Tuesday 3 April 2007

System Builder Tip: Vista Aero Performance Rating - ATI X1550 256 MB PCI-E

The ATI X1550 is a relatively new entry level video card.

It has the ability to be installed in a low profile case much to my pleasant surprise.

It has been installed on our Vista test system consisting of:
  • Intel DQ965GF
  • Intel Core 2 Duo E6400
  • 2 GB Kingston RAM
  • 2 Seagate hard drives in RAID 1
The system has an already installed Catalyst 3.6 driver set.

When the system booted up, it picked up the X1550 as an X1300.

The initial Windows System Assessment Tool put the X1550 at 3.4 on desktop performance for Aero and 3.8 for 3D graphics.

Here is a screen shot of the initial scores:

After downloading and installing the Catalyst 3.7 drivers, verifying that the card is now picked up as an X1550, I reran the Windows System Assessment Tool and received the same scores as the Catalyst 3.6 drivers.

In my opinion, the ATI X1550 represents a good step in performance over the previous generation X1300 for about the same price. Thus, it is great value for corporate systems or entry level CAD stations.

UPDATE: Wasn't paying too much attention to the title that was beyond the one line view in Blogger. Updated it by removing the "Intel" out of it. Also, in the second paragraph above this one, I updated what was "default Windows Vista drivers" to Catalyst 3.6 drivers. Oops :)

Philip Elder
Microsoft Small Business Specialists

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