The best 1440p graphics card for PC gaming

Most people play on 1080p monitors and aspire to game in 4K, but here in 2019, 2560×1440 resolution is the PC gaming sweet spot. 1440p provides a big leap in visual fidelity over 1080p, yet it won’t melt your graphics card as ferociously as a 4K display.

Picking the best 1440p graphics card can be somewhat complicated however. Here, you’ll start to see a wider array of monitor types and features than you typically do at 1080p resolution, with ultra-wide resolutions and high refresh rates becoming much more common. You need to keep the specifics of your setup in mind when you’re buying a new GPU. This guide can help.

If you want a wider look at the world of GPUs, be sure to check out our overarching guide to the best graphics cards for PC gaming, where we also explore your best video options for 1080p and 4K resolution, and divvy out buying tips to keep in mind while you’re on the hunt for new hardware.

The best 1440p graphics card: AMD Radeon RX 5700

Your best option for PC gaming at 1440p resolution on a standard 60Hz display is the AMD Radeon RX 5700, which ostensibly starts at $350 but can often be found at $330 on the street—and sometimes less, if you catch a particularly enticing sale.

The Radeon RX 5700 has no problem clearing the 60-frames-per-second gold standard in the vast majority of modern games. There are games where it does fall a few frames short: Some titles, like Metro Exodus, have especially strenuous high-end graphics presets designed to bring modern hardware to its knees, in Crysis-like fashion. In such cases, bumping a couple of visual settings from Ultra down to High or Very High should do the trick. AMD stuffed the card with 8GB of ultra-fast GDDR6 memory, which should be enough for 1440p-resolution gaming for years to come.

This card was the first GPU built using 7nm process technology and AMD’s new “RDNA” graphics architecture (which was since trickled down to the Radeon RX 5500 XT and RX 5600 XT). The underlying tweaks helped AMD finally draw equal to Nvidia’s impressive power efficiency. Games that once favored Nvidia’s GeForce architectures now perform much better on the Radeon RX 5700. It also supports the bleeding-edge PCIe 4.0 interface if you’re running a system with an AMD Ryzen 3000 processor paired with an X570 motherboard, though the benefits from that will be more apparent in select content creation workloads than during gameplay.

Add it all up and the Radeon RX 5700 is the best graphics card for 1440p gaming at 60 frames per second.

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