This HIS HD 5450 is a solid entry level product, ideal for home media and server systems. The fact that they have given it PCIe 1x compatibility means that it will reach a much wider audience. Server systems with older motherboards will find a good home for this specific solution as it offers excellent video acceleration and multi screen support, without costing a fortune.
Unfortunately for the mainstream enthusiast audience, this backwards compatible version of the HD5450 will prove rather expensive. The regular HIS HD5450 GDDR3 graphics card costs £42 inc vat and this model today will be retailing in excess of £90 including VAT. HIS have explained that the development and the production of this card is much higher than the mainstream unit however this means that it makes little sense for the majority of people reading this review. Unless you specifically require PCIe 1x slot support then it makes more financial sense to purchase the mainstream version of the card.
Other aspects deserve credit. The passive cooler is excellent and in reasonably good environments, the core will never exceed 50c. Equally important, the card generates no noise and we didn't notice any coil noise either from the PCB which is reassuring.
Those people in the market for a low powered card with video acceleration capabilities would be advised to shortlist the HIS HD5450 as it consumes a measerly 13 watts under full load, and generally under 9 watts when watching high definition video. It will hardly cost anything to run over the course of a year, opening the market to the ‘green' audience wanting to lower their environmental footprint (and electricity bill!).
KitGuru says: The HIS HD5450 Silence is a great card and this version is specifically targeting an audience with only PCIe 1x slot support. The vanilla version at half the price will be a more sensible option for a semi modern media center, but we appreciate HIS are helping to support people with legacy systems.