Conclusion: Inconsistent Gaming Ability, But Often Rewarding
After testing 15 games, what have we learned? Mainly, only six games are completely unplayable on both platforms. Nine of the games—a slight majority—are playable at 720p on at least one of these platforms.
That’s where we see some difference between the E-350 and D525/Ion 2:
The data for this chart is taken only from the playable game titles. And the really important thing to note here is the blue bar—minimum frame rates. AMD’s E-350 achieves more than three times the minimum frame rate of the D525/Ion 2 combo, on average. This means that, when things get tough, the E-350 remains more playable. The Atom D525/Nvidia Ion 2 combo has a harder time keeping things smooth.
Now, we’re not declaring AMD’s E-350 a true gaming APU—far from it. If gaming is a high priority for you, stay the heck away from both of these platforms. They aren’t built for it, plain and simple.
But if you’re looking for a new low-budget nettop or notebook, and gaming is a secondary concern, you may find this information useful. Of the two platforms we tested here today, AMD's E-350 has more potential to play a couple of new titles, and it looks like it can better handle the vast majority of previous-generation games. There are a lot of golden oldies out there that are worth a second look for nostalgia’s sake, or even a purchase from the bargain bin if you missed them the first time around.