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AMD FX-8350 Review: Does Piledriver Fix Bulldozer's Flaws?

Benchmark Results: Adobe CS 6

Our older Photoshop workload is composed of threaded filters able to tax each multi-core processor. Given the FX-8350’s first-place finish, it clearly scales to at least eight threads. The improvement over FX-8150 is quantifiable. Meanwhile, AMD’s older four- and six-core chips get left in the dust.

We have a second Photoshop benchmark that exploits the application’s support for OpenCL. The workload is completely different, so you can’t compare it to the chart above. That'd make sense though, since this test takes longer to run.

AMD’s platform just doesn’t do as well. It’s OpenCL-based, so Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 680 and PCI Express 2.0 do play a role. However, this is also a scenario AMD is telling us to expect more of moving forward, so I think it’s still very relevant. All four AMD chips slide back to the rear of the field behind Ivy and Sandy Bridge-based processors from Intel.

We move back over to workloads that isolate processor performance and AMD’s FX-8350 shows us what it’s working with once more. The FX-8150 didn’t do poorly in this test previously, so its position right behind the Core i5-3570K isn’t altogether surprising. But the -8350 soundly bests the Core i5 and pulls right up behind the Core i7. We’ve told this story before, and we know how it ends: when you’re dealing with a threaded application, AMD’s modular architecture does well.

At the same time, when you swap over to a usage model not as well adapted for parallelism, the module concept chokes up. After Effects CS 6 is no friendlier to AMD’s design than CS 5.5 was. A higher base clock rate does help the Piledriver-based FX-8350 land in front of the almost two-year-old Phenom II X6 1100T, but it trails the full complement of chips from Intel.