Finding the right card means taking the time to look at what’s out there. Below is everything you need to know to buy a great low-profile card, including brief reviews of some of the best cards on the market today. If you’re ready to build small, the information below will help you to reach your goals.
The 10 best low profiles graphics card at a glance:
1. RADEON RX 550 4GT Low Profile OC
In all honesty, it’s a little weird to see this card mixed in with the other low-profile offerings. That’s not to say that there’s anything wrong with either this card or with the other low-profile cards out there, but when one thinks of this particular brand they’re probably not looking at little cards. With that said, though, this is an obvious product to put on this list, as it not only manages to come in at the right size for most builders, but also at the right price. Simply put, this is a good low-profile card for most builders.
This is a budget card, of course, though it does have a tendency to run a little high in terms of that category. What you get for the money, though, is amazing. Not only does it manage to do well across the board on performance, but it also tends to run both cool and quiet. What many are going to love, though, is how well this card plays with older hardware and especially with older connectors. This is a really good fit if you are looking to upgrade an older computer or if you’re just looking for a good card that’s going to work well in a thinner build.
2. Sapphire Pulse Radeon RX 570 ATX
A fair number of those who are in the market for a good graphics card are looking for ways to play their favorite games at higher resolutions. Unfortunately, this tends to be a little bit of a problem for those who don’t have room for a big, bulky card in their cases. This Radeon RX 570 ATX may not be the strongest video card on the market right now, but it’s an amazing fit for all of those who want to increase the settings on their favorite games without having to increase the size of their computer cases.
This is definitely a game-focused card, with all that entails. Like many gaming cards, this one is fairly high on the power consumption scale so you’ll need a bigger power supply than you might think to keep this card happy. The good news, though, is that it is also fairly quiet compared to many of its peers. Complete with a fan that turns off when idle, this is a good choice for those who want to experience some of the newer games on the market without having to deal with what sounds like an airplane taking off evert time they boot up a game.
3. AMD Radeon RX 460 4GT LP 4GB GDDR5 Low Profile PCI-Express Video Card
Sometimes it’s the value of a card that makes it stand out more than the performance of the card. If you’re very lucky, though, you can find a card that gives you precisely the kind of performance that you need without having to sacrifice too much in terms of cost. While this is definitely a card that’s going to get put into the value bin for most, it’s also a card that works particularly well for those who love the less graphically-intense e-Sports games like Valorant and Fortnite and who want to make sure that they always maintain peak performance.
Like many gaming video cards, this one is very power hungry. You’re going to need a solid power supply to run this card, but you’re going to get an awful lot in return. This is a card that’s capable of keeping a game like League of Legends up above the sixty frames per second mark with ease and it’s going to do so without causing much of an issue with your build. If you’re looking for a low-profile, low-budget solution to your e-sports needs, you are going to find an awful lot to like about this card.
4. MSI GAMING GeForce GT 710 1GB Low Profile Graphics Card
There are a few major things at which you can look if you’re trying to find the right low-profile card for gaming. One of which, of course, is the benchmarks; knowing how the card performs with some of the more resource-intensive games is always going to play a role in your decision. You also need to know what the user experience with the card is going to be like, as even a powerful card isn’t going to be too useful if it makes your life uncomfortable. If you’re looking for something that satisfies both the numbers and your feelings, you’ll like this card from MSI.
MSI’s card is uniquely suitable for high-end games, especially when those games are a little bit older. This is the kind of card that you’re going to use to get the maximum settings from games that are a few years old, even if the 1GB model isn’t going to be quite enough to give you the performance you need for contemporary games. The card is also very quiet even when it is under pressure, so the sound of your computer isn’t going to annoy anyone in your home. This card really does a good job of doing it all.
5. Asus Nvidia GeForce GT 710 2GB 64-Bit
It’s becoming more and more common for professionals to need a second monitor for work. It doesn’t matter if they’re running spreadsheets or if they just need a second monitor up for video calls – having the support for multiple monitors is moving from being a choice to being a necessity. Unfortunately, there aren’t that many low-profile graphics cards out there that do a very good job of supporting multiple monitors. Though you’ll have to make sacrifices in order to get the kind of support that you need, this card from ASUS does provide great multiple monitor support.
