Biostar has added a new graphics card to its arsenal, and it might make you think it's 2017. As momomo_us on Twitter discovered, the company is releasing a new version of the several year old Radeon RX 550. You won't find the it on any list of best graphics cards these days, but Biostar's Radeon RX 550 (VA5505RG41) may be a feasible option for those who don't need high-end graphics.
The Radeon RX 550 from Biostar leverages Lexa Pro silicon, so it's the variant with 512 shading units instead of the Baffin LE-powered Radeon RX 550 that has 640 shading units. The graphics card has a 1,100 MHz base clock and a 1,183 MHz boost clock, allowing it to deliver an FP32 performance of around 1.2 TFLOPs. However, the Radeon RX 550 is slightly slower than the Vega graphics engine found in the Radeon 5 5600G (Zen 3) APU.
The Radeon RX 550 won't offer you a pleasant gaming performance unless you game at 720p (1280 x 720) resolution with the eye candy toned way down. However, the graphics card's 4GB of GDDR5 memory does help with other everyday tasks. In addition, the Radeon RX 550 provides four HDMI outputs with 4K support and can manage up to four displays simultaneously.
Biostar's iteration of the Radeon RX 550 comes in a single-slot design and doesn't require any external power connectors. As a result, the graphics card fits nicely into essential systems, although we recommend a 250-watt power supply as a minimum.
Biostar didn't specify the pricing or availability for the Radeon RX 550 (VA5505RG41). For perspective, the cheapest Radeon RX 550 starts at $209.99. The graphics card debuted at $79 five years ago, so consumers pay a 166% premium for the aging Radeon graphics card. That's the beauty of a semiconductor shortage. Even old models like the Radeon RX 550 or the long-forgotten GeForce GT 730 can still be relevant. But should you overpay for a graphics card that's five years old? No, unless you really don't have any other choice.