Many form factors of PC components are shaped by inheritance. To give a very clear example, 2.5 inch SSDs are like this to “respect” the shape of mechanical hard drives of the same size, and to be able to be installed in the same spaces either in a laptop computer or in holes provided. for this purpose in PC cases. However, unlike a hard drive, an SSD wouldn’t need to have this form factor and, in fact, could even be circular if the manufacturers wanted.
With graphics cards more or less the same thing happens, but with a few nuances which we will see below.
The PCIe socket is what determines the shape of graphics cards
Actually, the PCI-Express socket and the box. We all know what a PCIe socket looks like, with its elongated shape and the hole in which graphics cards, among other things, are inserted.
Only after that will you know why the graphics card needs to be extended, because we literally have to insert it into that elongated socket. However, that’s not all, since in the case of graphics cards, they also need to be anchored (usually with screws) to the PC case, and since the PCIe socket is not completely glued to the end of the motherboard but there is some separation, the manufacturer has to lengthen it even more so that it reaches the edge of the box, so that we can screw it in and the video output ports “stick out” so that we can there connect monitors.
So much so that even when we have low profile or really very short graphics cards (even those in ITX format) there is also a minimum in terms of length, so the graphics have to go at least anchor to the box at the end of the PCI-Express port.
The third reason graphics cards are shaped as they are, and again doesn’t have to do with PC cases, is that as a rule they have a maximum width. and since the graphics are They are installed “flat” because the motherboards are installed vertically, this makes the height of the graphics cards to a maximum. It is true that there are charts higher than others, just as it is true that some charts do not fit in all the boxes of the market. There is no standard in this regard or even a convention, but manufacturers are aware of this and that is why they do not make graphics cards in any other way.
What is more or less standardized is the layout of the graphics card: it has a necessarily rectangular and elongated PCB, with the video outputs on the right side, the PCIe connector at the bottom, and the power outlets (if it is in a) either to the right or above the PCB. In this one, the GPU is mounted normally either in the center or in the center by pulling to the left – it depends on the size – and it is surrounded by the VRAM chips, as they need to be as close as possible to reduce latency. . Thus, the correct area is the one that remains to install the VRMs and other components of the assembly constituting a graphics card.
So, if you’ve ever wondered why graphics cards have an elongated shape, you now know.