AMD launches Trinity processors to take on Ivy Bridge

AMD launched its line of Trinity processors today, which will be used in notebooks, desktops and embedded devices. The most obvious devices to make use of the new processors are ultraportables, given the power-saving nature of Trinity. The second-generation accelerated processing unit combines CPU and GPU cores on a single chip.

Among the features touted for the new processor include up to 12 hours of battery life, a CPU performance increase of up to 29 percent over the previous generation and an AMD Radeon 7000 series graphics core that will increase graphics performance up to 56 percent over the previous generation. AMD was clear in its press release that the processor would be competing in the ultraportable market, with Chris Colan, Vice President and GM of the company's Client Business Unit stating the following:

Our 2nd-Generation AMD A-Series APU is a major step forward in every performance and power dimension, allowing users to enjoy a stunning experience without having to give up the things that matter to them most. This experience doesn’t stop at mainstream notebooks. It carries over into affordable ultrathin form factors featuring the latest in AMD Radeon graphics.

In a review of the new processor, Jarred Walton of AnandTech was provided with a test system featuring Trinity which is pitted against Intel's Ivy Bridge processor. Walton found that the 7660G featured in the Trinity processor proved to be 20 percent faster in gaming performance than the Ivy Bridge's HD 4000. In a test of 15 titles, Trinity came on top in 10 titles, whereas Ivy Bridge won only five. A chart from AnandTech comparing the two processors can be seen below.

More general computing tasks were still won by Intel's Ivy Bridge platform, however, although Ivy Bridge is currently only available in quad-core designs, whereas the Trinity platform tested used a dual core CPU. Even still, the Trinity platform only saw a performance increase of 20 percent over the previous generation APU, Llano, whereas the even Intel's mid-range i5-2410M Sandy Bridge platform saw a 25 percent lead over the Trinity platform tested.

Trinity saw a design win last week when HP announced its new Envy ultraportable line, which includes the Trinity-powered Sleekbook.

Image via AnandTech

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In a test of 15 titles, Trinity came on top in 10 titles, whereas Ivy Bridge won only five.

Maybe I'm reading it wrong - I really despise charts like that one used - but in the chart, it looks like Intel's Ivy Bridge only beat AMD's Trinity APU in 3 games out of 15. I read it to mean anything under 100% would be a point toward Intel and only 3 of the games are under 100% - Batman: AC, Dirt 3, Elder Scrolls: Skyrim.

I was going to buy an AMD FX-8120 tomorrow for a self install PC (budget dictating AMD over Intel this time)...should I wait & buy this instead?

If/when I'm in the market for a nice thin "ultrabook" battery life and GPU performance (for watching HD videos mostly but a game or two wouldn't hurt) is what I'd look for. The rest is up to price for the type of device I want, though I'd also like it to be a hybrid and turn into a tablet when I just want to watch a movie.

That said, AMDs always going to be ahead when it comes to GPU and price seems like a sure win for them also. Now to wait and see what OEMs can give me with WIn8 on it later this year.

deadonthefloor said,
Combine this with the new enhancements for AMD's architecture in Windows 8 and I'm sold!

Kind of pathetic if you ask me, that AMD's new arch required changes to Windows to make it competitive just with some low end i5 parts.

SharpGreen said,

Kind of pathetic if you ask me, that AMD's new arch required changes to Windows to make it competitive just with some low end i5 parts.

Like Intel has no say with Microsoft on how their chipsets are used by the OS. Believe that as you wish. And some 'expansions' or new techniques might need adjustments on the OS side to use them properly.

Can think it pathetic as you wish, but theres no reason when AMD has other techniques to improve performance, to not add them to the X86 chipset just because its not 'standard'.

AMD ultrathin laptop with $500 price tag, long battery life and ability to play games such as Diablo 3 will be an instabuy

warwagon said,
Do AMD CPU's still have the pins on the bottom of the chips?

APUs.
The last one I installed did. Bad design. I like how Intel moved the pins to the socket.

"The most obvious devices to make use of the new processors are ultrabooks, given the power-saving nature of Trinity."

Uhm, not really? If I'm not mistaken Ultrabooks have to have Intel chips to be called Ultrabooks? It should say ultraportables or Sleekbooks (unless that's an HP patent)...

Not necessary, thank you, but I was just pointing out that I think a tech journalist ought to get the terminology straight...

Sumi said,
Not necessary, thank you, but I was just pointing out that I think a tech journalist ought to get the terminology straight...
'unprofessional journalism looks better'

Sumi said,
"The most obvious devices to make use of the new processors are ultrabooks, given the power-saving nature of Trinity."

Uhm, not really? If I'm not mistaken Ultrabooks have to have Intel chips to be called Ultrabooks? It should say ultraportables or Sleekbooks (unless that's an HP patent)...


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