The Radeon RX 550 brings us to a segment where gaming is all but possible. For graphically intense games, this card is simply too slow. There is a variety of lighter games that run reasonably well, but most players in that segment of games will not appreciate anything below 60 fps.
For those who want to build a media centre, the radeon RX 550 offers an interesting proposition. It offers hardware H.265 decoding as well as a HDMI 2.0 output, which allows you to play 4K movies. Unfortunately it is not yet know if and when the RX 550 will support streaming Netflix in 4K quality. The service is very firm on anti-piracy measures and for now, AMD cards are not eligible. Support for Nvidia cards is currently in beta.
Obviously, the green camp is keeping a close eye on things and have launched their GT 1030 GPU. As the RX 550, this card is not focused on gamers but offers all the functionality you’d want for a HTPC. A sample of the GT 1030 card is finding its way to our test lab as we speak, so expect a head to head in not too long.
Finally, looking at the card that Gigabyte sent us for this test, if you’re looking for a Radeon RX 550 then this Gaming OC would be a good choice. The cooler is quiet enough, and doesn’t make any sound at all when the card is idling. Seems to us that’s well worth the extra investment over the regular RX 550s.