Yes, you can use an Nvidia graphics card with an AMD processor. In fact, you can use any graphic card with any processor as long as the graphic card is compatible with your motherboard.
When you build your own computer, you must consider the components’ compatibility. This includes your CPU and graphic card.
In this section, we will talk about the compatibility of an AMD processor and an Nvidia graphics card.
Because AMD manufactures both CPUs and graphic cards, you might hear some people saying that it is not possible to use an Nvidia graphics card with an AMD processor. This is a myth, and there is no data whatsoever to prove this theory. There is no reason why you cannot use an AMD processor with an Nvidia card (or any other graphic card, for that matter).
Related Article: What CPU Is Compatible With My Motherboard?
Are Nvidia graphics cards Compatible with an AMD processor?
I have said it many times, but I will say it again: you do not need to match your components. As long as they are compatible and you take the necessary steps, you can use any graphic card with an AMD processor, so yes, you can use an Nvidia card with AMD CPU.
But using an AMD CPU with an AMD GPU has its advantages, which we will discuss below.
Related Article: Can You Sli Two Different GPUs?
Advantages of using AMD CPU with an AMD Graphics card
There are several advantages to using an AMD processor with an AMD graphic card, including:
1. Smart Access Memory
Smart access memory is a technique used by newer AMD processors to access the memory of the GPUS more efficiently, and of course, it can be used only with AMD graphic cards.
But let’s see what smart access memory is in more detail:
GPU cards have their own memory called “video memory” or “VRAM.” It stores all the graphics information for the GPU. When you buy a new GPU, you can read on the specs how much memory it has. This is an important metric that everyone buying a new GPU pays attention to.
But what about the data link between the CPU and the VRAM?
Well, the standard data link speed for a while now has been 256MB at a time, and this was ok, but as time went on, GPU manufacturers decided to include more memory and create models up to 32GB.
So as you can understand, this creates a bottleneck between the CPU and GPU. For this reason, AMD included a new technology in their processors that is called “smart access memory.”
With this technology, the CPU can access larger chunks of data from the GPU’s memory faster by using the CPU PCIe lanes. AMD claims that the smart access memory is 15% faster than the standard memory. While this is not a very big difference, it is still a plus.
At this point, it is important to mention that this feature is available only for specific AMD CPU, motherboard, and GPU combinations.
Nvidia’s answer to AMD smart access memory
Of course, Nvidia has an answer to AMD smart access memory. Nvidia’s answer is called Resizable Bar Technology.
Nvidia’s resizable bar also uses the PCIe lanes to create a link between the CPU and GPU. In this way, it is similar to smart access memory from AMD, even though it uses different technology. The result, however, is equally efficient. It works for both Intel and AMD CPUs, but only the latest generation of both AMD and Intel CPUs support it.
2. Open Source
Having open-source drivers is another important factor that everyone should consider when choosing their PC components.
For those who don’t know, AMD has open-source drivers while Nvidia does not (they stop supporting it in 2010). This is a big advantage for Linux users that use APIs.
It is not a secret that AMD Graphic Cards cost less than their Nvidia counterparts.
Let’s be honest; price is one of the main factors to consider when buying a CPU or any other part for that matter.
It is true that the AMD graphics cards are cheaper than Nvidia, so this is an advantage if you are on a tight budget. This means you can save money to spend on other hardware components like a good power supply unit while still getting the same gaming performance.
4. Energy Consumption
Energy consumption is another factor to consider when buying a new component.
AMD GPUs are much more energy-efficient than their Nvidia counterparts, so you should keep that in mind when choosing the components for your PC.
Related Article: Does Ryzen Have Integrated Graphics?
Do Nvidia GPUs work better with an Intel Processor?
I have talked about the advantages of using AMD GPUs with an AMD CPU, but what about Nvidia GPUs? Can they run better with an Intel CPU?
Well, the simple answer is that they don’t work better with an Intel Processor, but there are certain areas in which they can work better with an Intel Processor.
For example, when it comes to AI performance and machine learning, Nvidia’s Tensor Cores combined with Intel’s DL Boost Technology can be very efficient.
So if you are into machine learning or AI, then you can consider getting an Nvidia GPU combined with an Intel Processor.
Related Article: What Is AMD Equivalent To Intel Core I7?
By now, you know the answer to the question “Can you use Nvidia with AMD CPU?” and also the advantages and disadvantages of doing so.
I have also covered the pros of using an AMD GPU with an AMD CPU and an Nvidia GPU with an Intel Processor.
I hope that you now feel more confident about choosing the components for your PC build.
If you have any questions or something is not clear, please leave a comment, and I will answer your question.
Nick Ryley is a computer architect and the owner of The Pc Geekz.
His love for playing games got him interested in computers in the first place. He wanted to be able to build a gaming PC that could run all the latest games at max settings, and this has him pursuing a major in computer architecture!
He started this blog to help people out and answer some of the most common questions about computer building