Capable of supporting two or three HDMI monitors with ease, this card is definitely designed for professionals. Unfortunately, that means it is a little limited when it comes to gaming or design capacity – but then again, that’s not the purpose for which this card was designed. If you are looking for a good card that’s going to help you with your productivity, you’ll absolutely want to keep this one in mind. At a very fair price point, this is also a card that really makes sense for anyone who is looking to build a functional home office.
6. Gigabyte Geforce GTX 1050 Ti OC Low Profile 4GB GDDR5 128 Bit PCI-E Graphic Card
Gigabyte’s cards are, by and large, some of the best cards out there for those who are looking towards space-saving builds. The company shows up a few times on this list, but the card that seems to have the most real potential is this one. Not only is it a great space-saver that will fit in a smaller build with ease, but it’s a great HD card that manages to avoid some of the pitfalls that are common in the other cards on this list. While not the best choice for every user, it’s an excellent card for those looking to build a new machine.
The first thing you’ll notice about the card is that it is very compact. Yes, that largely holds true for most of the cards on this list but the extra-small size is really good at hiding the strength of the card. Despite being very powerful and great at working with HD displays, the card is a relatively light touch on the power front. It’s honestly a great card on most fronts, with a lack of RAM being the only thing that holds it back from perfection. If you can deal with that single flaw, though, this might be the card for you.
7. VGA GeForce GT 1030 SC 2GB GDDR5 Low Profile Graphic Card
Performance is one of those metrics that can mean different things to different people. When you’re building or upgrading a computer, though, it’s a metric that’s going to be very important. You’ll need a card that’s going to make your computer better, after all, and a good card will do this in several ways. It will help you with the quality of what you can display, it will make your computer run in a way that works better for your needs, and it’s going to be a better fit for your build. This particular card is one that does all three.
This is an amazingly strong performer, especially when you consider its price point. Good for everything from gaming to crunching numbers, it’s the kind of low-profile graphics card that really makes a case for this type of card even if you have plenty of space in your case. It is, however, hobbled by one strange flaw – it doesn’t play well with DirectX 12. Fortunately, given that the vast majority of applications that most people run are still using DX11 or earlier, this shouldn’t be a problem for the average user.
8. GIGABYTE GeForce GTX 1650 Mini ITX OC 4G Graphics Card
The best low profile graphics card is always the card that does the job that you need it to do. It needs to be designed well enough to fit in a slim case and it needs to be quiet enough to run without overwhelming the space in which you work or play, but most of all it needs to be powerful enough to get the job done while it is working. This card is one of the better choices on the market, with the ability to push out more power than most would expect from its small size.
In fact, this card is virtually perfect. With the ability to run quiet and to do its job exceedingly well for its size, the only real problems that you’re going to run into with this one are outliers. There are, unfortunately, an awful lot of shipping issues with this particular card and getting the help you need to get it replaced isn’t easy. This isn’t quite a situation in which buyers need to beware, but it is important to know that you might not get exactly what you need right out of the box if you do choose to buy this card.
9. MSI GeForce GT 710 2GB GDRR3 Single Fan Low Profile Graphics Card
This MSI Radeon card is a great example of what it means to be a jack of all trades. It’s not the smallest slimline card out there, but it is small enough that it can fit in an ultrabook without a problem. It’s not the fastest card, but it does have an incredible write speed. It’s not even the most powerful card on the market, but it’s going to help gamers play some of the hottest games on the market. This is a card that does a little bit of everything and that does it all very well.
The downside to the card is, of course, that it isn’t at the top of any metric. Everything it does well, something else does a little bit better. There’s no card that outperforms it on every metric, though, so it’s a really good choice for those who are just looking for solid performance across the board. If you have to have a card that’s the top of the line in one specific category, this might not be the one for you. If you want something that does a good job with anything you throw at it, though, this card could be a great fit.
10. ZOTAC GeForce GT 710 2GB
Let’s talk size for a moment. If you are looking for a low-profile card, you’re already looking at a build in which space is at a premium. If you’re trying to build something impressive, you want to get as much out of your low-profile card as you can without taking up any more space inside your computer case than necessary. If you want to see what a product that absolutely sheds every extra millimeter looks like, you’ll definitely want to take a close look at this GeForce card from ZOTAC.
