Monday, 19 May 2014


Now I have been doing some thinking lately along the lines of computing and I have been doing a lot of reading.

Thise that come here or my blog on corruption will know full well that since I started the blogs I have talked about building a PC Rig? In January AMD bought out an intriguing APU Chip codenamed Kaveri. This bought with it another leap in graphics and yet while the CPU side of things did not really move forward it did cut down an power consumption a great deal. It also may not have moved forward but it did this with a drop in CPU clock frequency. That was not bad!

Of course a higher frequency would have meant it did move forward and still would have been less power hungry than its predecessor! But, hey its a start.

Now I have read a great deal about this chip online and the contradictions are so wide its laughable. From playing on high settings to medium to low and in differeing resolutions too.

Now not that long ago Elder Scrolls Skyrim was lauded as a fantastic looking game. I did not realise until recently that it was an older Direct X game and this was a suprise, though in all honesty Direct X has not really made huge leaps forwards in recent times.

OK so there are games now that are supposed to have better graphics, albeit with lesser gameplay on some titles, but I find the claims about some games not being able to be played a bit odd.

Also I have been leaning towards kaveri because I seem to read and feel confident that buying into an FM2+ motherboard will allow me to plug Kaveri's replacement in, codenamed Carruzo.

Now I have played both Fallout New Vegas and Elder Scrolls Skyrim on my laptop and yes the setting were turned down some to play them but nowhere near as much as I thought! In matter of fact I asked in my local Game store if my graphics chip would run Elder Scrolls IV Oblivion and the chaps said no. Not knowing which of the and New Vegas were the older of the two, yes I have been out of touch for a long time, I stated that this was weird because I played Fallout New Vegas, or could have been Fallout 3, OK. When I stated this they were shocked I was playing it on my laptop and said Oblivion would run.

It did but quite bizarrely I had to drop the settings down a lot more than the two Fallouts and even Skyrim! Yes I said Skyirm!

Now my laptop is a Phenom X3, not 4, running at 1.8GHZ and the graphics os the mobile version obviously of a AMD Radeon 5470.

Yes I plaied those games on this laptop and sure the fan snarled away whenever I played them but the fact was I did play them...

On 1600x900 on medium settings and even have 2xAF and 3, or it it 4, xAA. Or the other way around I cannot remember. Cannot do that with Skyrim but can on New Vegas.

Here are some screen shots ...

Now before anyone graons that these are old games I say to them that they are missing the point of this post and the screen shots. Now in the screenshots above you will see what I have in the way of hardware and below is a link to a video, and a funny one where me and my companions invent the New Vegas JIG. In the first video you see New Vegas running on the settings I show in the screen shots.

The reason I am playing it again is that I did a dual boot with a version of Linux, Ubuntu, some ten years plus from trying this last time. The magazine I read stated it was easy but completely failed to inform readers of two extremely important things ...

1 That WIndows is coded to refuse to install if it sees a non Microsoft Operating System, a fact they have been sued for a few times by various groups of software engineers and Steve Balmaer at his very best!

2 That you should not attempt to install Ubuntu, or any Linux OS for that matter, if you have AMD chips, especially GRAPHICS!!

Now I did a video of this and got lambasted by someone who insinuated I was an idiot for complaining about this and lambasting the Linux OS. Well yes of course we are all bloody psychic of course! The point was the magazine did not point out that over half the graphics cards out there do not work with Linux based OS's due to lack of drivers!

That was a pretty major ommission! The fact is you do not tell readers how easy it is and leave something like that out! To add fuel to this particular fire very recently a friend of mine bought an old Sony Vaio laptop to me he bought for his wife. I text him and told him it dual booted with Ubuntu and he was pleased as he knew about Ubuntu through me.

HOWEVER, once I had ridded the machine from all the mistakes its owner had made I then booted into Ubuntu, or at least I attempted to! Basically it was a no go and just locked up just prior to the detop GUI and this was a machine using an Intel CPU?!


Anyway I deleted it off and put it back to how it was. Now despite stating this I have read some little snippets that there has been a big push by AMD for drivers on Linux. Probably because of the hge cock up that is Windows 8 along with the announcement by Valve Software of a STeam Operating System to run games, along with the imminent Steam Boxes for games too?

So things are looking kind of cool but I find some of the things stated somewhat misleading.

That chap that left the comment with the insinuation may well have been the writer of the articale or a big fan of them, I don't know and I don't particularly care. The fact was it was wrong to do it and I have been stunned by many things I had read, so much so that when I pick up a magazine these days I wonder if ots worth my money and will it be full of crap?

This leads my straight back to the AMD Kaveri chip, namely the A10-7850k APU. I find it stunning that they say the things they do about it considering the cash it costs, especially as you can add a cheap graphics card the vastly increases the graphics power.

Now currently the two cards that work are the R7-240 in dual graphics but I would suggest not to bother. Then there is the R7-250 which I have seen benchmarks that can raise the frames per second from anoywhere around 10 to 20 and that is significant if you having difficulty playing a game with the settings on full.

Added to this there is no reason why a driver update will not be realeased to allow the Kaveri to pair up with an R7-260? Some stated that you cannot use graphics cards that use DDR5 and has to be DDR3 but I read one guy that said he got his DDR5 card to work. Odd.

What I see is loads of bold statements ad arguing and then when something happens out of the ordinary all the technical tomfoolery stops being flung around and everyone stops and goes, 'oh?'.

They might also release I higher clocked R7-250 that will be better still in Dual Graphics mode with Kaveri though I wish they would hurry up as this is my conundrum I would have to face if I built one!

Another little fact I have come across is there seems to be a belief in some quarters that there is more to the Kaveri chip and I do find this quite intriguing. It seems that peoples maths and study of the chip has worked out that the size and the tranistor count do not match up. But I have heard this before with AMD and not too long ago in fact.

So there was some speculation and discussion on one forum about whether or not the chip had more to it that had been swicthed off?!

Now this could turn out to be true because of a heat issue.

However if this turns out to be the case there is one good reason for it that not only makes the theory some bright sparkes have come up with but that it also explains something that AMD states would come out down the line and not too long ago.

The consoles!

It might be that the two big console companies made AMD sign an agreement that they would not release the full version of the chip because their own ,achines were imminent and they did not want potentional customers going off and building a PC instead. AFter all the new consoles are very PC like, are they hot?

Also if anyone remembers when askeed about the customised chips in the consoles AMD stated that a PC desktop version would be made for sale further down the road?!

Now what I find interesting is this ...

1 There has been precious little in rumours regaqrding any more desktop APUs or CPUs from AMD for the rest of 2014 and I find this bizarre. I cannot recall a time that this has happened in recent years but I do have abad memory! Lol!

2 Any release of any chip like this would surely have to happen prior to Carrizo being launched which everyone seems to anticipate has taking place around January 2015?!

Hmm interesting, so I might dive in and buy a cut down Kaveri only for the chip I really want to be released a couple of months later?! Bah-humbug!! Lol!

Food for thought though.

The videos of New Vegas on an AMD Radeon 5470M at 1600x900 2xAF 3xAA, I think or near as damn it and should be in the screen shots above anyway...

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