Low End Video Cards Rant – Are they still terrible?


On the 16th of November 2013, Linus released a video called ‘Low End Video Cards Rant & Radeon R7 240 Unboxing & Review’, which was known internally as ‘Low end graphics cards are s***’. You can click here to go check it out. If you do go check it, out scroll down a bit to the comments. This is why we were determined that we needed a follow-up. I will address some of those that commented and their misconceptions, and try to add a bit of my own points to the conversation through some interesting benchmarks. Let’s do this. Apacer’s AS720 is a dual interface SSD with USB 3.1 Type C on one end, and SATA on the other, with read speeds of up to 540 MB per second and write speeds of up to 450 MB per second. Check the link in the video description to learn more. The first comment I’m going to address was from Michael H aka Freakazoid777. Michael claimed that he could think of many situations where one would want to buy a low-profile ultra-cheap graphics card, but that Linus’s gamer mind clearly polluted his ability to think outside the box. A little aggro, but regardless Linus already replied and Michael admitted that he may have been a little off the point with that one. The point Linus was trying to make wasn’t that no-one could ever use a low-profile graphics card. The point he was trying to make is that the R7 240 is actually too expensive for the performance it delivers, making it a terrible value. This is not only true for games, but also for any application that relies on GPU power. So thinking outside the box: if you needed the compute performance, it just isn’t there. Mygaffer claims that people don’t buy these for gaming anyway unless they’re ill-informed. That people people should buy this if, say they have an older motherboard that the video-out died on or they just need more ports in general. Sorry, but that would also be ill-informed. If someone just needs more video-out ports buying this card is literally throwing money away. If you just need a graphics card so you can hook up more monitors, you could pick up something like the GT 210. It’s 30 bucks on Amazon compared to 70 for an R7 240, has DVI, HDMI and VGA connections, is passively cooled and if you spend 35 dollars total, it has free shipping so grab yourself a couple snacks and a drink. Within a couple days you’ve got some nom noms and a GPU for half the price that is going to be equally capable of driving your extra monitors for non-gaming or compute applications. If you don’t care about low-profile, which is likely, but your problem lies more on the affordability side of things, I would still definitely not ever buy this card. There are comments talking about needing a graphics card, but not having the money to get to the price per performance sweet spot. Linus suggested just waiting and saving, but we also understand that this isn’t an option for everyone. If this is your budget, and it’s not gonna change, that’s fine: buy something used. Check out Scrapyard Wars. We build pretty kick-ass computers for like 300 bucks. All the time. And the budget that you’d have for something like an R7 240, looking at my local used sites like Craigslist, [I] could get a GTX 660. Which would kick its ass in terms of performance. So, no, that’s not a valid argument. Basically, if all you need is a low-profile card: get a different one. If you don’t care about gaming performance: this is too expensive for your use case, find something else. If you don’t have the money for something new that’s better: buy used. We’re not trying to attack people that don’t have the money. For the vast majority of my life, that’s where I was at. We’re trying to help them to not waste the little that they have on trash that offers no benefit. Okay? So that addresses, I hope, the issues people had with the first video, which brings us to the new part of this video: The 2016 update, if you will. Since we don’t have the R7 240 any-more, I went out and bought the newest card that I could find in that price point and what I could find it up being the Nvidia GT 730. We went [with] the green team this time to demonstrate that we weren’t picking on AMD specifically last time around, and that the problem is actually universal. It’s basically the same story as the R7 240. I put this on our standard graphics card test bench running alongside an I7 5930K, in order to not have to worry about bottlenecking at all. And then I tested it against a 6700K, not overclocked, using its integrated GPU: the Intel HD graphics 530. The results may be a little surprising: the 6700K with its integrated graphics card handily beat the 730 in Tomb Raider, more or less equalled it in Counter-Strike [Global Offensive] and didn’t do quite as bad as it did in Far Cry 4. In every scenario it was better. The 730 just had its ass handed to it by an integrated GPU. I realize this scenario won’t be applicable to a ton of people, but if you will be able to save up for more, but need a system now, and don’t have quite the money for everything that you wanted: Instead of stepping down your platform and buying something like a 730, just wait and run your I-GPU for a bit and get something more sensible later on. Basically, what we’re trying to say is that there are lots of good approaches. Buy a cheaper low-profile card with the video-outs that you need. Buy used or use your I-GPU or APU. The only terrible option is buying an entry-level card like the R7 240 or GT 730. Speaking of good solutions: Crunchyroll is a site created by anime fans for anime fans. Which usually is actually a pretty good solution. They offer the most current episodes of new shows straight from Japan like ‘Erased’ or ‘Active Raid’. And they have large collections of popular anime series that everyone has heard of like ‘One Piece’ or ‘Naruto’. All of them are professionally subtitled within an hour of their premiere in Japan. So head over to crunchyroll.com/linus, [and] you get a 30-day free trial of Crunchyroll Premium, that gives you no ads. You can watch on whatever device you want: consoles even, phones, tablets, laptops, computers, 1080p streaming. Like I said, episodes straight from Japan and if you like it after those 30 days, it’s only 6,95 [dollars] a month. So again: crunchyroll.com/linus, check it out. Thanks for watching guys! If that video sucked or if you still somehow disagree with us: You know what to do. But if it was awesome: get subscribed, hit the like button or even consider supporting us directly by using our Amazon affiliate code to shop for stuff that you know: Amazon. Buying a cool t-shirt like this one in the comments, in the description down below thingy, or with a direct monthly contribution through the forum. Now that you’re done doing all that kind of stuff: you’re probably wondering what to watch next, so click the button in the top right hand corner just check out this video, where we unbox and review a card that is great to buy used and has been featured on Scrapyard Wars twice. It’s not that cheap, but the value is actually pretty good so yeah, it’s a, it’s a 290. It’s an R9 290. It’s, it’s up there.

