Vizio announces 11-inch AMD-powered Windows 8 tablet

CES 2013 doesn't even officially start until Tuesday, but the first news of new Windows 8 products has begun to trickle in. Vizio has just announced a few new Windows 8 products, the standout of which is an 11-inch tablet which packs - for the first time we've seen - an AMD Z60 chip, along with a full-blown 1080p display and a zero bloatware "Microsoft Signature" Windows 8 install.

The AMD Z60 chip is from AMD's most recent range of "Hondo" low-power, tablet oriented processors, and packs a 1.0 GHz dual-core CPU along with a Radeon HD 6250 graphics processor. It's unknown how this sort of processor will perform as we've never seen it inside a tablet until this point, but it's also coupled with 2 GB of RAM and 64 GB of solid state storage for what it's worth. Other specs include a 2-megapixel front camera, micro-HDMI port and a microUSB port.

Currently the pricing and availability for this tablet remain unknown, but we're sure it'll appear on the show floor at Vegas very soon.

Source: Engadget

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well my AMD E-450 with a Radeon 6230 can run Photoshop, Paint.Net, and After Effects so I expect this to do a lot better because of a better GPU and it has windows 8.

Should be a really nice tablet experience. Don't look for too much in terms of multitasking on the desktop, though. With the APU maxing out at 5W TDP, we can expect netbook levels of performance in most areas. The added GPU, however, should make many indie games pretty playable, and that's definitely a good selling point.

Yes the 1080p resolution is nice but where the atoms still have the advantage is with battery life. The AMD offering aimed for 8hours whereas the atoms on the samsung for example are actually pulling 12. If the AMD can pull a full 8 might not be so bad but well see.

Looks interesting, I like Windows 8's interface more at that resolution. Although I am looking for the whole tablet-PC experience so anything without a connectable keyboard isn't what I'm looking for. I'm hoping to hear some tablet news from Nokia.

Last year I bought a HP-635 laptop, a first generation of laptops with Zacate E-350 APU. According to the specs, Z-60 should have about 66% of computing power (1:1.6 GHz), about half of graphical power (275:492 Mhz) and quarter of power consumption (4.5:18W) compared to E-350, since Z-60 (Hondo 4.5 W) is re-architectured Z-01 (Desna 5.9W), not an upgraded C-50 (Ontario 9W)!
I was surprised how well the laptop performed (for za 300€ machine!) in normal environment (browsing, office, movies), since I was expecting universally bad experience. The graphical unit was fast enough to run fully composited desktop, 720p movie and some lesser demanding games, up to 6 hour of uptime. After tuning down some desktop effects (blur, transparency, enabling texture compression, etc), laptop really came alive and the only noticable performance hog was decompressing packages and parsing some heavy PDFs. 2GB wasn't the problem at all.

Granted that I use slightly scaled-down Ubuntu with Unity/Unity2D, but those laptops came preinstalled with Linux for a reason. Regardless of performance increase Win 8 has achieved, I don't believe you can make Windows experience enjoyable on such specs.

I look forward seeing new low-cost x86 based tablets/laptops with AMD hardware, I really do.

Edited by PanzerFury, Jan 6 2013, 5:13pm :

HP just sent me an Ad for the Envy two. Detachable twin battery Atom powered for $849. THIS is the type of machine people want. Rather have the Hondo chip over Atom, but it's claiming 19 hours battery life. Gimme an i3 and we're done.

People don't want to spend that much on a tablet. It's a toy. For businesses, Sure that is probably what they want, but for "normal" people, this would be just fine.

you're mistaking windows 8 tablets to all other tablets. people who buy windows 8 tablets are going to keep them longer. Its because of the OS. Hell Windows 8 works on 6 year old + hardware perfectly fine. When IOS or android get updated,you most of the time need new hardware or its going to crawl.And you lose a lot of software compatibility.

vcfan said,
......

That's just flamebait. I've seen countless phandroids who will argue their latest custom ROMs run on the oldest available hardware better than Win RT or WP8.

/s

It does say windows 8 and not windows RT, so I am guessing people automatically compare specs of this tablet to desktop and laptop computers. Windows 8 system requirements:
1 GHz processor or faster with support for PAE, NX, and SSE2
2 GB RAM / 20 GB available hard disk space
1366 × 768 screen resolution
DirectX 9 graphics processor with WDDM driver

Edited by Invizibleyez, Jan 6 2013, 3:03pm :

I just hope we could get a powerful APU with 7650g and a nice 2.x Dual/Quad Core processor + SSD
And that'll do it.

