Friday, December 30th 2016

AMD A12-9800 "Bristol Ridge" AM4 APU with ASUS A320M-C Tested

German PC enthusiast "Crashtest" clinched a sweet combo of an AMD A12-9800 "Bristol Ridge" socket AM4 APU with an ASUS A320M-C entry-level micro-ATX motherboard, for 200€. Pairing it with 8 GB of dual-channel DDR4-2133 memory, the platform was put through the AIDA64 test-suite. In the memory front, the platform performs on-par with older platforms at comparable DDR3 bandwidth. The K15.6 integrated memory controller isn't producing the kind of memory bandwidth as the Core i7-6700K with dual-channel DDR4-2133 memory from AIDA64's internal reference bench table.

In the CPU-related tests, the APU has about the same performance as its predecessors, such as the A10-7850K. The chip features two "Excavator" x86-64 CPU modules, making up four cores, and is clocked at 4.20 GHz. There are performance upticks seen in tests such as Hash and VP8, where the chip likely benefits from new instruction sets.
More results follow.

Below are pictures of the board and the A12-9800 chip.

Source: Crashtest on Planet3DNow Forums
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35 Comments on AMD A12-9800 "Bristol Ridge" AM4 APU with ASUS A320M-C Tested

#1
the54thvoid
I read the source - used a boxed oem cooler. Doesn't help on the AM4 cooler compatibility issues.... I'm looking for ward to air cooling on CPU moving forward but until the damn thing is out, socket compatibility is unknown.
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#2
RejZoR
Wait a second, AM4 APU, but wth Excavator cores? Something doesn't compute here or it's intentional for the low(er) end part to be on new socket, but based on old tech...
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#3
-The_Mask-
RejZoR said:
Wait a second, AM4 APU, but wth Excavator cores? Something doesn't compute here or it's intentional for the low(er) end part to be on new socket, but based on old tech...
I don't see anything strange, the problem most be between your monitor and keyboard. :D
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#4
ShurikN
RejZoR said:
Wait a second, AM4 APU, but wth Excavator cores?
Wait how did you miss that. It's been known for quite some time. They needed something to fill the gap to Zen, and to have a product for the AM4/DDR4 mobos.
True Zen apus have an unknown release date, if i'm not mistaken.
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#5
Chromatix
RejZoR said:
Wait a second, AM4 APU, but wth Excavator cores? Something doesn't compute here or it's intentional for the low(er) end part to be on new socket, but based on old tech...
Somebody's been hiding under a rock for the past six months.

Bristol Ridge is just a respin of Carrizo. It officially supports DDR4, while Carrizo was released only in DDR3 configurations. It also reaches higher clock speeds than Carrizo did, both on CPU cores and iGPU. The DDR4 support allows it to be the first AM4 socket APU.

Stoney Ridge is a budget APU, also with Excavator cores, but only one pair of them and a smaller iGPU. I don't know whether it's coming to AM4 as well, but it's definitely showing up in cheap laptops.

Summit Ridge is the first Zen CPU. It'll also be on AM4, but it won't have an iGPU at all. Coming Soon™.

Raven Ridge will be the first Zen APU, with the iGPU being Vega-derived. This will be the third AM4 chip, and the second AM4 APU. However it won't be ready until several months after Summit Ridge is released.

AMD wants to retire the old AM3+ and FM2+ sockets ASAP. Giving us Bristol Ridge on AM4 lets them do that without leaving a huge gap in the low end of the market.
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#6
birdie
Pretty awful performance all around except for hashing.

This page of AMD CPU history should be closed and forgotten.
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#7
Chromatix
It's sitting pretty much where I'd expect Excavator at this clock speed. On most benchmarks it does poorly relative to high-end competitors (and sometimes even compared to old Phenom IIs), but it's consistently a little ahead of Steamroller.

Remember, this is a relatively cheap APU; the bundle with m/board costs similar to a Core i3 + m/board, and the iGPU surely outperforms the i3's. The board will also happily take upgrades to Zen+Vega, making it impressively future-proof.
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#8
Frick
Fishfaced Nincompoop
What about gaming? I wanna know how much faster the GPU is than the 7890K.
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#9
Chromatix
It's a valid question - we'll have to wait for someone who actually has one to run benchmarks. I expect it'll mostly be bandwidth limited, so it should be run at different RAM speeds too, up to at least 3200.
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#10
iO
the54thvoid said:
I read the source - used a boxed oem cooler. Doesn't help on the AM4 cooler compatibility issues.... I'm looking for ward to air cooling on CPU moving forward but until the damn thing is out, socket compatibility is unknown.
As stated in the source they did change the hole dimensions, thats why he went with an old Oem cooler.
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#11
the54thvoid
iO said:
As stated in the source they did change the hole dimensions, thats why he went with an old Oem cooler.
You have confused me.

