5 Best GPU For HTPC (Home Theatre PC) – Expert Reviews

Are you planning on building a home theatre PC? You can’t do so without a GPU.

The GPU is what’s responsible for displaying the graphics on the monitor or TV.

In this article, we list the best GPU for  HTPC.


Position
First Place
Runner Up
Best Budget
Snapshot
ZOTAC Gaming GeForce GTX 1660 Super 6GB GDDR6 192-bit Gaming Graphics Card, Super Compact, ZT-T16620F-10L
ASUS TUF Gaming NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 OC Edition Graphics Card (PCIe 3.0, 4GB GDDR6 Memory, HDMI, DisplayPort, DVI-D, 1x 6-pin Power Connector, IP5X Dust Resistance, Space-Grade Lubricant)
Gigabyte GeForce GT 1030 GV-N1030D5-2GL Low Profile 2G Computer Graphics Card
What You Need To Know About The GPU

The best affordable GPU for HTPC set-ups.

The best value GPU for HTPC you can get.

The cheapest GPU for HTPC.

Prime
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Rating
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Position
First Place
Snapshot
ZOTAC Gaming GeForce GTX 1660 Super 6GB GDDR6 192-bit Gaming Graphics Card, Super Compact, ZT-T16620F-10L
What You Need To Know About The GPU

The best affordable GPU for HTPC set-ups.

Prime
-
Rating
Position
Runner Up
Snapshot
ASUS TUF Gaming NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 OC Edition Graphics Card (PCIe 3.0, 4GB GDDR6 Memory, HDMI, DisplayPort, DVI-D, 1x 6-pin Power Connector, IP5X Dust Resistance, Space-Grade Lubricant)
What You Need To Know About The GPU

The best value GPU for HTPC you can get.

Prime
-
Rating
-
Position
Best Budget
Snapshot
Gigabyte GeForce GT 1030 GV-N1030D5-2GL Low Profile 2G Computer Graphics Card
What You Need To Know About The GPU

The cheapest GPU for HTPC.

Prime
Rating

Last update on 2021-09-22 at 01:41 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


Preview
Name
Clock Speed & VRAM
 
ZOTAC Gaming GeForce GTX 1660 Super 6GB GDDR6 192-bit Gaming Graphics Card, Super Compact, ZT-T16620F-10L
1530 MHz & 6GB
ASUS TUF Gaming NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 OC Edition Graphics Card (PCIe 3.0, 4GB GDDR6 Memory, HDMI, DisplayPort, DVI-D, 1x 6-pin Power Connector, IP5X Dust Resistance, Space-Grade Lubricant)
1320 MHz & 12GB
Zotac GeForce GTX 1050Ti 4 GB Mini Graphics Card - Black
 1290 MHz & 4GB
PowerColor AMD Radeon RX 550 4GB Red Dragon Graphics Card
 1100 MHz & 2GB
Gigabyte GeForce GT 1030 GV-N1030D5-2GL Low Profile 2G Computer Graphics Card
 1228 MHz & 2GB

Best Video Card For HTPC Reviewed


NVIDIA GTX 1660 Super – Best Video Card For 4K HTPC

ZOTAC Gaming GeForce GTX 1660 Super 6GB GDDR6 192-bit Gaming Graphics Card, Super Compact, ZT-T16620F-10L

Where To Buy

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Pros

  • Affordable
  • Excellent performance
  • Doesn’t get too hot

Cons

  • No RT cores
  • Limited ports

Clock Speed: 1530 MHz | CUDA Cores: 1408 | VRAM: 6GB | Memory Bandwidth: 336GB/s

One of the best entry-level gaming video cards on the market. The GTX 1660 Super might not be the most powerful.

But it’s certainly powerful enough to play 4K movies on the HTPC. It has high clock speeds and plenty of VRAM to easily compute and display graphics data.

This also makes it a decent option for rendering, photoshop, and gaming. Moreover, the GPU’s cooling system is on point making GPU throttling non-existent under heavy loads.

Overall, the GTX 1660 Super is the best video card for 4K HTPC or higher resolutions.


NVIDIA GTX 1650 OC – Best GPU For 4K Streaming

ASUS TUF Gaming NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 OC Edition Graphics Card (PCIe 3.0, 4GB GDDR6 Memory, HDMI, DisplayPort, DVI-D, 1x 6-pin Power Connector, IP5X Dust Resistance, Space-Grade Lubricant)

Where To Buy

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Pros

  • Affordable
  • Good gaming performance

Cons

  • Not suitable for 4K gaming

Clock Speed: 1485 MHz | CUDA Cores: 896 | VRAM: 4GB | Memory Bandwidth: 128GB/s

An overclock version of the GTX 1650. This video card is not only cheap but also powerful enough for 4K streaming and movies.

It’s also able to handle a bit of 3D rendering and photoshop with ease.

