We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message
Budget graphics cards Reviews
15,670 Reviews

HIS HD 5450 review

£37.7 inc VAT

Manufacturer: HIS

Our Rating: We rate this 4 out of 5

The HIS HD 5450 graphics card comes with some brave claims. It has complete DirectX 11 support, we're told. Plus the 'world's most advanced' graphics. And all for a price of just £50.

The HIS HD 5450 graphics card comes with some brave claims. It has complete DirectX 11 support, we're told. Plus the 'world's most advanced' graphics. And all for a price of just £50.

Well, to save any disappointment, let's be very clear about what this dirt-cheap graphics card won't be able to do for you. It won't make a good job of DirectX 11, for a start. The HIS HD 5450 does support it, but the frame rates will be so low on anything that even attempts to harness the power of the latest version of Microsoft's programming interface that the game will be almost impossible to play.

Of course, this will come as no surprise to anyone familiar with the graphics card market. Every new product family has a bottom of the range card that's clearly not intended for games freaks. And a quick glance at the specifications will lay the HIS HD 5450's limitations bare.

There's little wrong with the HIS HD 5450's clock speeds - a 650MHz core clock and also a 650MHz memory clock (which in effect amounts to 1300MHz with the double rate of DDR) are figures that wouldn't look out of place on many a higher end product. However, the memory itself is basic DDR3 RAM - not even the graphics-geared GDDR3 - and the 64-bit memory interface is so pared down as to prohibit advanced gaming capabilities.

Having said that, provided you're content to keep the HIS HD 5450 at 1280x800 and below, you can coax some performance from it. It fared as well in our games tests as the nVidia GT 220. Titles like Crysis Warhead were far too much, and even at just-HD 1280x768, the ATI struggled along at only 12 frames per second (rather than 11 in the case of the GT 220; and as many as 24 for the GT 240). This figure almost halved at higher resolutions.

Far Cry 2 was more impressive, with the HIS HD 5450 scoring at just over 30 fps at 1280x768. In contrast, the GT 220 couldn't even make 30fps, while the 240 notched up a far healthier 48 fps. In other words, the 5450 is capable of playing games at lower resolutions, but if you're looking for decent game coverage then you'd be mad not to pay a little extra and get the GT 240.

So what might the HIS HD 5450 be good for? Well, its half-height design makes it very small and extremely light on power - typically consuming just 19 watts. This incredibly efficient design allows HIS to skimp on the potentially noisy cooling system. Indeed, we doubt you'll find a new graphics card generating less noise than this one.

It's also very good as a cut-price video and audio card. We coaxed some very smooth HD video output from the HIS HD 5450's Avivo technology, with very few defects indeed. And on audio, its support for advanced formats like Dolby TrueHD and DTS Master Audio is pretty much flawless. With strong high definition across the board, this is an excellent choice for HTPC users.

NEXT: our expert verdict >>

HIS HD 5450 Expert Verdict »

ATI Radeon HD 5450
650MHz core clock
650MHz memory Clock (1300MHz DDR effective)
64-bit memory interface
80 stream processors
PCI-E interface
no power connectors
DirectX 11.0
2-year warranty
  • Build Quality: We give this item 7 of 10 for build quality
  • Features: We give this item 6 of 10 for features
  • Value for Money: We give this item 6 of 10 for value for money
  • Overall: We give this item 8 of 10 overall

While the HIS HD 5450's marketing might appear to position it at a number of different audiences, its actual suitability is restricted to a much narrower user-base than that. If you're looking to get any decent games coverage, we really would recommend spending a little more and going for the nVidia GT 240. However, if you want a compact and quiet HTPC card for high-definition sound and vision then this is very much the best choice at the £50 mark.

  • Sapphire ATI Radeon HD 5570 review

    Sapphire ATI Radeon HD 5570

    More expensive than the 4550 (and thus more appropriate for today's hardware-intensive gaming world), but still a good £23 short of the three figure mark, the Sapphire ATI Radeon HD 5570 graphics card marks ATI's fiercist assault on the value gaming market.

  • DinoPC Plutosaur 540 review

    DinoPC Plutosaur 540

    DinoPC’s Plutosaur 540 budget desktop PC delivers good Windows performance, and gaming framerates more than double those of the competition in our tests.

  • Gigabyte HD 5670 1GB review

    Gigabyte HD 5670 1GB

    The Gigabyte HD 5670 1GB is a great sub-£80 graphics card, with low power needs. Is its performance good enough to make it a bargain? Here's our Gigabyte HD 5670 review.

  • Sapphire Radeon R7 240 Boost review: Budget graphics card is a close second to nVidia rival

    Sapphire Radeon R7 240 Boost: Budget graphics card is a close second to nVidia rival

    AMD's Radeon R7 240 Boost budget graphics card is a little behind its nVidia rival in performance, but also a few pounds cheaper. Read our Sapphire Radeon R7 240 Boost graphics card review.

  • HIS Radeon 6970 IceQ 2GB Review

    HIS Radeon 6970 IceQ 2GB Review

    AMD should undoubtedly be pleased with what it has achieved with the Radeon HD6970.

IDG UK Sites

Windows 10 for phones UK release date, price and new features: When will my phone get Windows 10?

IDG UK Sites

It's World Backup Day 2015! Don't wait another minute: back up now

IDG UK Sites

How Lightroom works: Where are my photos and how do I back up?

IDG UK Sites

Best Mac: Apple Mac buyers guide for 2015: iMac, MacBook, MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, Mac mini and...