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Any point in buying Llano APU now with Trinity next year?

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September 23, 2011 8:49:07 PM

Hi

I'm hoping to do my first system build soon, and was planning to include a Llano A8 processor in it. However, I've been hearing about the new Trinity APUs that will be released Q2 next year, and was wondering if I should bother buying one now, as from what I've seen the current motherboards won't work with next years processors? Thanks

singul4r1ty
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September 23, 2011 9:12:15 PM

If you don't need a new PC now, then I would wait. I haven't been following up on Trinity so if you say Q2 2012, then okay.

Trinity will be using the new Bulldozer CPU core so it should be much more powerful than Llano which uses an Athlon II CPU core. I'm sure the graphic core will be upgraded too.

As long as you don't intend on installing a powerful video card, then I would guess that Trinity would be the way to go. Otherwise I would look at buying a separate Bulldozer core CPU (or Intel Sandy Bridge CPU) and a powerful video card.

Trinity will be using socket FMX which means Llano's socket FM1 is dead even before those APUs were released.
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September 23, 2011 9:18:17 PM

The latest I've seen on the FM1 and FM2 compatibility is here: http://www.nordichardware.com/news/69-cpu-chipset/44132...

They just report that there is just speculation currently. It looks like Trinity will be considerably better than Llano.

The question to ask yourself is do you really need fusion? From the below-linked article, it definitely has its niche but so far the benefits are limited to entry-level graphics. Llano's CPU component is still pretty weak. Going with a sandy bridge based cpu and discrete graphics still trumps it and you don't have to wait till next year.

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/amd-a8-3850-llano,2...
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September 23, 2011 9:26:48 PM

jaguarskx said:
Trinity will be using socket FMX which means Llano's socket FM1 is dead even before those APUs were released.


That's based on this slide: http://news.softpedia.com/newsImage/AMD-2012-Trinity-AP...

But the AMD slide says, "FMx". I read various articles that state 'trinity will be on "FMX"' and reference the slide. I haven't found anything (but the slide) as official from AMD. The "x" could refer simply to a variable. I'm just speculating :) 
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September 23, 2011 10:13:04 PM

If you need a computer now, buy one. If you start waiting for the next new thing, you'll be waiting forever.
September 24, 2011 11:05:11 AM

Ok. I'm likely to get a graphics card too, so will AM3 be compatible with next year's Bulldozer CPUs?
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September 25, 2011 6:19:56 AM

singul4r1ty said:
Ok. I'm likely to get a graphics card too, so will AM3 be compatible with next year's Bulldozer CPUs?


From what I've seen Zambezi will be using the AM3+ platform but will generally work in AM3 boards as long as the motherboard maker supports them with a bios upgrade. AM3+ boards are already available though and are backwards compatible with AM3 CPUs so you could just hedge your bet and get an AM3+ board.

And yes, if you are getting a decent graphics card then don't worry about fusion yet. It will be interesting to see what trinity and future generations bring in terms of hybrid Xfire with the heftier discrete cards. Llano does do hybrid Xfire but only with low-end cards. If they can figure out a way for an integrated graphics proc to help a beefy high-end graphics card (in a significant way), a lot of people are going to start paying more attention to fusion.
September 26, 2011 4:41:46 PM

Having consulted people, I've decided that I'll get a cheap enough athlon x3 455, and the Asus M5A78L-M LX. Then I can upgrade to a Zambezi if I want. I'll also buy a 1GB HD 6770.
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September 26, 2011 5:18:10 PM

singul4r1ty said:
Having consulted people, I've decided that I'll get a cheap enough athlon x3 455, and the Asus M5A78L-M LX. Then I can upgrade to a Zambezi if I want. I'll also buy a 1GB HD 6770.


Sounds great. If you upgrade to Zambezi make sure to check your motherboard's supported CPU list before buying a particular CPU. Your board will only support the 95w variants (which are mainstream anyway) and might need a BIOS update prior to CPU installation.
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