Llano vs. Sandy Bridge: Finally, Acceptable Processor Graphics

On average the A8-3850 is 58% faster than the Core i5 2500K. If we look at peak performance in games like Modern Warfare 2, Llano delivers over twice the frame rate of Sandy Bridge. This is what processor graphics should look like. While I believe Sandy Bridge was a good start for integrated GPU performance, Llano is my ideal for 2011. Update: We've added results from the latest 2372 driver for the 2500K. Most performance results remain unchanged however a few problematic areas for Sandy Bridge have been addressed as a result. Llano still maintains a significant performance in the majority of cases.

Games that are more CPU bound however do show Llano's weakness. Both Dragon Age and Starcraft II have Sandy Bridge either outperforming or coming very close to Llano in frame rates. Those are most definitely the exception rather than the rule however; for the most part AMD is able to deliver entry-level discrete GPU performance with Llano.

Dragon Age: Origins

Dawn of War II

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2

BioShock 2

World of Warcraft


Starcraft II - AT GPU Test

Starcraft II - AT CPU Test

Call of Duty: Black Ops

Mafia II

Civilization V - DX9

Metro 2033

DiRT 2

GPU Performance: Between a Radeon HD 6450 & 5570 Final Words


View All Comments

  • Akv - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - link

    What is called "serious gamerz" is 0.01% of users, but 99.99% of review websites visitors.

    Hence the eerie tone of most articles like "so can it do gaming or not" totally out of context when price, consumption, heat, technical elegance should be the matter.

    The fact that an IGP that can do perfect bluray, perfect architectural or medical simulation, perfect graphic editing can be labeled "insufficient for serious users" is itself a subject of philosophical wonder, especially when you realize that what the "serious users" do is shooting at ridiculous zombies in extremely ugly environments.
  • jabber - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - link

    Spot on!

    I think the issue is that AMD is listening and looking at what 99% of real world users actually use and need and catering to that.

    Intel on the other hand have been totally blinded to follow the rants and needs of the 0.01% that read the review sites and their prices/power levels have gone up accordingly.

    Its really only AMD's stubborn and baffling refusal to advertise to the masses that they obviously covet so much that holds them back.

    Get enough TV ads up there and folks will be just as happy to ask for an AMD chip as an Intel especially when they find the AMD box is $100 cheaper.

    If you dont advertise then its your own fault that you arent selling as much as the guy that does.
  • Exodite - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - link

    Given that both Intel's and AMD's IGP solutions are currently good enough for everything up to mainstream gaming I can't really see why AMD are doing a better job?

    Llano is obviously not fast enough to allow more serious work and the weaker per-core performance is going to be a drawback for most mainstream users who do browsing and word processing as their main tasks.

    Llano seems to be lacking a significantly improved memory and cache system to truly make it shine, at least as far as GPU performance with 400 SPs go.
  • veri745 - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - link

    Are you serious? I can browse and do word processing on my ancient P4. Per-core performance doesn't matter for what the *vast* majority of users do on their computers. What kind of "serious work" requires something beefier than an Athlon II X4?

    And think a minute before you say "video encoding/transcoding", because soo few people actually do that, and those that do know what they need.
  • norwayishot - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - link

    Gotta agree with 'veri745', mainstream users will not notice the performance difference.

    A 5 year old processor is just fine for your average PC user.
  • jabber - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - link

    Yeah I've always felt that as soon as CPUs reached dual core to stop the eggtimer appearing with more then two windows open, that was it.

    The "need for more power game" ended for most folks at that point.

    Customers just dont give a damn about CPUs on modern PCs. The thing that really wows them is show the the difference between a mechanical HDD and a SSD.

    Now that they notice.
  • Seikent - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - link

    I think that an upgrade from an old pc (P4 for example) does have a noticeable impact on web browsing, text processors and so on, because these program are hungrier than before, but when you get certain amount of power, the bottleneck goes to the hard drive. So if you're browsing using a SB or a llano cpu, it wouldn't matter very much. Reply
  • jabber - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - link

    Good folks at Anandtech, is there any chance one of you could get an interview with the Marketing Dept Head at AMD and ask them exactly what is their strategy for getting into the hearts and minds of the general computing public?

    The dont seem to be bothering thats all.
  • nickb64 - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - link

    I would guess they don't bother a whole lot because most people don't know or give a shit what the difference between Intel and AMD is. I know my mom and my sister don't. All they really care about is whether their computer can be used for email, browsing, and maybe occasional light photo/video editing with something like Windows Movie Maker or Photoshop Elements. Reply
  • jabber - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - link

    No thats note quite my point. As you say if mum and dad dont care but they only know of Intel due to them appearing on TV adverts 5 times a night which one will they go for?

    The Intel, cos they've never heard of AMD. You wouldnt buy a car and many other goods from a company you never heard of.

    But you only have to get slight recognition and folks will be okay with it.

    If you dont try you'll never know.

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