ZOTAC’s card is tiny in a way that’s hard to really explain without seeing the card. At least than three inches across, it’s going to fit in virtually any case without causing problems. It’s so small, in fact, that it only takes up a single slot on your motherboard and frees up plenty of interior space. Despite the fact that the ultra-small card doesn’t have a fan, it’s also very cool – again, saving space and doing its job well. Though it might not be the most powerful choice in terms of display ability, it’s the kind of card that you’re going to want to choose when you absolutely need to conserve as much space in your case as possible.
Buyers Guide or What to Look for When Buying a Low-Profile Graphics Card
If you’re on the lookout for a new graphics card, it’s important that you look beyond the name brand to find something that’s really suitable for your needs. Doing so requires doing a little bit of digging, but it’s also far easier when you know exactly what it is for which you are looking. The best way to make the right choice is by paying attention to the factors that make cards stand out, each of which are outlined below.
Size really matters in the world of low-profile cards. In a field where millimeters can mean the difference between the success and the failure of a build, you need to pay careful attention to the difference between various types of low-profile cards. The smaller the card you need, the more you’re going to have to give up to get what you want.
In reality, the smaller the card, the more stripped down it is going to be. You’re going to sacrifice all kinds of extras to shed each centimeter, so know exactly what you need before you set out to make a purchase. As a rule, you’re going to have to decide whether you’re going to want to maximize your space or if you are going to want to maximize what your card can do. Unless you’re playing with an ultrabook or some other kind of ultra-thin build, you will have a choice as to exactly how small you can go with your card while still getting all the other features that you need.
In this case, power refers to exactly what a GPU is going to be able to do for you. Usually measured in terms of clock speed and RAM, this is the factor that’s going to not only make a difference in what level of graphics you’re going to get when you play a game but it’s going to make a difference in terms of rendering certain types of images and even your ability to display multiple screens at once.
How much power you need is, of course, up to you. Buying a super-powerful gaming card might be nice, but it’s going to impact most of the other features you will read about below. Instead of just going for the card with the biggest numbers, try to think about exactly what you need it to do before you buy.
The other type of power you need to consider is the amount of electrical power that your GPU is going to draw. Generally speaking, power isn’t something you have to worry too much about when you’re putting together a build – power sources are relatively cheap, after all, and you can adjust an awful lot of your planning based on how much your GPU is going to draw. When you’re dealing with a slim build, though, the power consumption of your card is going to play a huge role in your buying process.
The best move is to start by thinking about how much total power your have available and then start looking at your card. If the card you need is a power hog, you’ll need to look back and think about if you can afford to buy a new power supply and if a bigger supply is actually going to work with your build. If the answer to either of those is a no, you’ll want to make sure that you choose a card that’s a little more power-friendly.
Noise is one of those factors that you really don’t think about until you have to deal with it. Graphics cards are notorious for being noisy, largely because they have their own fans that are used to keep them at an operable temperature. The good news, at least for most, is that most low-profile cards either have one small fan or some other form of passive heat control – features that ensure quieter operation. The trade-off here is that you’re going to have less power, though, so you can choose options that are a little noisier in order to get what you need.
It’s important to keep the noise level of the card in mind because it’s very hard to soundproof a small build. If you chose a card that’s on the louder end of the spectrum, you’re going to have to deal with that noise because you simply won’t have any reasonable way to compensate. If you’re able to deal with that kind of distraction, though, you might be able to give a little ground on this issue in order to get something that’s a bit more powerful.
This is one that’s only going to impact some users, but it does end up being more important than you might think. Given that you’re going to connect your computer monitor directly to your card, you’ll want to make sure that you have something that’s actually compatible with your current monitor connection – or at least something that you can make compatible with the right accessories. Most modern low-profile cards come equipped with at least one HDMI connection, while many others will also include connectors like VGA or even DisplayPort.
It’s also a good idea to stop and think about whether you’re going to need a card that can support multiple displays. If so, you’ll want to make sure that it has enough ports to support all of the monitors that you are going to use. Quite a few low-profile cards now support at least two monitors, but make sure to check the back of your card to ensure that the ports are actually those which you need.
Finally, you’ll want to think about price. The good news is that some of the best low-profile cards are actually quite cheap when compared to their full-sized brethern and are also on our list of the best graphics cards under $100. Unfortunately, though, it’s also very valid to say that you get what you pay for in this product category. As nice as it is to save some money, you’re going to want to stop and analyze why any bargain card is able to be sold at so cheap a price.
