The staggered birth of Kaveri has been an interesting story to cover but it has been difficult to keep all the pieces right in the forefront of memory. The initial launch in January 2014 saw a small number of SKUs such as the A10-7850K and the A8-7600 at first and since then we have had a small trickle at a rate of one or two new models a quarter hitting the shelves. We've seen 65W SKUs, such as in the form of the A10-7800, which offer 45W modes as well. Today we're reviewing the most recent Kaveri processor to hit the market, the A8-7650K rated at 95W and officially priced at $105/$95.

AMDs APU Strategy

Integrated graphics is one of the cornerstones of both the mobile and the desktop space. Despite the love we might harbor for a fully discrete graphics solution, the truth of the matter is that most people and most places still have that integrated platform in both consumer and business. Whenever I meet with AMD, the question from them is always simple - when you build a system, what would you get from AMD/Intel at a similar price point? The APU series tackles the sub-$200 price bracket from head to toe:

CPU/APU Comparion
AMD Kaveri Amazon Price on 5/12
 
Intel Haswell
    $236
 
i5-4690K
(4C/4T, 88W)
3.5-3.9 GHz
HD 4600
    $199 i5-4590
(4C/4T, 84W)
3.3-3.7 GHz
HD 4600
    $189 i5-4460
(4C/4T, 84W)
3.2-3.4 GHz
HD 4600
3.7-4.0 GHz
512 SPs
A10-7850K
(2M/4T, 95W)
$140 i3-4330
(2C/4T, 54W)
3.5 GHz
HD 4600
3.5-3.9 GHz
512 SPs
A10-7800
(2M/4T, 65W)
$135    
3.4-3.8 GHz
384 SPs
A10-7700K
(2M/4T, 95W)
$120 i3-4130
(2C/4T, 54W)
3.4 GHz
HD 4400
3.3-3.8 GHz
384 SPs
A8-7650K
(2M/4T, 95W)
$104    
3.1-3.8 GHz
384 SPs
A8-7600
(2M/4T, 65W)
$96 Pentium G3430
(2C/2T, 53W)
3.3 GHz
HD (Haswell)
3.7-4.0 GHz
No IGP
X4 860K
(2M/4T, 95W)
$83    
    $70 Pentium G3258
(2C/2T, 53W)
3.2 GHz
HD (Haswell)
3.5-3.9 GHz
256 SPs
A6-7400K
(1M/2T, 65W)
$64 Celeron G1830
(2C/2T, 53W)
2.8 GHz
HD (Haswell)

I first created this table with launch pricing, and it had some of the APUs/CPUs moved around. But since the release dates of these processors varies on both sides, the prices of individual SKUs has been adjusted to compete.  Perhaps appropriately, we get a number of direct matchups including the A10-7700K and the Core i3-4130 at $120 right now. This table is by no means complete, due to Intel’s 20+ other SKUs that fight around same price points but vary slightly in frequency, but that tells a lot about each sides attack on the market. Some of AMD's recently announced price cuts are here, but for consistency our results tables will list the launch pricing as we have no mechanism for dynamic pricing.

Testing AMDs APUs over the years has provided results that these are not necessarily targeted to the high end when it comes to multi-GPU systems that total $2000+, although AMD wouldn't mind if you built a high end system with one. The key element to the APU has always been the integrated graphics, and the ability to offer more performance or percentage of transistors to graphics than the competition does at various price points (irrespective of TDP). Ultimately AMD likes to promote that for a similarly priced Intel+NVIDIA solution, a user can enable dual graphics with an APU+R7 discrete card for better performance. That being said, the high-end APUs have also historically been considered when it comes to single discrete GPU gaming when the most expensive thing in the system is the GPU as we showed in our last gaming CPU roundup, although we need to test for a new one of those soon.

Part of the new set of tests for this review is to highlight the usefulness of dual graphics, as well as comparing both AMD and NVIDIA graphics for low, mild-mannered and high end gaming arrangements.

The A8-7650K

The new APU fits in the stack between the 65W A8-7600 and before we get into the A10 models with the A10-7700K. It offers a slightly reduced clock speed than the A10, but it is built (in part) for overclocking with the K moniker. The integrated graphics under the hood provide 384 SPs at 720 MHz, being part of AMDs 4+6 compute core strategy. The A8-7650K is designed to fill out the processor stack to that end.

