Kitguru have been making an appearance at IDF and today we spent some time with AMD at their ‘hotel location’. They were really keen to focus on their new CPU architecture with integrated graphics. The new ‘APU’ chip is code-named ‘Zacate’ and it is based on dual Bobcat CPU cores and Evergreen class Direct X 11 graphics.
This chip only takes a maximum of 18W power and is the quicker of the two Bobcat based APUs. AMD Guru Chris Mikesell spent some time with us and gave us a rolling demonstration. The first part of our video was based around City Of Heroes with the game running on both Zacate and on a Core i5 based laptop. The Core i5 system’s integrated HD graphics processor was struggling to hit 15fps while on the AMD Zacate solution it was peaking between 30-40fps.
Chris also showed us an early version of Internet Explorer 9 with GPU acceleration, focusing on some intensive content. As before the Core i5 system was struggling to deliver a smooth experience while the Zacate solution was hardly breaking a sweat.
We had a chat with Chris later and he gave us some information on the hardware, saying it was a discrete level GPU with an APU incorporating a video decode block similar to the UVD hardware in current day Radeon hardware but more in line with the upcoming Northern Islands chips.
Zacate based systems are due to hit the market in Q1 2011, followed shortly by Ontario solutions.