Best GPU for Fortnite - The Ultimate Guide
We here at ProSettings.net are dedicated to make you the best player you can be. For that reason we make a variety of game-specific guides, ranging from mice to headsets. Many people almost immediately buy a good gaming mouse once they decide to buy themselves a (new) gaming PC but having all the best peripherals in the world won't help you if your PC can't handle the games you want to play. That's why we've unleashed our team to see what's up in the world of GPUs. Seeing as a GPU is a much more expensive purchase than something like a mousepad or a keyboard (we're not talking about high tier custom keyboards here though) it's important to know what you're getting into prior to clicking that 'buy' button.
In this list we'll go over available GPUs and give you a brief rundown on what you can expect from these cards so that you can make an informed decision on your next purchase.
What makes a GPU good for Fortnite?
A GPU basically has to do one thing: deliver your game to your monitor without any hiccups, preferably doing so at the highest FPS possible. Unlike mice, for example, there's no shape or feel to account for, since the only time you'll be touching your GPU is when you're installing it in your system. Professional gamers value framerates over visual fidelity because it gives them a number of advantages: first off it allows them to play on a high refresh rate monitor, which makes everything look a lot smoother, which in turn increases their consistency as players. Secondly, playing on a rig that's outputting a lot of frames per second reduces overall latency, which makes the game more responsive.
Finding the right GPU is therefore a reasonably objective task: aside from choosing between different third party manufacturers (there can be subtle differences between how a GPU looks and performs, which is important to some people) there's only performance to consider. In an ideal world everyone would just go for the best (and most expensive) card out there, but of course there's such a thing as a budget.
Fortnite might not be the most difficult game to run, but contrary to what its cartoony looks might suggest it's also not a breeze to run. If you're planning on playing at 240Hz you'll definitely want to set aside a decent-sized budget. With that said: the current generation of graphics cards is powerful enough to let you play the game at 144 frames per second (which we consider to be the absolute minimum for competitive gamers) even on the budget end, so that's good news for gamers who don't have an unlimited budget.
As pro/competitive players rarely play on resolutions that are higher than 1920x1080 (framerates are more important than eye candy) we'll mostly be focusing on that resolution in this article, but we'll also mention the higher resolutions where it's applicable.
High framerates = lower latency
As we said in the previous section: higher frame rates give you a visual advantage. Yes, that visual advantage (if you combine a high tier rig with a high refresh rate monitor) is one of the most noticeable and most often discussed advantages, but the reason why a lot of pros go for the best PC internals even if that means that their PC (greatly) exceeds the refresh rate of their monitor is because higher frame rates also reduce system latency.
Enter NVIDIA's Low Latency Reflex technology. This works in two ways: the Reflex Low Latency Mode allows developers to reduce the overall system latency between the user and their game to under 25ms (if your gear is up to scratch: see the image on the right) by, among other things, reducing the render queue (done by keeping the CPU in sync with the GPU; a longer explanation can be found here). This feature is available starting from the GeForce 900 cards (older cards won't have this feature) and in compatible games. The Reflex Latency Analyzer also allows users to measure their system's overall latency, if you're using it in combination with a compatible monitor. The image on the right is a good (albeit slightly extreme, since it goes from a low end GPU to a top of the line system) example of how choosing the right components for your build along with a high refresh rate monitor can significantly reduce the overall latency of your system.
As of right now, not all games are Reflex compatible (though most of the popular competitive shooters are) and since Fortnite is one of them and it's a new piece of technology we thought it was a good idea to add a brief explanation to this article. Feel free to browse our own article to learn more on this.
There is an everlasting debate as to who's 'the best' manufacturer of graphics cards, but as you can see from our data, Nvidia has the GPU world well and truly conquered, with a staggering 90 percent of our analyzed professionals opting for an Nvidia card.
We won't be entering the Red vs Green debate in this article, but it's no secret that Nvidia's GPUs are top of the line right now. Every little drop of performance matters when you're gaming at the highest level (or trying to make your way to the highest level, for that matter) so it's only logical to opt for the cutting edge if you're trying to get ahead of the competition. Please also note that we only add cards that are currently being produced and (officially) sold in this list. That doesn't mean it can't be worth it to go for an older card if you find, for example, a series 20 card for sale at a clearance or from a trusted second hand seller, but for the sake of clarity we only consider current cards.
