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How to install or upgrade a graphic card on a PC?

If you’re feeling anxious because of the low performance of your computer or laptop in gaming, and you want to know about how to install or upgrade a graphics card on a PC .you want to read the article. In the 21st century, graphic cards have become the need of the hour for gamers and programmers. How to install or upgrade a graphic card on a PC. Their huge demand is because of the fact that advanced graphic cards can lift your gaming career to the peak.

Since the last decade, graphic cards have gained huge importance specifically in gaming, programming, and other fields related to engineering. As they can give your computer or laptop a new life or an advanced way working of with its lightning-fast performance and storage, they are crowned head of the gaming world. 

The installation of graphics card isn’t a big deal. You just need to have a tools kit or a Philips-head screwdriver that will help you in opening the rear side of the computer or PC. Even if you didn’t open your PC before, you can easily install or upgrade a graphic card in your PC by using the following guide.

This well-explained article on how to install or upgrade a graphic card in a PC is worth reading for you in every case. Like, if your laptop or PC doesn’t have any graphic card, you’ll get to know the most suitable graphic card for your PC, laptop, and Mac. And, in case, you’re currently using a graphic card but want to switch to another brand or an updated version of the same brand, you’ll understand all the points.

Buying guide for selecting the best graphics cards for PC:

Before diving into the process of installing or updating a graphic card, let’s look at some critical points about choosing the most appropriate graphic card for your PC or laptop. In the following points, I have clearly mentioned all the necessities about GPU including brand, size, and power supply that will help you in purchasing a good one. 

Brand of GPU:

Because of the huge demand for the graphics card, there is a saturation of multiple brands of the graphics card in the market. But, according to my vast research on the products related to the gaming mainly graphics cards, there are two worth considering brands of graphics cards in the market; Nvidia and AMD.

Both of these brand’s graphics cards have shown mind-blowing performance for past years. if you ask me to suggest anyone super-efficient graphics card brand, then I recommend you to go for Nvidia.

Here is the list of top-rated graphic cards from these brands for ideal performance;

  1. Nvidia GeForce 3090
  2. Nvidia GeForce GTX 1660Ti
  3. AMD Radeon RX 6800
  4. Nvidia Quadro RTX 4000
  5. Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Ti
  6. AMD Radeon RX 570

Here is one thing to remember, if you are a Macbook user, you have to choose the particular graphics card cautiously. Most of the Macbooks and Mac computers don’t support the Nvidia graphics card except the two Quadro K5000 and GeForce GTX 680, but only old models support it. Mac usually supports AMD graphics card as an e-GPU. If you want to know the process of inserting an e-GPU into the Mac, be with me. I have also discussed it below. 

Also, you can check efficient and the most compatible e-GPUs for Mac from here.

Size of the graphics card:

The size of the graphic card is another point of consideration. While buying a graphics card, make sure that it is according to your need and fits best in the motherboard. Most of the motherboards doesn’t support graphics card because of their long size.

Generally, all the latest graphics cards fit in the PCI-E slots, but if your motherboard is older and doesn’t have a PCI-E slot then you can’t insert any graphics card in it. Also, if your PC has an integrated graphic card, you can’t upgrade or replace it. Since the integrated graphics cards are mostly attached to the motherboard or CPU you can’t upgrade them.

If your PC has a PCI-E X4 slot, most probably the latest graphics card will not fit in your motherboard properly. But if your motherboard has PCI-E X16, you can easily fit the updated graphics card. The PCI-E X16 is more powerful and hasa speedy performance.

Power supply:

The suitable power supply also plays an important role in the functioning of the graphics card. Before updating your graphic card also check the power supply to these graphics cards. If you’ve connected other power-consuming devices with the same power supply, upgrade the power supply too.The power connector supply 75-Watt extra voltage to the graphics card for efficient performance. This voltage mostly drew from 6 pins connector. The 8 pins connector provide 150-Watt voltage to the graphics card, which is enough for all type of work. 

But the PCI express X16 connectors are enough for delivering power to the graphics cards on the Intel desktop board.

Upgrading the graphics card in PC

How to install or upgrade a graphic card in a PC 1, take a glance at the given points that help you to upgrade a graphic card on your laptop.

Uninstall the previous drivers:

Firstly, you have to uninstall the drivers of the previous graphics card from yourPC or computer.

Remember that if you’re inserting the same but updated brand of the graphics card, you didn’t need to uninstall the drivers. You can enjoy the features of the latest graphics card by simply updating the specific drivers.

But if you’re switching from one brand to another; that is, you want to change the graphics card from Intel to Nvidia or from Nvidia to AMD or vice versa, you have to uninstall the drivers of the old graphics card. Otherwise, both of the drivers will keep running in the background and ruin the efficient working of the latest graphics card.  

