I'm about to build a similar budget HTPC to digital foundry's under 300 experiment, and I wondered if the new AMD chip could be a better bet, using the IGP.
It will actually mainly be used as an emulator PC to play my PS2 collection and various other consoles.
It seems the A10 beats the G860 in everything apart from single threaded stuff. And the IGP of the A10 seems to be pretty much on par with the Radeon 6770, especially with 2ghz system ram.
I'm thinking most emulators like PCSX2 and Dolphin are CPU bound and single threaded, so the G860 might hold a slight advantage. It probably won't matter though, as the A10 should still run them at 60fps comfortably.
So it's possible the A10 is an even better deal for a budget HTPC gaming PC. At only 90 pounds, it's even cheaper, uses slightly less power, and should be quieter too right, without the additional GPU fan?
DFPC Vs AMD A10-5800k
FutileResistor 1,221 posts
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Emulation requires processing power. I would go the Intel route with a B75 motherboard, you will be able to just drop in an i3/i5 later if you find the G860 not up to the job. I would go with an i3-3220 from the off, but that would push you over £300.
The A10 is fine but if you go with the A10 you will be pretty much stuck with very limited ability to improve your CPU horsepower.
B75 mother board £45
Radeon 7770 £85
Corsair 430CX V2 PSU £36
Crucial 4GB (2x2GB) DDR3 1600Mhz Ballistix RAM £15 from Ebuyer
Generic Case £20
Seagate 500GB Barracuda 7200 RPM HDD £46
I make that around £297.
Edited by FutileResistor at 15:58:07 24-12-2012
I did start to think the same thing actually. Even if I'm right and the performance is comparable even for emulators, the 1155 is just a much better socket to have isn't it? As you said it would be so simple to just whack an i3 or i5 in there if necessary. Plus the Pentium and 6770 only work out at about 106 quid compared to 92 for the A10.
Regarding emulators, what % of their performance do you think is down to the CPU, say for Dolphin or PCSX2? I'm thinking at least 75%, as the number of polys and shaders they're using should be pretty easy work for most GPUs, it's obviously just getting to that stage that's the hard part.
I was thinking of keeping strictly to the DFPC cpu and gpu, so I could spend a bit more on a mini itx case. Only problem is, the only reasonably priced 1155 itx motherboards I've seen are h61, which I don't think are Ivy Bridge compatible right? The z77's are a good chunk more, at least 75.