Note: the average FPS you get ingame will severely depend on your ingame settings, as well as the rest of your rig (CPU, RAM, …) so take these estimates with a grain of salt.
Most used GPU manufacturer in the Fortnite pro scene
1. RTX 3070
If you're someone who is hard into Fortnite at a competitive level you're probably not going to be playing at higher resolutions (professional and competitive players value framerates over high resolutions and eye candy) and that's where this card absolutely shines. It's got enough juice to deliver a smooth performance for 144 and 240 frames per second setups, with the framerate basically never dropping below the 240 mark at 1920x1080.
It's also a good shout for people who use a 1440p 144Hz setup: the framerate won't drop below 155 frames per second, meaning that you can enjoy 'the best of both worlds' in a smooth fashion without any hiccups.
Aside from all this the RTX 3070 is just one of our favorite cards right now. The value/performance ratio is really agreeable, and its performance is powerful enough to allow you to play pretty much all new games at high settings without any issues, so if you're someone who also enjoys the odd graphical masterpiece here and there you're good with this card.
2. RTX 3060
Best 144Hz option
If you're going to build a budget setup or you don't want to spend a lot of cash on your PC then this is probably the best purchase you can make. The RTX 3060 has plenty of juice to deliver reliable 144Hz performances, with framerates never dropping below the high 160s at 1080p. If you've got a budget setup that's exactly what you need: reliable 144 frames per second performance at a friendly price.
The RTX 3060 is the weakest card in this lineup, so naturally it's not the one to go for if you enjoy playing at higher resolutions or if you want to also play other games and crank up the video settings, but as a dedicated 'budget competitive gamer option' this one is hard to beat.
3. RTX 3080
Best 'all out' card
The RTX 3080 is one of the most powerful graphics cards out there at this point in time, and if you want the cutting edge of technology in your PC this is definitely one to consider. Of course it will run Fortnite at 1080p with ease: the frames will never go below the high 200s, making this card perhaps a bit 'overkill' at that resolution unless you're rocking a 360Hz monitor.
This is really the one to get if you are someone with a very large budget (or perhaps no budgetary constraints at all) or if you want to also play other games at the highest settings. The RTX 3080 also shines when you use it with higher resolutions. If you've got the budget for a 1440p 240Hz monitor you'll likely also have the budget for a card like this, and it won't disappoint. Average framerates comfortably stay above 240, and it never really drops below 200 either. We don't really recommend playing Fortnite at 4K if you're even a bit competitive (the performance hit just isn't worth it) but naturally this card is also one of the best option for that: count on framerates dancing around the 130 mark on average at 4K.
4. RTX 3060 Ti
Best budget 240Hz card
If you've got a 'budget' (it of course depends on your definition, but most 240 frames per second setups will already cost a pretty penny) 240Hz setup running this card could be your perfect graphics card. At 1920x1080 the 3060 Ti reliably stays above 240 frames per second. There is the occasional dip here and there, but given the fact that those dips don't go below 225 frames per second you can count on a smooth overall experience without any jarring framerate fluctuations.
For 1440p 144Hz gaming this is also a good budget option, though your framerate headroom won't be as big as with the 3070, which is what we'd recommend for that resolution and refresh rate.
Conclusion: The best GPU for Fortnite
Recent GPUs have become so powerful that even the budget cards can run Fortnite at 144 frames per second without many issues, even though the game has been getting heavier to run lately. Which card you get will of course mostly depend on your budget, but there are a lot of options here to consider, and that is always nice.
If you're even a little bit competitive you will definitely want to aim at that 144Hz refresh rate (ideally even higher) but luckily that doesn't mean making a massive investment these days. With a budget high refresh rate monitor and budget GPU (remember to make a balanced build though: don't bottleneck your PC by going for a subpar CPU for example) you can reliably land yourself in the land of high refresh rate gaming, which is nice to see.
Thanks for reading!