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Specific questions re: Ivy Brige and gaming


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#1 thesorehead

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Posted 23 March 2012 - 03:08 PM

Hi all, Question 1 - Current rig: AMD X2 4200 / 2GB DDR800 / 512MB 8600GT / 1TB Samsung HDD. Will an Ivy i7 ultrabook (such as the Lenovo Yoga) outperform this machine in games? It's sure to demolish it in every other metric, but I want a new "main" machine and that means it has to play StarCraft 2, Minecraft and TF2 at least as well as my current rig. I'm in no rush whatsoever, but I'm also super-tight so I'd like to know whether the mobile IB CPU/IGPs will be worth my time or if I'll be stuck with building a SFF desktop. Question 2 - If it turns out that mobile IB chips are not the way to go, then in desktop CPUs - AMD Fusion APU or Intel HD4000? I really, really don't want to bother with a discrete GPU, but if I do is there a way for Intel chips to work with a GPU the way AMD APUs can "fuse" with AMD GPUs?
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#2 Dasa

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Posted 23 March 2012 - 03:56 PM

if your happy gaming at a low res ~30fps id be supised if one of those didnt cope 1600x900 nativ res on the yoga may strugle depending on the game and settings but its just guess work untill its out and we see reviews
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#3 cohmoddersolo

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Posted 24 March 2012 - 12:24 AM

If you want an ultrabook that can handle games, find one with a gtx540m or gtx555m graphics card in them. I think its near impossible to game comfortably with integrated gpu.

Edited by cohmoddersolo, 24 March 2012 - 12:25 AM.

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#4 UberPenguin

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Posted 24 March 2012 - 09:35 AM

Or if gaming is what matters a Llano or trinity would be good. The integrated GPU kills the Ivy's but the cpu is slower. Essentially if you want gaming performance without a designated GPU go AMD fusion. If you want CPU power and not so much GPU power go Ivy.

Edited by UberPenguin, 24 March 2012 - 09:36 AM.

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#5 thesorehead

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Posted 25 March 2012 - 09:26 AM

Hey folks, thanks for the advice. As I said, I'm in no rush so I'll definitely wait for reviews, but from what I've seen some reviews favour IB and some favour Llano for gaming performance. So I thought I'd ask here! If Llano kills the Ivy for gaming, then can you recommend a notebook with Llano? An i3 would kick my current CPU's arse, so I'm not too fussed with AMDs poorer performance! Currently I play SC2 at 1280*800, most settings down low. That's quite adequate for me, but I don't want to compromise any further! cohmoddersolo - can you recommend a model or range? The reason I'm after the Yoga is the whole "ultraslate" idea.

Edited by thesorehead, 25 March 2012 - 09:28 AM.

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#6 cohmoddersolo

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Posted 25 March 2012 - 10:43 AM

cohmoddersolo - can you recommend a model or range? The reason I'm after the Yoga is the whole "ultraslate" idea.


This article should give you a good idea about gaming ultrabooks.

Edited by cohmoddersolo, 25 March 2012 - 05:01 PM.

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#7 UberPenguin

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Posted 25 March 2012 - 12:59 PM

Llano is an older architecture, if you want an ultrabook (or ultrathin) specifically and not a normal laptop then waiting for Trinity would be your best bet. The long and short of it all these days is that AMD laptops based on the fusion CPUs are just better for gaming because the GPU has a lot more grunt. I talked my sister into buying an E-350 fusion netbook and she can run Mass Effect 2 and dragon age on it pretty well (at the lowest spec) and that’s just a netbook.

The A6 llano I'm using to type this is actually a pretty damn good little gaming laptop (medium-low spec depending on the game) with a good battery life. But it looks like trinity will add an extra 50% graphical improvement over llano. There was a demo released recently of desktop trinity running Dirt 2 on medium eyefinity across 3 1600x900 screens, and on full settings on the single screen laptop. Really if we are talking gaming performance with battery life AMD has got it in the bag.

BUT if you want CPU grunt, like you do a lot of video editing and don't want to wait longer for it, Intel has the clear win. For the conceivable future Intel is going to kill AMD on the CPU power side of things and AMD will destroy Intel on the GPU side of things. So the way I see it is that at this moment in time and most likely for a while into the future GPU is far more important factor for gaming. Even severely dated CPUs can provide great gaming experiences if the video card is up to scratch.

EDIT this is a pretty good comparison of the starcraft 2 performance between desktop llano and sandybridge http://www.hardwares...-Review/1470/13 Trinity and Ivy are going to be much better then these two but as you can see if we are talking integrated graphics and gaming AMD takes the cake at this point in time

Edited by UberPenguin, 25 March 2012 - 01:04 PM.

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#8 thesorehead

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 09:30 AM

Thanks for the link! My current CPU serves my needs well as it is, and will be absolutely demolished by any mid-range modern CPU. So the decision rests on other factors.

Hmmm... so when it comes to gaming, dollar for dollar (A8-3870 vs. i3) Llano kills Sandy and Ivy; and Trinity will pretty much certainly trample Ivy. If and when it comes.

I wanted the Yoga because it's the best convergence of PC and tablet I've seen - and I was hoping that IB would be adequate for games, meaning it can qualify for being my main machine. According to that link a desktop Sandy i3 can get 30+ FPS on "High" settings in SC2, at 1440*900 (I normally play at 1280*800, low/med custom settings).

Can I expect a mobile Ivy i7 to outperform this chip for graphics? If so, that'll do me just fine. There's still 6+ months to go, so maybe by then there'll be an equivalent product with AMD Trinity!

Edited by thesorehead, 26 March 2012 - 09:31 AM.

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#9 UberPenguin

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Posted 27 March 2012 - 09:37 AM

Ivy has a big boost over sandy, I dont think it beats llano but still a huge improvement over sandy. Trinity will offer +%50 and more (as far as current hype mill suggests) over llano - baring in mind we are just talking about mainstream gaming performance/graphics the CPU component on Ivy will kill trinity.


you certainly won't be able to do this with Ivy -
http://www.tomshardw...Demo,15009.html

Edited by UberPenguin, 27 March 2012 - 09:51 AM.

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#10 thesorehead

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Posted 27 March 2012 - 12:32 PM

Mainstream gaming/graphics performance without a discrete GPU is all I really care about here, so Trinity is looking damn good. I'm not wedded to the ultraportable idea, so much as the ability to use Win8 with a touchscreen. That's the big appeal of the Yoga over other portables - it'd be nice to see an ultraportable with Win8, Trinity and a touchscreen!
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#11 nesquick

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Posted 05 April 2012 - 08:33 AM

shop around there are some ultra books coming in with discrete graphics chips. also food for thought my vaio I can switch between the HD3000 intel chip and the HD6470m, the intel GPU is pretty bad tbh and doesn't play anything well.
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