Plug out from power supply:

Before inserting or even opening the motherboard of a computer, make sure that there is no power supply attached to the computer. For utmost safety, turn off the button on the rear side of the CPU for disconnecting all kinds of PSU.

Mostly, manufacturers recommend that don’t open the computer’s motherboard for inserting or removing anything by placing it on the ground. Prevention is better than cure. So, sit on a non-conductor thing like wood while doing such tasks.

Removing the existing card:

Now, you have to turn off your computer or PC. Keep in mind that you have unplugged it, otherwise it’ll cause you an extensive shock.

Open the rear side of the CPU by using a specific tool kit. And, if you have any experience of opening it or not, you can easily open it by using a Philips-head screwdriver. Again, verify that there is no any plug of power supply.

So, take out the inserted graphics card gently by opening PCI-e slots’ screws. Also, keep in mind that while doing so, you’re not hurting or damaging any other wire. Moreover, after removing that graphics card, clean the space. So that there is no dust present there.

Inserting the latest graphic card:

How to install and upgrade a graphic card in a PC there are many recommendations. it’s time to insert the new graphics card in that place. Again, use gentle hands while placing the new graphics card. Ensure that it has completely fitted in the particular place mainly at the PCI-e slots. Look again that there is nothing cable or wire under the card and tight the screws.

Attach the wires/cables again as they were adjusted before. And, close the chassis again by screwing up at the exact positions.

GPU drivers:

There are two scenarios; as I’ve mentioned earlier if you are switching from a different brand then you have to install the drivers of the specific brand. But if you’re switching across the same brands then you just have to update the drivers.

Let’s look at this briefly! After following the procedure mentioned above, open (Turn on) your PC.

You can install the drivers from the CD/DVD of that particular graphics card if you have. Otherwise, follow these steps.

  • No matter which Window you are using, either it is Window7 or Window10, click on the Search bar and type “Device Manager”
  • When you’ll click at the “Display adaptors,” you’ll see your newest graphics card popping here.
  • Click on that, then select the properties.

If you have installed a graphics card and driver on your laptop or computer, you can upgrade it too for better results. For this open the “Display Adaptors” by following the above steps.

  • Click on the particular graphics card and then a window will appear.
  • Click the “Driver” and then choose the option of “Update driver.”
  • Then click on the “Search automatically for updated driver software” option.
  • Select the “Search for updated drivers on Windows Update” If there any updated driver exists; you can select it and then upgrade it.
  • Otherwise, you can also check it from the “Window Update” portion.
  • After updating, you have to restart your laptop or PC.

By following all these steps, you can easily upgrade the installed drivers and your PC will start working more smoothly.

How to install and upgrade the graphic card in a PC?

Most of the laptops have integrated graphics cards. So, we can’t remove or replace these integrated graphics cards because they are usually fastened with the motherboard or attached to the CPU. Mainly, you have to change the laptop in order to change the graphics card in the laptop for better performance. You can check our article on the best gaming laptops for under $1500 (link) if you want.

By keeping in mind all the things, there left only one method of upgrading the graphics card in your laptop; that is, using an external graphics card. If your laptop has a thunderbolt3, you can easily attach the e-GPU. It can produce enough memory and space for the ideal working of your laptop. Moreover, you can buy the Startech USB graphics card at a very low cost. This small USB graphics card has the ability to provide much extra space for efficient functioning and it provides ease of plugging in the standard USB port.

How to install GPU in the Macbook?

If you are a Mac user, you can better relate to these points. Most of the Macbooks don’t have efficient graphics cards because of their slim and lightweight nature. If you are using Macbook Air or Macbook Pro or any other version, you can enhance its performance by using an external graphics processing unit (e-GPU).

A dedicated e-GPU acts like a mini-processor. While buying an external graphics processing unit (e-GPU), you have to make two purchases; first, you’ve to buy a GPU enclosure and secondly, a graphics card.This empty enclosure for e-GPU has a thunderbolt 3, which is the most important part, built-in fans, and PCI-e slots.

Both Macbook Pro and Macbook Air havethe almost same method of installing an external graphics processing unit (e-GPU).

  1. First of all, open the empty enclosure, and fit the new graphics card (should be from AMD) in the particular space.
  2. Connect the PCI-e slots, HDMI, and Mini Display port with your laptop if you want to use the display of that e-GPU.
  3. Connect the thunderbolt3 of the external GPU and Macbook with the help of a USB-C cable.
  4. Now, when you open your Macbook or Mac computer, the new icon of e-GPU will already present there. Also, by clicking on that icon, you can disconnect the e-GPU too.

The Thunderbolt3 is the main feature in your Macbook that allows you to connect it with any e-GPU. Furthermore, you can easily plug out the USB-C cable from your laptop and take your laptop anywhere.

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