Note that your budget is probably going to be wildly different depending on whether you are replacing a card or if you are doing an entirely new build. In the former case, you’re looking at a single expenditure. In the latter, you have to balance the cost of your card against the cost of the entire build budget. While your graphics card is definitely important, try to make sure that you don’t blow your whole budget on this single part.
Low Profile Vs. Standard Graphics Card: What’s the Difference
If you’re shopping for new computer components, you’ve probably encountered the phrase ‘low profile’ during your searches. It’s used throughout this very guide, and it’s a phrase that’s going to be especially important to you as you try to build a smaller computer. It is, however, a good idea to know how these cards differ from their more traditional counterparts so that you know what to expect when you make a purchase.
Low-profile cards are, simply put, smaller graphics cards. While most modern PCs are designed to have plenty of space inside the case so that owners can upgrade and tinker to their hearts content, those who build smaller machines are always in search of smaller components that will fit their builds. Low-profile cards were designed so that users of these smaller machines could still get the benefits of a dedicated graphics card without having to drastically increase the sizes of their builds.
The obvious difference between the two types of cards is height. A standard card is usually around four and a half inches tall, while a low-profile card is going to be closer to three inches tall. This might seem like a small difference in size, but this eliminates over an inch of case space. The trade-off, of course, tends to be power – larger cards have more room not only for the ‘brains’ of the card, but for the cooling devices that are necessary to keep higher-powered cards working. Lower-profile cards shed their extra size by limiting the amount of power they can output.
1. What is a best low-profile graphics card
A: There’s no single low-profile graphics card that is the absolute best. Instead, there are several cards that all have a really good claim to that title, each of which works better for a different kind of consumer. A card that’s great for a gamer might not be quite as good a fit for someone who is doing design work, for example, while a high-powered card might be great for someone with a slim case but not for someone who needs to conserve space in a notebook. As always, it’s the needs of the individual buyer that are going to play the biggest role in determining whether the cards that are praised by most consumers are actually going to work for that buyer.
2. What does low profile gpu mean?
A: A low profile GPU is simply a GPU that’s smaller than a typical graphics card. These cards either take up less space horizontally by fitting into a single slot or they are literally smaller in size than a typical GPU. These cards are generally meant for builds that have less internal space, ranging from slimline cases that can fit easily under desks to gaming notebooks that are still large enough to avoid using mobile-only hardware. There are many cards that can be described as low-profile, but not all of them work for every build.
3. Are low-profile graphics card good for gaming?
A: This is a tough question to answer because it really depends on the low profile card in question. Are some low profile cards good for gaming? Absolutely! Some of the cards out there can run the latest games on reasonable settings, though they’re not going to be nearly as powerful as some of the bigger cards that are on the market right now. These cards are even better for those who want to game on the go, though, as the space that they save in a build can make it much easier to transport from place to place in order to game.
4. What is the most powerful best low profile graphics card?
A: There are plenty of cards out there that can make a claim to being the most powerful low profile card. It’s important, though, to think about what that means. If you’re looking for a good gaming card that might mean one thing, while a card that gives you a better ability to multitask might mean something else. It’s always a good idea to be very specific with your needs, as what seems like a powerful solution to one buyer might not end up being so useful to others. With that said, there are a number of good cards out there, of which the Gigabyte Geforce GTX 1050 is a very strong contender.
Recap: Top 10 Low Profile Graphics Cards 2021
- RADEON RX 550 4GT Low Profile OC
- Sapphire Pulse Radeon RX 570 ATX
- AMD Radeon RX 460 4GT LP 4GB GDDR5 Low Profile PCI-Express Video Card
- MSI GAMING GeForce GT 710 1GB Low Profile Graphics Card
- Asus Nvidia GeForce GT 710 2GB 64-Bit
- Gigabyte Geforce GTX 1050 Ti OC Low Profile 4GB GDDR5 128 Bit PCI-E Graphic Card
- VGA GeForce GT 1030 SC 2GB GDDR5 Low Profile Graphic Card
- GIGABYTE GeForce GTX 1650 Mini ITX OC 4G Graphics Card
- MSI GeForce GT 710 2GB GDRR3 Single Fan Low Profile Graphics Card
- ZOTAC GeForce GT 710 2GB