Whether or not a 4GB graphics card is enough for gaming depends on its make and model. 4GB VRAM is found on newer and more than half-a-decade-old graphics cards.
As such, the performance scores of the latest generation of 4GB graphics cards cannot be compared with that of the older generation 4GB.
However, as far as 4GB RAM graphics cards go, generally, 4GB graphics cards are well respected by gamers. They are sufficient for meeting the higher-than-minimum requirements of the latest AAA titles.
In other words, a 4GB graphics card can give you decent medium to high-quality graphics settings on full HD resolution while maintaining a respectable 30-60 FPS.
In the following text, I will try to answer the question, “is a 4GB graphics card enough for gaming?” in detail. But first, let us talk about all the newer and widely popular 4GB graphics cards out there.
List of Graphics Cards That Feature 4GB VRAM
The following table lists all the newer and popular 4GB dedicated graphics cards. One thing to note is that even half a decade old, 4GB VRAM is found on GPUs.
You can also notice from the corresponding G3DMark Benchmark scores provided that not all 4GB graphics cards are created equally.
Many other factors, such as CUDA cores, Stream processors, body clock speed, RAM clock speed, etc., affect the overall performance of a graphics card.
In other words, VRAM is NOT the only measure of a graphics card’s performance. It is just ONE of many specs that contribute to the overall performance of a GPU.
|Graphics Card||Release Year||G3DMark||Cuda Cores/Stream Processors||Core Clock||Memory Clock|
|NVIDIA GeForce |
GTX 1650 Super
|2019||10046||1280||1530 MHz||1725 MHz|
|2014||9673||1664||1050 MHz||1752 MHz|
|AMD Radeon |
RX 6500 XT
|2022||9411||1024||2310 MHz||2248 MHz|
|AMD Radeon |
|2017||8914||2304||1257 MHz||2000 MHz|
|NVIDIA GeForce |
|2019||7814||896||1530 MHz||1500 MHz|
|AMD Radeon |
|2022||6528||768||1923 MHz||2000 MHz|
|NVIDIA GeForce |
GTX 1050 Ti
|2016||6306||768||1290 MHz||1752 MHz|
Again, take note of the fact that 4GB graphics cards are not uniform in performance.
For instance, the old NVIDIA GTX 970, released in 2014, features 4GB VRAM. It still outperforms the newer 4GB GPUs, such as the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650.
Also Read: Is a 2GB Graphics Card Good for Gaming?
So is a 4GB Graphics Card Enough for Gaming?
We must look at the graphics requirement for some popular games to get a decisive answer to this question.
There are typically two types of games:
- eSports / Popular Online Games: These include the likes of World of Warcraft, Rocket League, and League of Legends. They do not have robust graphics requirements.
- AAA (high-profile) Games: These include the likes of Elden Ring, Red Dead Redemption 2, Cyberpunk 2077, and Skyrim. These games tend to push the graphical limits of their time and hence require a robust system.
As such, we will need to look at these categories separately to see if the 4GB graphics cards are good enough for gaming.
Graphics Card Requirements for Popular Online / Esports Titles
The following tables list popular online or eSports titles and their minimum and recommended graphics requirements.
|Minimum Graphics Requirements||Recommended Graphics Requirements|
|Minecraft||Integrated Intel HD 4000||GeForce 700 Series|
|Rocket League||GeForce GTX 760||GeForce GTX 1060|
|Fortnite||Intel Iris Pro 5200||GeForce GTX 960|
|Dota 2||GeForce 8600||Radeon HD 2600 Pro|
|League of Legends||Shader version 2.0b-capable (iGPU)||GeForce 8800|
For Online Games 4B Graphics Card is an Overkill
Usually, 4GB graphics cards for online games and eSports titles are overkill.
Some outliers exist, such as the GeForce GTX 1060 (6GB) for Rocket League as its recommended requirements. However, a GTX 1060 would only be needed by rocket league if you plan to play the game at 4K resolution or need the game to run at 144 FPS.
For regular gamers running the game at high-quality settings on Full HD resolution, a 4GB graphics card should suffice.