100 thoughts on “Low End Video Cards Rant – Are they still terrible?

  1. Instead of that little EVGA card you can buy GTX650. My is 6 year old and still works good af at 1070Mhz clock speed and 2600Mhz memory speed and it goes for arround 20$
    Edit: I have no heat issues with it even with fan at lowest 30% speed. While playing games temperature gets up to 50°C with stock termal paste on GPU. Yes you will have to play on medium to low graphics but it is a good starter point.

  2. Oh God, 730 is worse than iGPU? I (my former, uneducated me, long ago) bought laptop with 710M for GAMING, because I only cared about how much vram it has 😀 and it had 2gb VRAM :((

  3. I run the zotac geforce gt 730 4gb and have no problems running anything, this card does it's job (running xcom2, cs:go, left 4 dead, Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor), and others.

    My opinion is your "reviews" are bies and frankly in my opinion again bullshit, if it isn't high end in your guys opinion it's garbage and frankly that's crap.

  4. Hey 👋🏽 I am going to build my first pc, is a ryzne 5 and a gtx1060 6gb and 16 gb of ram is that good for gaming ,if no please comment what I need to improve. thx

  5. If gpus like these are useless for proper use, why do they even exist? Doesn´t make any sense to me.

  6. The 1030 with GDDR5 is a good budget card for low end or HTPCs and still faster than most integrated solutions.
    it can still compete with decent older cards but only draws about 30-35W

  7. The only problem here is that people get angry when they can't get what they want in under a year. If you have any way of saving money at all then a brand new computer is only ever going to be as good as your patience. And that's why some people are smug about their hardware; not because they are snobs, unless they're spoiled children, but because they worked hard to get their hands on that shit and they're proud of it.

  8. Anyone having a good advise for a songle-slot gpu for not to much money which could run cs:go at low-mediumu settings over 60 fps ? Yes, I'm a VERY low budget gamer …

  9. And i want to ask something to everybody watching this video, gaming is still important, more Important family or those gaming set up, more important reunion with family and friend or those gaming set up?
    answer me and don't give a lie answer

  10. I hate how some people don't get the difference between a graphics adapter and a budget gaming card . I'm not saying they can't game . They can , but they suck at it . They weren't designed to do that .. If the companies were to make the cheapest models to be the best how would they sell their pricier cards . Don't expect miracles with the cheapest component ..

  11. I use the gt 730 and the 2017 game drivers make it a kick ass graphics card. I ran far cry 4 medium at about 30.5 fps

  12. Thank you for pointing that out. I had been conditioned too view used electronics as trash. But computer parts are an exception. Some one can be looking to just offset the cost of an upgrade. I too can sell many old parts for extra $$. A interesting video would be HOW much can you upgrade for? selling off old parts. Might get a banging pc for $100 in upgrades.

