XFX HD 5450 Reviewjlqrb - June 20, 2010
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Almost every household has at least one personal computer these days and let's face it, very few of these systems are used for gaming. They are instead being used for editing photos, watching home movies, streaming HD content or surfing the net. For tasks such as these a graphics card that can play modern games would just be a waste of money and electricity. Still, there are plenty computers in use that are not setup to properly perform these average tasks. This is due to many people running an outdated graphics card or weak integrated graphics unit. So what the HD 5450 does is give these people an upgrade option other than replacing their entire system. As soon as the HD 5450 card is installed, the end-user will have the support of new features and technologies such as ATI Stream. This technology is used to allow the graphics card to do more of the work alongside the CPU and in turn improves the overall performance. With this being the case, even older PCs that run slowly can see a significant boost after this card has been added.
Even with all that the XFX HD 5450 offers for the mainstream user, it is perhaps the HTPC crowd that will benefit the most. Not only does the card have a low-profile design, a low power requirement and brackets that will allow it to easily fit into any SFF case, but it also has technologies for improving HD playback. This is thanks to Avivo and Accelerated Video Transcoding, both of which enhance HD content though the graphics card, reducing the strain on the system. Just a few years back anyone looking to run a High Def signal on their PC had to invest in a state of the art PC. Luckily, this is no longer the case, and now thanks to products such as the HD 5450 we can all experience crystal clear HD content.
The only real issue I have with the HD 5450 is that other than a few key technologies, this graphics card is very similar to the HD 4550. So with each card sharing similar performance, it would be hard to justify an upgrade from the HD 4000-series to this card. Also, since AMD's current integrated graphics units support Stream and Avivo, again it would not make much sense to upgrade. However, if you are not using either of these solutions the HD 5450 is a great option that will accelerate your PC to meet the processing demands of today's technologies.
- Low power requirement
- ATI Stream technology
- ATI Avivo
- Great performance for $60
- Life-time warranty
- 1GB of memory
- Small performance upgrade from HD 4550 & new IGPs