AMD A8-3850 & Gigabyte A75M-UD2H Review
Published: 1st August 2011 | Source: Gigabyte | Price: £89.99 @ Aria |
Time to wrap up! Thoughts?
Let us start with the processor. On face value, what we have here is a package with performance that is roughly comparable to the AMD Athlon II X4 series that precedes it. For a 2011 release, this is arguably a little mediocre for a quad core processor but then again its list price reflects its performance accordingly. As already shown, the A8-3850 APU really comes into its own in games and other GPU accelerated media. Needless to say, you will need to pair your Core i3/i5 processor with a Radeon HD 6500 series graphics card or similar in order to outpace the AMD Llano APU. Moreover, one could expect further gains in multimedia performance by overclocking the integrated GPU. At around £100, the processor itself represents good value for entry/middle range multimedia and home theater desktop computers.
Next up is a final word on Gigabyte's A75M-UD2H. As a Micro ATX solution, it is ideal for those who wish to build a compact multimedia/home theater computer. Its performance was certainly in line with our expectations and on the whole it delivered as promised. Its overclocking abilities appeared somewhat limited in our sample; this could be a significant consideration for many of you.
In terms of price, the A75M-UD2H sits at around £85, which is about average for current FM1 socket releases. We do however find this quite alarming.
Today, if you wanted to build a low cost Intel Core i3/i5 machine, you would be looking at Intel's H61 and H67 chipset families, where motherboards are priced from £40 and £60 respectively. Admittedly the offerings towards the lower end of the price spectrum aren't particularly feature rich but for many, CrossfireX, elaborate heatsinks and power management is not all that necessary. The message that I hope to convey is that in purchasing a Socket FM1 system, you are buying into AMD's budget and mid-range platform. As such, you would be mad to spend 990FX or P67 money in this category. Do not forget that the A8-3850's GPU is compensating for the quad core processor's limitations; introduce dedicated graphics cards and Sandy Bridge processors will eat Llano for breakfast.
Overall, there is a lot to like about both the A8-3850 and the A75M-UD2H. As a whole, you can expect it to have an edge over a basic Core i3/i5 system for certain home usage such as video/basic gaming. However do not lose sight of the platform's limitations. AMD Fusion is certainly not a one size fits all solution for all.
- Excellent integrated GPU performance
- Good motherboard layout
- Processor pricing
- Motherboard pricing
- Core Processor Performance