Fan Speed & Noise
To say that there's a fan curve is an overstatement. More accurately, the fan keeps on spinning at around 1600 RPM until we apply a load, after which it drops back down again. If you're wondering why MSI has the fan generate similar airflow at idle and under a 100% load, we simply do not know. What we can say, however, is that the company tells us it's working on a new BIOS version to improve this curve.
The fan speed readings under our stress test look similar, which is to say there's still not much of a curve. A minimum fan speed of 25 percent would result in a measurement of less than 1500 RPM. That's still way too high, but it'd certainly help make MSI's card quieter.
Of course, there's a price to pay for an unoptimized fan curve: poor acoustics. In this case, we observe a noise level of 36 dB(A). Although that doesn't sound like much, we're dealing with a small, low-power graphics card. In that context, MSI's RX 550 Aero ITX 2GB is much louder than it should be (or than an HTPC enthusiast would want). We're certainly glad to hear MSI is going back to work on the fan curve and make improvements.
In the end, MSI's RX 550 Aero ITX 2GB stays fairly cool, but has a problem maintaining its maximum clock rate. The firmware’s 50W power limit, which AMD imposes on its board partners is to blame. We think that's unfortunate, as a few additional watts of power consumption wouldn't have been a problem.
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This is an 85$ GPU, competing with more the likes of a GT 740. So don't expect good details at such a low price point. $30 GPUs are worse than IGPUs BTW.
However, you can still find GTX 750s and 750 tis used for the price of a 550 and it performs much better.
Its hard to buy a card that you know can't keep up with the consoles. What happens when a big game comes out and you don't have the horse power to actually play it? The 460 and 560 can keep up, but the 550 might he left behind.
Save your pennies for another couple weeks and buy something better, its worth the wait
On a side note, images finally load correctly using Firefox on Android.
That's the value proposition that should be explored. the A10 w. integrated, or the 550 discreet.
Keep in mind that out of that $80 MSRP, there is a ~60% distributor and retailer markup on the manufacturer's own price, so the manufacturer itself only sees ~$50 of it to cover DRAM, GPU chip, PCB, support components, HSF, assembly, testing, packaging, R&D, marketing, gross profit margin, etc. In other words, manufacturers barely break even on those and don't want you to buy them unless your choice boils down to either that or nothing. They'd much prefer that you buy the RX560 for $20-30 more which translates to $10-20 more gross profit for the manufacturer.
Who are you going to get an alternative sub-$100 GPU from? Nvidia has bailed out of that market altogether to focus on $150+ (launch-time MSRP) GPUs.