MSI Radeon RX 460s are small and slot-powered

At some point in the last couple of days, MSI quietly updated its website with a pair of new Radeon graphics cards, called simply the MSI Radeon RX 460 2GB OC and RX 460 4GB OC. The company already has a plethora of Polaris parts, but these are RX 460s, and thus use the smaller Polaris 11 processor. Normally, the stealthy launch of some entry-level graphics cards might not be worth a lot of fuss, but these are the first single-fan RX 460s we've seen that don't require a PCIe power connector.

Before the RX 460 was released, AMD—or at least its fans—made a lot of noise about the slot-powered nature of the card. Now that the cards are on the table, though, the majority of them do seem to come with a single six-pin power connector on board, just like their Polaris 10 brethren. They also tend to be similar in size to the RX 470 and 480 cards, which is contrary to the expectations set by Lisa Su at E3.

These new cards from MSI, on the other hand, are similar in size to the diminutive Radeon R9 Nano, at just 6.7 inches long. Some of that length comes from the fan shroud, too—the card itself is barely longer than the slot it occupies. Aside from the capacity of their 7GT/s GDDR5 memory, the cards are identical, with the same 1210 MHz boost clock and cooler. They also have the same display output configuration: one each of DisplayPort, HDMI, and dual-link DVI-D ports.

We're not quite done with our RX 460 review yet due to a fault in our testbed, but looking around the web it seems like the RX 460 could make a fine add-in for OEM systems lacking the proper power supplies to drive more potent processors. The small size of these cards will help, too. Unfortunately for mini-PC enthusiasts, it seems the Dragon Army's new lightweights aren't quite ready for service, as there are no listings at e-tail yet. We've contacted MSI to see when and for how much these cards will be available.

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