Sapphire Radeon 9550

A typical budget card: it has an in-between model number, too much memory and it has been manufactured 3 years after the chip it's based on made it's debut.

Let me explain that: The ATi Radeon 9500 was a decent performer in it's day. It was succeeded by the 9600 which was fine. However, the 9550 doesn't have the performance to justify the name 9550. It was placed under the 9600-series but ATi probably didn't wanted that it would sound too slow and opted for 9550 rather than a, performance-wise, more appropriate 9400 or something.

Too much memory? This particular card is fitted with 256MB of RAM. 128MB would've been enough for every possible scenario that this card will ever see in it's life.

Manufacturing date? It's made in 2006 :). The RV350 was announced in 2003. In 2006 ATi would be releasing the Radeon X1950XT and nVidia already had released the GeForce 7800 GTX. That's 2 generations of cards in difference. I find it always interesting that these slower, budget cards somehow find a reason to exist. Wouldn't it be more sense to buy a newer Radeon X300 or X1300 instead? I guess someone had stockpiles of old chips to sell...

Specifications

Chipset
PCB date
0609
Chip date
0606
RAM
256MB DDR 5NS (Infineon)
Interface
Condition
Card only
TV functions?
Yes
Engineering sample?
No
RAMDAC
Integrated
Board revision
?

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