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AMD “Virgo” Platform: 2nd Generation APU

Desktop Line-up

AMD launched the mobile Trinity SKUs back in May and we will not repeat them here. Today we will just focus on the desktop Trinity. The table below shows the specification and the models: 

 

Desktop Trinity will either be 65W or 100W TDP. Unlike what Intel has done with Ivy Bridge by lowering the maximum TDP, AMD chose to deliver higher performance while maintaining the same TDP as Llano. Given the size of the die and the amount of transistors, we can understand why AMD is unable to lower the TDP, especially since both Trinity and Llano are based on the same 32nm die. Hopefully we will see lower TDP once AMD shifts to the 28 nm fabrication process.

AMD will have A10, A6, A8, and A4 models available. It will also have the K series with unlocked multiplier for overclockers. The desktop APU will fit in the 65W or 100W TDP envelope. The A10 and A8 will come with 4 cores (2 modules) and the former will feature HD 7660D GPU with 384 Radeon cores clocked at 800 MHz while the later will come with HD 7560D with 256 Radeon Cores clocked at 760 MHz. The A6 and A4 series be dual cores (or one module) where the A6 will have the HD 7540D GPU with 192 Radeon Cores clocked at 760MHz and the A4 will have HD 7480D with 128 Radeon Cores clocked at 723 MHz. 

In addition to the A series APU, AMD also brings back the Athlon branding. The difference between the Athlon and the A series APU is appreantly the lack of the integrated GPU. Other than that, the turbo core is still supported and it still comes with either four cores or two cores configuration. There is even an K model for overclockers. One thing to note here though because the Athlon models lack the integrated GPU, they will not have the VCE and the UVD3 support.

The most expensive model A10-5800K retails at $122 which is the same as the Intel Core i3 2120/2100. So it is clear that AMD is targeting the high-end A series APU at the Intel Core i3 CPU and the low-end APU at the Intel Celeron. 

For consumers, AMD’s nomenclature created a little bit confusion. First, although the GPU on the Trinity is based on the HD 6000 GPU, it is branded as 7000. Making the matter a little worse, these APUs will also able to run AMD Dual GPU with the 6000 graphic cards. Additionally, the same chipset naming can be slightly confusing when shipping for a new board. This is not as big of an issue if you just watch out for a board that is socket FM2 compatible as opposed to FM1 when shopping for a board that will work with Trinity. Obviously, non-tech savvy individuals may not care much about the numbering scheme and branding, so we do wish AMD could make it easier for consumers to identify their various products and their compatibility. 

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