Computers & Electronics

AMD A6/A8 vs Intel i3/i5?

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  • Aug 26th, 2011 10:34 pm
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Aug 15, 2006
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AMD A6/A8 vs Intel i3/i5?

I know that in the past AMD has never really been up to snuff with Intel, but it seems like their A6/A8 brand is now giving the i3/i5 a run for its money.

Is this true, or am I way off?
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kcorscadden wrote:
Aug 26th, 2011 5:48 am
I know that in the past AMD has never really been up to snuff with Intel, but it seems like their A6/A8 brand is now giving the i3/i5 a run for its money.

Is this true, or am I way off?
It's all true. Keep reading reviews from trusted sites and you'll see the improvements AMD has made while Intel is just selling to people who don't know any better and buy their products based on name alone.
Thoughts and Prayers to the many thousands of civilians who perished from terrorists acts.
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kcorscadden wrote:
Aug 26th, 2011 5:48 am
I know that in the past AMD has never really been up to snuff with Intel, but it seems like their A6/A8 brand is now giving the i3/i5 a run for its money.

Is this true, or am I way off?

Depends on how threaded the application is. The more threads an application likes, the better the AMD's perform in comparison. Is it better than the Core? Again, depends on the application you're wanting to use and if it is optimized for Intel or just based on thread. Clock for clock, the Intel is still faster as the A6/A8 CPU portion isn't a major improvement over the existing quad core X4 series.
If you're comparing the integrated graphics, then definitely, the Intel falls behind the AMD.
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Apr 23, 2011
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if you don't play graphics intensive games, then the a6/a8 is better, but if you want less of a bottleneck on your FPS rate, then i5 is better.

but then again, if you wanted the best, then you'd buy i7 and dedicated videocards anyways, wallet be damned.

The only drawback of a6/a8 systems in terms of costs is the RAM. slow ram adds quite a bottleneck to it according to reviews, but fast ram can be quite expensive.
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The i3/i5 will perform more work per clock cycle than the AMD. In other words, in CPU processing power they will mop the floor with the Llano CPUs. This will show up in things like computational analysis and transcoding.

The A6/A8 have better on board GPUs, and AMD graphics drivers are miles ahead of Intel. If you want to game on your IGP, the A6/A8 are better. Likewise, for HTPC work, the AMD chips will offer more sophisticated post processing options for the video.

If you want to build an HTPC or casual use desktop and light gaming, go with the Llano. If you want high performance and serious gaming, ditch the integrated graphics and get an i5.

The i3, IMHO, has no use in the market. For teh price of an i3, you can get an AMD quad.
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goofball wrote:
Aug 26th, 2011 7:13 am
Depends on how threaded the application is. The more threads an application likes, the better the AMD's perform in comparison. Is it better than the Core? Again, depends on the application you're wanting to use and if it is optimized for Intel or just based on thread. Clock for clock, the Intel is still faster as the A6/A8 CPU portion isn't a major improvement over the existing quad core X4 series.
If you're comparing the integrated graphics, then definitely, the Intel falls behind the AMD.
Don't forget that the current line of Phenoms are very open to overclocking. Once you bump up that speed it can match and in some cases outperform Intel's i5 cpu which cost
more and regarded as a next gen processor.

The i7 however are still at the top of the game if you have the cash to spend. I know the new Bulldozer line of cpu's from AMD will be released soon.


You definitely get more for your money if you are willing to unlock cores and overclock.
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Super strokey wrote:
Aug 26th, 2011 1:33 pm
Have benchmarks for the new AMD cpus come out yet?

This thread is confusing the OP didn't specify if they're talking about the mobile or the desktop CPUs. So I'll talk about both.

On the desktop side the A6/A8 CPU's don't make much sense besides probably using it for a HTPC type setup or all-in-one. On the CPU speed side they slightly faster clock for clock then a Athlon II. The fastest A8 desktop CPU is currently 2.9 GHz there's no turbo on these CPU's. They don't make much sense because for the same price you can get an Athlon II CPU and a discrete GPU that's gonna perform better and have more room for overclocking. The A6/A8 CPU has hardware TDP limit that is going to prevent you from hitting extreme speeds and to get better speed from the GPU you need to use faster (more expensive) RAM. Remember the TDP limit is for both the CPU and GPU so you have to find a balance between OC the CPU or the GPU. Of course the A6/A8 will use less power then an Athlon/Phenom II + GPU setup but on desktop you aren't so worried about power making the A6/A8 on desktop kinda pointless.

On the mobile side things get more interesting because here we have to make tradeoffs between speed and battery life. On the CPU side the A6/A8 mobile is slow (1.5/2.4 GHz on A8). While the 2.4 GHz turbo seems nice in reality that is hardly reached because of the TDP limit (35W for the mobile) and AMD design to give the GPU priority over the CPU. As you can see from the Benchmarks Here the A8 loses out to the i5 in all the CPU based tests, even the multi-threaded ones in which you would think the 4 core A8 would beat the 2 Core i5. On the integrated Graphics side the A8 wins hands down though. This is where AMD has made the lower end discrete graphics obsolete. They have also done a good job at improving the battery consumption compared to there older mobiles CPUs to a point where they are comparable to Intel. Although in the real world based on my experiences I would still expect Intel to give better battery life (outside of gaming) based on the fact that with a faster CPU tasks gets completed faster and the CPU can idle more often, something the testing sites can't duplicate with battery tests that just runs a script till the battery is dead. The interesting thing is if you compare the A6 with an i3 CPU things gets more interesting. The A6 isn't much slower then the A8 on the CPU side (100 MHz difference) but the i3 is significantly slower then the i5 on non multithreaded apps because it lacks turbo. On the GPU side though the i3 would bench about the same as the i5 since the GPU on both are pretty much identical speed wise, while on the A6 its about 20% slower then the A8 because the GPU runs at lower frequency and has less shaders, etc. I don't have benchmarks comparing the i3 and A6 but if you interpolate from the A8/i5 benchmarks you'll probably get a picture where the i3 is faster then the A6 for CPU tasks, but the A6 is faster then the i3 in gaming, but not by as much (as the i5/A8 difference). AMD has put out a good product, if you are an occasional gamer you'd probably get the AMD product. If you are a hardcore gamer you'd probably get a laptop with a higher end discrete GPU anyways so you're most likely get an Intel CPU. If you're a business looking for a laptop, you'd probably go with Intel.

-LeeBear
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