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


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  • ET - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - link

    Also for gaming. Hopefully Llano prices will end up a little lower than rumoured, otherwise might as well buy an Athlon II X4 635 + Radeon HD 6570 ($160 together at Newegg). Reply
  • Exodite - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - link

    What do you mean?

    That the general populace does/doesn't buy computer with gaming in mind?

    Because from these numbers Llano is as incapable of handling gaming as any other IGP. Aside from casual gaming, flash games and the like, but then again every IGP can handle that.

    The bare minimum for gaming is doing native resolution, meaning 1080p today, at low-medium settings with no AA at tolerable framerates.

    I'm not seeing that here.
  • ET - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - link

    I mean that Llano is also disappointing for gaming. I thought it was clear from context, but apparently it wasn't. I'm glad you've agreed with me.

    Still, I disagree with your assertion regarding bare minimum gaming. WoW at 720p is probably what separates a gaming capable PC from one that isn't.
  • Exodite - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - link

    Re: WoW, granted.

    I just feel WoW is a poor representation of the GPU prowess of Llano as the game is by far and large CPU-bound, as most MMOs, RPGs and RTSs are.

    Shooters are by far and large the common denominator for mainstream gaming.
  • norwayishot - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - link

    WoW is the single most mainstream game out there....

    Other titles I would consider mainstream are Call of Duty, Fifa, Portal, Minecraft...

    I'm pretty sure all of these titles would get 100 fps in Llano
  • ET - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - link

    By the way, I think Llano could have a place where space is a premium, such as nettops and all in ones. The main problem here is power consumption and heat, and I wonder if the desktop Llano will be good enough in these respects. Reply
  • Mathos - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - link

    Whats the story on chipset plans for the Llano chips? Are they going to do a 990GX chipset that could be run in crossfire with the APU's GPU? Can these GPU's in the processor be used for hybrid crossfire the same as the GX chipset iGPU's can, for example with a discreet 6550? Reply
  • milli - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - link

    "However Intel does have a history of building upon ideas that AMD introduced before their time (e.g. IMC, x86-64, Fusion), "

    AMD didn't invent IMC.
    AMD didn't invent 64bit computing.
    AMD didn't invent Fusion (well they did invent the brand name).

    So please, don't mix things up. Don't think that Intel only looks at the x86 market for ideas. Having some of the old Alpha & Elbrus people there, i don't think they're short on ideas. It's just when they want to implement them.
  • ET - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - link

    So who exactly invented x86-64 if not AMD? Perhaps it didn't invent "64 bit computing", which is a completely irrelevant argument, but it did invent the most far reaching enhancement of the x86. Reply
  • Lonbjerg - Tuesday, June 14, 2011 - link

    "but it did invent the most far reaching enhancement of the x86. "

    You say that like it's a good thing?
    x86 should have died years ago.

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