HD6450 – Review for servers/non-3D workstations

The AMD Radeon HD 6450 is a low-end graphics card that’s perfectly suited to basic graphics duties such as you’ll need on a server or workstation board that lacks inbuilt graphics capabilities (on-CPU or a discrete chip). It’s flexible in output – VGA, HDMI and DVI – is more than powerful enough for everyday use or even production 2D Photoshop work – is silent thanks to the passive cooling design and only draws somewhere between ~6-9W on idle and ~27W under load. For systems which are generally headless you should probably be looking at a server board which incorporates onboard graphics, but if you have a setup which requires a graphics card that will go largely unused the low idle power draw is quite appealing here. It does require a x16 physical slot but works fine in slots which are lesser electrically, e.g. x8 or below.   The card doesn’t run particularly hot at idle so the passive cooling system should fit in with most setups without causing significant additional heat load to nearby components.   It’s also worth a look-in if you have hit the maximum number of monitors your current setup requires and don’t plan on gaming or doing 3D work on the additional monitor – no point in spending up big on a noisy gaming card for that purpose. At around AU$40 this card represents good value for someone who doesn’t need a great deal of graphics performance but wants to minimise the noise and power consumption of their system, and it’s our current go-to card for this sort of requirement.