The Llano Desktop Preview: AMD A8-3850 CPU & GPU Performanceby Anand Lal Shimpi on June 14, 2011 12:00 AM EST
CPU Performance: Pretty Much an Athlon II X4
As we found in our look at mobile Llano, the A8 isn't impressive as a general purpose x86 microprocessor. In general the chip is somewhat faster than the Athlon II X4 635 and I'd say it performs more like a 645 based on the numbers I've seen here. Again, nothing to be impressed by but if you're building a value gaming PC it may not matter.
Note that heavily-threaded applications actually favor the A8-3850 to the Core i3 2100 (its most likely target based on pricing rumors) thanks to its four cores. They may not be as efficient as the i3's cores, but you sure do have more of them. We have been discussing this tradeoff with AMD for quite a bit over the past couple of years. You lose out on single-threaded performance but you do gain better performance in heavily-threaded workloads. I had assumed that Turbo Core would partially solve this with Llano but 2.9GHz is going to be the fastest SKU AMD offers and it doesn't ship with any turbo enabled.
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starfalcon - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - linkWell there's a few ways to look at it.
I've played tons of games at 1024x600 resolution, they can still look pretty good.
Console games run around that resolution sometimes too, so apparently millions of people are fine with it. It's still way above a DVD resolution.
It's not much of a change to 1366x768 either.
IGPs are pretty limited on bandwidth so go get discrete to play at 1920x1200 obviously.
Just my 2 cents.
Griswold - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - linkI dont see why you toss consoles or DVD in the mix here. We're not talking huge but low dpi TV screens where resolutions like this are quite normal but screens that are used for computers. A screen with that resolution would be tiny, compared the standard these days - and nobody would accept that unless its a crapbook.
Anand Lal Shimpi - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - linkKeep in mind that these are entry level GPUs here, anything above 1280 x 1024 isn't really going to do too well. Llano at least lets us have a conversation at 1280 x 1024 but for the most part integrated solutions are going to keep you to these types of resolutions. I tried to provide both a reference point to older IGP results (1024 x 768) as well as some perspective for discrete cards (page 3 at 1280 x 1024). As you can see by some of the numbers on page 3, at 1280 x 1024 in many benchmarks we're pretty close to 30 fps already.
That being said, this is just a preview. If you'd like I'll provide some resolution scaling data in the full review :)
Jamahl - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - linkI disagree. There are plenty of cases where the AMD chip is in the 100's. Nobody expects them to run Metro 2033 on high so don't bother using that as an excuse.
1680 minimum, and medium settings - we'll see who holds on to the fps and who collapses. And for god sake put some decent RAM in the AMD system.
Griswold - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - linkQFT
whoaaaaaaaa - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - linkI have to concur with everyone else, Anand.
There were a couple of tests where this setup had 80-100 fps.
I think particular attention ought to be paid to the most popular games in your list, and that's probably Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 + Black Ops and WoW.
Given that the Llano is a budget desktop chip, who is going to buy one? The semi casual gamer who is probably interested in the Call of Duty franchise or World of Warcraft.
And in both of those games this APU gets 100+ fps.
Most screens these days are widescreen, 1366 x 768, 1280 x 720, 1680 x 1050, and 1920 x 1080. I think these are the resolutions to focus on.
But I really appreciate the review having just discovered this web site last week it's really nice. Keep up the great work!
Anand Lal Shimpi - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - linkMy apologies - I was referencing the data on page 3 which purposefully looks at higher resolution/quality settings. There you're not looking at 100 fps in most situations but more down to earth frame rates.
I've already begun work on high resolution testing and varying memory bandwidth, our story at the end of the month will focus much more attention on these questions as a result of your feedback :)
veri745 - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - linkThis would be a perfect scenario for the list older games that you guys were putting together a few months ago.
Show us some 2005-2008 action at decent resolutions (1366x/1680x)
Anand Lal Shimpi - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - linkHave any specific requests you'd like to see?
veri745 - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - linkA couple suggestions
In no particular order