AMD A8-7600 Kaveri APU

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INTEGRATED GRAPHICS TESTING

Our first set of tests focuses on the integrated graphics. Each CPU/APU and motherboard combination was equipped with 4GB of RAM, a 500GB notebook hard drive and a Blu-ray drive.

IGP Energy Efficiency

With each generation, AMD's desktop APUs have gained more energy efficiency. On light load, the Richland parts used slightly less power than Trinity, and Kaveri in turn, used slightly less than than Richland. The difference was only about 1~2W when idling and 3~4W during high definition Flash playback, but it's nice to see continuing improvement.

Heavy load saw some noticeable decreases as well. Using the 65W TDP setting, the A8-7600 did not exceed 85W no matter what we threw at it. Like the A10-6700, while running Prime95, we weren't able to push the load further by adding FurMark to load the GPU as well. TDP throttling kicked in, slowing the CPU cores down to 2.4 GHz, causing the power draw to actually drop by a modest amount. There was a third setting in the UEFI/BIOS to disable the TDP limit completely but it didn't have any effect. The 45W setting limited power consumption to less than 70W.

According to CPU-Z, on full CPU load, the CPU core frequency ramped up to 3.7 GHz on the higher TDP setting, while the lower setting restricted clock speeds to 2.8~3.1 GHz.

IGP Performance - Synthetic

Note: Discrete GPUs were tested on our GPU testing platform which uses a Core i3-2100, though CPU scaling shouldn't be an issue given the relatively low level of GPU performance of the chips compared.

According to 3DMark11, the A8-7600 is head and shoulders faster than its predecessors, which doesn't seem possible given the GPU hardware inside (on paper). The Heaven 3.0 benchmark had the 65W setting competing well with the A10-6700/6800K, while the 45W setting trailed well behind.

IGP Performance - Real World

Our real world gaming tests were conducted at two resolutions, 1366x768 (or 1280x800 if 1366x768 isn't recognized as a valid resolution) and 1600x900, with differing levels of image quality. The results we're reporting are for the highest resolution and detail level with which the product can deliver a reasonably good framerate (about 40 frames per second).

Note: Discrete GPUs were tested on our GPU testing platform which uses a Core i3-2100, though CPU scaling shouldn't be an issue given the relatively low level of GPU performance of the chips compared.

Unfortunately the encouraging synthetic results didn't translate into better real world performance. In Aliens vs. Predator, it edged out all the other integrated solutions we've tested, but in Crysis it was dead last, while the rest of the test results were more mixed. It's in the same class, more or less, as the 5000 and 6000 series. Playable framerates at 1600x900 resolution were achieved but keep in mind the games in our suite are older and not as demanding as cutting edge triple-A titles, so this is more of a best case scenario.

We arrived at our overall performance figures by giving each GPU a proportional score with each game test having an equal weighting. The scale has been adjusted so that the A8-7600 65W is the reference point with a score of 100.

The A8-7600 65W falls directly into the middle of the pack, while at 45W, it's at the bottom rung among AMD's last three generations of desktop APUs. However, the overall spread between Kaveri, Richland, and Trinity, was only about 11 points. Given this tight range, the gaming performance of each APU shouldn't be given much credence in any final buying decisions.



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