Graphics cards can be an expensive investment since they’re sold for thousands of dollars. With that in mind, you may want to know how long graphics cards last before purchasing any.
Average graphics cards should last at least 5 years and more, depending on how careful you are. There isn’t any guarantee that the card will last beyond its warranty.
We will be answering the question—how long do graphics cards last. Stay with us.
Table of Contents
What Is a Graphics Card?
A graphics card is otherwise known as the GPU (Graphics Processing Unit). It is a printed circuit board, just like your computer’s motherboard. When it comes to standalone (sometimes referred to as discrete) GPUs, it also includes a particular set of instructions to follow in addition to fans, a BIOS, onboard RAM, a separate memory controller, and other features.
Although graphics cards can be found in a wide variety of sizes and shapes, there are two major types—integrated GPU and discreet GPU.
How Long Do Graphics Cards Last?
Graphics cards have two lifespans to consider, just like every other computer component. The first is how useful they are with their main task, which is gaming. And the second occurs when they fail and are unable to function at all.
How long graphics cards last in the former depends greatly on your demands and wants. Whereas, the latter is determined by the hardware itself and whether years of heat damage have been done.
Assuming steady use and proper maintenance, GPUs can generally last for 5 – 8 years. More if the card is well maintained and hardly ever used. A good mid-level graphics card today would only really function at a mid-to-high level for about three years.
And unless you just ever use it for things that aren’t graphically demanding, its performance level will decline with time, faster than you might have imagined.
Do Some Graphics Cards Last Longer Than Others?
Although some graphics cards have a solid reputation for durability, it’s difficult to predict which model will last the longest. In the end, the graphics cards that are handled carefully are the ones that are most likely to last for a long time.
They are not overclocked and their voltage is not scaled up. Some individuals go as far as underclocking or lowering the voltage on their card to make it work a bit less hard.
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Can a GPU Last 10 Years?
Certainly. There is no reason why the same graphics card won’t continue to play the game and the time it was released if you play the same game for 10 years. Even though there may be new, graphically demanding features or expansions, the base game should be playable during that time.
Graphics cards are probably not going to be capable for 10 years if you want to play more than one game over several years and keep up with the newest gaming trends.
Nevertheless, if you purchase the most powerful graphics card that is available, they can survive for several years. For instance, the Nvidia GTX 1080 Ti was the strongest GPU ever when released in March 2017 and is still one of the strongest GPUs in the world that can play almost everything at very high settings.
However, even more, basic GPUs can last for a very long time. According to the latest Steam Hardware Survey, the Nvidia GTX 1060 was released in July 2016. And it remains the most popular graphics card among all Steam gamers as of May 2021, with almost 9% of gamers owning one.
If you’d like to play at low resolutions, frame rates, or detail settings, modern games also support numerous graphics cards from older generations and many lower-tier graphics cards.
In ten years, the majority of graphics cards won’t be functional, but 5 years, or even 7 or 8 years at the extreme, is doable. Again, in ten years, the most potent GPU you purchase might still be able to run low-end games or at low resolutions. However, they will miss out on several features that could be released.
Do Graphics Cards Get Bad?
If you play the kinds of games that graphics cards can handle, they may last a very long time. But every graphics card will play its final game.
Most frequently, this is because they are no longer fast enough to play contemporary games. But there is also a potential that a GPU will go bad over time.
When graphics cards are overclocked, pushed hard, and exposed to high voltages over a long period, they may finally stop functioning entirely.
Overheating is the most common issue with graphics cards that appear to be failing. They frequently overheat as a result of a heat sink being clogged with dust or a cooling fan’s bearing that’s failing.
How Often Do Graphics Cards Fail?
They hardly ever fail. Your graphics card is unlikely to fail unless it is very old, has been greatly used for overclocked gaming or cryptocurrency mining, or is overheating.
Manufacturers don’t divulge their cards’ failure rates. However, in the past, some retailers provided return rates for defective cards, giving current GPUs a failure rate of between virtually nothing and 5%.
Generally, how long graphics cards last depends on how you use them. Graphics cards can survive for about five to eight years. But, their lifespan reduces as you keep overclocking or overheating them.
Taking proper care of your graphics card, keeping it clean, and using the recommended settings will help increase the lifespan of your GPU.
As often as you need to. Many people don’t need the latest and most powerful graphics card available each time a new generation is released.
However, it makes much more sense for you to invest in a new GPU every generation if you’re undertaking graphically demanding tasks (gaming, GPU AI data processing, rendering, etc.) and need the fastest speeds possible.
Since cryptocurrency mining is an intensive operation, it strains your graphics card more than less intensive games do. You may enjoy many years of effective performance if you take the precautions to avoid overheating and overclocking or buy a specialized mining GPU.
Laptop GPUs could last for many years without problems. They might become out-of-date before failing, especially if you often use them for rigorous gaming.
Ultimately, laptop parts are more difficult to replace and rarely last as long as desktops. If you’d need a graphics card upgrade for your laptop, you can go for an external enclosure or a new model.
There are many ways that your graphics card can warn you about its failure. These include glitches galore, overheating problems, random crashes, etc.
- technewstoday.com – how long do graphics cards last
- makeuseof.com – what is a graphics card how does it work
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