AMD A8-7600 Kaveri APU

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CPU Performance Analysis

We arrived at our overall performance figures by giving each CPU a proportional score in each real world benchmark with each 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 didn't light the world on fire with its CPU performance, but at 65W and 45W, it did manage to come within striking distance of the A10-6700 and the A10-5700 respectively, despite having a significant disadvantage in clock speed. This bolds well for higher clocked parts like the A10-7850K (3.7 GHz). Give the A8-7600 a further 200 MHz bump and it should be competitive with the more expensive A10-6800K.

To calculate performance per dollar, we divided the overall performance score by the average platform costs we determined earlier and re-scaled it, again with the A8-7600 65W as our reference point.

AMD has been traditionally strong in this department (they've had to be) and the A8-7600 at 65W carries on this tradition, coming in second to only the A8-5600K. Even at 45W, there's more value to be had than some of the lesser Richland and Trinity offerings.

To determine performance per watt, we took into account the average power consumption, again adjusted with the A8-7600 65W as the reference point.

Though arguably not faster than the previous Richland models we've tested, lower power consumption alone was enough to boost the A8-7600 ahead of AMD's older APUs. The Intel chips remain king in this measurement, thanks to a combination of both excellent energy efficiency and performance.

FINAL THOUGHTS

Kaveri is another incremental improvement to AMD's mainstream desktop lineup. Efficiency is the watchword, both in terms of CPU clock cycles and power consumption. The A8-7600, despite having a modest clock speed of 3.1 or 3.3 GHz (depend on the TDP setting) is competitive with last generation chips running 300~400 MHz faster. The newest APU iteration also manages to squeeze out a little extra energy efficiency, narrowing the gap with Intel's contemporary parts. Despite the graphics processor undergoing an upgrade to the latest architecture, gaming performance is more or less equal to its predecessors.

Like Richland before it, Kaveri is a refinement of the AMD APU platform, bringing minor improvements. Everything is new and fresh, but when it comes down to it, the experience is more or less the same. Existing Richland and even Trinity users can hold off on upgrading, especially as a new motherboard is required. Unless you want 4K support, such a move would only provide marginal gains hardly worth the trouble and expense of changing sockets. For users looking for a new budget machine, however, we can certainly recommend an A8-7600 based system without any hesitation. It's fast enough for most users, offers plenty of value, and if it's not taxed strenuously, will shave a few dollars off your electric bill.

Kaveri is certainly preferable to the older generation in almost every regard but don't expect much extra longevity. AMD's recent track record with APU socket changes is not great; FM1 chips were launched in June of 2011, FM2 came out in October of 2012, and FM2+ was released in January of 2014. This 15~16 month window wouldn't normally bother us but it does undermine the value of HSA. It's essentially a form of future-proofing but there's no guarantee developers will latch on to this model, and if/when they do, the FM2+ socket will likely be long gone. AMD may be building for tomorrow but users should really buy for today.

Our thanks to AMD for the A8-7600 and review sample used in this review.

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Articles of Related Interest
AMD A10-6800K & A10-6700 Richland APUs
Intel Core i7-4770K Haswell Processor
AMD FX-8350 CPU: Piledriver Arrive
AMD A10-5700 APU: Trinity at 65W
AMD Trinity: A10-5800K & A8-5600K 2nd Gen APUs
Intel Core i7-3770 Ivy Bridge CPU

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