Our first candidate has been in our labs for more than 6 months now. When we last took a look at the NVIDIA GT 430, it was an underwhelming performer. Have driver updates fixed the issues we had with the card? We are going to put the NVIDIA reference card through the paces and also through our new benchmarking methodology.

From the AMD side, we have 6450 reference card. This is the same card that Ryan took a look at earlier. We didn't cover too many HTPC specific issues in that review (except noting that the deinterlacing performance matched that of the 5570's), and we will correct that aspect in this piece.

AMD also provided us with a Display Port to HDMI adapter so that we could test out HD audio bitstreaming, and it worked without issues.

The second NVIDIA card we have in the list is the recently introduced GT 520. Ryan had again covered the launch, but without a detailed review. NVIDIA provided us with a retail sample of the MSI N520GT.

Rounding up our initial set of candidates is the AMD 6570 retail sample, courtesy Sapphire.

NVIDIA let us know that the GDDR5 based 6450 from AMD was not representative of what is available in the market. There is no passively cooled GDDR5 based 6450, and the core clocks of all the 6450s in the market weigh in at 625 MHz (compared to the reference card's 750 MHz). Keeping this in mind, we also added a DDR3 based MSI 6450 (quite late in the game) to the list of contenders.

The table below compares the listed specifications of all the contenders.

Discrete HTPC GPUs Shootout Contenders
  NVIDIA GT 430 AMD 6450 [GDDR5] MSI GT 520 Sapphire 6570 [DDR3] MSI 6450 [DDR3]
AMD Stream Processors   160   480 160
NVIDIA Stream Processors 96   48    
Core Clock (MHz) 700 750 810 650 625
Shader Clock (MHz) 1400   1620    
Memory Clock (Data Rate) (MHz) 900 (1800) 900 (3600) 900 (1800) 900 (1800) 667 (1333)
DRAM Configuration 128b 1GB DDR3 64b 512MB GDDR5 64b 1GB DDR3 128b 1GB DDR3 64b 1GB DDR3
Max. TDP (W) 49 27 29 44 20

Let us now proceed to take a look at the HTPC testbed in which these cards were benchmarked.

Introduction HTPC Testbed
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  • fixxxer0 - Sunday, June 12, 2011 - link

    that arrangement of cards slightly resembles a swastika
  • Anand Lal Shimpi - Sunday, June 12, 2011 - link

    Thanks for the heads up, it honestly didn't cross our minds at all but now that it's been pointed out I can completely see the resemblance. Needless to say we've removed the offending image and I'd like to apologize to anyone who was offended.

    Thank you guys for catching it so quickly.

    Take care,
  • fb39ca4 - Monday, June 13, 2011 - link

    If people want to jump to conclusions, let them. The swastika means many things, if you want to associate it with Nazis then go ahead, or you could associate it with the religion Jainsim, which it happens to be a symbol of. Your interpretaion of the image affects no one, there is no reason to make a big deal over it.
  • fixxxer0 - Monday, June 13, 2011 - link

    lol... i made no connection to nazis or anything... nor said i was offended.

    i just pointed out a resemblance i noticed as a matter of fact.
  • tzhu07 - Sunday, June 12, 2011 - link

    Yeah, time to change the Nazi reference.
  • qwertymac93 - Sunday, June 12, 2011 - link

    The indians(the asian ones...) have been using Swastikas for centuries before the nazi party was even thought of. Just sayin'.
  • jwilliams4200 - Sunday, June 12, 2011 - link

    It is unfortunate that there is such an over-reaction to something like this. Besides, the swastika symbol is and has been used for many, many other purposes than representing Nazis:

  • Souka - Monday, June 13, 2011 - link

    True as it may be that fact remains that if some one says:

    Most people think of Adolf

    Most people think of Nazi

    I'm of Jewish decent... the pic didn't offend me in the least bit, nor my friends.

    Jusy saying.... ;)
  • Gnarr - Monday, June 13, 2011 - link

    people should be thinking of Nazi's and Hitler anyways, it reminds everyone not to make that mistake again.

    I see no harm in accidentally arranging something in a Swastika :p

    and on that notes.. There is a company in my home country that has been using the swastika as the company logo for over hundred years:
    http://martasmarta.blog.is/users/1d/martasmarta/im... ;)
  • L. - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - link

    Unfortunately it does not.

    The way the western world depicts adolf hitler, nazism and everything surrounding that part of history is far from reminding anyone not to make that mistake again, as the main message is "nazi evil, hitler evil, us good guys, us not like them".

    Anyone ever wondered what difference there is between Gestapo and the Patriot Act ? - oh right it doesn't target jews so it's fine ... lol

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