AMD A8-3850 APU review -
AMD's A8 series APU review
Over the past few months you guys have been hearing about AMD's Fusion products quite a bit. AMD Fusion very simply explained is a merging of the CPU and the GPU into a generic processor. Combine the power of the CPU and the GPU then tie a Northbridge to that product and boom -- AMD calls the end product an APU.
In the ultra low-end spectrum AMD has already had its first trial launch with the E series (E350) for example, excellent low-power APUs for entry level products like netbooks. A week or two ago AMD started launching another line of APUs, Sabine a more mainstream series of APUs intended for the mainstream notebook market.
That leaves a residual two segments open, in the high-end AMD will release Bulldozer processors (the FX series) but these have been delayed with an ETA of roughly a week or six (August/September 2011). And then for the PC market there's entry-level to mainstream still to cover, and that's what we'll be looking at today. You guys have heard about Llano, the processor family. In the past few weeks the name 'Lynx' surfaced as well. Lynx is the codename for the desktop series Llano APUs, and today that is what is released.
Now before we start off I want to make it very clear here, the A8 Lynx processors are entry level to mid-range targeted processors (well -- APUs). So we are looking at reasonably up-to okay CPU performance versus a rather kick ass integrated GPU, and all that for prices that are very interesting. Today's tested A8 3850 APU for example will cost roughly 139 EUR.
There's more inbound though, for Llano Lynx based processors we'll see three lines (segments) of APUs namely A4, A6 and A8 APUs, today is all about the A8-3800 and A6-3600 series, but AMD certainly has more in store in the months to come.
AMD's A4 series
The A4 series A4-3400 is a 65W processor with 2 cores that run at 2.7GHz. There will also be an A4-3300 65W processor with two cores at 2.5GHz. These A4 models have 160 Radeon (shader processor) Cores with an integrated Radeon HD 6410D. The L2 cache is 1MB and the graphics GPU clock is 600MHz for A4-3400 and 443MHz for A4-3300.
AMD's A6 series
Initially there will be three processors to be found in the A6 Series, the first is the A6-3650. It is a 100 Watt 4 core processor running at 2.6GHz. The A6-3600 is a 65W 4 core APU running at 2.4/2.1GHz (Turbo Core). The third APU is the A6-3500, a 65 Watt 3 core 2.4/2.1 (Turbo Core) APU. These processors have a 4MB L2 cache pool except the A6-3500 which has 3MB (one core less). All three models have 320 Radeon (shader) Cores at 443MHz. The graphics class is HD 6530D.
AMD's A8 series
The best performing Lynx APUs will be injected into the A8 series. There are two APU models to be found in A8 series, the A8-3850 is rated at 100W running at 2.9GHz. Both SKUs have a Quad Core processor. The other model is the A8-3800 rated at 65W, 2.7/2.4GHz (Turbo Core). Both APUs have a 4MB L2 cache and pack no less than 400 Radeon Cores with that embedded GPU running at 600MHz with what AMD calls a Radeon HD 6550D.
Yep 400 Shader cores... that's right. That's really a huge leap in performance for integrated graphics alright. Also, for those that immediately noticed it, correct -- these processors do not have a shared L3 cache. Anyway, we'll talk all about the features and architecture over the next pages of course.
So before we dive a little deeper into the performance of the processor review I wanted to quickly talk about the APU and the technology behind it. Next page please.
The A8 series processors are entry level to mid-range targeted processors (well -- APUs). So we are looking at reasonably up-to okay CPU performance versus a rather kick ass integrated GPU, and all that for prices that are very interesting. Today's tested A8 3800 APU will cost roughly 89 EUR, and you get a whole lotta CPU/GPU for that money.
AMD A8-3850 APU review
Combine the power of a CPU and a GPU then tie a Northbridge into that product and boom -- AMD calls the end product an APU. We take a look at the AMD A8-3850 APU in combination with the new A75 motherboard chipset. Let's have a peek at what AMD brings to the table.