Following Up With More Test Data
This story, an update to our AMD Trinity-based A10, A8, and A6 family preview, was originally published on July 2, 2012. It was not condoned, supported, or sponsored in any way by AMD. The piece appears here, unchanged, with the same information presented nearly three months ago.
Shortly after wrapping up our first look at AMD’s Trinity-based desktop APUs, I ordered an A8-3870K and Core i3-2100 from Newegg. Each chip was $120 bucks at the time, and promised to add much needed comparison data to our Trinity-based desktop APU preview.
The A8 is important because it’s AMD’s flagship APU built on the Llano design. Although it only operates 100 MHz faster than the A8-3850 originally used for testing, an unlocked multiplier ratio commands a bit of a price premium. Expect the unlocked Trinity-based parts to cost extra, too.
Intel’s Core i3 is, by far, a more interesting comparison point. Its two Hyper-Threaded cores employ the Sandy Bridge architecture, which we know to be very efficient. But can it stand up to AMD’s twin Piledriver modules in the Trinity-based A10 and A8? Really, that was the question we wanted to answer most.
Core i3-2100 is armed with HD Graphics 2000, so we knew it’d get slaughtered by AMD’s forthcoming APUs. However, the i3-2105 employs HD Graphics 3000—a more capable implementation with two times the number of execution units (12, rather than six). Operating at the same 3.1 GHz core clock rate as the i3-2100, the only reason to buy -2105 over -2100 is built-in graphics. And for that, you’ll pay $135.
How do our results look after adding the A8-3870K and Core i3-2100 to our x86-based tests, along with the Core i3-2105 to our gaming tests?