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[Tom's] Battle At $140: Can An APU Beat An Intel CPU And Add-In Graphics? - Page 6

post #51 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oedipus View Post

mario.gif

sonic.gif


But he has a very valid point.

CPU performance isn't everything. APUs demonstrate so. Sure the i3 CPU component smokes the APU CPU component, but overall the APU destroys the i3/i5 of comparable price point due to the much better GPU performance.
   
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post #52 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChaoticKinesis View Post

Are you being serious? Why would you not compare systems on the basis of price? Last I checked, when most people shop for things they make decisions for what to buy on the basis of price and what they'll be getting for it. For those that don't have unlimited budgets, price will always take first priority. No, the APU is not a top contender for people on OCN building a high-end gaming PC, but it's a good choice for people on a limited budget who want a computer for casual tasks and a bit of gaming. Who are you to judge what it means to "game for real"? Seriously!
Before your edit, you also mentioned comparing the APU to an Intel quad-core and how it would be smoked by it. On Newegg, Intel's cheapest quad-core is the i5-2300 for $180. Add a comparable GPU and the Intel system is $100 more than AMD, for an increase in price of a mere 71% on the CPU/GPU side. That Intel system better smoke the AMD or you wouldn't be getting your money's worth!
"Not an 'Intel Fan'" you say? Your post is riddled with bias. End of discussion.

First thing that comes to mind is that there's a place for an APU, and there's a place for a CPU + dedicated GPU card. There are situations where you just can't fit a discrete graphics card into a case. The ultra-small, ultra-think HTPCs for one--mine is just like that. So in cases like that, this comparison is irrelevant. I would go out on a limb and say that despite AMD enabling xfire with their APU's, the main target audience for APU's is the small form-factor segments. Yes, you can buy one and run it in a normal sized desktop tower, and in that case, it would not be the best solution for the money. But money is not the only (or even primary) factor for why people buy an APU.
    
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post #53 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by guyladouche View Post

First thing that comes to mind is that there's a place for an APU, and there's a place for a CPU + dedicated GPU card. There are situations where you just can't fit a discrete graphics card into a case. The ultra-small, ultra-think HTPCs for one--mine is just like that. So in cases like that, this comparison is irrelevant. I would go out on a limb and say that despite AMD enabling xfire with their APU's, the main target audience for APU's is the small form-factor segments. Yes, you can buy one and run it in a normal sized desktop tower, and in that case, it would not be the best solution for the money. But money is not the only (or even primary) factor for why people buy an APU.

What case do you have? The only thing I can think of is a Mac Mini, and that doesn't meet an ATX standard.
post #54 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by Foolsmasher View Post

What case do you have? The only thing I can think of is a Mac Mini, and that doesn't meet an ATX standard.

Say if a person wants to build an ITX HTPC.
They have 1 PCI-e slot available.

They may prefer to slot in a sound card over a video card.

Going the APU route,
+CPU performance
++Graphics performance
++Sound quality

Going the Intel route,
++CPU performance
+Graphics performance
+Sound quality
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post #55 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by sLowEnd View Post

Say if a person wants to build an ITX HTPC.
They have 1 PCI-e slot available.
They may prefer to slot in a sound card over a video card.
Going the APU route,
+CPU performance
++Graphics performance
++Sound quality
Going the Intel route,
++CPU performance
+Graphics performance
+Sound quality

If you're into Home Theater enough to put a PC in your living room, you're probably going to have a AV Receiver and speakers already, which would render a sound card completely useless. It's all just 1's and 0's.

Also, do the APU's bitstream lossless audio like the discrete 6000 series cards do?
post #56 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by guyladouche View Post

First thing that comes to mind is that there's a place for an APU, and there's a place for a CPU + dedicated GPU card. There are situations where you just can't fit a discrete graphics card into a case. The ultra-small, ultra-think HTPCs for one--mine is just like that. So in cases like that, this comparison is irrelevant. I would go out on a limb and say that despite AMD enabling xfire with their APU's, the main target audience for APU's is the small form-factor segments. Yes, you can buy one and run it in a normal sized desktop tower, and in that case, it would not be the best solution for the money. But money is not the only (or even primary) factor for why people buy an APU.

