512 units running at 1183 MHz allow overclocked performance out of the box. It supports the high 4k resolution. It is the ultimate money-saving machine. It comes with the AMD Radeon Freesync Technology that allows smooth display on high-action games without any tearing across your screen.
Aesthetically the plastic looks cheap but has a high thermal performance. Most users have reported that most of the software interface is in Chinese, which was a letdown. The heatsinks do not have a heat pipe structure. The card allows three simultaneous connections, while some manufacturers provide 4 display options at the same price point. The GPU has lower cores, and the memory speed is also lower than the other GPUs featured in our reviews within a similar price range.
It can play first-person shooter games like CS: GO, Fortnite, and Valorant at 100+fps on 720p resolution, suitable for a small monitor, streaming, and competitive gaming from home. It’s the ultimate startup hardware for your gaming/streaming computer. If you have a small enclosure or pc case, this could be a wise choice as the length of this card is 6 inches and the low profile high allowed SFF cases assembly. It ranks high as the best low power graphics card.
Best Performance Low Power Graphics Card
Brand: ASUS | Chipset Brand: NVIDIA | Cores: 768 Units | Core Clock: 1392 MHz (OC) | Memory Type: GDDR5 | Memory Speed: 7 Gbps | Memory Width: 128 bits | Memory Size: 4 GB | Max Resolution: 7680 x 4320 | Power Consumption: 75 Watts | PCI Express: 3.0 | Dimensions: 7.6 x 1.5 x 4.4 inches
REASONS TO BUY
✓ Quality components with a 3-year warranty
✓ Esports titles run at ultimate 1080p graphics
✓ Provides impressive tweaking and real-time streaming
REASONS TO AVOID
✗ No RGB
✗ Slightly bigger size
ASUS GeForce GTX 1050 Ti is the streaming graphics card that you need. Its high performance will surely thank the investment you have made. The graphic card is aesthetically pleasing and made from solid material. The GPU is pre-overclocked from the factory at 1392 MHz which allows gaming 1080p resolution. At this price point, this graphic card comes with a GPU Tweak II with XSplit Gamecaster that allows you to control your GPU performance and also stream in real-time.
Owing to the features that it offers, i.e., high performance, low power consumption, and high manufacturing quality, this GFX card sits at a slightly higher price point than other cards. The card’s size is also slightly longer than the other, thus causing problems for SFF cases. Some users have reported higher power consumption than 75watt. The card has a higher price/performance ratio which might be of importance to some users.
You can also use this GPU for crypto mining. The product comes with a 3-year warranty owing to the high manufacturing quality. The dual ball-bearing-based fans never stop working and ensure long-lasting performance. This graphic card requires no additional power to support esports titles at ultra-high resolutions. It runs from power drawn via your motherboard. The NVIDIA GPU Boost 3.0 allows high performance. We labeled it as the best performance low-power graphics card.
Best Enthusiast Low Power Graphics Card
Brand: MSI | Chipset Brand: AMD | Cores: 512 Units | Core Clock: 1203 MHz (OC) | Memory Type: GDDR5 | Memory Speed: 7 Gbps | Memory Width: 128 bits | Memory Size: 4GB | Max Resolution: 5120 x 2880 | Power Consumption: 50 Watts | PCI Express: 3.0 | Dimensions: 6.7 x 2.7 x 1.5 inches
REASONS TO BUY
✓ It fits an SFF case
✓ AMD Free-Sync Featured for esports
✓ 60+fps gaming on 1080p resolution with medium settings
REASONS TO AVOID
✗ No GDDR6 memory
✗ Noisy Fan operation
MSI Radeon RX 550 AERO is the best enthusiast low-power graphics card you can own to start your streaming and gaming journey. It offers 60+fps gaming performance at 1080p resolution for most highly respected esports gaming titles. The compact size allows you to fit it in any SFF case. This GPU comes pre-clocked at 1203 MHz which is high enough for the cooling solution that the company has fitted for the RX 550 GPU. With the aluminum core, components are made to last more than 10 years.
The GPU is small due to the low profile design, and performance is beyond PAR. It adds to the additional cost and making the card overall a bit costly amongst its competition. The card only has two display ports which means you cannot plug in more than two monitors for your gaming and super chat. The aesthetics are great, but they are missing the RGB touch that most modern games require. The GPU under stress sends fans the signal to boost and thus increasing noise.
It delivers high performance for 50-watt power consumption and no power supply from the PSU. It precisely marks it as the best low power graphics card. The GFX card comes with an Afterburner Overclocking Utility, which allows you to customize the performance that you extract from the GPU. In-game diagnostics and control through android or iOS make overclocking a breeze. With the AMD Freesync, you can forget about screen tearing and fps/Hz mismatch. The dual fan setup keeps the graphics card cool and running without any bottleneck issues. All these features make it the best low power gpu with impressive performance.
We have featured some great and high-performing best low-power graphics cards on our list. All of them are capable of running games at 1080p resolution and 50+fps, but when it comes to detailed quality and raytracing, you might not be able to find the product you desire for the best graphics card without external power.
Some GFX cards that we feature allow syncing capability, while some do not have the option. It’s up to the user. We recommend that you definitely go for the one with syncing capability as at lower frames, your monitor might be faster than your gpu, or your gpu might be faster than the monitor. They should be in sync to allow better flow and no screen tearing. The form factor might also be important; we want our customers to decide on a chassis first before buying.
Check the dimensions in our specification section of each graphic card before purchasing. The desire for great aesthetics is everlasting. If you own a rig that speaks out through the windows, we recommend you go for the ROG version graphics card as they have RGB lighting and an overall sturdy look.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the most powerful low-profile graphics card?
We consider ZOTAC GeForce GTX 1650 as the most powerful low-profile graphics card. It has a 1665 MHz core frequency amongst the highest in our list of reviewed products. The 896 core units allow gaming at 1080p resolution for all competitive esports games. The GPU has a low profile to fit in any SFF case and the power to run AAA titles.
Which graphics card does not require external power?
The MSI Radeon RX 550 AERO requires no external power. It is the best graphics card without external power and runs purely from power taken out of the motherboard. The 50 watts power consumption is incredible for the frames that it delivers on screen. You can run an Overwatch at 1080p resolution and 100+ fps. The dual fan setup allows your GPU to remain cool and perform for a long period of time.
What is the best graphics card with a low price?
Biostar Radeon RX 550 is the best of all low price GPUs. The brand might not be popular, but as most users report, this GPU can run a game and stream at the same time on most leading games in the industry—all of this at 50-watt power consumption at a very reasonable price range.
Are mini graphics cards less powerful?
The mini graphic card does not directly mean lower performance. Consider MSI Radeon RX 550 AERO. It’s a card of small size and powerful performance. The ability to sync with a monitor and maintain 60+fps performance with streaming is an incredible GPU tech feat. With ASUS components, they also mean long-lasting performance. No external power is required for this masterpiece.