In our tests we used three mobile platforms for each of the sockets represented. In order to put all the configurations on an equal footing with respect to energy consumption, we chose machines without additional graphics cards.
For FS1, the socket used by the AMD Llanos, we used a Lenovo Thinkpad Edge E525 laptop. For the AMD Trinity solutions (socket FS2), we used a test machine supplied by AMD. For the Intel platform, used for Sandy Bridge and Ivy Bridge (PGA988), we used a Clevo W270EU equipped with the HM76 chipset.
Our three platforms were equipped with three different but relatively similar chipsets:
On the AMD side the only difference between the A60M, which equips the Llano platform, and the A70M, which equips the Trinity platform, is the addition of an NEC block that supports USB 3.0. The chip TDP hasn’t changed.
The Intel HM76 also supports USB 3.0, like its desktop equivalents. Still in line with the Intel desktop chipsets, only two SATA 6 Gb/s ports are supported here, which isn’t too much of an issue on the mobile side. RAID is however absent and is only used on very few laptops (Intel has some higher end versions of its chipset with RAID). The Intel chipset supports up to 8 PCI Express 2.0 lanes to interconnect additional chips. The AMD chipsets settle for four lanes. Once again, this is plenty for this type of configuration.
We tested nine different processors which have been grouped in this table.
As you can see, comparing the Core i3s to the Core i5s, whether Sandy Bridges or Ivy Bridges, will be particularly interesting and this is what we will be focusing on most when we look at the benchmarks. Note also that the Core i3 2370M’s graphics turbo clock is 50 MHz lower than that on the 2410M. This i3/i5 difference doesn’t exist in the Ivy Bridge range.