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Old 11-09-2012, 09:12 AM   #1
felang
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Default Best passive HTPC video card

So the old 9500gt in my HTPC seems to be dying. I would like to replace it with possibly a passively cooled card in order to keep noise to a minimum. I use a matx p31 board with an E8400 and 4gb ddr2 ram. It seems powerful enough for my needs so not really looking to upgrade anything else at this time.

I mainly use it to watch 720p and 1080p tv show rips. I donīt have a blueray drive but will probably get one soon. Also, it is connected to my 7.1 home theater receiver so proper audio bitstreaming would be a definite plus.

I donīt use madvr or any crazy post processing filters so I donīt think I need anything to powerful (the 9500GT worked just fine).

I just checked newegg and they seem to be offering an ATI HD5450 for $15 after rebate today as a shellshocker deal. Would that card be any good?
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Old 11-09-2012, 10:37 AM   #2
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HD 5450 80 stream processors 8 texture 16 ROPs
My feeling is it would be adequate.
AMD/ATI Website "finder' seems to like 55xx or better
http://www.amd.com/us/products/deskt...=3&F2=All&F3=1

I would be more comfortable with an HD 6550 or GT 430, but I am a hardware nut, price wise the 5450 is worth a trial.

http://shop.amd.com/us/All/Search?Na...on%20HD%206570

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814130579

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814161374
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Old 11-09-2012, 10:58 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by felang View Post
So the old 9500gt in my HTPC seems to be dying. I would like to replace it with possibly a passively cooled card in order to keep noise to a minimum. I use a matx p31 board with an E8400 and 4gb ddr2 ram. It seems powerful enough for my needs so not really looking to upgrade anything else at this time.

I mainly use it to watch 720p and 1080p tv show rips. I donīt have a blueray drive but will probably get one soon. Also, it is connected to my 7.1 home theater receiver so proper audio bitstreaming would be a definite plus.

I donīt use madvr or any crazy post processing filters so I donīt think I need anything to powerful (the 9500GT worked just fine).

I just checked newegg and they seem to be offering an ATI HD5450 for $15 after rebate today as a shellshocker deal. Would that card be any good?
The HD5450 that will be on shellshocker is mysteriously stripped of its name: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814150655

I wonder if XFX has done something to it that makes it not warrant an official HD5450 model name. I have a cheap Asus HD5450 that I keep around as a spare, and the only thing I really don't like about it is how hot it gets. Its heatsink looks smaller than the XFX, though.

Either way, unless you're really budget-constrained, I'd look to get a better card. You said "best passive HTPC video card," and I assume that means best performing. The HD5450 was found to be slightly lacking in video processing power for certain HD video content in an old Anandtech review. I'd go straight to the HD6450 for just a few dollars more: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814102933

It has twice the stream processors and 25% faster memory bandwidth compared to the one you're looking at.

If you want to fool around with some fanless gaming, then you could step up to any of these cards, which aren't strictly for HPTC and will not fit in small cases:

HD6670: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814102950
HD7750: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814161417
HD6770: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814121472
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Last edited by Termie; 11-09-2012 at 11:08 AM.
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Old 11-09-2012, 10:59 AM   #4
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I dont know about being the "best", but I have a passive HD6450 in my HTPC and have never had any issues with it. Picked it up at microcenter for about 30 bucks, I believe.
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Old 11-09-2012, 02:15 PM   #5
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Great info guys, exactly what I needed. Since Iīm not planning on gaming I think Iīll go with the 6450, seems like a worthwhile bump over the 5450 I was looking at.
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Old 11-09-2012, 06:45 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by felang View Post
Great info guys, exactly what I needed. Since Iīm not planning on gaming I think Iīll go with the 6450, seems like a worthwhile bump over the 5450 I was looking at.
I use a Sapphire 6450 1gig silent model for my HTPC and it works great.
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Old 11-10-2012, 09:53 AM   #7
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The 6450 is better than the 5450 due to the 6450 having UVD3, vs the UVD2 in the 5450.
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