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AMD Hardware

AMD Launches New Higher-End Kaveri APUs A10-7800 and A6-7400K 117

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the waiting-for-fx-steamroller dept.
MojoKid (1002251) writes "AMD updated its family of Kaveri-based A-Series APUs for desktop systems recently, namely the A10-7800 and the A6-7400K. The A10-7800 has 12 total compute cores, 4 CPU and 8 GPU cores, with average and maximum turbo clock speeds of 3.5GHz and 3.9GHz, respectively. The A6-7400K arrives with 6 total cores (2CPU, 4 GPU) and with the same clock frequencies. ... The AMD A10-7800 APU's performance is somewhat mixed, though it is a decent performer overall. Its Steamroller-based CPU cores do not do much to make up ground versus Intel's processors, so in the more CPU-bound workloads, Intel's dual-core Core i3-4330 competes favorably to AMD's quad-cores. And in terms of IPC and single-thread performance Intel maintains a big lead. Factor graphics into the equation, however, and the tides turn completely. The GCN-based graphics engine in Kaveri is a major step-up over the previous-gen, and much more powerful than Intel's mainstream offerings. The A10-7800's power consumption characteristics are also more desirable versus the Richland-based A10-6800K."
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AMD Launches New Higher-End Kaveri APUs A10-7800 and A6-7400K

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 01, 2014 @11:47AM (#47582481)

    Based on the most commented articles, I thought this was a site for politics and social issues. What the hell is this technical bullshit doing here?

    • Oh, not to worry. No one will comment on it.

    • by rubycodez (864176)

      I can stomach a little of it, as long as they don't go off the deep end with actual discussion of assembling a system or god forbid picking up a soldering iron to actually build a thing. This isn't BYTE magazine in the 1970s after all, we've evolved beyond technical knowledge and skills

      • Oops, sorry, I just got a dc-dc converter in the mail to run my AMD geode SBC off a marine battery. No solder involved though, so I guess it's ok, just a crimping tool [pololu.com]

        • by rubycodez (864176) on Friday August 01, 2014 @12:35PM (#47582995)

          Crimping? why that's fucking MANUAL LABOR, what the hell is wrong with you?!!

        • by drinkypoo (153816)

          Oops, sorry, I just got a dc-dc converter in the mail to run my AMD geode SBC off a marine battery.

          You probably should be sorry. The fastest Geodes are antiques (I have two of them right here, whee.)

          • Oops, sorry, I just got a dc-dc converter in the mail to run my AMD geode SBC off a marine battery.

            You probably should be sorry. The fastest Geodes are antiques (I have two of them right here, whee.)

            I'm thankful. Total system board power draw: ~2W. Plus 2 watts for the SSD. Total power draw: 4 watts, while my converter will deliver 15 watts. Sweet or what? And it runs Linux like a champ. Even runs KDE, though video can be a little slow. Doesn't bother me a bit. I compile remotely anyway. Basically, the perfect shipcom.

    • by zephvark (1812804)

      Product placement. It's advertising. I presume someone at Slashdot is smart enough to get paid for this, although that may not be a reasonable assumption.

  • These aren't exactly new news. I've had a 7850k since March/April. It's a nice CPU, with my main complains being that
    a) It gets hot very quickly
    b) The accompanying heatsink/fan is crap

    The nice part:
    The APU is quite nice for gaming. I haven't had any issues running most games at 1080p with graphics settings cranked, especially mantle-enabled stuff (BF4, etc). I've got dual-monitors, but I haven't played much which takes advantage of that so while gaming it's usually 1 for the game and another running monitor

    • Re:Updated? (Score:4, Insightful)

      by janeuner (815461) on Friday August 01, 2014 @12:24PM (#47582857)

      The "new" news is the release on the A8-7600; and only about 7 months late. Most of the reviews for that processor were published in January, which is shameful really.
      http://www.anandtech.com/show/... [anandtech.com]

      But now that it is out, it is at a good price, decent computationally, very good power envelope. It's a good option for productivity-only desktops, at a fraction of the price of a 7850K or an i3-4330.