I really like more AMD than Intel on the integrated department.

Jose_49 said,
I just hope we could get a powerful APU with 7650g and a nice 2.x Dual/Quad Core processor + SSD
And that'll do it.

I really like more AMD than Intel on the integrated department.

Their integrated APU technologies are well done; however, the lineage goes back to Microsoft, as the base SoC design AMD uses comes from Microsoft.

(Less known engineering bit of trivia. When Microsoft redesigned the Xbox 360 CPU/GPU into a SoC/APU architecture, which has been shipping in the newer Xbox 360 systems, , it was an engineering 'feat' that beat both AMD and Intel at a desktop class SoC design integrating with standardized controllers. Microsoft gave AMD and Intel access to their reference designs, with AMD went to work on implementing faster than Intel. Intel took this personally, but eventually they also took the reference design from Microsoft and can be found in their newer integrated CPUs with GPU. - Go back a few years and search in hardware engineer publications, it is not something the traditional 'PC' tech journalists even noticed.)

Its the same CPU/GPU as the Acer W500 and that is no speed demon, even with Windows 8. Possible pushing a higher res screen could tax it more but I guess we'll know soon enough.

efjay said,
Its the same CPU/GPU as the Acer W500 and that is no speed demon, even with Windows 8. Possible pushing a higher res screen could tax it more but I guess we'll know soon enough.

Not quite. Pretty sure the W500 uses the C50; however, even if I am not remember right the Z60 also has advantages over the C60.

Compared to the C50, the performance is at minimum 25% faster.

The main features of the Z series is lower power consumption, additional performance and a new controller with USB 3.0/SATA 6/etc functionality.

I personally found the W500 to be ok, especially in comparison to lower performing tablets like the iPad or (insert any Android tablet.) - Let alone the AMD APU is a x64 architecture, that can run traditional x86 and x64 software off the shelf.

The Z-60 is a slightly upgraded C-50 that was inside the Acer W500 tablet. The W500 was designed for Windows 7 but many owners installed Windows 8 on it.
Also, there were, at the time, indications that some W500 actually shipped with a C-60 in them.

The C-50/C-60 had a 9W TDP and it was not really possible to have the tablet passively cooled. The Acer W500 had a small fan - tablets should not.

The Z-60 has a 4.5W TDP and this should allow Vizio to make the tablet passively cooled.

On the performance side, both APU will behave similarly, with a small edge for the Z-60. Graphic performance is fine in Windows 8 but the dual 1GHz cores do suffer from time to time when computations get tougher.

As a rule of thumb, It is somewhat similar to a Tegra 3 (Surface RT) device.

TheCyberKnight said,
The Z-60 is a slightly upgraded C-50 that was inside the Acer W500 tablet. The W500 was designed for Windows 7 but many owners installed Windows 8 on it.
Also, there were, at the time, indications that some W500 actually shipped with a C-60 in them.

The C-50/C-60 had a 9W TDP and it was not really possible to have the tablet passively cooled. The Acer W500 had a small fan - tablets should not.

The Z-60 has a 4.5W TDP and this should allow Vizio to make the tablet passively cooled.

On the performance side, both APU will behave similarly, with a small edge for the Z-60. Graphic performance is fine in Windows 8 but the dual 1GHz cores do suffer from time to time when computations get tougher.

As a rule of thumb, It is somewhat similar to a Tegra 3 (Surface RT) device.

It is a more than small jump from the Tegra 3 ARM class.

More importantly, it should compete well with Clovertrail. CPU performance as you note will possibly fall behind the Clovertrail/Atom level, but the GPU is significantly faster than Clovertrails integrated graphics, which is why more of the 1080p tablets are looking to the AMD APU to ensure a smooth UI.

Even if this was equal to one of the fastest ARM architectures, it has the advantage of running traditional x86 and x64 software. Users can have a nice tablet, and if they want run WoW, CoD, and things like Photoshop or AutoCAD.

Its no longer about the Mhz anymore imo, I upgraded from a S2 to an S3, Went from Snapdragon S3 to S4, both 1.5ghz dual cores, saw 40% speed increase in the switch.

Would you care to provide a base for your claim why this CPU @ 1GHz is horrible or 2GB RAM is weak in this configuration?

