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:
- The Resolution
- The Frame Rates
- 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 scores – G3DMark is a popular benchmark that scores GPUs based on their performance. It is great for basic comparison.
|Graphics Card||Release Year||G3DMark||MSRP||Price/Performance|
|NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060||2016||10,070||$299||33|
|AMD Radeon RX 5600||2020||11,288||-|
|NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660||2019||11,744||$219||53|
|NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660Ti||2019||11,892||$279||42|
|NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980Ti||2015||13,857||$649||21|
|AMD Radeon RX 5600XT||2020||13,833||$279||50|
|NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060||2019||14,009||$349||40|
- MSRP reflects the price at release NOT the current market price.
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:
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.
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.
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:
|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.
|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.
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.