I agree with you to an extent. Form factor is a benefit to the APU, even though most ITX cases can still fit a low profile graphics card. I would say a bigger benefit, however, is the power consumption to performance ratio. I have an HTPC that is not small very small, but my priority was to make it efficient because it also doubles as a server. A discrete GPU would have used much more power when idle.

As far as running APUs in desktop towers, I think they can also make a lot of sense in budget builds, depending on how much of an emphasis is on media. Most casual PC users do not crunch data on their computers; they surf the web, edit documents, consume multimedia, and might play a casual game or two. Even a low-end A4/A6 Llano chip would work well for this, and it would come in at a lower price point than any other modern system.
     
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post #57 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by sLowEnd View Post

Say if a person wants to build an ITX HTPC.
They have 1 PCI-e slot available.
They may prefer to slot in a sound card over a video card.
Going the APU route,
+CPU performance
++Graphics performance
++Sound quality
Going the Intel route,
++CPU performance
+Graphics performance
+Sound quality

This ^^^

For HTPC the most important things are, small and attractive case, video quality, and sound quality.

Why anyone would try to game on a HTPC is beyond me.

I really wonder what the point of this test was. Everyone knows integrated cpu/gpus are for mobile/small platforms. For everything else of course a discrete gpu is going to pummle a integrated cpu/gpu system at the same price. Your paying more because you want everything smaller.

I wouldn't be suprised to see a "Tom's Hardware: Snapdragon 4 vs Sandy Bridge" article rolleyes.gif
 
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post #58 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by Foolsmasher View Post

What case do you have? The only thing I can think of is a Mac Mini, and that doesn't meet an ATX standard.

It's the "HTPC" in my systems list. It's a prebuilt ASUS, small form-factor--about the size of a mac mini actually. No standard PCI-e slots. There's really no reason to follow an ATX standard form-factor if there's no need for the size. Having a large HTPC sitting around is an ugly eyesore for one. smile.gif Sure, you can say that you could just go with a larger form-factor case and go with the CPU + GPU option, and I would whole-heartedly agree, much better performance could be had (both for the money and in absolute terms). I know my argument sounds a little arbitrary and cyclical, "not needed unless you need it," lol, but there are other cases, like laptops, netbooks, and ultrabooks, that either can't accommodate a discrete GPU because of motherboard, or cannot accommodate a discrete GPU that gets performance on-par with the integrated GPU in the APU on a price-point. As I stated, AMD's APU's are not intended, in spirit, for people who want a dedicated graphics card in a mid-to-high performance system, so doing comparisons of it against a system with a dedicated graphics card amounts to an academic comparison with no relevance. You absolutely can pair them with a dedicated card in a "standard" system, and it would, of course, work just fine, but it defeats the purpose of an all-in-one solution.
    
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post #59 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by Artikbot View Post

sonic.gif
But he has a very valid point.
CPU performance isn't everything. APUs demonstrate so. Sure the i3 CPU component smokes the APU CPU component, but overall the APU destroys the i3/i5 of comparable price point due to the much better GPU performance.

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post #60 of 76
Quote:
Originally Posted by Foolsmasher View Post


Let's not turn this into a "let's bash Tom's thread" please.
I just went through this same debate when building my HTPC, so it is certainly a valid comparison. In the end, an i3 2100 and dedicated card (I got a 6570 low profile) was cheaper and performed on par or better than AMD's strongest APU. It also fits in the same TDP envelope, and gets crushed in any CPU intensive task that runs on 1 or 2 threads, which is what I use it for. The cost I'm referencing included a motherboard as well, which if I'm not mistaken were slightly more expensive than the comparable Intel ITX boards.
As for suggesting the "form factor limitation", you still need a heatsink on the processor that's going to take up some space. A low profile video card isn't going to eat up much more real estate than that heatsink will. Also, I'd say it's pretty generous to overclock the APU too far, at least in my scenario in a mini-itx case (Origen M10), heat would be an issue.
Please show me some examples in a desktop PC setting where the APU has a "form factor" advantage, I'm not sure what you're referring to.


What they don't tell you is that an A8 w/ a video card gets MUCH faster...

 

 

 

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