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Question Are 4GB (and maybe even 6GB) VRAM cards "worthless" these days, for "modern games", even @ 1080P (excluding Fortnite and Roblox)? (with poll)

minimum VRAM amount needed for 1080P High gaming in 2021

  • 1GB

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 2GB

    Votes: 1 1.9%
  • 3GB

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 4GB

    Votes: 9 16.7%
  • 6GB

    Votes: 26 48.1%
  • 8GB

    Votes: 14 25.9%
  • 10/11GB

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 12G

    Votes: 1 1.9%
  • 16GB

    Votes: 2 3.7%
  • 20GB+

    Votes: 1 1.9%

  • Total voters
    54
  • Poll closed .

VirtualLarry

No Lifer
Aug 25, 2001
51,647
6,727
126
Just curious what your thoughts were. With Poll.

Keeping in mind, AAA Console ports may have been written with certain minimum VRAM capability in mind too.

What brought this about was, Newegg had a 4GB GTX 1650 Super (refurb) on SS today for $259.99, and I almost bought one. But the fact that it still hadn't sold-out immediately, gave me pause too. I ultimately decided against it. Mostly, because brand-new RTX 3060 12GB GDDR6 cards are becoming available @ $329-450.

I started to think, how much of a "dead-end" are 4GB GTX 1650-family cards? Then I started to think of them, basically as slightly-faster GTX 1050 ti 4GB cards.
Are they still in any way viable? Yeah, they'll play Fortnite and Roblox... but will they play much else?
 
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solidsnake1298

Senior member
Aug 7, 2009
204
113
116
The newer of the triple AAA games I do play, Rainbow Six Siege (vulkan client) and Destiny 2, both on high-ish settings, use between 4-5GB of VRAM at 1080P. So, at a minimum, a GTX1060 6GB and up on team green and a RX570 8GB model and up on team red.
 

DeathReborn

Platinum Member
Oct 11, 2005
2,351
265
126
Probably 6GB and my thinking does include the 10GB total memory on the Xbox SS.

It would be interesting to see what Direct Storage does to video memory usage though.
 

psolord

Golden Member
Sep 16, 2009
1,343
430
136
Well my GTX 970 still manages to play many games quite decently although I cannot really claim that it can run everything fine, because I cannot possibly test everything. It's on a secondary system too, so....

Here are my latest tests if anyone cares (non monetized videos) and don't forget that's on PCIe 2.0 bus too.


 

psolord

Golden Member
Sep 16, 2009
1,343
430
136
It didn't do so well in The Medium however, during the dual screen scenes, but I am not sure if it's a vram issue or a processing power issue. It seems more of the latter I think.


Still for a card that came out 9 months after the PS4, it ain't bad I guess.
 

Magic Carpet

Diamond Member
Oct 2, 2011
3,471
221
106
Mostly, because brand-new RTX 3060 12GB GDDR6 cards are becoming available @ $329-450.
Personally, I am a fan of 3090 and it’s huge frame buffer. But at that price and half of 3090s vram, 3060 sure as hell looks incredibly sexy too, go for it! Forget the 4gb cards.
 

Shivansps

Diamond Member
Sep 11, 2013
3,328
943
136
i used a RX570 4GB for gaming since 2019 up to Janury 2021. Not only i was able to play everything, some times i was able to do it at 1440p... I played RDR2 at 1440p with that RX570, unfortunately Cyberpunk was too much for 1440p.

I have to say, the GPU was the problem not the vram in most cases, games tend to adjust to the avalible vram rather well, if the diference from whats needed to what it has is not so big.

Funny enoght, i had vram issues in some non-AAA games, for example "7 days to die", really struggled with 4GB gpus after some big update. I never actually played AC Valhalla or AC Odyssey, my last AC was Origins that ran fine at 1440p.

But yeah, looking forward, i would say 6GB is the minimum target for any new gpu, 4GB still works mostly fine, but we crossed that barrier some time ago already. And i belive that will be the case here, with the 6700XT and RTX3060 having 12GB, 6GB is a valid target for the stuff that comes below it.
 
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Stuka87

Diamond Member
Dec 10, 2010
5,479
1,268
136
For the most part 4GB still works pretty well for 1080P. But there are a few games that will max that out. So I think 6GB is now the same minimum. I currently game at 1440P with a 5700XT, and I have had zero video memory issues at that resolution. So you definitely do not need 8GB for 1080P.

NOTE: If RTX is in use, what I said above goes out the window. But as my card doesn't support it, it is not a concern of mine.
 

DAPUNISHER

Super Moderator and Elite Member
Moderator
Aug 22, 2001
23,047
4,721
146
1650 super is nearly double the performance of a 1050ti in most games. It is faster than a 970 too, in some titles significantly so. And it really should not be grouped with the 1650, it is a big step up, particularly v. DDR5 version.



Being a 100W card, it is danged impressive. I have 2 systems running them because of the low power, low noise, low heat, excellent performance, and HTPC goodness.
 