      • by phorm (591458)

        In terms of performance, the big difference seems to be a somewhat lower number of graphics cores and lower CPU clock, but the lower TDP (45W vs 95W) could make it attractive along with the price-point. I wonder how it does for heat compared with the 7850k.
        From reviews it looks like gameplay FPS is slightly lower but playable. Still not many details on heat though

        • by aliquis (678370)

          How do you judge playable?

          For instance in bf4 full-hd (or whatever it was, I've closed the tab) the 7850 seem to have done around 30 FPS.

          It all depends on what you want though.

          Also it showed TDP as 65/45 (turbo or no turbo?.)

          70% the price for 75% the GPU and 84-90% the CPU power?

          • by phorm (591458)

            From what I see, there's a 45W A8-7600 @ 3100/3300Mhz, and a 65W A8-7600 @ 3300/3800

            The clock turn clock would be the second for either version, but the 65W's base close is equiv to the turbo of the other, and the 65W has a 3800Mhz turbo.

            I didn't check my frame-rate on the 7850, but at 1080p (full detail) it didn't have any notable lag or tearing, so that's good enough for me.

  • Fast RAM required (Score:4, Interesting)

    by jones_supa (887896) on Friday August 01, 2014 @12:01PM (#47582669)
    Why is the recommended RAM clock speed for AMD chips significantly higher than for Intel ones? A modern i3 is designed for 1333MHz, but performance will be hampered for an AMD APU if you don't go with 2400MHz.
    • by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Friday August 01, 2014 @12:06PM (#47582717)

      CPU workloads tend to be something that so long as you've a bit of fast cache, memory speed isn't that important. That cache buffer is enough to get you extremely high performance. Not the case with GPU workloads. They are very memory bound. If you look at high end GPUs they have stupid amounts of RAM bandwidth compared to CPUs.

      Well, if you try and do both on one chip, you are gonna need fast RAM if you want it to work well.

      • Ah, of course!
        • by aliquis (678370)

          http://www.eteknix.com/memory-... [eteknix.com]
          http://semiaccurate.com/2014/0... [semiaccurate.com]

          Can one calculate b/s simply from number of bits * clock?

          17 GB/s for 2133 MHz DDR3?

          The GTX 770 would put that at 224 GB/s ..

          New AMD APUs are supposed to have "stacked memory" or something such though.

          • by gman003 (1693318) on Friday August 01, 2014 @02:54PM (#47584193)

            Almost - you also need to count memory channels, which on most desktops is two.

            2 channels * 64 bits/channel * 2133MT/s / 8 bits/byte = 34128MB/s = 33.3GB/s

            GPUs tend to use very wide, high-speed memory, because they need a lot more bandwidth than CPUs because graphics stuff doesn't cache as easily. Some data for comparison:
            R7 240: 2 channels * 64 bits/channel * 4500MT/s = 70GB/s
            R7 260X: 2 channels * 64 bits/channel * 6500MT/s = 102GB/s
            R7 270X: 4 channels * 64 bits/channel * 5600MT/s = 175GB/s
            R9 280X: 6 channels * 64 bits/channel * 6000MT/s = 281GB/s
            R9 290X: 8 channels * 64 bits/channel * 5000MT/s = 312GB/s

            • by aliquis (678370)

              I should had thought about dual channel myself =P

              The 17 GB I saw mentioned was from a wiki and it make sense that answered for the single memory module :)

              I thought later about using R290X because it likely had the greatest number, GTX 770 happen to be what I consider "good but not insanely extreme" :), good enough to beat an APU platform but not something which wouldn't be considered by most (or well, maybe so, but not out of reach for them at least :))

    • by Kjella (173770)

      Fast RAM is mainly important for graphics. AMD has a more powerful IGP, the Intel equivalent performs worse and so requires less. That is why Intel went with embedded DRAM [intel.com] on their best IGPs (brand name "Intel Iris Pro Graphics 5200"), though none of these are retail chips but only for laptops and AIOs. Personally I'm of the opinion that either you don't care about the GPU at all and it doesn't matter, or you should care enough to get a decent graphics card. Putting a CPU+GPU on a 65W power budget won't eve

      • I think there are levels in between, such as having some older games that you want to play at decent quality but not the latest stuff.

