GPU backplate Worth
GPU backplate worth: As gaming slowly made its way into the mainstream during the last decade. We’ve seen a much broader focus placed on aesthetics in the pc building than ever before. And while this holds for most hardware and peripherals, nowhere is it more evident than with the graphics card.
Graphics cards have gone from being pieces of purely functional hardware to gigantic monstrosity zin sleek shrouds replete with RGB lighting and enough turbines to propel a drone, and we mustn’t forget about the backplate.
One of the latecomers to the trend of GPU beautification that’s becoming increasingly more common, but as with all the other features, the inclusion of a backplate increases the overall price of the graphics card.
Which leaves many people wondering whether they’re even worth it? So, we’ll discuss the actual purpose of the backplate to conclude whether or not it presents enough value to justify its price. So, without any further ado let’s begin,
What is a backplate?
The GPU backplate is a piece of the metal plate that covers the back of the graphics card. Sometimes it’s made of plastic, but most backplates are metal.
So, what purpose does this thing serve? Well, as we’ve said, the backplate is one of the many features that increase the overall aesthetic of graphics cards. To turn a blind eye to this aesthetic function of the backplate would be to ignore much of what it’s there to accomplish.
It gives the graphics cards a cleaner and sleeker look, which in and of itself is paramount to many pc builders. Some backplates even come with built-in RGB lighting, which increases the aesthetic appeal even more.
- What Is PCIe 4.0 And Is it worth it?
- OneDrive vs Google Drive vs Dropbox vs iCloud – Which one is the Best?
But there is a practical benefit to having a backplate as well namely
- The backplate helps add some rigidity to the graphics card, which is much needed in many of today’s bulky high-end models.
- The backplate supports the card’s cooler and prevents the PCB from bending.
- Budget and mid-range graphics cards don’t suffer much from this issue since they aren’t as, but massive triple fan graphics cards with denser heat sinks can bend under their weight. It makes the inclusion of a backplane essential in many high-end graphics cards but not so much in more modest models. Since they only reap the aesthetic benefits.
- We should point out that the backplate can also make the graphics cards easier to clean from dust, but this doesn’t hold for all models.
So, it’s not something that should be heavily considered when making your purchase. It’s a nice little bonus if you do get a graphics card with a backplate that makes it easier to clean, but that’s all it is a nice little bonus that should not be overstated.
What about cooling?
Now conventional wisdom states that the backplate should also help keep the graphics card cooler. It is made of metal, after all. Some backplates even come with larger contact areas and feature thermal pads that allow them to function as heat spreaders.
It sounds good on paper, but unfortunately, it hasn’t shown to be as effective in practice. A backplate can sometimes even increase the temperature of the card or the temperature inside the computer case.
Please don’t take this as us saying that all backplates are inadequate when it comes to cooling. Some do help, but others don’t. The reality of the situation is that backplates are highly inconsistent with regards to the effect they have on the GPU temperature or the overall temperature inside the case.
What is a good thing?
Here’s the good thing, though. It doesn’t matter whether the backplate is making your case or GPU hotter or colder since the difference is quite negligible and comes down to a fraction of a degree on average.
So, the effect the backplate has on cooling should also be a non-factor when determining whether to buy a GPU that features it or one that doesn’t. Regardless of whether it helps or hinders the overall cooling system, it does so in a genuinely inconsequential manner.
So, what can we conclude,
Is it worth to get a GPU with a backplate? That, of course, comes down to the individual. You have to weigh in the practical and the aesthetic benefits of the backplate against your wants and needs.
The thing we wanted to highlight was just that the backplate offers fewer tangible, practical benefits than many thinks. It boils down to the added rigidity that’s there to prevent large cards with heavy coolers from sagging into the PCI express slot.
If you’ve got such a graphics card, then the backplate presents some excellent practical value. But if you plan on getting a mid-range or especially a budget graphics card, then all the backplate does from a practical standpoint is bring up the price.
So, if you’re not keen on getting a high-end GPU, we’d say the backplate isn’t worth it. Unless you value its aesthetic benefits in which case, you’ll have to decide on your own whether it’s worth the extra price.