  13. Here's a scenario for exactly why i bought 2 r7 240's today….my rig has no apu and I want this build to strictly be a all AMD build…period…I am using a asus aura 970 gaming motherboard and a 8370 8 core…the only scenario that I needed these cards is to make sure that I did not fry this board when i connected more than 4 gpus to it last time…last time I fried my 6-core 6300 and I just got my 8370 that I have want for literally like forever…omg…lol anyways…I bought this because of the fact that it does crossfire with amd apus and I just so happen to have 2 AM2 socket mobo's that someone gave me that these cards will be going into as a "retro revamp" so to speak…
    I paid $100 for 2 of these card brand new today and the 550rx was 150 at the lowest price I could find…new that is
    yes maybe but it was a bad choice but still the one thing I notice that is wrong with these reviews is you guys always resort back to nvidia when reviewing low end stuf when …lets face it…nvidia just isnt low end…I just bought my step dad a geforce 210 for xmas for strictly watching movies on and it is great…however there is no sli with this card…
    I GET CROSSFIRE WITH THESE WITH WHATEVER AMD CARD I USE IN THE FUTURE!!! and me being a cryptocoin miner(currently mining with gtx1050Tis 8 of them in 8-way SLI according to evga precision and 4 750-TI's in 4 way sli)…that only adds to my bottom line since I used gift card money to buy these card to top all this off…
    Thanks for the reviews and the knowledge you guys share…I learn a lot from your guys…but can you please just try and do an all amd review on the low-end side…I honestly cant decide between a rx580 4gb or 8gb or just a 590 for my 9570 and 9590 fx series build I am about to do…

  14. GT 730 ver 2, GT 430 ver 2 and GT 1030 are basically the same and they are excellent for 32bit OS games. Tomb Raider 2013 was a 32bit OS game. GTX 750 Ti was a good 1080p introduction to gaming, and now you want a GTX 960, GTX 1060 Or GTX 970 if you cant get the 1080 or TITAN. If you live in a warm climate stick to Intel and Nvidia, AMD gets about 10 degrees hotter in their CPUs and GPUs.

  15. I remember when I see linus testing the Acer Nitro 5, and in the US it's priced around 800 dollars, but here in Brazil it's costs around 1200 dollars, and since I can't afford this, I'm looking for a getting a Lenovo with a Core i5 8250 (it's almost the same thing as the core i7 8550, and this i5 8250 don't get that hot like the i7 8550), with Nvida MX150 (AKA GT 1030), and I know it isn't an GTX, but it have a pretty decent performance, and it performs quite like some older GTX graphics cards.
    Brazil taxes sucks…

  16. I think it also depends on access. where I live you're not going to find second hand GPUs. and online arkets like craig's list don't work here, i mean out of every 50 items i search on amazon only like 1 item ships here soooooooooo sometimes you just end up buying whatever you can find. but Buying a shit card is not value for money given that they don't really provide the significant boost in performance per dollar.

  17. "Just wait and use iGPU" exactly what i did with my Ryzen32200g for like 6 months and got a 10606gb for like 150CAD off so yea… wait lol

  18. I bought an HD 7470 for like $6 but that was to upgrade an old Dell Optiplex 740 from 2007. Still gets better performance than its integrated graphics.

  19. I understand Im just pissed I was uninformed and bought one of these years ago. When I became informed even a little bit about computers it was too late. Story of my life.

  20. The used graphics card market is a minefield, it's a 50/50 that any used card you buy will still be functioning in 6 months.

  21. I don't think a person would buy a card like this for 1080p gaming . maybe 720p gaming didnt even give one 720p benchmark

  22. I put a zotac gt 730 4gb in my wifes desktop and it surprised me immensely considering I run a 970 in my desktop. I think that nowadays its not a good option as a cheap 1050 can be bought for around the same price and give you a solid performance increase overall. love your videos bud keep it up! and hey careful with those CPU's… watched u drop one earlier on that budget build upgrade video LOL. well done sir

  23. I agree on the price/power ratio as I did in 2013. Linus was spot on. Certainly if it was about value, it ain't there. I have several Optiplex workstations and these cards especially if your buying from Dell are pricey for what you get. I have an R5 240 in fact in my 9020 SFF. It's job however isnt to game, it's to free up memory and more importantly maximize computing power. While the intel GPU isn't as powerful as my r5, it still steals some ram instead of having it's own, uses memory bandwidth and adds to the heat created by the cpu. So if your doing intensive work, your likely not to enjoy that turbo feature for as long if your doing even mild graphics. Now, I am sure it doesn't impact the TDP envelope by much, but if your doing modeling such as I am with this SFF, every ounce counts. But if your just surfing the web and simple office tasks I really see no point. Intel serves simple tasks like this just fine. But if I was going to upgrade while keeping the portability of the SFF, I would go with the !)%) now days. That double slot design, power sipping performance in a little package is impressive. But, I wouldn't want to do all of my work on it. There's huge costs most don't see when going with a system like this.