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Hans Gruber

Golden Member
Dec 23, 2006
1,191
345
136
I am a known critic of Nvidia for being greedy. Same with Intel. I recently bought a Dell with an Intel 10400 CPU and 1660 Super 6GB GDDR6 memory to replace my GTX970. The 1660 Super is what the 970 is to 1080P but @ 1440p and on steroids. It's not a 1440p card but in this market that is what it is for me. I think you want 8GB or more of VRAM. The 1660 Super is the bare minimum. Everything below it is incapable and not fit for modern PC gaming. I still regret not getting the AMD 5700 but it didn't hit my strike price of $275 at the time. I almost bit on $292 for the 5700. I was using my 970 way beyond it's useful life. I tried to kill it off but it wouldn't die. I had the original Geforce 256 that died a pathetic early death as well as a Ti4200 that blew a bunch of capacitors. My ATI/AMD cards were all retired still functioning perfectly. The 8800GT was another one of my favorite cards for the time. It's retired and still perfectly functional.

When they sell the stuff cheap, I am obligated to buy. The 1660 Super is a great POS graphics card with the good VRAM memory. Obviously I need a 3070 or a 6800XT.
 

mohit9206

Golden Member
Jul 2, 2013
1,374
493
136
Nvidia is going to launch 3050 with 4GB for $250 this year. Nvidia is going backwards. From 6GB in 2016 to 4GB in 2021 for the same price. In 2016, AMD was already providing 8GB for $240 in 2016. Hopefully Nvidia gets called out for this.
 

mohit9206

Golden Member
Jul 2, 2013
1,374
493
136
Does it matter how much Nvidia gets called out if people keep buying those products?
I think this may backfire on them. Over the years, people have been conditioned by marketing to believe that more ram is better so if Nvidia launches 4gb card then it should also reflect in sales because people will buy amd which will have more ram.
 

Elfear

Diamond Member
May 30, 2004
7,035
557
126
1650 super is nearly double the performance of a 1050ti in most games. It is faster than a 970 too, in some titles significantly so. And it really should not be grouped with the 1650, it is a big step up, particularly v. DDR5 version.



Being a 100W card, it is danged impressive. I have 2 systems running them because of the low power, low noise, low heat, excellent performance, and HTPC goodness.
This makes me feel much better after I sold my 6900XT and went back to a 1650 Super I had in the kid's computer. Thanks!
 

Shmee

Memory and Storage, Graphics Cards
Super Moderator
Sep 13, 2008
5,247
954
126
4GB should still be enough for moderate settings, but remember performance depends largely on the GPU. For instance, a Fury has 4GB of memory, but is generally faster than a 1060 or 580. Depends on game of course too.
 

CP5670

Diamond Member
Jun 24, 2004
4,898
248
106
6GB is fine if you don't use the absolute max settings (and avoid RT, HD texture packs, VR, etc.). Probably even 4GB will work at reduced settings. I used a 980 until 2018 and it ran everything pretty well at 1080p at medium settings. The lack of vram is more of a problem on cards like the 3080 and 3080ti. Given how much they cost, there should not be compromises required.
 

Leeea

Golden Member
Apr 3, 2020
1,046
1,241
96
8GB minimum for 1080p? Lulz! Poll is a joke.
For triple AAA, maybe.

But as soon as the user gets into the not so optimized titles, it starts to matter. Developers who are crossing the line from indie to more mainstream frequently have unoptimized engines that eat VRAM.

Tarkov is an example of this. Poor optimized, increasingly popular, and eats VRAM for lunch. This is nothing new either, the original DayZ mod for ARMA was a VRAM eater.

Thing is, to me this is where the energy is in the PC gaming scene. The titles that are new and trying out something different, rather then the same old rehash. The developers always have bigger fish to fry then optimizing for low VRAM usage.
 
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aigomorla

Cases and Cooling Mod PC Gaming Mod Elite Member
Super Moderator
Sep 28, 2005
19,196
1,589
126
Mostly, because brand-new RTX 3060 12GB GDDR6 cards are becoming available @ $329-450.
Good luck getting a card tho.
I have been scouring for videocards.
The best I could do without coughing out too much blood was the 1660 @ 439.99

That is probably the best your gonna get until the end of this year. At least I predict until eth 2.0

Even then I think the 1660 will sell out as you can still mine somewhat productively on a 1660.

As for vram I think for lower mid range 6gb is fine for 1080p. If it's not I think your lacking in gpu power to even utilize more vram.
The 3080 has showed us what 24gb on a 3090 will give us in real world gaming, and it was depressing.

Yeah, the people picking 16 GB or 20+ GB options crack me up. I'd also be curious to hear from the plucky fellow that picked 2 GB.
isnt the reason for picking those because those are the greatest chance at you even getting a new gen gpu?
3090 and the 6900xt being so overpriced as it is, is probably the easiest cards to get with the lowest markup %.
 
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