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AMD A8-3850 Review: Llano Rocks Entry-Level Desktops

Benchmark Results: Sandra 2011

SiSoftware’s Sandra 2011 gets even more surgical about the way it presents performance. The Arithmetic component singles out processor integer and floating point throughput. The Dhrystone integer test is threaded, 64-bit, and compatible with up to 64 cores; the result is reflected in millions of instructions per second. The same holds true for the Whetstone test, though it reports its score in millions of floating operations per second.

Deneb’s quad-core architecture demonstrates the best floating point results, though Intel’s dual-core Sandy Bridge design is slightly more adept at integer performance. The lower-clocked A8-3850 falls behind in both measurements.

The difference between ALU and FPU power is highlighted in the Multimedia test. AMD’s processors exhibit the best floating point performance. However, when you use integers to simulate floating point data, Intel’s Sandy Bridge architecture takes a more commanding lead.

Normally we’d see Intel dominate here, but because the company chooses to handicap its entry-level processors by disabling acceleration for AES encryption and decryption, the Core i3-2105 actually falls into last place behind the brute force of the Phenom II X4’s four cores at 3.4 GHz and A8-3850’s four cores at 2.9 GHz.

It’s not a surprise to see Intel’s dual-channel DDR3-1333 memory bandwidth up at the top. It is interesting, though, that at the same data rate and timings, Llano achieves better results than Deneb. As we’ve already seen, memory bandwidth is a very important figure in determining the A8-3850’s performance in graphics-heavy workloads.

Using OpenCL, we’re able to test the cryptography potential of these on-die and chipset-based graphics solutions. Llano absolutely dominates in test of both AES and SHA algorithms; Intel is only able to work on OpenCL code through its processing cores.

If you haven’t yet seen a practical application for measurements like this, check out Harden Up: Can We Break Your Password With Our GPUs?, where we use GPUs to crack passwords. It's legit stuff.