AMD Zacate mini-ITX Motherboard Previews (AMD Fusion APU)

Discussion in 'AMD x86 CPUs and chipsets' started by DiGiTaL MoNkEY, Jan 5, 2011.

  1. DiGiTaL MoNkEY

    DiGiTaL MoNkEY Inverted Monkey

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    The first AMD Fusion APUs, codenamed Bobcat, have just been launched. What's more, we've already managed to have a look at a number of mini-ITX motherboards using the dual-core Zacate flavour of the CPU architecture.

    [​IMG]

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    More details and photo's can be found here: http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/motherboards/2011/01/04/amd-zacate-mini-itx-motherboards-preview/1

    [​IMG]

    GA-350N-USB3 hardware features

    * AMD E-350 APU (1.6GHz, 18W)
    * 'Hudson' SB750 southbridge (sub 5W)
    * AMD Radeon HD 6310 graphics core (80 stream processors)
    * 3-phase CPU power
    * Four SATA 3Gbps ports
    * PCI-Express 16x slot (4x electrical)
    * Two DDR3 1,333MHz slots (single channel)
    * HDMI 1.3b, dual-link DVI-D and d-sub (dual digital outputs supported)
    * Two USB 3.0 ports (NEC) and on/off charge
    * Six USB 2.0 ports (four rear I/O, two pin-outs)
    * Realtek RTL8111E Gigabit Ethernet
    * Realtek ALC892 7.1-channel surround sound, with S/PDIF out
    * Dual-BIOS
    * 3 year warranty


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    Asus E35MI-I Deluxe hardware features

    * AMD E-350 APU (1.6GHz, 18W)
    * 'Hudson' SB750 southbridge (sub 5W)
    * AMD Radeon HD 6310 graphics core (80 stream processors)
    * Five SATA 3Gbps ports and one eSATA port
    * PCI-Express 16x slot (actual bandwidth to be determined)
    * Two DDR3 1,333MHz slots (single channel) and the MemOK failsafe button
    * HDMI 1.3b and dual-link DVI-I (dual digital outputs supported)
    * Four USB 3.0 ports (two rear I/O and two pin-outs) and on/off charge
    * Eight USB 2.0 ports (four rear I/O, four pin-outs)
    * Bluetooth 3.0 and 802.11n Wireless
    * Realtek RTL8111E Gigabit Ethernet
    * Realtek ALC892 7.1 channel surround sound (outputs only provided for 5.1), with S/PDIF out
    * ASUS TurboKey II automatic overclocking

    MSI E350-E45
    [​IMG]
     
  2. stmok

    stmok Member

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    Damn that ASUS mobo looks awesome. I love the idea of passive cooling!

    It also has automatic overclocking?

    ...I wonder how easy/hard it is to overclock the E-350 APU? :confused:
     
  3. kally

    kally Member

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    Yeah, the Asus looks very nice, sub-$200 for mobo + apu :thumbup:

    It's a shame uefi isn't in yet. It'll be interesting to see overall system power with say, a couple sticks of ram, an SSD and lower power spindle drive connected, idle and also running a blu-ray disc.
     
  4. OP
    OP
    DiGiTaL MoNkEY

    DiGiTaL MoNkEY Inverted Monkey

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    Should give Intel's Atom a run for it's money :)
     
  5. jezza323

    jezza323 Member

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    will be keen to see how it handles blu-ray/HD playback :)
     
  6. OP
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    DiGiTaL MoNkEY

    DiGiTaL MoNkEY Inverted Monkey

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    Last edited: Jan 5, 2011
  7. jezza323

    jezza323 Member

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    yeah i would imagine it has been designed with HD in mind, so i expect it to be good, but you just never know!
     
  8. OP
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    DiGiTaL MoNkEY

    DiGiTaL MoNkEY Inverted Monkey

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    http://www.amd.com/us/products/desktop/apu/mainstream/Pages/mainstream.aspx#2

     
  9. kally

    kally Member

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    It will run perfectly fine with it's UVD3. In fact it's looking better than Sandy Bridge with it's 24fps/23.79fps balls-up. I've seen it on Core iX, gives me the irrits.
    AMD says the cpu is only at ~30% load whilst playing a blu-rays. Plenty of headroom.
     
  10. Pemalite

    Pemalite Member

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    Good bye Atom 330 + Intel Decelerator!
    And... Hello Zacate. (You couldn't get here soon enough!)

    Now to wait for Aus PC Market or PC Case Gear to get these things in stock! (Anyone got any ETA?)

    Only thing I find sad is that I doubt my chances of seeing a DDR2 version of these things, I would have literally then only had to replace the board.
     
  11. stmok

    stmok Member

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    Atom's butt is gonna be whooped!

    I guess in about 3 weeks or so?