If AM4 uses new hole dimensions, how can you have used an 'old' oem cooler? The old cooler will be AM3 compatible, not AM4. I read it as the APU came with an OEM cooler?
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#12
Chromatix
AMD heatsinks come in two varieties - one which uses the mounting holes directly, and one which mounts to the plastic bracket fitted to AMD m/boards by default. AMD's stock heatsinks are always of the latter variety, and *that* remains compatible all the way from Socket 754, 939 and 940 to AM4. You can just as easily use a Wraith on an old K8 Sempron and on new AM4 chips, as you can on its intended AM3+ CPUs.

What's changed with AM4 are the mounting holes. M/boards have new, straight plastic brackets which fit into the new mounting holes and provide the old stock-heatsink mounting points. You just need new mounting hardware for most aftermarket heatsinks.

A few aftermarket heatsink vendors, including Noctua, have promised to make new mounting hardware available for existing models.
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#13
the54thvoid
Chromatix said:
AMD heatsinks come in two varieties - one which uses the mounting holes directly, and one which mounts to the plastic bracket fitted to AMD m/boards by default. AMD's stock heatsinks are always of the latter variety, and *that* remains compatible all the way from Socket 754, 939 and 940 to AM4. You can just as easily use a Wraith on an old K8 Sempron and on new AM4 chips, as you can on its intended AM3+ CPUs.

What's changed with AM4 are the mounting holes. M/boards have new, straight plastic brackets which fit into the new mounting holes and provide the old stock-heatsink mounting points. You just need new mounting hardware for most aftermarket heatsinks.

A few aftermarket heatsink vendors, including Noctua, have promised to make new mounting hardware available for existing models.
I'm looking at a Thermalright cooler.... they said a while back they were compatible but since then others have said differently.
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#14
xorbe
20/11/18 (read/write/copy) [GB/s] on the DDR4 memory benchmarks, why so slow? My DDR3 system gets 35/37/34.
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#15
Chromatix
Simple reason, Bulldozer family's cache architecture is horrible. None of them get anywhere near normal memory performance, except from the iGPU in the case of APUs.
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#16
GhostRyder
That seems odd... Not sure what to believe on these tests as it shows to be pretty poor performing even knowing its a "BullDozer" based APU especially compared to the other APU's in the lineup. Maybe its accurate but I guess I am always skeptical of these leaks.
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#17
Basard
Good for Grandma's computer.
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#18
dalekdukesboy
Chromatix said:
Somebody's been hiding under a rock for the past six months.

Bristol Ridge is just a respin of Carrizo. It officially supports DDR4, while Carrizo was released only in DDR3 configurations. It also reaches higher clock speeds than Carrizo did, both on CPU cores and iGPU. The DDR4 support allows it to be the first AM4 socket APU.

Stoney Ridge is a budget APU, also with Excavator cores, but only one pair of them and a smaller iGPU. I don't know whether it's coming to AM4 as well, but it's definitely showing up in cheap laptops.

Summit Ridge is the first Zen CPU. It'll also be on AM4, but it won't have an iGPU at all. Coming Soon™.

Raven Ridge will be the first Zen APU, with the iGPU being Vega-derived. This will be the third AM4 chip, and the second AM4 APU. However it won't be ready until several months after Summit Ridge is released.

AMD wants to retire the old AM3+ and FM2+ sockets ASAP. Giving us Bristol Ridge on AM4 lets them do that without leaving a huge gap in the low end of the market.
Considering the turd-like level of performance of this "CPU" (using that term lightly) you shouldn't be surprised many of us have "hid under a rock" from AMD for years never mind months! I give him credit if he only missed 6 months of the AMD progress, he must really be a sadomasochist
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#19
MikeX
Why they tested with very high Ram Timings? CL 15 on 2133??
I would imagine it should be better than 7850k with CL 9
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#20
Chromatix
The timings are on a different scale for DDR4 than for DDR3. I'm not sure of the details, but I imagine they just left it at the defaults, and that they're no slower in practice than typical DDR3.
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#21
Chromatix
dalekdukesboy said:
Considering the turd-like level of performance of this "CPU" (using that term lightly) you shouldn't be surprised many of us have "hid under a rock" from AMD for years never mind months! I give him credit if he only missed 6 months of the AMD progress, he must really be a sadomasochist
I hoped that the upcoming Zen CPUs would have at least raised interest in everything to do with the AM4 socket. Even if you don't plan to buy any of the Bulldozer-family chips - an entirely defensible position - I think it's wise to know which ones they are.

