I love horsepower and we’re not ashamed to admit it. In the case of graphics cards, ATI’s 5000 series products have been running roughshod over Nvidia of late, having become quite popular with the gaming and enthusiast crowd. The Sapphire Radeon HD 5450 is a type of graphics card of 512MB that provides reliable performance for computer use.
I have had the opportunity to look at several of these DX11-capable Graphics cards in the enthusiast, performance, and mainstream segments, and these cards have proved to be impressive in terms of technology and sheer horsepower.
However, we know that not everyone is a hardcore gamer or enthusiast, and there is a large consumer market out there that needs something very affordable. As a result, the latest 5000 series card occupies the entry-level segment, the Radeon 5450.
Closer Look Of Sapphire Radeon HD 5450 512MB
With the pervasiveness of information being provided at an increasing pace these days, we are simply at the mercy of our monitors’ ability to display that information; quite simply, a single monitor cannot accommodate the visual real estate many people now need.
I use three monitors across a desk on a daily basis for regular productivity tasks, usually multitasking between word processing, browsing, and photo editing applications, not to mention chat messaging and additional programs that require space on my screens.
Frankly, if my desk could hold a fourth screen, I would connect one. Keep in mind, however, that this also requires more than one graphics card, and SLI or Crossfire is out of the question to boost horsepower in games across three screens, for example; they simply don’t work on more than only two screens.
So, multiple-display setups and technology have largely been fraught with headaches and disappointment for those who need the extra space, or may even want to consider gaming in a more truly immersive environment. That is, until now.
ATI Eyefinity is an advanced multiple-display technology that enables a single GPU to support up to six independent display outputs simultaneously. You can boost productivity and multitasking with a vastly expanded visual workspace, as well as intensify gaming with immersive playing environments that offer a stunningly wide field of view.
Eyefinity will allow you to group multiple monitors into a large integrated display surface, enabling windowed and full-screen 3D applications, images, and video to span across multiple displays as one desktop workspace.
There will be many combinations of viewing space configurations available, both in portrait and landscape format, as well as a hybrid of both simultaneously.
As you can see, the possibilities are staggering, certainly nothing like the antiquated and frustrating setups we must now endure. There are a couple of caveats here, however, in order to fully harness the Eyefinity features.
Features of Eyefinity
The first is that Windows Vista or Windows 7 must be the operating system employed; you cannot use Eyefinity with an older OS.
The second stipulation is that ATI’s Eyefinity will allow you to connect at least three monitors to a single card but one of the displays must be a DisplayPort panel, and this is an unfortunate restriction at this point since very few monitors on the market currently have this connectivity.
Lastly, it must be understood that powering three or more screens requires some serious graphics processing horsepower, and while the Sapphire 5970 OC is indeed a monster, the simple fact remains that upcoming games that push a card will suffer in terms of framerates as a result, possibly making certain games run very poorly.
The Sapphire Radeon 5450 is a very small, low-power, silent, budget graphics card, marketed in the sub-$50 range to consumers who may be interested in something for their HTPC or the occasional foray into some light gaming. It’s the baby of the 5000 series Radeon cards and offers some great value for those people with a minimal budget to work with.