As such, sometimes the official graphics requirements are not accurate. As a general rule of thumb, 4GB graphics cards are sufficient for popular online games / eSport titles, given that you play the game at FHD resolution.
Also Read: How Long Do GPUs Last?
Graphics Card Requirements for AAA Titles
The following table shows some of the latest AAA titles and their minimum and recommended graphics requirements.
|Minimum Requirements||Recommended Requirements|
|Cyberpunk 2077||GeForce GTX 780 (3GB)||GeForce GTX 1660 Super (6GB)|
|Resident Evil Village||GeForce GTX 1050 Ti (4GB)||GeForce GTX 1070 (8GB)|
|Watch Dog Legions||GeForce GTX 970 (4 GB)||GeForce RTX 2060S (8GB)|
|Assassin’s Creed Valhalla||GeForce GTX 960 (4GB)||GeForce GTX 1080 (8GB)|
|Elden Ring||GeForce GTX 1060 (3GB)||GeForce GTX 1070 (8GB)|
|Red Dead Redemption 2||GeForce GTX 770 (2GB)||GeForce GTX 1060 (6GB)|
For the Latest AAA Games 4GB Graphics Card is JUST Sufficient
AAA games are a completely different story as compared to eSports titles. AAA tiles have a robust requirement for a graphics card, particularly if you want to play the game in epic settings.
Playing the game at ultra or epic settings would require a graphics card even better than the one stipulated in the officially recommended requirements.
So where does that put the 4GB graphics cards?
From the requirements above, we can deduce that 4GB graphics cards, newer and older, are sufficient for playing AAA titles at low to medium graphics settings on Full HD resolution.
Again, the exact model you have would generally dictate how well it can run the game. For instance, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050Ti would have difficulty running the newer AAA titles, while the GTX 1650 Super should at least enable you to play the heavier games at medium graphics.
Also Read: is Core i7 Good for Gaming?
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
1. Which 4GB Graphics is Best for Gaming?
As explained earlier, 4GB graphics cards are NOT all the same.
According to the G3DMark benchmark, the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 Super is the best 4GB dedicated GPU, with a score showing it is almost twice as powerful as the GTX 1050Ti despite both having 4GB VRAM.
It is also a surprise that GTX 970, a 4GB graphics card released in 2014, still outperforms most of the newer 4GB graphics cards.
2. Can a 4GB graphics card handle high-end games with demanding graphics?
A 4GB graphics card can handle many high-end games with demanding graphics, but it may struggle with some of the most graphically demanding games.
Games that require high-resolution textures, advanced lighting effects, and other demanding graphical features may require a more powerful graphics card with more memory to run smoothly.
3. Can a 4GB graphics card handle virtual reality (VR) gaming?
A 4GB graphics card may be able to handle some VR games, but it may struggle with more demanding titles. VR gaming requires a high frame rate and low latency to avoid motion sickness and provide a smooth experience.
To achieve this, a more powerful graphics card with more memory and higher clock speeds is recommended.
4. What is the lifespan of a 4GB graphics card in terms of gaming performance?
The lifespan of a 4GB graphics card in terms of gaming performance depends on several factors, including the specific card model, the games being played, and the user’s expectations for performance.
As new games are released with more demanding graphics, a 4GB graphics card may become less capable of running games at high settings.
However, with proper maintenance and regular driver updates, a 4GB graphics card can provide satisfactory gaming performance for several years.
5. Can a 4GB graphics card cause any performance or graphical issues while gaming?
A 4GB graphics card may cause performance or graphical issues while gaming if it is not powerful enough to handle the graphics demands of the game.
This can result in low frame rates, stuttering, and other graphical glitches that can negatively impact the gaming experience.
Additionally, some games may require more than 4GB of graphics memory to run at high settings, which can cause performance issues on a 4GB graphics card.
It’s important to check the recommended system requirements for a game before playing it on a 4GB graphics card.
Also Read: GPU Hierarchy – Graphics Card Tiered Performance List
So the answer to the question “is 4GB graphics card enough for gaming?” boils down to your GPU model and the game you wish to play.
Generally, 4GB graphics cards are sufficient for popular eSports titles; however, the AAA titles are barely trying to stay afloat and will go obsolete soon.