        This said, the AMD IGPs tend to be limited by RAM bandwidth. Discrete graphics cards with similar numbers of shaders tend to beat the AGPs in graphics. I think AMD needs either quad-channel memory (too expensive?) or stacked VRAM on the APU itself. Without that, it is only a matter of time until Intel's HD graphics catch up...

    • by guacamole (24270)

      It's because on the APUs there is no dedicated graphics memory. The graphics units use the main memory as was always the case with all integrated graphics chips for a long time. Using the main memory for GPU tasks is a serious performance penalty, that's why it's normally recommended to use faster memory with APUs if you care about GPU performance.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    I really hate the current naming conventions for CPU's.
    you go buy a computer and it only says Intel Core i5... WTH. Is it sa Gen 1 i5 or a Gen 4 i5 there's a big difference. Sure I can look it up and check out specifics but how the heck is a regular consumer supposed to know?
    and then lets not get started on the Xeon... what we can't even add a simple identifier to the name? a 2002 Xeon sure as heck isn't the same as a 2013 Xeon chip.

    Then AMD... just feels like a cluster-F--- of names and numbers.

    GPU's reall

    • With an Intel CPU, Look at the part number to figure out the generation.

      xxx is first gen
      2xxx is second
      3xxx is third
      4xxx if fourth
      I assume the 5th gen will start with a 5

    • by oldhack (1037484)
      And throw the loads of marketing drones out of work? Actually, sounds pretty good.
      • by Wootery (1087023)

        AMD have the most awful marketing I can think of. Here [archive.org] is archive.org's backup of an old (now deleted) Wikipedia article which nicely summarised the 'AMD Vison' lies.

        They were telling people that low-end machines would be fine for playing DVDs, but wouldn't cope with ripping CDs.

        I really want to like you, AMD...

  • I have a strong preference for using ECC RAM when I build a new computer.

    I would be perfectly happy to use an APU to make a very quiet computer, but the chipsets that support the APUs don't have ECC support.

    I admit I'm probably a weird outlier. People who want APUs probably don't want to pay extra for ECC RAM most of the time. Still, will there ever be even one chipset that will add ECC support?

    Is there any technical reason why ECC shouldn't be used with an APU?

    • by ponos (122721)

      They will probably make some version for the server market, but it will certainly be on another socket. The socket AM3+ does support ECC (if you choose the right motherboard, ASUS usually do...) but the upgrade path is probably stuck forever at the FX8350. It isn't a bad chip, actually quite good for multithreaded loads, but it's getting old... If you want ECC for cheap you could buy a lower-end socket AM3+ processor like the FX4350, otherwise Xeon is clearly the better choice.

      • by steveha (103154)

        The socket AM3+ does support ECC (if you choose the right motherboard, ASUS usually do...)

        Yeah, I have standardized on Asus for all my builds, and the ECC support is one of the reasons.

        If you want ECC for cheap you could buy a lower-end socket AM3+ processor like the FX4350

        My most recent build was an FX8xxx part. FX8350 I think.

        otherwise Xeon is clearly the better choice.

        I have made the choice to not give Intel any of my money if I can help it. I don't like the unethical games Intel plays (example [agner.org]).

        Proce

        • by Khyber (864651)

          "Yeah, I have standardized on Asus for all my builds, and the ECC support is one of the reasons."

          God I hope you never have to RMA with them. Last time I did it, they wanted me to send them $600, THEN they'd send me a new GPU, THEN I could ship mine back, THEN they'd redeposit the money in my account.

          I just tossed the card and bought something other than Asus.

    • The technical reason is probably along the lines of the memory controller in the chip doesn't support it.

      The memory controller hasn't been in the chipset since before the K8 architecure over 10 years ago

  • Performance is comparable if we compare against Intel's lowest end CPU?

    • It crushes my heart saying this, because I used to love them, but AMD's CPUs are shit nowadays. I don't even like their low-end.
  • FPS per Dollar Champ (Score:4, Informative)

    by Scot Seese (137975) on Friday August 01, 2014 @01:49PM (#47583669)

    Umm.. These benchmarking sites, and comment threads like this one constantly miss the point.

