AMD debuts second-generation mobile APUs
AMD yesterday launched Comal mobile platform, accompanied by several mobile Accelerated Processing Units (APU). New processors use "Trinity" design, that combines 1 or 2 Piledriver modules (2 or 4 CPU cores), HD 7000M series graphics unit and HD Media Accelerator on a single die. "Trinity" chips feature many enhancements over previous generations of Bulldozer processors and Llano APUs. According to AMD, improved micro-architecture and higher operating frequencies result in up to 29% better CPU performance than previous generation of APUs. Furthermore, new HD 7000M series GPU provides up to 56% better performance in graphics applications. Mobile CPUs also incorporate a number of enhancements to improve processors' power consumption, which allowed AMD not only reduce combined CPU and GPU TDP to 35 Watt, but to introduce 25 Watt and 17 Watt versions of the APUs as well.
Overall, Advanced Micro Devices launched yesterday 3 APUs for mainstream notebooks, and 2 low- and ultra-low voltage SKUs for ultra-thin laptops. Three microprocessors for mainstream notebooks have 35 Watt TDP, and they have from 2 to 4 CPU cores. Their clock speeds range from 1.9 to 2.7 GHz, with maximum Turbo Core 3.0 frequencies reaching 3.2 GHz on two SKUs, which is considerably higher than on yesteryear's "Llano" APUs. A10-4600M and A8-4500M have 4 MB of level 2 cache, and dual-core A6-4400M has much smaller 1 MB L2. The APUs lack L3 cache, and boast the same instruction set extensions as Bulldozer microprocessors: SIMD extensions up to SSE4 and AVX, and AES instructions. On-chip GPU on these models is clocked at 497 MHz, and it can go as high as 655 MHz on A8-4500M, and up to 686 MHz on A4-4400M and A10-4600M SKUs. Mainstream mobile APUs use second revision of socket FS1.
Low voltage A10-4655M and ULV A6-4455M products have 4 and 2 CPU cores. To achieve better power efficiency, these APUs run at lower CPU and GPU frequencies. The LV / ULV processors are offered in so called socket FP2 package, which is indeed a BGA package. This type of package has lower profile than PGA packages, and it is better suited for ultra-thin devices. It is encouraging to see AMD releasing low power processors for mid-class notebooks. We hope that increased competition in ultrabook/sleekbook class of notebooks will help to drive their prices down, which will be beneficial to all consumers.
Detailed specifications of newly launched APUs are provided below:
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Sep 27, 2012: AMD quietly releases ultra low power APUs
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Related News (older articles):
May 14, 2012: AMD to launch Brazos 2.0 in June, desktop APUs in August
May 10, 2012: AMD readies R-series embedded APUs
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