The high clock speeds, CUDA cores, and decent amount of VRAM can handle games on low to medium settings.

To sum it all up, the GTX 1650 OC is an inexpensive video card that will easily handle 4K streaming on Youtube, Netflix, etc.


NVIDIA GTX 1050 Ti – Best Value Video Card For 4K Movies

Zotac GeForce GTX 1050Ti 4 GB Mini Graphics Card - Black

Where To Buy

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Pros

  • Handles all games at Full HD
  • Ridiculously low power consumption
  • Quiet design

Cons

  • Some games need to be dropped to low settings

Clock Speed: 1290 MHz | CUDA Cores: 768 | VRAM: 4GB | Memory Bandwidth: 112GB/s

A few years ago the GTX 1050 Ti used to be one of the most popular and quite expensive video cards on the market.

Now? With the release of newer and more powerful video cards, it has taken a back seat. The good news is that you can grab the GTX 1050 Ti at a very affordable price.

It will provide your HTPC with more than enough performance for 4K movies. This makes it one of the best value GPUs for 4K movies.

It might be outdated but the hardware is still more than capable for this kind of job. Highly-recommended.


AMD Radeon RX 550 – Best Budget GPU For HTPC

PowerColor AMD Radeon RX 550 4GB Red Dragon Graphics Card

Where To Buy

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Pros

  • Low power, low heat
  • Compact form factor
  • Serviceable 1080p performance
  • No auxiliary power connector

Cons

  • Not great for high-performance gaming

Clock Speed: 1100 MHz | Stream Processors: 512 | VRAM: 2GB | Memory Bandwidth: 112GB/s

An awesome budget GPU for your HTPC build. The AMD Radeon RX 550. It’s quiet and runs cool because of its low power consumption.

That means less fan noise and GPU throttling under heavy loads. The RX 550 is also decent enough for video and photo editing.

Furthermore, you can stream and play 4K movies without any problems. Overall, the RX 550 is a decent GPU that’s very affordable.

It has enough performance making it a solid hardware component for your HTPC build.

We highly recommend this as the best budget GPU for HTPC.


NVIDIA GTX 1030 – Best Cheap GPU For HTPC

Gigabyte GeForce GT 1030 GV-N1030D5-2GL Low Profile 2G Computer Graphics Card

Where To Buy

Check Today's Price

Pros

  • Starts at $70
  • Remarkably low 30W TDP
  • Single-slot/low-profile form factor

Cons

  • Not suitable for demanding games

Clock Speed: 1228 MHz | CUDA Cores: 384 | VRAM: 2GB | Memory Bandwidth: 48GB/s

Perhaps, the greatest advantage of the NVIDIA GT 1030 is it is a single slot and low profile card. Most GPUs have several slots and are massive in size.

This makes the GT 1030 perfect for mini-HTPC builds. You don’t have to get a large case to house the GPU. But, a mini-case is sufficient enough for the GT 1030.

Moreover, it has low power consumption – less power, less noise, and less heat. Literally, what you need in a mini-HTPC.

This cheap GPU is also able to play and stream 4K movies at 60Hz. To sum it all up, the GT 1030 is the best cheap GPU for HTPC.

It’s a single-slot card that doesn’t take much space, runs cool, and plays [email protected] movies.


Do I Need a GPU For HTPC?

Yes, you do. A GPU is responsible for computing, processing graphics data, and displaying it on your monitor. That means without a GPU your monitor or TV will have a blank display.

There are two types of GPU – integrated and dedicated.

An integrated GPU is built onto the same die as the CPU and uses part of the PC’s RAM as video memory.

Dedicated GPU, on the other hand, is a standalone hardware component that houses the GPU and has its own VRAM.

Dedicated GPUs are more powerful than integrated GPUs when it comes to computing graphics.

Does Graphics Card Matter For Watching Movies?

Yes, graphics cards do matter for watching movies. Lacking a graphics card means you won’t be able to watch movies or you will get a blank screen on your monitor or TV.

Also, depending on the movie resolution. You might need an integrated or dedicated graphics card.

What Graphics Card Do I Need For 4K Movies?

Below are the dedicated graphics cards you need for 4K movies:

  • GTX 1660 Super
  • GTX 1650
  • GTX 1050 Ti

Do You Need A Graphics Card For 4K Streaming?

Yes, you need graphics for 4K streaming. Building a home theatre with an integrated or dedicated GPU is very important if you want to stream movies in 1080p or 4K.

A home theatre without a GPU won’t display anything on the monitor or TV. That includes the start-up screen.

Final Thoughts

To sum it all up, the GTX 1660 Super is the best video card for 4K HTPC.

The GTX 1050 Ti comes in as the best value video card for 4K movies.

And finally, the AMD Radeon RX 550 is the best budget GPU for HTPC.

That’s it for the best GPU for HTPC.

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