May 21, 2012, 2:00 PM — AMD's next-generation A-Series processors, code-named Trinity, are the chip manufacturer's answer to Intel's new Ivy Bridge processors now appearing in the new Ultrabook laptops.
How much of an improvement do the new Trinity chips offer laptop users and can these new Trinity-based laptops compete against Ivy Bridge? The reviews are in.
Every new generation of chips promises better performance and energy efficiency, and Trinity is no exception. Earlier this year, AMD claimed Trinity would offer significant improvements over its current Llano chips: An overall performance increase of up to 25%, 50% better graphics performance, and double the performance per watt.
Across the web, tech reviewers have been benchmarking an AMD Trinity test laptop (featuring the A10-4600 quad core processor with integrated Radeon HD 7760G graphics) to put these claims to the test. We'll have our own tests from the PCWorld Labs soon, but this is how the new accelerated processing unit (APU) is being received so far:
Modest General Performance Improvements: Not Enough to Best Intel
Intel is still the market leader in this highly competitive chips race and, unfortunately, going on CPU performance alone, Trinity still lags behind. Both VR-Zone and HotHardware say the Trinity A10 gets "blown out of the water" by Intel's Ivy Bridge Core i7 CPU--and even against Intel's second-generation Sandy Bridge mobile chips in some tests.
AMD positions its top-of-the-line A10 series against Intel's lower-end Core i7 and higher-end Core i5 chips. Yet an Ivy Bridge mid-range i5-2410M had a 25% CPU performance advantage over the Trinity A10-4600, according to AnandTech's comparisons using PCMark.
VR Zone is frank in its assessment, calling Trinity's single threaded applications and raw memory performance "abysmal."
Still, AnandTech says Trinity's new is a step forward from the CPU cores used in Llano. Trinity was about 20% faster than Llano in the reviewer's general CPU performance tests--close to AMD's 25% promise.