Is 6GB Graphics Card Enough for Gaming?

In the current race of graphics cards featuring ever higher VRAM, the 6GB graphics cards still hold a very special place. While 6GB is nowhere near what top of the line graphics card like the NVIDIA RTX 4090 (24 GB) feature, they are still highly relevant for gamers today.

The simple answer to the question whether a 6GB graphics card is enough for gaming or not is a yes. 6GB graphics cards are more than sufficient for even the heaviest AAA games today. However, it all depends upon your gaming setup and what 6GB graphics card you have.

For instance, if you have a very demanding gaming setup such as dual screens, 4k monitor or a 120Hz monitor for 120FPS gaming, then 6GB may not be sufficient.

It is important to understand that not all 6GB graphics cards are the same. What decides a good graphics card is not the just the VRAM, but the chipset.

The bottom line however is that the NEWER 6GB graphics cards are excellent for budget to midrange gaming builds and they should have little issues playing even the latest AAA games at high graphics setting while maintaining close to 60 FPS.

Your Gaming Requirements and 6GB VRAM

As alluded to earlier, one of the biggest factors that would determine whether a 6GB graphics card is sufficient for you or not is your gaming setup itself.

Gamers these days have very high preferences for their gaming builds. They like to have dual screens featuring QHD or 4K resolution. Many also prefer to play their games at 120FPS.

There are three factors that determine the amount of graphics VRAM you need:

  1. The Resolution
  2. The Frame Rates
  3. The Graphic Settings

The higher the resolution, the more powerful a graphics card you need. The most common and the default resolution that gamers prefer is the Full HD or 1920 x 1080.

Anything higher than this, i.e QHD resolution or 4K/UHD resolution would require you to have a more powerful graphics card with higher VRAM.

The same goes for frame rates. The higher the frame rates, the more powerful a GPU you need. 30 frames per second is considered as the bear minimum you should settle for; however, any gamer worth their salt would aim for 60 FPS. Enthusiasts, on the other hand, aim for even 120 FPS or higher.

As such while 6 GB graphics may be sufficient for 30-60FPS gaming. Anything higher and the 6GB graphics cards will show their limit.

Finally, your graphics settings matter a ton. Ultra high graphics settings are taxing on a graphics card as compared to low graphics settings.

In short, if you have a 6GB graphics card, you will generally need to juggle between resolution, FPS or graphics settings until you find the right playable setting for yourself. You will often have to sacrifice one or the other.

Benchmark List of Graphics Cards Featuring 6GB VRAM

For a thorough comparison, we can benchmark the 6GB graphics cards and then see if they would be sufficient for the latest AAA gaming titles. 

One very important point to note, however, is that not all 6GB graphics cards are the same in terms of performance. For instance, both GTX 1060 and the RTX 2060 have 6GB VRAM, however, the RTX 2060 is far superior in comparison as shown below in the table.

The following table highlights all the 6GB graphics cards as well as their corresponding G3Dmark scoresG3DMark is a popular benchmark that scores GPUs based on their performance. It is great for basic comparison.

Graphics CardRelease YearG3DMarkMSRPPrice/Performance
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060201610,070$29933
AMD Radeon RX 5600202011,288-
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660201911,744$21953
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660Ti201911,892$27942
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980Ti201513,857$64921
AMD Radeon RX 5600XT202013,833$27950
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060201914,009$34940
  • MSRP reflects the price at release NOT the current market price. 

is 6GB graphics card enough for gaming

One thing to note is that older 6GB graphics cards (GTX 1060 and the 980Ti) have a far lower value compared to the newer 6GB graphics cards if you take the G3D mark and the MSRP into consideration.

Additionally, while the 6GB 980Ti was the top of the line GPU of its time, the newer 6GB graphics cards such as the RTX 2060 are considered mid range GPUs of their respective series.

So is 6GB Graphics Card Enough for Gaming?

In short, yes, it is. But we can further prove this point by looking deeper into the system requirements of the popular online games as well as of the popular AAA titles released recently.

Graphics Requirements of Popular Esports Titles

Esports titles / MMORPG are generally have a low graphics card requirement. This is because they are intended to be played by the masses and since not everyone has top dollar to afford dedicated graphics cards, eSports/MMOs are are intentionally designed to work on low end graphics cards.