  24. it is a valid argument depending the place in the world u live, and its current economic situation
    (inflation or not)…anyways nowadays integrated graphics have advanced a lot
    in terms of efficiency and performance
    , and can run a lot of modern games titles without a problem, with the limits of running on a igpu, in not all, but I think the vast majority maybe
    , like dunno not the best graphic quality or the highest resolution u can get so u can forget about that, but on pretty much decent settings, acceptable quality at low or low- med sometimes even high at very playable fps, because the thing is just to play the game, if u r not of course an obsessed gamer that only want to play games at megaultra quality at 4k on a gaming monitor

  25. There has been a lot of scammers would video cards on eBay lately and the scammers are running rampant on Craigslist, they both are becoming less of an option. I know three people that bought from both sites and all three of them were scammed….

  26. I would love to see a video with the most value for performance on each PC part at this time. Since I believe it's a good way of continuing the theme used within this video, pointing out people in the good directions with what they actually can get for their low-mid budget situation with the highest performance percentile.

    Reason why I'm requesting this is since there's a lot of review videos EVERYWHERE most of the "Best budget" or "Best for your money" isn't actually the best at that time, not taking into account buying used things. I meant Going part by part into PC building what would the best value when it's all "Combined" into a single machine.

    Love your videos @Linus Tech Tips, I think some are pointless, some less than others however keep doing a great job! : )

  27. I bought a GT 1030 (not the ddr4 version) and slapped it into a HP t620 plus thin client. It completely converted that system. Stock it uses an AMD R3 8400.

    It could only support a low profile single slot designed card, plus with only a 90w PSU the GT 1030 was the only option.

    But gaming wasn't in mind, with the GT 1030 its damn good media box.

    And it can game, but that not the point of that system.

    If you buy a gt 1030 and expect a high end gaming system, you're only fooling yourself, but a bad car it is not.

  28. Cheap cards might suck ..but some of us can only afford cheaper gear though . …I wish I could get a 1080 ti or whatever . but nope

  29. My mother's PC is so old ("How old is it?!?"), she's using intel GMA 3100 integrated graphics… a GT 730 would be a significant upgrade (and that's in 2019).

  30. I live in a third world county so its not easy to get graphics cards but their are some places that sell them even low end cards costs over 400 of this countries money i have an old cpu with an igpu that did not even have de latests shaders it could only play games from 2006 and older and im not in a rich familie i only had a budjet of 400 and their where not many options i could only choos between gt 230and gt 710 and i realy needed somthing to game on so i bougt the gt710 even a low end card like the 1030 costs 950 that was way out of my budjet sometimes the situation that people are in dont allow them to have better options especialy for a kid in a poor country a mid range familie

  31. not having the money to get something better is valid. not everyone is comfortable with buying used items… you guys cant seem to admit that there is even a shred of elitism in your opinion, which is bullshit. go to a place like ukraine, and talk about not having enough cuda cores to be one of the cool linus approved kids. not everyone is a privileged kid from BC.

  32. Hmm, well now I'm going to need to do some benchmarks. I just assumed the 730 would beat the onboard. The 730 will likely win as it's up against a Dell e521, but don't know without benchmarks. Can't complain about value as I got it free. Thanks LTT

  33. But you guys aren't going to do legitimate reviews on cheap cards are you? You aren't going to find one that you'd honestly recommend would you though? Why is that? Are we too focused on telling people to save, or buy used, to genuinely give reviews on low end cards?

    Like, random ass card, not even real, but we can't get you guys to review this YT 340, don't get me wrong, it's a crap card, can only push ~40 frames on medium settings for like, super old games from like, 2010, but! It's a great value, and would honestly recommend it for anyone with a low end budget and wants to start gaming, they'll just have to live with the compromise of not having a pretty scenery

  34. The people in the channel Linus Tech Tips are currently being took over by nVidia. So they will always recommend those cards.

  35. LOL that's the card that came with my Dell. I hate that damn card 😂You're telling me I would've been better off running integrated graphics with my i7 6700 cpu the whole time I had it? LMFAO!! Dell cheated me!!

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