    The AMD A-Series processors do NOT equal intel chips when you run synthetic CPU benchmarks.

    The AMD A-Series absolutely KILLS IT when your goal is to throw together a dirt-cheap gaming rig on a budget.

      If all you need is a new motherboard, CPU & RAM, and you intend to reuse your old case, hard drives, and peripherals - The AMD A10 chips and their integrated Radeon graphics offer outstanding FPS for the dollar when compared to the alternative of building an intel system w/discrete Nvidia GPU.

    Did you really think people are sticking AMD APUs in cases with neon-accented cutout windows and holographic 3D skull case stickers to optimize their VBA performance in large Excel workbooks?

    No, they want consistent 90 fps in Shooter DuJour, and they want it for only a few hundred bucks.

    • by guacamole (24270)

      However, a cheap dedicated Radeon card for $70 will still slaughter the latest APU in gaming performance.

      The best bang for buck cheap gaming system these days would be based on the unlocked dual core Pentium CPU combined with an entry level Radeon card.

  • by serviscope_minor (664417) on Friday August 01, 2014 @02:21PM (#47583947) Journal

    They seem to have missed some really important benchmarks.

    Clearly on the graphics side, the APU kills the i5.

    The interesting thing was HSA which allows low latency CPU/GPGPU workloads, which allows the (relatively slow) GPU to work on a MUCH wider range of problems than any comparable product. Early indications, such as the LibreOffice spreadsheet program had the A10 killing even the top end i7s.

    For other less extreme examples, the A10 was comfortably outpacing the i5 by a factor of 2 or more.

    • I'm not sure AMD has even released the HSA SDK yet. ;/ (And while you have the HSAIL ISA documentation already, there's no word even on finalized C-level API yet, as far as I know.)
    • by edxwelch (600979)

      There are no HSA applications (just a few tech demos) and it doesn't look like they are going to appear any time soon.
      HSA will only work on kaveri CPUs, which are maybe 0.001% of the market. Maybe if Intel adoped HSA then there would be some more motivation for developers to support it.

  • by ponos (122721) on Friday August 01, 2014 @02:51PM (#47584151)

    What most people don't realize is that the desktop version is basically an afterthought. The chip has been optimized for laptops, where it does make some sense (adding a discrete GPU is not an option after purchase and laptops with discrete GPUs are quite more expensive, so the comparative advantage is more important). AMD knows they can't win on the desktop, which is why they didn't bother with extreme caches, 4-module (8-core) versions and cherry-picked chips with crazy TDPs. Personally, I'm much more excited with the laptop version of Kaveri, such as the 7350B in the HP EliteBook 745 G2.

    Anyway, for the price it makes a really great casual gaming PC, especially for people who are price sensitive and can't afford a +$100 discrete GPU (in some places this is a decent chunk of a month's salary...).

    • by TeknoHog (164938)

      ..just the way I like it. I mean, just because the machine is sitting in one place, doesn't mean I want to waste electricity willy-nilly. Somebody has to pay the electricity bill, bear the heat, and listen to the noise of coolers. By giving the computer more space than a laptop, you can make cooling practically silent and the machine a lot more ergonomic and expandable.

      If you absolutely need the computing power of a high-end CPU, then you probably want to figure out how to do the same calculation in a GP

    • by guacamole (24270)

      What most people don't realize is that the desktop version is basically an afterthought.

      I'll believe it when I see it. AMD CPUs always run hotter and used more energy in real life tests.

      • by ponos (122721)

        I'll believe it when I see it. AMD CPUs always run hotter and used more energy in real life tests.

        Well, in idle, which is what most processors do in typical user workloads, the 7800 is comparable to intel processors. Total energy to accomplish a task obviously varies, but the 7800 uses 30-50% more energy than intel processors for the same task. However, the 7 series APUs are clearly more efficient than the 6 series Richland APUs that they replace. Peak power consumption is around 100W for a complete system with 7800, which is not a huge thermal load.

        In the end, what I'm saying is that AMD improved power

  • If Intel dropped all chip prices 25% across the board, AMD would be bankrupt then have a monopoly forever. Unfortunately they're just too damn greedy and completely lacking in foresight.

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