Finally, the Llano's on-die DX11-class graphics processor will give people legitimate alternative to the crappy Intel's IGP. Great article Joel, besides netbooks, this looks ideal for tablets.
I don't know if I'd say it'll be an alternative to crappy Intel's IGP. Only 35 million transistors? That's not a lot. Isn't the Radeon 5850 1more than a billion transistors? Obviously it would be foolish to expect that kind of performance from an integrated chip, but if the transistor count is linearly tied to performance, it'd be 1/28th the speed of a 5850. Not exactly blazingly fast.
True Joel, but the chip will be DirectX 11 compatible, and have power gating. Even the Sandy Bridge IGP will be only DirectX 11. Again, AMD is not marketing this as a GPU, even though the APU is based off the HD 5000 series core, so comparison to existing graphics cards may not be suitable.
So it's an APU, is it? ...I wonder if they'll do any tie-ins with The Simpsons?
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This seems interesting on several factors. The power gating and direct digital measurement capabilities of course. On the graphics end though the 5000 series has quite a few iterations all DX11 capable. The also run both considerably cooler than anything they have ever put out as well as considerably more conservative on energy than anything they have made. Also as I had pointed out commenting on the Intel GPU/CPU having a 45nm gpu with a 32nm separate in one package offers considerable heat capabilities. Where this would be able to be cooled by a single heatsink, a dual setup will either require a very specialized as well as shifted heatsink. On top of the dual contact one side of a 45/32nm setup would be by default hotter. This layout looks much better to me, and from what they (AMD) have talked about on this unit both CPU and GPU will be able to share capabilities as needed. This may be interesting in operation to say the least.
This should be real interesting. Coz off late for the past year or so since the late 4000 series and early 5000 series, AMD has shown its clear dominance in the GPU segment, delivering blows to NVIDIA @ all unexpected times. Eyefinity is a wonderful technology and would love to see that implemented here in APU.
I really think now AMD has really what it takes (particularly after getting the grace money from Intel, thanks to EU :P).
All the best AMD, to break Intel's ridiculous monopoly.
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Looks to me as if AMD is doing a good job of producing valuable innovation - of great benefit to us consumers, not least because this means the market won't be reduced to a quasi-monopoly, with the negative consequences we've experienced with, say, operating systems....
Ok, a few clarifying points.
That's 35M transistors per CPU core, NOT counting L2. We don't know anything about the GPU--not its transistor count, or its design, or what it had for breakfast.
Ack, you're right. How the heck did I miss that! JoelB, your comparison to the 5850 is completely debunked!
"At 32nm each core (minus L2 cache) is only 9.69 mm^2 and is made up of over 35M transistors. Each core is paired with its own 1MB L2 cache, meaning the quad-core processor will have a total of 4MB of L2 on-die."
That is also 140M transistors for the processor cores alone. The picture is one core as well, so there will be 4 of these, and a GPU. I would like to see the layout of the whole APU myself.
I look forward to seeing how it works. I could care less how they build it, aside from a completely casual interest. If they work significantly better than the bumbling Intel solution, that's gonna be a good thing. Integrated Graphics have needed a boost for a long time.
JoelH,.........as to what it had for breakfast, maybe it will be Intel's offerings,..............
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That's not going to happen. On the GPU side, maybe, on the CPU side, no. Shanghai—Phenom II—can't match Westmere's performance. I suppose things could get a bit interesting if AMD tries to match quad-core Llano against dual-core Westmere, but even then, it's not at all certain that Llano would win.
Sooo what's the ETA on a full computer minus PSU on one chip?
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