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Tuesday, 20 July 2010 10:38

Fusion to have Redwood graphics

Written by Fuad Abazovic
Real mainstream power inside
The surprising part of the Fusion all-integrated chip is that it actually comes with Redwood equivalent graphics. Redwood is a group codename for Radeon 5500 and 5600 graphics and its actually a mainstream core, rather than an entry level one.

Almost everyone had expected to see Cedar, an entry level Radeon 5000 core as a part of Fusion, as such cores would usually find their way into chipsets in the past. However, it looks like ATI can simply squeeze a much bigger and more powerful graphics core in this all-integrated Fusion chip. 

Compared to Sandy Bridge core, Redwood DirectX 11 derived core will kill Intel's all-integrated part in graphics performance, but it also looks like Intel will win the CPU fight, again. It also appears that the graphics inside Ontario and Llano only need DDR3 support, something that the Radeon 5500 generation offers, and the performance of the Fusion should be in range of 5500 series. This will depend on the clock and number of shaders enabled on the core, but it's clear that it will be quite powerful for the integrated market segment.

The Fusion APU line won’t be expensive either, but it seriously jeopardize the future of low-end, and entry level discrete graphics chips, as the CPUs of the future might have just enough graphics power.

We will still have to wait until 2011 before this technology is comercially available, but it already appears that it will be worth the wait.
Last modified on Tuesday, 20 July 2010 11:56
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-7 #1 Fud_u 2010-07-20 11:44
I'm still waiting for Cedarwood and RedOak to come out. No time for Redwood.
+10 #2 BernardP 2010-07-20 12:09
Let's not forget that graphics performance will be lower because of the absence of dedicated video memory. But still it will be very acceptable. Now, let's see those CPU clocks!
+13 #3 dan 2010-07-20 12:47
Fudo you need to make it clear WHICH Fusion product has Redwood-equivalent graphics.
+7 #4 Alexko 2010-07-20 13:02
"Almost everyone had expected to see Cedar, an entry level Radeon 5000 core as a part of Fusion"

Not really. Well, not since November 2009, when AMD released die-shots of Llano, which clearly showed a lot more shaders than in Cedar.
+9 #5 jon 2010-07-20 13:45
With news that Fusion APUs will incorporate Redwood graphics architecture on die, it seems that AMD may have a much stronger foothold over Intel's expanding Atom platform in the entry-level market.

Where a dual-core Atom N550 1.50GHz chip with an 8.5W TDP can only provide GMA 3150 graphics power at best, consumers benefit most from Nvidia attaching an ION GPU to hang off the DMI interface between the CPU and chipset. Unfortunately, Intel's NM10 chipset only includes four PCIe 1.0 lanes providing 250MB/s of bi-directional bandwidth each, and only one of them is actually being used for most discreet ION chips - hardly enough for a modern GPU.

As Fudo mentioned three weeks ago, the first dual-core Fusion APU will fit in the Brazos platform, and performance of its Redwood equivalent IPG (Integrated Processor Graphics 8) ) can be expected to be more in-line with a dedicated card, all within a quite acceptable 25W TDP package.

I'm personally looking forward to the performance of AMD's netbook platform next year more than Intel's Atom hardware respins.
+1 #6 pogsnet 2010-07-20 14:12
I expect better since it plays Alien vs Predator well, if you only knew what is the minimum specs for that game. Base on the demo using Fusion APU it plays well at decent resolution and settings. This was announced in computex event but under closed door.
-1 #7 anno 2010-07-20 15:52
Quoting jon:

Jon, Faud didn't say which Fusion product will have a Redwood class GPU. As you may know there are not one but three Fusion platforms: netbooks, notebooks and desktops.

So, it could be that the Redwood GPU is only for desktop parts, for instance, since those have a higher TDP. The other two might still have a Cedar type GPU.
0 #8 terrace215 2010-07-20 18:09
Which Fusion part, Fuad?

40nm bulk (TSMC) Ontario for netbooks/low-end notebooks?

32nm SOI HKMG (GloFo) Llano for notebooks? (delayed)

32nm SOI HKMG (GloFo) Llano for desktops? (delayed)
0 #9 terrace215 2010-07-20 18:11
Ontario has a much weaker CPU AND GPU than Llano mobile, per AMD.
0 #10 anno 2010-07-20 18:37
Terrace, you certainly know how to display things in the worst possible way...

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