The following table shows the graphics card requirements of the popular online titles:

  Minimum Graphics
Requirements
Recommended Graphics
Requirements
Minecraft Integrated
Intel HD 4000 (Shared Memory)
GeForce 700 Series (2GB)
Rocket League GeForce GTX 760 (4GB) GeForce GTX 1060 (6GB)
Fortnite Intel Iris Pro 5200 (Shared) GeForce GTX 960 (4B)
Dota 2 GeForce 8600 (1GB) Radeon HD 2600 Pro
League of Legends  Shader version 2.0b-capable (iGPU)  GeForce 8800 (1GB)
World of Warcraft NVIDIA GeForce GTX 560 2GB NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960 (4GB)

6GB Graphics Cards are an Overkill for eSports Titles

We can deduce from the table above that for MMORPG/eSports titles, a 6GB graphics card is an overkill.

Even a 2GB or a 4GB graphics card would be more than sufficient for online games. Games like League of Legends or Dota 2 do not even require a dedicated graphics card at all. 

The only game that does seem to require a 6GB graphics card as a recommended requirement is Rocket League. But rest assured in knowing that these requirements are for someone who wants to play the game on QHD or 4K resolution with higher than 60 FPS. In reality, this is a game that even works on a measly integrated Intel HD 630 iGPU. 

Rocket League GTX 1060
Rocket League FPS on 6GB GTX 1060. . Source: Userbenchmark.com

On QHD, Rocket League runs at a whopping 134 FPS on GTX 1060. You should easily be able to sustain 60FPS on 4K on this graphics card. 

For someone who simply wants to play on FHD resolution and high graphics, 6GB is an overkill not just for Rocket League, but for almost any eSports/MMORPG title under the sun.

Here are the G3D scores of the graphics cards as required by eSports/MMO titles above:

  G3Dmark Release Year
Intel HD 4000 339 2012
NVIDIA GeForce 710 635 2014
NVIDIA GTX 760 4772 2013
NVIDIA GTX 1060 10,70 2016
Intel Iris Pro 5200 1224 2013
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960 6025 2015
NVIDIA Geforce 8600 116 2007
AMD Radeon HD 2600 Pro  110  2011
Shader Version 2.0B
NVIDIA Geforce 8800 507 2006
NVIDIA GTX 560 2704  2011

Comparing the G3DMark of the GPUs above with those of the 6GB graphics card should make it clear that for eSports games, 6GB GPUs are far too advanced.

Graphics Requirements of AAA Titles

AAA titles require a robust graphics card in order to play at ultra high graphics settings and at high resolution and frame rates.

The following are the graphics card requirements for some of the latest games. 

  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)

6GB Graphics Card Are Sufficient for FHD @30-60 FPS for AAA Titles

Take note that the requirements in the table above refer to games being played at Full HD and between 30-60 FPS.

Latest AAA titles tend to push the limits of the current gen graphics cards and particularly if you wish to play the titles at 4K resolution or 120FPS or higher.

But generally speaking, even for AAA titles a 6GB graphics for most gamers is more than sufficient.

You may have tweak the resolution or the graphics settings to medium settings a bit to bring the game to decent frame rates, but in majority of the cases 6GB graphics card should do the trick.

If, however, you wish to play AAA titles at ultra high graphics, while wanting to maintaining 60FPS or higher, then 6GB graphics cards may not be enough, particularly the older ones (GTX 980Ti, GTX 1060 etc).

The only issue with 6GB graphics card is that they will run obsolete soon as the graphics engine on AAA titles advance in the coming years.

Final Words

In majority of the cases, the answer to the question “is 6GB graphics card enough for gaming?” is a yes. Almost all of the 6GB graphics cards out there should be able to support the latest titles given that the graphics settings are reasonable.

If you expect these graphics cards to play the latest demanding titles at ultra high settings on 4k resolution while maintaining higher than 60 FPS then you will be thoroughly disappointed. 

In short, 6GB graphics cards are great if you are tight on budget or if simply wish to play games at FHD and 60FPS max – like most gamers out there.

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Author:

Atif Qazi
Atif Qazi is the founder of PCGuide101 and an expert in the computer peripheral industry with over two decades of experience. He has worked as a consultant for major companies and has a deep understanding of the inner workings of computer peripherals. He has a degree in Electrical Engineering and has served as a product manager and technical consultant. He is passionate about testing and evaluating the latest products to provide readers with reliable information.

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