For gamers, videographers, and graphic designers, a good powerful graphic card is an absolute necessity. Fortunately, most of the gaming laptops that we have these days have already very powerful internal graphic cards integrated. But many people use normal laptops for both working and gaming, and to get a performance boost, they add an external graphic card or an eGPU to their laptops. While it is a fairly decent practice that brings satisfactory results for most of them, however, it is important to do some research and consider a few things to know about the best laptop graphics card out there that can actually bring a major difference to their overall gaming experience on their laptops.
Some of the most important things to take into account before buying an external graphic card for your laptop include the following pointers:
This is the most important thing to factor in before buying the best laptop graphics card for external integration. If your laptop is mediocre in the performance department, you really should think twice before investing more in it with an additional expensive eGPU. If you can afford it, go for proper gaming or a high-performing laptop with a powerful internal GPU. Otherwise, invest in it only if you can spend some money to upgrade your laptop too.
Thermal values or Thermal Design Power is the maximum heat generated by a central processing unit, or a graphic card, or any other component on the chip that the cooling system of a computer is capable of dissipating under any amount of load.
Now, graphic cards produce a lot of thermal energy and this is important to consider before going for the best laptop graphics card for external integration. You must look for a card that has a suitable TDP value so that your laptop does not require additional cooling fans for heat dissipation. Adding more fans is also an added expense plus space consuming which you need to factor in before considering buying the most appropriate external graphic card.
You need to know if your laptop’s power supply has 6-pin to 8-pin connectors to levy your external graphics card or not? If not, then you will have to purchase a power supply too.
Video Random Access Memory (RAM)
Most of the external graphic cards come in the range of 2-12 gigabytes of video memory. This video memory is actually quite important for gamers, videographers, and graphic designers as it makes your images more life-like by removing all the jagged edges smoothens the texture and makes them appear more flawless. Therefore, video card RAM is crucial for high image quality and optimal computer performance. It also allows gamers to play games at higher resolutions without any problems. So, choosing the best laptop graphics card for external integration can be done easily and accurately by dividing the system memory by two. The resultant answer is the memory that your system needs for your external graphics card. For instance, if your system’s RAM is 8 gigabytes, dividing it by two will give you 4. So, your system needs a graphics card of at least 4 gigabytes to enhance its performance.
Bandwidth, Clock Speed, and Bus Width
Bandwidth is the memory that is always accessible for a graphics card. The more a graphics card’s bandwidth is, the faster is the result in frame changes and the video graphics are clearer. This is really important for gamers.
Now, a card’s bandwidth is determined by its Clock speed, which affects the frame change rate, latency, input lag, etc. Clock Speed is determined in MHz, and most graphics cards can read 64 bits chips or 64 bits of information at a given time. An additional and external GPU can add to the overall bandwidth, so it is important to consider the one with the best clock speed and bus width.
Stream Processors or CUDA cores
They are also called “Shader Cores” and they influence the bandwidth of graphic cards. What they do is to add more variation and clarity to contrasting media for 3D objects. If a graphics card has more “shader cores,” then it allows a better and faster image result. For some video games, more “shader cores” are important, while some games are better with lesser “shader cores.” So, you must consider the requirement of your preferred games before choosing the best laptop graphics card to integrate externally.