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AMD A10-5800K and A8-5600K: the second desktop APU!
by Guillaume Louel
Published on November 26, 2012

A year after the launch of its first APUs, the Llanos, AMD is now bringing out the second generation of processors that combine a ‘fast’ graphics part with traditional x86 cores. Launched at a relatively high price, with modest clocks and a K10.5 architecture that had served its time, the Llanos didn’t really convince us in their first desktop incarnation.

Everything is new on the second generation however. Although the APUs are still manufactured on a 32nm process by GlobalFoundries, AMD has otherwise wiped the slate clean. As with the mobile version of these chips, launched in June, the K10.5 architecture used for the Phenom IIs has been replaced with Piledriver, a second version of the Bulldozer architecture. This isn’t however the only difference as the graphics part has also been modified.

Of course, the competition has also moved on in the last year and Intel has now brought out Ivy Bridge in place of Sandy Bridge. The main innovation on the Intel side – apart from the engraving / energy consumption aspect – concerns the more powerful graphics part. Will the new Virgo APUs give a decisive advantage over the Llanos? How will these new chips do against the competition from Intel? And how does the integrated graphics part perform compared to the entry level Nvidia and AMD solutions? All questions that we’re going to try to answer in this article!

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