Final Words

I have to admit, Trinity's CPU performance made it a lot closer to Intel's Core i3 3220 than I expected it to. In the worst case there's still a huge gap in single threaded performance, but even SYSMark 2012 only shows Intel's Core i3 3220 with a 12% performance advantage. Multithreaded workloads do reasonably well on Trinity as well. Intel pulls ahead in some, while AMD does in others and there's another selection of applications/workloads where we see performance parity between similarly priced Trinity and Ivy Bridge parts. A big part of all of this is Intel disabling features on its Core i3 (the lack of turbo hurts), but Piledriver's high clock speeds and AMD's pricing strategy both play a role here as well.

The big exception to all of this is high-end gaming performance. If you're planning on pairing a beefy GPU with a cheap CPU, you're much better off going with Intel than AMD at this point. Single threaded performance is still far too important to most gaming workloads for the recommendation to be anything different.

As I mentioned earlier, Trinity's CPU performance puts the buying decision squarely in the tradeoff evaluation zone. Once again what matters the most is how important Trinity's GPU is to you. AMD holds a clear advantage there if you're going to use it, otherwise the decision is heavily weighted towards Intel. Intel holds a power consumption advantage and a clear single threaded performance advantage, while there are some specific workloads that will do better on Trinity (e.g. AES-NI accelerated apps, heavily threaded integer applications).

Overall Trinity is a step forward from Llano. It's not enough to make the job of recommending the APU any less complex than what I've outlined above however. Depending on what you plan on doing with your system, Trinity is either going to be perfect or a distant second.

What I am happy to see is AMD putting a little competitive pressure on Intel here. Offering unlocked K SKUs, features like AES-NI and great GPU performance at these price points is important. I don't believe Trinity is strong enough on the CPU side to really force Intel to do the same with the Core i3, but we do need AMD to keep doing this and getting better each time.

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  • Crono - Tuesday, October 2, 2012 - link

    It's good to finally see pricing on Trinity.
    Looks like AMD is still competitive at lower price points for Video transcoding performance, which is good news for me and others who's highest CPU workloads are mostly video editing.

    But even for gaming the A10-5800/K doesn't look too bad for $122 chips.
    Glad to see it isn't quite "Bulldozer" all over again. I need to build a new system for Windows 8 and Trinity looks promising for a budget to mid range build.
    Reply
  • ac2 - Tuesday, October 2, 2012 - link

    Big deal...

    Just look at pg 2, the single threaded performance of the A10 is lower than a friggin Pentium G850

    Pg 3 Sysmark, only slightly ahead of the Pentium even with 2 additional Integer cores

    I wish Anand had included the Pentium G850 power comparison as well though at 65W vs 100W TDP we can be sure which way that will swing...

    And the G850 costs a little more than HALF the A10 suggested price... That puts a $70 saving towards a discrete graphics card, which, as per pg 6 should result in a much better gaming performance as well...
    Reply
  • StevoLincolnite - Tuesday, October 2, 2012 - link

    It's also slower than an old Core 2 Quad Q6600 overclocked to 3.6ghz+ which was released in 2007 both in single threaded and multi-threaded tasks.

    However, what I would like to see is some under-volting tests to see how low they can go in terms of TDP as AMD has always been incredibly conservative (Even on the GPU side) with voltages, would be excellent in a Mini-ITX rig without the need for a dedicated GPU.
    Reply
  • MrMilli - Tuesday, October 2, 2012 - link

    http://www.computerbase.de/artikel/prozessoren/201... Reply
  • Belard - Tuesday, October 2, 2012 - link

    Really cool how the performance charts are NOT static.

    Ah, German technology. :)
    Reply
  • phillock - Friday, January 26, 2018 - link

    I think there is very little need for raw single-threaded performance increases in consumer-level "general computation" processors (e.g. few-core x86 processors). So who cares if we don't have a second intel? What we do need are better ways of extracting performance from multiple cores, and from the massively parallel architectures found in GPUs. Part of the equation is ensuring that these two paradigms are pervasive, and therefore,https://audiomanagerapp.wordpress.com/2017/10/11/a... from a big-picture point-of-view, AMD really *is* pushing things forward with Trinity Reply
  • B3an - Tuesday, October 2, 2012 - link

    Trinity truly is embarrassingly slow. I think it should be even cheaper for this performance level. And it's also disappointing that Intel have no performance competition AT ALL from AMD. We need this for some real progression to be made in desktop CPU's and also drive prices down at the high end. Reply
  • IKeelU - Tuesday, October 2, 2012 - link

    What kind of progress are you talking about? Power efficiency? Raw general computing performance? Progress comes in many forms.

    I think there is very little need for raw single-threaded performance increases in consumer-level "general computation" processors (e.g. few-core x86 processors). So who cares if we don't have a second intel? What we do need are better ways of extracting performance from multiple cores, and from the massively parallel architectures found in GPUs. Part of the equation is ensuring that these two paradigms are pervasive, and therefore, from a big-picture point-of-view, AMD really *is* pushing things forward with Trinity.
    Reply
  • Belard - Tuesday, October 2, 2012 - link

    AMD's progress is about 2 years behind. While this is somewhat intel's fault by illegal competitive practices which in turn kept AMD from profiting as much as they could have during the Athlon64~X2 era.

    AMD has done a lot of things wrong and would take at least 2 years to sort out... if ever. FM2 is no better than FM1 and not cross compatible. Neither is compatible with Socket AM3 and nothing AMD has on the market even supports PCIe 3.0.

    Compared to buying an intel i3-something system, in which you can upgrade to an i7-something easily. AMD has a mess on their hands and I suspect part of their performance problems could also be rooted in their chipsets. (Across the board, the performance hits a wall). Yeah, for a notebook - the powerful GPU part comes into play. And both intel i3 and Trinity is more than powerful enough for MOST people. hell, I'm still running on a Q6600 at 2.4Ghz and it does quite well (going i5-3570 this weekend)... But for those who want their money's worth when performance counts, AMD is not in the game.

    The performance from AMD has to be consistent, and its not. The heat is not good along with the cheap fans they include that are noisy and should be replaced with a good $20~50 cooler. Meanwhile intel CPUs are running cooler and their fans are very quiet.

    So as of today, in general - it costs more to get an AMD. I really want AMD to do well, I've sold lots of AMD systems in the past.
    Reply
  • Origin64 - Wednesday, October 3, 2012 - link

    About PCIe 3.0, nobody needs that. 2.0 * 8 is enough to drive every card on the market with maybe 2% performance loss, which is within the error margin of every benchmark. To keep prices low, of course they're not going to add extra features that nobody needs. I think it's a smart move.

    Other than that, I agree. AMD hasn't been doing well price-performance wise the last two years. I have a Phenom II, and when they were released they were still competitive, for the price and the time, but the last two generations have seen no singlethreaded performance increase and cost about the same.
    Reply

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