    Its very tempting...
    I might grab that passively cooled ASUS mobo, (if it allows one to hit 2.0Ghz overclock); and "update" my old Socket 754 Sempron box. Maybe do a review and comparison of the upgrade? ;)
     
  12. Oblong Cheese

    Oblong Cheese Member

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    The E-series uses too much power. 18 watts for a dual-core 1.6Ghz? The Atom 330 dual-core 1.6Ghz uses half that.

    That said, the Bobcat graphics core looks to be a lot better than the Intel or ION offerings. However, how much graphics power do you really need in a system like this? As long as you can accelerate 1080p BluRay playback (and have some headroom for future high-def formats), you're fine. Does anyone actually use these platforms to play games or do serious graphics work? I doubt it.
     
  13. James_B

    James_B Member

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    I might be wrong but I'm pretty sure Intel and AMD measure TDP differently.

    Also more graphics power = more filters/deinterlacing etc that can be performed on lower quality divx.
     
  14. terrastrife

    terrastrife Member

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    but the E series AMD is the WHOLE solution, not just a CPU. Atoms still require the ION chipset platform under them.
     
  15. Digit

    Digit Member

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    this :leet:

    i'm slightly excited for the next iteration, 28nm :thumbup: should do wonders for power consumption and performance
     
  16. Phido

    Phido Member

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    Wow, feature packed platforms.

    How much CPU do you need? Zacate seem to offer everything you would want in a light duty system (exclude heavy 3d gaming or 3d rendering/movie encoding).

    The GPU does more and more with GUI's and interfaces. Flash, photoshop etc are all being GPU accellerated.

    I've got a 785G and I havent felt the need to upgrade, some light older 3d games, 3d rendering, handles it fine. Honestly I can see the point where only "gamers" buy video cards.

    In terms of features, throw it in a box, SSD, ram and your away. If its a media box, think about how quick you can copy files over an USB3 SSD.

    Overclocking should be interesting, as everything is very low power, might be some serious OC room. ~ 2.5 Ghz, with a GPU OC of ~1000Mhz placing GPU performance somewhere above 5470 level. That will require active cooling (fan on?), but weather the board can supply that level of power will have to be seen.

    This setup is going to be perfect for a media box.
     
  17. Pemalite

    Pemalite Member

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    If you beat me to the gun and do a review... Then I look forward to it. :D



    You can never have enough CPU grunt. ;) One day it will be of use.

    The biggest problem for me right now with Atom is CPU performance, I have an Atom 330 Mini-ITX rig, which does feel sluggish in Windows 7 and basic tasks like Listening to Music, while browsing the web and doing some word processing whilst chatting.

    My Netbook/Tablet convertible machine with an Atom n470 1.86ghz single core processor seems to only just cope with 720P video (This is hit and miss, I did send Gigabyte an email to release overclocking software, hopefully with another 100-200mhz 720P video will be flawless regardless of codec)
    Also having enough grunt to do 1080P video and HD flash would be bloody awesome to without having to resort to Ion.

    If Zacate can do StarCraft 2 at Medium/High quality, and hopefully Diablo 3 upon release, then it's going to be the perfect platform for my Mini-ITX rig as a small casual LAN gaming box.
     
  18. stmok

    stmok Member

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    You'll probably have to wait until after Chinese New Year. :lol:

    See performance previews of AMD E-350 (Zacate)...
    => http://www.anandtech.com/show/4023/the-brazos-performance-preview-amd-e350-benchmarked/5

    StarCraft 2 at 1366x768 at low quality;
    GPU test => ~35 fps.
    CPU test => ~8 fps.

    This one offers better StarCraft 2 numbers...
    => http://www.legitreviews.com/article/1470/8/

    Does it meet your needs?

    If not, you may be better off with a Celeron/Pentium (or even ULV) variant of Sandy Bridge in a Mini-ITX mobo.

    Or wait for AMD's A-series (Llano) APU with its Radeon HD 55xx-based IGP...But that isn't available until the 2nd half of this year. :(
     
  19. Pemalite

    Pemalite Member

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    Bleh! Not good enough just yet.
    Overclocking may change the landscape a little, on my Athlon x2 7750 Kuma rig with it's Radeon 3200 I managed to overclock the IGP to 1ghz and that was built on a 55nm fabrication process (Stock is 500mhz).

    So I'm hoping for some similar overclock ability.

    Also, is there any information if these IGP's will be using Sideport Memory? It resulted in decent performance gains for the older IGP's.
     
  20. stmok

    stmok Member

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    No sideport. Its shared memory as the IGP is on-die with the main processor and memory controller.

    The problem is that the GPU-based IGP is bandwidth starved by the dinky single-channel RAM.

    *Maybe* AMD will remedy the issue in 2012 with the successor; "Krishna"? :confused:

    The more I go back and read the preview performance numbers; the more I realise I should be looking at the mainstream marketed solutions for my needs...Intel's Atom and AMD's C/E-series don't quite fit my requirements.
     

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