What is GPU Power Limit: A Guide to Understanding the GPU Power Limit

what is the gpu power limit

Are you wondering what is GPU Power Limit is and what effects it can have on your PC performance?

GPU Power limit is a feature that allows the user to control how much power goes into their graphics card. Increasing this value will improve performance by allowing for higher clock frequencies and lower temperatures from heat buildup in hardware-accelerated tasks like gaming or video rendering. It should only be set to maximum when increasing your memory frequency because doing so, you may end up destabilizing your laptop or CPU performance.

It goes without saying that graphics cards play a key role in computer graphics and PC games. Over the past few years GPUs have evolved little especially when it comes to their control.

For example, the values for overclocking and underclocking are still the same as they used to be. In a nutshell, not much has changed and you still have to consider the same factors as before when buying a graphics card. You should know the answer to questions like, “what is GPU power limit?” if you want to get the best and the most seamless PC performance.

In this article, we’ll be discussing GPU’s power limit, what it is and how to check it on your system so that when certain things go South with your graphics card, you know where the problem lies!

What Is GPU Power Limit In GPUs?

what is gpu power limit in gpus

Power limit is all about the power a graphics card uses when it’s at plus zero percent. At this point the GPU is using its default amount of power. For example, if you increase the power of your graphics card to 30%, it will use 30% more power than its default power whenever it’s required. In simpler words, increasing the power limit means that your GPU will start drawing more power than it needs.

Increasing this limit won’t do any harm to your system but if you decrease the power below the normal level then it will affect your PC’s performance. If the card isn’t able to draw enough power or if the power limit is too low, the core clock of your GPU will start throttling hence it will lose its performance.

GPU Power Target-What Is It?

what is gpu power target

If you ever read the term “Power target” and “Power limit”, don’t get confused because they both are the same. Power target is actually the term NVIDIA first started using instead of “power limit”. Since then, almost all GPUs including Maxwell started using the term “power target”.

Power target of a graphics card defines the maximum TDP value of the card. In most cases, the TDP value is 100% but then there are some cards that have a limited value or those that don’t have a predefined value at all.

What Is The Difference Between Power Limit And Temp Limit?

Difference Between Power Limit And Temp Limit

If you are new to graphics cards and don’t have much knowledge about them, certain terms and features can be a bit confusing. For example, you’ll have to study the difference between power limit GPUand temp limit in detail to know what to consider when buying a GPU.

The value of the processor’s power is the power limit and it’s represented in percentage. On the other hand, the temp limit is the maximum temperature your GPU can reach. You can only configure the temp limit of your card if there’s a built in thermometer.

Use and Impact of GPU Power

The GPU power plays a very critical role when it comes to providing you a smooth and seamless PC experience. Whether you want to use a very heavy editing software or want to play some really intensive GPU games, you’ll have to consider what is GPU power limit is no matter what.

Here are some detailed uses of GPU power that you must know about;

  • GPU acceleration can help 2D and 3D applications
  • A powerful and high-performing GPU is of utmost importance to keep up with the advanced game graphics. It also helps increase the refresh rates and it can easily cope with 4K technology.
  • High power GPUs can really help machine learning especially for image recognition.
  • You’ll be able to accelerate your game to a certain limit
  • It can benefit you in mining cryptocurrencies.

Is Raising Power Target or Voltage Bad for Graphic Cards?

If you want your graphics card to run at a higher speed then you’ll have to learn how to safely overclock GPU and then do it regularly especially while gaming. When you do that, there might come a time where  you’ll receive a notification saying “Voltage Limit Reached”. This is the point where you need to stop overclocking your GPU.

In simpler words, raising the power target of your GPU beyond the voltage limit is going to damage your card to an extent that you won’t be able to fix it anymore.

Checking What Is Power Limit GPU For A Laptop

If you want to check the GPU power of the laptop that you have access to, it’s quite simple. For example, the first thing you’ll have to do is to update your Nvidia driver. Once done, you then have to head to the control panel and click on the “Help” option. This is where you’ll be able to see the maximum power of your graphics card.


It’s great if you want to increase the power limit of your graphics card but while doing that you need to ensure that you aren’t crossing the “voltage limit”. On the other hand limiting the power of your GPU is beneficial too as it can prevent your PC from overheating. However, if you aren’t playing GPU intensive games or running graphics that require too much of GPU’s power then don’t increase or decrease the limit at all. For a seamless performance, just check the default power limit of your graphics card and the rest will be fine.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is It Safe To Increase The Power Target Of My GPU?

People usually don’t change the power target of their GPU mainly because they are afraid of damaging the card. What you must know here is that this process is completely safe as long as you are following the right steps.

Will My GPU Damage If GPU Power Limit Reached?

No, raising the power of your GPU is all about increasing its performance by increasing its speed at which it operates. So there’s nothing damaging that you are doing here. It’s just that you need to be careful about the balance that you have to maintain between the power limit and the temp limit.

Why Do Companies Set Power Limits?

Companies set GPU power targets to prevent your systems from overheating. If the software isn’t locked, you can easily boost the power limits if there isn’t much workload.

Can I Limit GPU Power Consumption?

Limiting the GPU’s power consumption won’t damage the card but yes it might become a little unstable or run a little slower if there’s too much load. Here you can use the MSI Afterburner power limit tool for some assistance.

Is Underclocking Safe For My GPU?

Yes, underclocking your GPU is completely safe and there isn’t anything that you’ll have to worry about. In fact, it’s a great technique if you want to keep the temperatures down!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top