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AMD A8-3850 With Radeon HD 6550D Running On Linux

Michael Larabel

Published on 27 July 2011
Written by Michael Larabel
Page 1 of 6 - 23 Comments

Last month AMD officially launched the A-Series "Llano" Fusion APUs to much fan-fare with significantly better computational and graphics performance over the E-Series Fusion APUs and all around the new hardware being a compelling solution. On launch-day we delivered AMD A8-3500M benchmarks as we managed to procure remote access to one of the AMD Llano systems from a third-party, and we also delivered benchmarks of the Radeon HD 6620G that are found on that APU. We have now finally been sent over a Llano APU and motherboard from AMD so we are able to conduct our own set of in-depth Llano Linux tests. In this review we are examining the Radeon HD 6550D graphics capabilities on the AMD A8-3850 APU.

This is just the first of several articles to be published on Phoronix looking at the Linux (and possibly Solaris / BSD) performance of the AMD A8-3850 Llano. The A8-3850 is AMD's highest-end desktop Llano chip with it boasting four cores operating at a 2.9GHz base frequency. The A8-3850 has 1MB of L2 cache per core, integrated Radeon HD 6550D graphics with a 600MHz clock and 400 Radeon cores, and 100W TDP. The Llano-based "Lynx" APUs are manufactured on a 32nm SOI process, support up to DDR3-1866MHz memory, integrated PCI Express 2.0, and obviously the Fusion graphics are integrated onto the die itself.

The AMD Radeon HD 6550D graphics found on this APU boasts 400 Radeon cores, 600MHz core clock, 5 SIMDs, 20 texture units, two render back-ends, 32 Z/Stencil ROPs, and 8 color ROPs. The peak compute performance out of the A8-3850's graphics is 480 GFLOPS. OpenGL 4.1 and OpenCL 1.1 are supported by this integrated graphics solution. The lower-end A6-Series Llano APUs have Radeon HD 6530D graphics, which are slightly trimmed down. The Radeon HD 6530D has 320 cores, 4 SIMDs, 16 texture units, and a 443MHz core clock. The peak compute performance out of the 6530D is just 284 GFLOPS.

With several weeks having passed since the AMD A8-3850 launch, most of the Phoronix readers are already familiar with the Llano architecture and other features from the other (Windows-based) technology publications that had the hardware in advance. As such, in this review looking at the Radeon HD 6550D, it will be focused specifically towards the value we bring to the table: the Linux information.

AMD sent over the Fusiomn A8-3850 with a Gigabyte A75M-UD2H motherboard. The A75M-UD2H is a micro ATX motherboard that uses the AMD A75 chipset and provides integrated VGA D-Sub, dual-link DVI-D, HDMI, and DisplayPort outputs. The assortment of these connections had worked under Linux. There's also two PCI Express 2.0 x16 slot for those wishing to install a discrete graphics card. Both PCI-E x16 slots can be utilized in parallel for those wishing to take advantage of AMD CrossFireX.

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