AMD met with a positive reception for their Llano based A series APU’s – targeting customers working on a relatively tight budget who want an ‘all in one’ chip design for a media center PC or low cost workhorse machine.
We are looking at the latest flagship A8-3870K Black Edition today, a minor upgrade to the A8-3850, which we reviewed some time ago. Additionally we also review Sapphire’s HD6450 FleX Edition graphics card, which should make for an ideal, low cost pairing with the 3870K for multiple screen support in a work based environment.
The A8-3850 was a capable design, but a portion of the enthusiast sector didn’t really warm to it, as it was locked. Fear not, for the 3870K has redressed this problem … meaning we now have more options at hand when it comes to overclocking.
We have already looked at the on die HD6550D graphics performance in our previous review, however I still believe that the enthusiast audience generally interested in building a media center or versatile, enthusiast grade system will opt for a full discrete solution. This isn’t just my view – Intel have the same idea, with a handful of updated processors targeting the enthusiast sector without IGP support.
Therefore, instead of retreading old ground, we felt a pairing up with Sapphire’s passively cooled, multi screen capable HD6450 FleX would make for more interesting reading.
Sapphire already make a series of FleX edition graphics cards, and we have reviewed them all before, but the HD6450 is an ideal partner for the A8-3870K. It consumes very little power, doesn’t require any PCI power connectors, and supports multiple screens without the need for a complex system configuration.
Will a system based around these two components be a good choice for a general all round workstation, with an option for casual 720p gaming?