AMD has shifted focus from a pure performance standpoint to an overall system experience with the new APU line up. AMD continues to make strides in their processors performance and from a pure performance standpoint they lag behind Intel clock for clock. The AMD A10-7850K Kaveri APU is meant to be a mainstream CPU and compete against the Intel i3 & i5 series.
The tests that we put our review items through are test and coax every last bit of performance out of them and may not necessarily be a “real world” usage of the device. For example, would I use the AMD A10-7850K Kaveri APU in a CAD workstation? Probably not. But I would use it in a gaming budget gaming system.
AMD has made some improvements to the IPC of the AMD A10-7850K Kaveri APU. Which is a good step for the 1st processor in the new APU line. For the most part the APU performed well. I used the system as my daily driver for a few weeks. I didn’t notice any major issues with performance with the daily tasks, such as working in office, browsing the web. Gaming with the APU only will for the most part, require the quality to be set to low, or decrease the resolution for the game. The addition of a dual graphics yielded playable frame rates in most gaming test. With a few tweaks and settings changes a few more frames per second could be coaxed out of the system.
From a value stand point the AMD A10-7850K Kaveri APU rocks. For the price, you get a decent processor and a GPU that can pull 30 FPS in games. An inexpensive gaming system is perfect for this APU. Adding an $80.00 external GPU and enabling dual graphics can really increase performance. AMD is doing promising things with HSA and soon we will be able to see the advantage of HSA in enabled applications. According to AMD HSA enabled applications are on the way and will be available soon. I am excited to see if AMD can keep bringing improvements to the IPC and bring the CPU performance to a level playing field. Competition is only going to benefit the consumers by making better and more capable products.
The only real complaint that I have with the AMD A10-7850K Kaveri APU is the drivers. Initially I couldn’t get the system to run very stable and resorted to using the beta drivers but eventually I was able to get the system stable.
I felt the MSI A88X-e35M was limited in overclocking, so I did not include it in this review. There is an overclocking performance article in the works and will be available soon.