DirectX 11 has officially reached the ultra-low-end market, thanks to the arrival of AMD’s cheapest Radeon HD 5000-series graphics card yet: the Radeon HD 5450, which AMD says you can expect to find listed soon for $49-59.
The Radeon HD 5450 is based on a new GPU, Cedar, which has 292 million transistors, 80 stream processors, two texture units (each capable of filtering four texels per clock cycle), and a single ROP that can push out four pixels per clock. Radeon HD 5450 graphics cards will have a 650MHz core clock speed, up to 1GB of DDR2 or DDR3 memory with a 1.8Gbps top data rate, and 64-bit memory interfaces. (The $49 part will only have 512MB of RAM, however.)
With those specs, this newcomer looks positively stripped down even compared to the $99 Radeon HD 5670. However, because Cedar has less than half as many transistors as the 5670’s Redwood GPU, it’s smaller, cheaper to produce, and easier to cool passively. AMD quotes typical power consumption of just 19.1W and 6.4W at idle—and as you can see below, this isn’t the type of card you’ll have trouble fitting in a case or keeping quiet.
The card also has three display outputs, and it’ll happily drive as many as three displays. AMD tells us card makers should have no trouble replacing that VGA port on the reference design with another digital port of some type, so some Radeon HD 5450 variants could ship with a couple of DVI ports and one DisplayPort output, or even a DVI, DisplayPort, and HDMI trifecta.