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AMD A10-5800K Trinity APU Review

By on October 14, 2012
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Trinity is crowned the king of integrated graphics.

Good: Decent quad-core CPU performance; Great gaming performance for integrated GPU; FM2 platform supports next upgrade of CPUs; Can easily Crossfire with low-end AMD GPU.
Bad: Thermal rating still high compared to Intel Ivy Bridge Core i3; Modern DX11 based games not easily playable at 1080p.
Price: AED 500
* The price is the Suggested Retail Price at the time of review. Please call a retailer to confirm the latest price for this product.

When AMD launched the Llano platform last year, the promise of onboard graphics on the CPU itself was somewhat lukewarmly satisfied with performance that was limited to 720p at best. Intel promised more with Ivy Bridge and Intel HD 4000, but that has been limited to their high-end CPUs, while the budget CPUs like Core i3s are stuck with Intel HD 2500; (Core i3-3225 being an exception).

If you’re on a strict budget, then you’d want decent onboard graphics on the CPU itself, so limiting HD 4000 to high-end CPUs that will most likely be used with discreet graphics card(s) doesn’t make much sense. Of course, you can always get a cheap Core i3 with a low-end graphics card, but what if you get both a decent performing processor plus graphics good enough for a 1080p monitor? And so today I’ll be looking at the AMD A10-5800K ‘Trinity’ APU to see what the new generation of Radeon HD 7000 onboard graphics can do.

The new quad-core A10-5800K APU runs at 3.8GHz on base clock, going up to 4.2GHz in Turbo mode. Along with the 4MB L2 cache, there’s also the 384 cores Radeon HD 7660D integrated GPU which runs at 800MHz. The total rated TDP of the entire processor is 100W.

Thing is that unlike the FM1 platform that last year’s Llano APUs were released on, the new Trinity APUs will come on a new FM2 platform. Early adopters are, however, reassured by AMD that that FM2 will carry on for at least one more generation of processors before changing the platform again. Along with the new socket we’re also introduced to the AMD A85X chipset that supports up to 8x SATA III (6Gbps) ports and up to 2x AMD graphics cards for a CrossFire setup. Not that you’d need two discreet cards if you’re getting an APU, although it’s entirely possible to hook up an AMD HD 6670 with the integrated HD 7660D on the A10-5800K for a CrossFire setup.

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About

From auditing to editing, I now test and analyze the latest gadgets and games instead of the latest financial statements. Both jobs are equally intense and rewarding. When I'm not burning up hardware in the name of science, you'll find me nuking in DOTA 2 or engineering in TF2.

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