The recently launched RS 780 chipset from processor manufacturer AMD has been
given cautious approval by the channel. UK system builders treated AMD’s claims
of changing the face of graphics and creating
massive performance improvements with some scepticism.
At CeBIT earlier this month, Ian McNaughton, AMD’s EMEA product marketing manager, explained how AMD planned to launch an array of new platforms and technologies targeted at mobile computing, PC gaming, high-definition (HD) multimedia and next-generation multi-core processing.
The new chipset manages to generate high power, while using low power, McNaughton told CRN: “The performance is better than anything else out there by a good margin. But we’re using a lot less power.”
According to AMD’s figures, the energy efficient AMD 780G used in an Athlon 4850e needs only 42W of power, whereas the equivalent Intel machine (a G33 w/ C2D E4500) uses 52W, a 20 per cent saving on electricity. “If there were 822.15 million PCs in the world in 2005, and they all switched to AMD tomorrow, we could save 72 billion KWh of electricity in a year,” he said.
However, games players and HD multimedia users are unlikely to consider
carbon footprints a priority, said applications developer Sam Marshallsea,
managing director of IT consultancy Dark Storm.
“Okay, it is a chipset with integrated graphics, but the problem with integrated solutions is they tend to share memory with the main system rather than owning their own dedicated RAM, so they lack the power of standalone cards,” he said.
Changing the specifications on the integrated graphics part (IGP) may make a big difference, he conceded, now the graphics processing unit is fully installed on the chipset and no longer compromised.
Gamers will like running the latest games from it, said Marshallsea. “It is cheap, from a system builder’s perspective, but I am not convinced it will outperform the vast majority of standalone cards based on chipsets from the same generation.”
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