AMD Kaveri Lineup
  A10-
7850K
A10-
7800
A10-
7700K
A8-
7650K
A8-
7600
 X4
860K
A6-
7400K
Price $140 $135 $120 $104 $96 $83 $64
Modules 2 2 2 2 2 2 1
Threads 4 4 4 4 4 4 2
Core Freq. (GHz) 3.7-4.0 3.5-3.9 3.4-3.8 3.3-3.8 3.1-3.8 3.7-4.0 3.5-3.9
Compute Units 4+8 4+8 4+6 4+6 4+6 4+0 2+4
Streaming
Processors
512 512 384 384 384 N/A 256
IGP Freq. (MHz) 720 720 720 720 720 N/A 756
TDP 95W 65W 95W 95W 65W 95W 65W
DRAM
Frequency
2133 2133 2133 2133 2133 1866 1866
L2 Cache 2x2MB 2x2MB 2x2MB 2x2MB 2x2MB 2x2MB 1MB

At a list price of $105 (current $104), we were at a quandary with what to test against it from team blue. The Pentium G3258 sits at $72 with two cores at 3.2 GHz and HD (Haswell) GT1 graphics. The next one up the stack is the i3-4130, a dual core with hyperthreading and HD4400, but sits at $120. Ultimately there is no direct price competitor, but AMD assured us they were confident in the positing of the SKUs, particularly when gaming is concerned. Due to what I have in my testing lab, the nearest competitor to this is the i3-4330, a model with a larger L3 cache which has a list price of $138, or the i3-4130T which is a low power SKU.

New Testing Methodology
POST A COMMENT

177 Comments

View All Comments

  • Ian Cutress - Wednesday, May 13, 2015 - link

    Would it be worth putting the gaming tests first? Perhaps for the mid range CPUs, it makes more sense. Reply
  • yannigr2 - Wednesday, May 13, 2015 - link

    Much more expensive i7 and i5 in the charts and wrong higher-older prices on AMD APUs. Am I wrong?

    Please, I am NOT asking you to make AMD APUs look good, don't make it look like that, just do not make them look awful. You want to add a much more expensive i7, at least change the color of the line, do it black or something. Even the i5 is much more expensive than the APUs especially considering that AMD changed it's prices a few days ago, which means that the AMD prices on the charts are also wrong. 7850K's price that is the most expensive is $127 not $173.

    From the five Intel processors you have in the charts only three of them are at the same price range as the APUs. Some Intel prices are the tray prices, not the box, and most of them are the prices on Intel's site. AMD prices on the other hand are the old much higher prices. Even in your article you give lower prices than those on the charts. AM I WRONG?

    Accept the critic when it is fair, don't try to make the other guy look like a brainless fanboy who asks you to make AMD APUs look good by putting GPU test first.
    Reply
  • akamateau - Tuesday, May 12, 2015 - link

    What is being benchmarked are APU's; AMD's integrated graphics processors. Reply
  • akamateau - Tuesday, May 12, 2015 - link

    I comment becasue they are JUNK. I read them hoping that Anand will write something useful.

    I am also settting the record straight and I am challenging ANANDTECH to write the truth.
    Reply
  • superflex - Tuesday, May 12, 2015 - link

    You sound like a paid shill with all your whining.
    Maybe AMD could hire shills with better English grammar.
    Reply
  • eRacer1 - Tuesday, May 12, 2015 - link

    That's an insult to paid shills. No one being paid to shill for a company would act that obnoxious and incoherent. Looks more like a volunteer effort, or someone who deliberately wants to make vocal AMD supporters look obnoxious and incoherent. Reply
  • akamateau - Tuesday, May 12, 2015 - link

    I comment becasue they are JUNK. I read them hoping that Anand will write something useful.

    I am also settting the record straight and I am challenging ANANDTECH to write the truth.
    Reply
  • Raiher - Tuesday, May 12, 2015 - link

    Review says that it's 720p benchmark, but screenshot is 1080p. Normally I wouldn't care, but screenshot even shows number of FPS. What is wrong? Reply
  • Ian Cutress - Tuesday, May 12, 2015 - link

    I use the same screenshot in all the games on the other pages where I am testing 1080p. It's just a generic screenshot of the game showing what happens in the benchmark. Reply
  • lilmoe - Tuesday, May 12, 2015 - link

    Too painful to watch. I just hope things getter better in 2016-17 Reply

Log in

Don't have an account? Sign up now