Bristol Ridge, being essentially an existing product repackaged, offers an inexpensive way to build an AM4-based machine that can subsequently be upgraded very nicely - and on a per-core basis it *is* generally an improvement over previous AMD CPUs, despite its smaller L2 caches and lack of L3 cache. Look at how close it gets to the FX-8350 on several tests, at half the power consumption and slightly lower clock speeds.
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#22
dalekdukesboy
Chromatix said:
I hoped that the upcoming Zen CPUs would have at least raised interest in everything to do with the AM4 socket. Even if you don't plan to buy any of the Bulldozer-family chips - an entirely defensible position - I think it's wise to know which ones they are.

Bristol Ridge, being essentially an existing product repackaged, offers an inexpensive way to build an AM4-based machine that can subsequently be upgraded very nicely - and on a per-core basis it *is* generally an improvement over previous AMD CPUs, despite its smaller L2 caches and lack of L3 cache. Look at how close it gets to the FX-8350 on several tests, at half the power consumption and slightly lower clock speeds.
https://www.techpowerup.com/forums/threads/intels-core-i3-7350k-to-reportedly-be-absent-from-initial-kaby-lake-launch.229110/#post-3578426

Ironically I posted that before I posted here, but obviously you probably didn't see it but is just funny, because I have glanced at AMD news for last several years but till I heard of Zen I was just tired of AMD for sucking and Intel for just sitting on their lead doing squat. But trust me I'm as excited as anyone about Zen, I have an x79 system and it should be ancient and cheap and irrelevant...instead CPU's for it still are several hundred to even a thousand dollars! That's crazy for a platform from 2011. So I've got an ES 3960x which prevents me updating to latest bios (no support beyond certain bios version) and I am eyeing an 8 core xeon but about a grand for that thing! Currently even if I want a 4960x it's 400-500 on ebay....until last week or so I just looked noticed a few go for just over 300 bucks, possibly already demand shrinking due to Zen rumors? I hope so. Like you said Zen succeeding helps all of us, value and innovation in cpu's has been dead while GPU's have continued to fly along mostly and AMD and Nvidia both have kept up most every generation.
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#23
Nihilus
Not sure what is worse in "improvements":
Skylake to Kaby Lake or A10-7800 to A12-9800.

Seriously what is the point of this apu? So you can upgrade to a Zen later? That is silly as you can get (on newegg) a 7850k for $90, fm2 mb for $35, and 8gb of descent ddr3 for $50. That is $175 TOTAL. You are better off going that route and upgrading to the newest motherboard and Zen cpu instead of screwing around switching out cpus.
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#24
Chromatix
The real point is so that AMD and their partners can retire the FM2+ socket at the same time as AM3+. The older parts will still float around the discount market for a while, but you can be reasonably sure they're already out of production. That, in part, is *why* they're so cheap.

It's also so that Joe Average and his grandparents, wandering into Best Buy with no real clue about what's inside a computer, have at least *some* chance of buying into a future-proof platform instead of an orphaned one. AMD released the AM4 platform to OEM prebuilt partners first.

I myself have an A10-7850K already. Bristol Ridge isn't a significant performance upgrade from that, so I almost certainly won't buy one. But if I desperately needed to build *something* today, I'd look for Bristol Ridge first, because I then wouldn't need to replace $85 worth (by your figures) of hardware that Zen can't use. That's worth the difference between $175 and €200.

What's intensely frustrating is that, months after the OEM release, we still can't buy AM4 gear at retail except for this single, rather obscure bundle. It really cramps the options available to give advice on.
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#25
dalekdukesboy
I get what you both are saying and appreciate the opposing views, however I am with Chromatix here because to me the real hassle is swapping motherboards and literally replacing everything versus just pop off your cooler and take 2 seconds to swap cpu's and reattach cooler and voila you have "new" system. Especially if it means throwing away even 100 bucks on stuff I never can use that is just insult to injury to me, and no idea how you can call swapping processors "screwing around" compared to replacing everything in your chassis! To me that is the real royal pain in the arse and hours of time if you got a lot of stuff and cables to re-route, re-attach etc. I want Zen to be awesome but case in point I have x79 with old sandy bridge e ES that was all I could afford after getting RIVE and good GPU etc and I would prefer to just have the Ivy Bridge cpu's crash in price with Zen coming along and kicking butt so I can simply get a now affordable upgraded processor and "plunk" it in and be done. Especially if Zen isn't much better than what I have but even if it is this system still is way more than I need for anything I do (like posting here lol), but even if it is better even at similar price point for whole system I'd rather just swap my cpu; because much as I love building systems when it's my own and no profit is involved the love of doing it wears off quickly when it seems you never are out of your case and you spend more time screwing around with hardware than actually having it turned on and using and enjoying it.
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