3.8 GHz, 4 MB Cache
|Memory:||8 GB DDR3 (2x 4 GB) AMD Performance Edition Memory AP38G1869U2K|
|Motherboard:||ECS A85F2-A Golden|
AMD A85X, BIOS 2012/11/14
|Video Card:||Onboard APU Radeon HD 7660D|
|Harddisk:||Corsair ForceGT 60 GB SATA 6 Gb/s SSD(TEST)|
Western Digital WD500AAKS 500 GB SATA 3 Gb/s (DATA
Corsair F60 60 GB SATA 3 Gb/s SSD(OS)
Velocity SuperSpeed USB3.0 External Dock w/Corsair ForceGT(TEST)
|Power Supply:||Seasonic SS-860XP2|
|Software:||Windows 7 64-bit SP1, ATI Catalyst 12.10|
Getting things installed into the ECS A85F2-A Golden is pretty easy, and the slot layout is such that if you install two dual-slot VGAs, you'll still have access to two PCIe x1 slots and a PCI slot. That odd SATA port sticking out of the board can also be accessed if dual-slot VGAs are installed.
Booting into the OS after installation and enabling the AMD AMP profile for my AMD memory worked just fine, but I noticed that overall CPU speed was 200 MHz higher than on other boards, where I saw 4000 MHz instead of the 4200 MHz on the ECS A85F2-A Golden. I expect high results in CPU-based benchmarks if the reported speed is accurate, but I am not going to keep my hopes up since AMD's APUs have been known to report false speeds.
Power ConsumptionWe measure CPU power consumption since one of our first tasks is to truly verify system stability. I isolate the power coming through the 8-pin ATX connector using an in-line meter that provides voltage and current readings as well as total wattage passed through it. While this may not prove to isolate the CPU power draw in all instances, it does serve as a good indicator of board efficiency and effective VRM design. I also measure total system power consumption, which allows you to get an idea of how much power the board and installed devices draw.
Since the ECS A85F2-A Golden uses a hybrid analogue/digital VRM design, I expected far higher numbers than the ones I got. Pretty impressive that an older design is so close to the newer parts, but it was higher across the board, so those new designs definitely have their advantages. What makes it even more interesting is the higher clocks the ECS A85F2-A Golden is running.