I am hoping you have a reason for saying so which does not include comparing it to a desktop CPU or RAM requirement

Voice of Buddy Christ said,
Only 2GB RAM? Weak.

and the iPad has 1GB of ram. Why doesn't anyone say that the iPad is weak?

iDiots.

p.s. I just typed this on my laptop with 2GB of ram. Have 12 chrome tabs, tweetdeck, photoshop, messenger, live mail, and outlook open.

FalseAgent said,

and the iPad has 1GB of ram. Why doesn't anyone say that the iPad is weak?

iDiots.

p.s. I just typed this on my laptop with 2GB of ram. Have 12 chrome tabs, tweetdeck, photoshop, messenger, live mail, and outlook open.

Wow your hard drive must be thrashing like hell

mrp04 said,

Wow your hard drive must be thrashing like hell


yeah, it thrashes when I switch between the apps frequently. What I mentioned is a extreme use case - 12 tabs is borderline unmanageable FOR MY BRAIN.

mrp04 said,

Wow your hard drive must be thrashing like hell

Maybe you haven't used Windows 8.

Windows 7 on 2gb of RAM is ample, especially when you consider many test labs have show that Windows 7 on 512mb of RAM is faster than Windows XP.

Windows 8 on 2gb of RAM is even more ample than Windows 7, due to the lower base memory footprint, and the new OS reduced and low RAM modes, making room in low RAM situations and constricting the OS footprint even more than the already lower base footprint.

(On Forced installs, Windows 8 runs fine in 128mb of RAM, you know like what XP was usable on over 10 years ago.)

And this is just laptops/desktop configurations. In the 'Tablet' world, 2Gb of RAM is massive when combined with Windows 8.

2gb on a Windows 8 tablet will have more free RAM and application headroom than Android will have with 2gb.

so is it slow? i mean 1 GHz sounds HORRIbLE! but sounds like a lot of battery life. also sounds cheap. but the 1080p screen doesn't. Vizio's first tab (Android) was a flow but this doesn't look to shabby and generally vizio products have good build quality.

Ezekiel Carsella said,
so is it slow? i mean 1 GHz sounds HORRIbLE! but sounds like a lot of battery life. also sounds cheap. but the 1080p screen doesn't. Vizio's first tab (Android) was a flow but this doesn't look to shabby and generally vizio products have good build quality.

1Ghz should be alright actually. Processor isn't the issue these days, most of the performance bottlenecks that we face come from our HDDs and GPUs. This AMD cpu packs a very decent GPU with it, so graphics performance shouldn't be a worry.

I doubt that this would be better than Intel's Clover Trail, but this may be better in terms of pricing.

Have i woke up in the 1990's? GHz isn't that important, as we all should know by now! If you a have 1GHz Intel i7 and compare it to a 1.8GHz ARM CPU (even the latest A15) then the i7 would absolutely slaughter it.

This tablet uses a Hondo based CPU. Meaning it's faster than a ARM based CPU at the same clock speed, and likely faster than the latest Intel Atom/Clover Trail at the same clocks as well. It wont be faster than Clover Trail though because CT has too much of a clock speed advantage. This AMD tablet also has a good GPU. Infact this should have some of the best gaming performance of any tablet out there.

The main problem is AMD's Hondo draws more power than both ARM and Intel Clover Trail. This wont last as long on battery but it shouldn't be that far off.


okay. i see what you mean. everytime i hear a session about clock speeds i freak out though (got too many at the verge.) i have an AMD E-450 right now and it is clocked 1.6Ghz with a Radeon 6230 so that GPU is an improvement and since it is an SSD it will be faster than my comp right now. will say the 2GB of RAM stinks but with Windows 8 RAM isn't that big of a deal

clock speed is just how fast the flip flops inside the cpu latch. if you have a cpu instruction that takes 1 clock cycle to complete on a 1Ghz cpu, and compare it to a 4Ghz cpu that takes 4 clock cycles for an instruction, then that instruction essentially takes the same amount of time.

the cpu architectures are always being tweaked,so clock speed doesn't tell you how fast the chip actually is, unless you compare it to the same family of chips. For example,we can compare core i7s by clockspeed,but not compare core i7 with core 2 duo.

Ezekiel Carsella said,
so is it slow? i mean 1 GHz sounds HORRIbLE! but sounds like a lot of battery life. also sounds cheap. but the 1080p screen doesn't. Vizio's first tab (Android) was a flow but this doesn't look to shabby and generally vizio products have good build quality.

