Graphics Cards for PC with LR 10 and PS 2021 and going forward

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dperez Regular Member • Posts: 339
Graphics Cards for PC with LR 10 and PS 2021 and going forward

Windows 10 Pro, current LR and PS...

I read some topics in various forums about graphics cards. And, of course, tried asking this in the Adobe Lightroom forum, with predictable results. So, I’ll try here…

Like a lot of people (I suspect), I’m looking for a graphics card that’ll actually WORK in both Lightroom Classic and Photoshop. No messing around, no picking "auto" or "custom" in Lightroom and seeing WHICH operations are fast or slow - just shove it into "Auto" and it WORKS. Same in Photoshop - turn on Graphics Acceleration, put it in Advanced and it WORKS. Scrubby Zoom WORKS. No more laggy clone tool, magic wand, brush, etc. in PS. No slow, laggy performance in Lightroom doing spot healing, or dragging the adjustment brush around a 45 megapixel D850 image, and so on.

A card that when the next version of Lightroom comes out, STILL works. That as Adobe increases the number of things that benefit from AI and graphics acceleration, just WORKS.

It would be a nice bonus if whatever I bought would work in Helicon Focus so it's actually faster with the graphics acceleration TURNED ON than leaving it off. HOPEFULLY anything that works optimally in LR and PS will also work well with Helicon (which wants at LEAST 8GB).

It doesn’t have to be future proof for the next decade, but it would be nice if the GPU was still working optimally in 2 or 3 years.

AND, of course, it would be nice if it didn’t cost more than my first ($500) car!

Looking at Puget System’s testing of Photoshop and Lightroom, the differences between the onboard Intel 630 and the 2080, 3080, 3090 class of cards was NOT impressive. The “overall score” for the 630 was 969 and the 2080 Ti was 1092 – about 12% higher…I was expecting something in the 10 or 20 TIMES faster, not 12% improvement between the onboard Intel 630 and a $1300+ graphics card.

Directly from their text:
The GPU score is calculated based on the performance for the Rotate, Smart Sharpen, Field Blur, Tilt-Shift Blur, and Iris Blur tests - all of which are able to utilize the GPU to improve performance.
Unfortunately, even if we only look at these specific tests, there is still no meaningful difference between each of the discrete video cards. The only results that we may be outside the margin of error are the AMD Radeon Vega 64 and 5700XT, but even those cards are only ~5% slower than the fastest score which is going to be extremely difficult to notice in day-to-day work.

For Lightroom Classic, I think they tested with LR 2019, so things may be very different with Lightroom 10, but the RTX 2080 was only about 8 – 9% faster than the RX 5700 XT and only about 5% faster than the onboard Intel 630 (I’m not sure HOW the onboard 630 was faster than anything, but it’s Puget Systems’ chart).

I have to believe the law of diminishing returns for Lightroom and Photoshop would kick in LONG BEFORE the >$500 mark, and a more reasonably priced graphics card would work extremely well for the foreseeable future…

So, opinions on REASONABLE graphics cards that will work OPTIMALLY with Lightroom 10 (and going forward) and Photoshop 2021 and going forward for a reasonable life expectancy?

Nikon D850
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