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Group test: what's the best budget graphics card?

The Top 5 sub-£150 graphics cards

PC Advisor selects and reviews the best five graphics cards available for less than £150 in the UK right now.

5. Club 3D Radeon HD 7750

Club 3D Radeon HD 7750
  • Reviewed on: 20 March 12
  • RRP: £85 inc VAT
  • Rating: Rated 7 out of 10

At around £85, the AMD Radeon HD 7750 is a very affordable card. It's extremely light on power and, when the cooling system has been improved, will even be suitable for home media-centre use. A card like the 6790 will probably offer you slightly more gaming power for not very much more, although on a frame per pound basis, the 7750 remains the best value. Overall, it looks like being a very dependable (if hardly the most exciting) addition to the graphics card market.

4. PNY GeForce GTX 650 Ti

PNY GeForce GTX 650 Ti
  • Reviewed on: 16 October 12
  • RRP: £125 inc VAT
  • Rating: Rated 7 out of 10

At the time of writing, pricing wasn’t totally clear. However, assuming a price of around £125, the AMD Radeon 7850 is clearly this card’s biggest competitor. That card offers marginally more performance for a price for around £25 more. There may well be some juicy pricing strategies on the 650 Ti in the next couple of months. Currently though, the 7850 is probably better value.

3. Asus AMD Radeon HD 7790 DirectCU II OC

Asus AMD Radeon HD 7790 DirectCU II OC
  • Reviewed on: 18 April 13
  • RRP: £132 inc VAT
  • Rating: Rated 7 out of 10

It's a shame that the 7790 didn't come out a few months ago, when it would have been very welcome at these price points. However, the 650 Ti Boost, despite being marginally more expensive, gives superior value for money. It's appreciably faster in every area, and also wins in terms of clock speeds and memory bandwidth. You can save yourself around £20 by buying the standard version of the 7790, but if we had around £150 spend, we'd find it hard to justify a 7790.

2. MSI GeForce GTX 650 Power Edition OC

MSI GeForce GTX 650 Power Edition OC
  • Reviewed on: 25 January 13
  • RRP: £90 inc VAT
  • Rating: Rated 8 out of 10

The MSI GeForce GTX 650 Power Edition OC is actually a pretty decent card. It’s already possibly a value option next to the 7770, and this MSI version has several upgrades that seem to make it that bit more fearsome. Add good overclocking and the incredible power efficiency, and the 650 is an appetising buy at around the £90 mark.

1. Gigabyte HD 7770 OC

Gigabyte HD 7770 OC
  • Reviewed on: 11 June 12
  • RRP: £110 inc VAT
  • Rating: Rated 8 out of 10

Unless you’re really strapped for cash, the Gigabyte HD 7770 OC is a better card. The superior specifications and improved fan are well worth the extra, and the Gigabyte HD 7770 OC offers quite playable game framerates in today’s titles, just as long as you aren’t expecting fireworks – you’ll still need to spend £250 or more for strong frame rates in titles like Crysis. The 6850 remains a slightly faster bet if you can find it, although the difference is marginal, and the 7770 OC’s architecture may well see it improving slightly in future games. As a value prospect, the Gigabyte HD 7770 OC is an excellent little card.

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