Compared to what?

It is GOING to be much faster than any ARM based tablet, and significantly faster than an iPad or any Android tablet. (It is funny that you even begin to compare a 1080p Android tablet in the same class as this 'computer'.)

If a Microsoft Surface RT ARM based system so far is running 2 to 10 times faster than any Android tablet, and this AMD APU is several times faster than the ARM architecture in the Surface RT, how can you even begin to equate this with a low performance and limited Android tablet?

It is faster than Intel Clovertrail/Atom overall with a much stronger GPU offering, that Windows 8 fully takes advantage.

The AMD APU is DirectX11 compatible, and is a 64bit system, meaning that it should be running Windows 8 x64.

It is traditional x86/x64, so it will run everything from AutoCAD and Painter to Photoshop and WoW.

AMD claims the Z60 APU is fully capable of running the PC version of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2.

(How well does Android run PC games again? See why the Android comparison is really silly?)

So don't get 'caught' on the ghz issue, especially with the non-clock advances in CPU technology. Also realize that even if this was 10 years ago, Windows 8 on a 1ghz system is FASTER than Windows XP.

1Pixel said,
Have i woke up in the 1990's? GHz isn't that important, as we all should know by now! If you a have 1GHz Intel i7 and compare it to a 1.8GHz ARM CPU (even the latest A15) then the i7 would absolutely slaughter it.

This tablet uses a Hondo based CPU. Meaning it's faster than a ARM based CPU at the same clock speed, and likely faster than the latest Intel Atom/Clover Trail at the same clocks as well. It wont be faster than Clover Trail though because CT has too much of a clock speed advantage. This AMD tablet also has a good GPU. Infact this should have some of the best gaming performance of any tablet out there.

The main problem is AMD's Hondo draws more power than both ARM and Intel Clover Trail. This wont last as long on battery but it shouldn't be that far off.



The thing is Hondo doesn't draw so much more power on windows based tablets. Due to the OS using GPU offloading, and AMD's GPU is master and absolute king in lower power segment. Intel is still very far behind when it comes to their GPU's.
So it might come close to CT tablets and in certain situations probably longer.

FalseAgent said,

I doubt that this would be better than Intel's Clover Trail, but this may be better in terms of pricing.

Clover Trail is still the same slow Atom architecture we all know.
Until late this year when Atom will finally get out-of-order execution, Atom has no chance in the performance department. And by then, AMD's Temash will be out with greatly improved performance per watt (remember that AMD cancelled the 28nm upgrade to Hondo so these still run on a 40nm process), and along with a GCN GPU to boot.

gonchuki said,

Clover Trail is still the same slow Atom architecture we all know.
Until late this year when Atom will finally get out-of-order execution, Atom has no chance in the performance department. And by then, AMD's Temash will be out with greatly improved performance per watt (remember that AMD cancelled the 28nm upgrade to Hondo so these still run on a 40nm process), and along with a GCN GPU to boot.

Um, no. Although Clover Trail is being called 'Atom', it is nothing like how the slow old Atoms that used to power Netbooks. Clover Trail is much MUCH faster and is a SoC, similar to ARM chips.

What a pity that Intel is calling this new thing...Atom.

FalseAgent said,

Um, no. Although Clover Trail is being called 'Atom', it is nothing like how the slow old Atoms that used to power Netbooks. Clover Trail is much MUCH faster and is a SoC, similar to ARM chips.

What a pity that Intel is calling this new thing...Atom.


it's still using an in-order architecture, so even if it's "faster" it is "faster than slow".

The thing you are seeing as fast is that they are running on a faster OS that is optimized for multicore computing and uses GPU acceleration, plus everything Clover Trail is running on eMMC or SSD vs older Atoms that ran on HDDs, you are getting an impression of a better CPU than it is just because it's running better software with a better storage device.

Ninja edit: let me make my point here http://www.anandtech.com/show/...-review-acers-w510-tested/4
Just look at how they compare different software and hardware all the time, first on JavaScript test where clearly not every tablet is running the same browser, then on PCMark test they pit the eMMC tablet against a E-350 that runs on a HDD and call it a "faster CPU" when we all know that disk access completely skews posted PCMark performance numbers.

Edited by gonchuki, Jan 8 2013, 2:08pm :