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AMD Goes Live With Fusion A-Series Chips

AMD has unveiled new chips, as part of its new A-Series fusion family, that will combine up to four cores with a DirectX-11 compatible GPU and, some are reporting, a dedicated chip for video encoding and decoding.

HP has already jumped on the bandwagon by announcing 11 laptops based on the A-series chips, starting from $449 with Lenovo, Acer, Dell, Asus and others expected to follow suit soon.

The chips will also come to desktops where the combination of faster video performance and decent raw computational power may help them attract price-sensitive buyers.

The A-series are unlikely to outperform their Intel counterparts because they are still based on the old AMD Phenom II processors, albeit with some tweaks. Versions of the A-Series based on the new Bobcat architecture will emerge next year.

The three parts announced are the A4, the A6 and the A8 - which made a brief appearance in Taipei during Computex. The first one comes with two cores and 240 Radeon graphics cores, the A6 has four cores and 320 graphics cores while the A8 ups the number of graphics cores to 400.

Two versions of the APUs will be put on sale, one with a low 35W TDP and another one with a higher 45W TDP. Unlike the C-Series and the E-Series, the A-series will be etched using Global Foundries' 32nm manufacturing process.

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at ITProPortal.com where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.