Originally Posted by BeepBeep2
In my opinion, which I am allowed to voice just as much as you, AMD is doing great with their APU line. However, Bulldozer has sucked. Their APU line is great for low power applications and entry/mainstream, but they are simply unable to compete in upper midrange and high end. Kepler poses some problems for GCN architecture too.
Well, bulldozer sucks mainly due to it's power inefficiency. If it weren't for that, then it would be a success, as it was meant to "hold the line" of IPC and increase power efficiency and thread count. Quite obviously it failed in the first iteration in two out of the three goals. Piledriver is looking to be like what it was meant to be, while increasing clocks as well. Given there's an A10 2m/4c/4t 3.6ghz 65w part with integrated graphics in the lineup.
So the idea behind bulldozer was good... it's first implementation wasn't. If this is real, then IPC still doesn't seem to quite match Llano, but should be about on par with Deneb.
On GCN's end, there is still speculation about on that the 79xx series under-performing based upon how the 78xx series performs. And it is great at GPGPU- which is what AMD needs for it's future heterogeneous computing goals, where they can dump floating point operations onto the GPU part of the APU, as well as heavily multithreaded environments where one can run parallelization on the graphics part as well. Not to mention GCN being able to naively run C++, which as both the PS3 and the Durango (aka xbox 720.) may very well have GCN graphics, we may see future games taking advantage of GPU compute. While it doesn't amount much in the short term except for Bitcoin mining, web browsing, media players, and a faster UI in the OS, it is also still better at tessellation than past AMD graphics cards, and more energy efficient than anything but Kepler. And it isn't really that much less power efficient than kepler. 5% less power efficient than the top end part and 5-15% slower depending on the game, although the 7970 is nearly twice as fast in GPGPU than Kepler. So GCN is a better all-round architecture whereas Kepler is optimized for gaming.
And AMD has also managed to remain more ethical in their practices than their competition, which is a win in my books.