AMD’s 68xx series GPUs have been out for a little while now. This means that the boring time of stock and reference designs is well past and now we get to see what happens when a manufacturer puts their best effort into designing a graphics card. In the past we have seen Asus stand out with some impressive designs. Their DirectCU and Voltage Tweak offerings have been excellent. Today we have one of these on the test bench in the form of the Asus EAH6870 DC/2DI2S/1GD5. This factory overclocked card features their DirectCU (hence the name) cooling which has the heat pipes sitting right on top of the GPU for better thermal performance. This new card also features Asus’ Voltage Tweak to help you get even more performance out of it. So let’s take a look and see if this $200.00 card is worth your time and money.
We have taken our walk around of the Gigabyte 990FXA-UD5 and found we like the design and many of the features packed into the system. In the second half of our test we will be diving into what you can get out of it when you put in under the stress of rendering, gaming and general purpose computing. We do have concerns with this new product as it has really been built with a newer CPU in mind (one that is not ready as of this writing). Still one of the things that AMD has always worked on is backwards compatibility. With that in mind we are breaking out our Phenom II 1100T and getting ready for some testing.
Welcome to 2011 and the re-birth of DecryptedTech.com. It has been a few months since I have written anything for this site; but then again there has been a lot going on. Instead or rehashing the dram and details let’s just dive right back in and kick things off with a review. For our return to the “living” we thought we would take a look at something fairly new. For years now Intel has ruled the low power CPU market (at least in the x86 space). Sure Via has had the Nano and AMD has had their version (the name of which escapes me), but for the most part if you wanted low power and you wanted x86 you were getting an Atom. Well things might be turning around as we find a new system offering from AMD. This is the Fusion CPU that we have all heard some much about (and some of us have been waiting for). The Fusion is an idea that puts a CPU in combination with a GPU much like the new Sandy Bridge CPUs but at the entry level. AMD refers to the whole package as an APU (accelerated processing unit). As we said these combine the power of a CPU and a GPU to get the best of both worlds. One of the first boards to hit the market from this family is the Gigabyte GA-E350N-USB3. This features the AMD E-350 APU. The E-250 is a Dual Core CPU running at 1.8GHz. It also features 80 Radeon Cores that run at 492MHz. This APU consumes only 18 Watts of power and still has room to support DX11. In all not a bad place to start for a new HTPC motherboard; so let’s dive in and see what else you get in our first preview of 2011.
With all the hoopla over the GTX 460 going on we are taking the time to look at a GPU that is not really new, but is still worthy of some headlines. Although the AMD Radeon HD5870 is fast approaching its first birthday it is no surprise that it is still a big seller. But we wondered if it is the reference GPUs that are making the 5870 fly off the shelves or if it is products like the Asus EAH5870 S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Call of Pripyat edition (which we will just call Stalker COP moving forward) This is Asus’ V2 HD5870 with a voltage tweak option for great overclocking potential. As you might have guessed the box also contains the Stalker COP game as part of the bundle. So let’s try out this bundle and see if it is worth the $500 or so you will shell out for it.
AMD’s Llano is not a new product; it is one that has been out on the market for long enough that all of the major hype and press has already been written. We recently wrapped up our long term testing of an AMD A6-3650 combined with a Gigabyte A75 motherboard. We were rather impressed with the performance that we saw, even if the numbers did not match up to the overall feel. Now we are taking a look at the same CPU, but taking a step down the ladder to the A55 chipset. This time the victim is the A55M-DS2 motherboard. You are losing a few items with this shift like USB 3.0, SATA 3.0 and a PCIe slot, but we wonder if that will really impact performance. So let’s take a look at the design and the features that you can expect to get when you pick up one of these.
With all of the excitement surround a CPU launch from both AMD and then Intel some of the smaller products have been overlooked. These are parts like the A75 chipset and the Llano CPU. We have had one of these up on the test bench for a while now. Mostly to run the performance tests and see where this hardware falls in terms of real performance, but also to try it out and see just what it is like to use. After all this is a platform that AMD was putting a good deal of stock in for future sales and market share. We wanted to see what it would be like to actually use one. We have already taken a look at the design philosophy and features So without any further preamble we bring you the second half of our Gigabyte A75-UD4H motherboard review.
Earlier today we talked about how AMD’s Rory Read is looking to cloud based services to help overcome the lack of processing power available to AMD’s APUs (and other CPUs moving forward) in that article we talked (very briefly) about some of the concerns that are keeping people out of cloud based services. Although one that is commonly talked about is privacy the other (and perhaps even more important) is security.
Since the first day AMD presented the AMD Radeon 7850 2GB graphic card, code name “Pitcairn”, they surprised the industry with its performance, abilities, technology and efficiency that put them in front of the rivals. The 7850 series has around 40% better performance when compared to its predecessor (the 6850) when running at higher resolutions. The HD 7850 is based on 28nm GCN Pitcairn GPU with 1024 stream processord and 256bit memory interface.
The recently introduced AMD FX processors codenamed Vishera could remain on the market throughout the next year. Unofficial sources have said in part of the presentation that showed AMD's processor roadmap for the coming year, apparently FX chips for desktop computers will stagnate on Vishera solutions with the Piledriver core.
Although we reported on this last year it seems that AMD is intent on reminding all of us about their new strategy. In comments to BloombergBusinessweek CEO Rory Read has made the comment that AMD will no longer compete head to head with Intel in the CPU market. This time Read qualifies his comment with a statement that is sure to be put in the same category of Bill Gates’ famous (although misattributed) “640K ought to be enough for anybody.”