Best Low-Profile Graphics Cards in 2023

When building a PC for yourself you will be faced with many questions regarding what you will use it for, and what components are appropriate for your use case. One of the most important components in a build is a GPU, and in 99% of the cases, you will want a dedicated GPU for your PC.

You do not need to buy the best most expensive GPU on the market you can find because in some cases that will simply be a waste.

If you plan on mostly consuming media, doing some light office work, and some light gaming you can minimize the footprint of your build by using a smaller sized case in a mini-ITX build.

For this type of build, you will also need to buy a smaller-sized GPU that will fit in your build while offering you enough power to push FPS in games.

These smaller-sized GPUs will not be as strong as their chunkier brothers, but when building in a small case stressing out the GPU with loads will increase temperatures which are your worst enemy in this situation.

You will also most likely have to underclock your GPU instead of overclocking it to maintain the best temperatures for safe operation.

Do not get discouraged however because once again, considering the use case of these specialized builds, these low-profile GPUs will still be able to handle the light loads you will throw at them.

Since we got that out of the way let us look at what are the best low-profile graphic cards you can put in your small PC builds!

asus geforce gtx 1660
  • 1785 MHz core clock speed
  • 2001 MHz memory speed
  • 6GB of GDDR5 VRAM
If gaming is still a priority even though you are building a smaller PC then the GTX 1660 is the way to go for you. You get a solid 1530 MHz base core clock speed (1785 boost clock) and 2001 MHz memory speed out of the GPU while also having 6GB of GDDR5 VRAM. This will allow you to play most games at low settings at around 60 FPS, or play easier to run games at even higher frames. The GPU is compatible with 3 monitors and has one native DVI-D connector, one native HDMI 2.0b, and one native DisplayPort 1.4. With all of this in mind, it is pretty clear that if you have the money to spare and you want a pretty powerful compact build the GTX 1660 is the way to go.
Pros:
  • Small form factor
  • Powerful enough to power a lot of the games you would play
Cons:
  • Might be hard to find this exact model
  • Will always lose to a standard size GPU for gaming

GeForce GTX 1650 D6 VENTUS XS OC

Gaming but Less Expensive

geforce gtx 1650 d6 ventus xs oc
  • 1740 MHz core speed
  • 2001 MHz memory clock
  • 4 GB of GDDR5
If gaming is important but you want a somewhat budget low-profile graphics card then you should go for a 1650 GPU from Nvidia. Obviously, this graphics card will not push out as many frames as a 1660 but at the same time if you do not need more power then this is a more balanced choice. You will benefit from a base clock of 1485 MHz that can rise up to 1740 MHz. The memory clock sits at 2001 MHz and you benefit from 4 GB of GDDR5. You can hook up 3 monitors to this GPU through the 3 main connectors: 1x DVI, 1x HDMI, 1x DisplayPort. The dual-fan design will also keep the GPU cool even though it is still a pretty small GPU by comparison therefore this is a great purchase in case you are concerned regarding your temperatures.
Pros:
  • Dual-fan design
  • Still a small form factor
  • Can power you through games
Cons:
  • Is a bigger low-profile GPU so you need to check for clearance

Gigabyte Geforce GTX 1050 Ti OC Low Profile 4GB

Truly Low-Profile GPU

gigabyte geforce gtx 1050 ti oc low profile 4gb
  • Clock speed 1417
  • Memory speed 1752
  • 4GB GDDR5
To say that this Gigabyte model of the 1050Ti is tiny is to state the obvious. This GPU is small enough to fit in most small cases and will deliver enough performance for you to watch YouTube videos and play games at 60FPS on low settings. The base clock speed of this particular 1050Ti is 1303 MHz with a boost to 1417 MHz, and its memory clock speed is 1752 MHz. The GPU comes with 4GB GDDR5 and has a TDP of 75W. The main connectors you will find on the GPU are 1x DVI, 1x HDMI, and a 1x DisplayPort. This is definitely not the fastest GPU but if you are looking into low-profile GPUs you should not expect stellar performance from one-third of a GPU in size.
Pros:
  • Super small size
  • Enough power for basic tasks
Cons:
  • It will easily hit max temperatures if pushed around a bit

Gigabyte GeForce GT 1030 OC

Weakest Low-Profile Offering

gigabyte geforce gt 1030 oc
  • Core clock at 1518 MHz
  • Memory clock 1502
  • ONLY 30W TDP
Although the GT 1030 is the weakest GPU on this list, it does not mean that it does not have a place in certain compact PC builds. If you just plan on using your PC for office work, or as a media machine the GT 1030 is the perfect GPU for you. Its biggest advantage compared to the competition is the price of this tiny GPU. You will definitely not be gaming hard on this GPU, but at the same time, it is pretty clear that this is not the intended use for this product. The GT 1030 has a base clock of 1266 MHz and this particular model boosts to 1518 MHz. The memory clock sits at 1502 MHz with 2 GB of GDDR5 VRAM. The important bit is that this GPU does not even need a power connector since it draws only 30W through the PCIe slot you plug it into! The only outputs you will find on the 1030 are a DVI port and an HDMI port. Nothing says low-profile like a good old GT 1030 in your office PC!
Pros:
  • Inexpensive GPU
  • Low TDP means low temperatures
  • Has flexibility with the DVI and HDMI ports
Cons:
  • It is only meant for office work

How to Choose the Best Low-Profile Graphics Card For You

When looking at your choices of low-profile GPUs the first question you should be asking yourself is what exactly do you expect the GPU to be able to handle.

If you want to do office work but still be able to do some gaming then you definitely need to go for the 1660 or the 1650 GPUs. These graphics cards, although small, will be able to power through your games and deliver a respectable experience.

If you know you will be doing only light gaming that really does not need that much computational power then the 1050 Ti is a better fit for your build. Do not buy a 1660 or a 1650 GPU if you plan on playing old RTS games from 2005.

Lastly, if you are 100% sure your machine will only be used for work and media consumption you should not go above a GT 1030 GPU, since it will do just fine for your intended use case.

Think long and hard about your use case because the higher you go in the chain looking for more FPS, the higher the prices will climb!

About The Author

Chris

Custom Windows ISO enjoyer, FPS optimizer, and aim improvement enthusiast. Will disassemble all of his peripherals (and sometimes PC parts) to mod them even if all of them work perfectly fine. Follow him on Twitch.

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