Asus E35M1-M Pro Review: A Look at AMD's Fusion Platform

By on February 16, 2011, 2:13 AM
AMD Fusion is the marketing name for a series of APUs (Accelerated Processing Units) that have been in development since 2006. The final design is the result of AMD's merger with ATI, combining general processor execution as well as 3D geometry processing and other functions of modern GPUs into a single chip.

AMD's ultrathin platform, code-named "Brazos", was introduced early this year as the company's fourth mobile platform targeting the ultra-portable notebook market. It features the 40nm AMD Ontario APU, a 9-watt chip for netbooks and small form factor desktops, and Zacate, an 18-watt APU for ultrathin, mainstream, and value notebooks and desktops.


The Asus E35M1-M Pro motherboard we are testing today is an implementation of the AMD Fusion/Brazos platform that packs a dual-core AMD Zacate 18W processor (formally known as the E-350 APU), DirectX 11 graphics support along with USB 3.0 and SATA 6Gb/s, making for a relatively inexpensive bundle at $140.

Read the complete review.




User Comments: 14

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ET3D, TechSpot Paladin, said:

It's nice to see reviews of the E-350 finally popping up all over the place, and I enjoyed reading this one, but I've yet to see any review which discusses overclocking. Does that mean that there's no ability to overclock at all? How about setting the amount of RAM used by the integrated GPU -- it that possible?

Guest said:

Only one suggestion. You tested the E-350 with a 750w power supply. Its overkill for that small MB. Can you test with some other PSU about 200W? Sorry for the bad english. Goran

Jibberish18 said:

Guest said:

Only one suggestion. You tested the E-350 with a 750w power supply. Its overkill for that small MB. Can you test with some other PSU about 200W? Sorry for the bad english. Goran

Do you think that will help power savings? I always figured that a power supply will only give out what it needs to.

PanicX PanicX, TechSpot Ambassador, said:

Jibberish18 said:

Do you think that will help power savings? I always figured that a power supply will only give out what it needs to.

Power supplies are typically most efficient at 1/2 to 3/4's load.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/80_PLUS

Staff
Steve Steve said:

Guest said:

Only one suggestion. You tested the E-350 with a 750w power supply. Its overkill for that small MB. Can you test with some other PSU about 200W? Sorry for the bad english. Goran

No I cannot re-test as it is not needed. All configurations were tested with the same power supply.

Guest said:

what about that asrock nettops? are you use same PSU(700W) for them?

Guest said:

Great review with one huge exception- the power supply choice. All Atom systems, for that matter all Asrock that you tested, are equipped with a power brick, which except for some cheap Chinese knockoffs, operate above 80% (well written review of power bricks :http://www.jonnyguru.com/modules.php?name=NDReviews&op=
tory&reid=207). Placing 700W on 25 load is ludicrous. Check the efficiency here on a much better power supply- http://www.jonnyguru.com/modules.php?name=NDReviews&op=S
ory2&reid=218- 20W at the socket and your PSU is at 74%. How important is that? Well the 28W AC idle of Fusion at 74% equals 20.7W DC. If you replace the PSU with one of 80% efficiency, the socket power will be 25.8W; 83% would yield 24.9W. So what your benchmark is telling us is the idle AC power could be anywhere from 28 to 25. Same goes with load power. Not only this skews the result, but it does it in non-linear fashion, so the results are unpredictable when testing such small wattage. Overclock3d got 38W idle which only proves my point. They happened to use 750W.

I know you had reasons for the use of that PSU, and I'm not trying to belittle your effort. However it makes all power consumption comparisons useless.

Staff
Steve Steve said:

Interesting, our results seem to align with most of the reviews from popular review sites such as Anandtech...

[link]

So are you saying that the huge exception which was also ludicrous means that the idle could really be somewhere between 25 and 28 watts?

Guest said:

Why did you waste your time testing then- you could have copied Anand's results and call it a day.

They got Zacate at 24/32, you got 28/36- it's obvious you don't care about 3-4 stinking watts- it's only 15% margin of error. Why don't we make it even easier and guess all the systems are somewhere below 50W.

And for the record, on the same page you linked Anand, unlike you, at least admits not having the right power supply: " I don't have any pico PSUs or anything super efficient readily available so don't expect any of the numbers to be particularly impressive, but what they are is comparable to one another. I hooked up each one of the systems I'd been using to the same PSU"

This is the difference, the huge exception, the ludicrous omission on your behalf- he used the same inefficient PSU for ALL systems. You didn't. His results confirm what I said- his ION idle is 35W, yours is 28W. Conclusion- his PSU is much more inefficient than the power brick that comes with Atom. In the same time his power supply is over 80% even at that low wattage- also much better than your OCZ POS.

If you tried to understand, you will see I'm not arguing about a few watts- my point was you can't compare your results, let alone I still think 700W with 25W load is ludicrous.

Staff
Steve Steve said:

Obviously if we had a lower powered quality power supply we would have used it, just like Anandtech we don't have one . As I said having a look around the net I found several reviews that our results aligned with, not just Anandtech's which was one example that I gave. How can you conclude that we had an error margin of 3-4 watts? We used a different board to the Anandtech example as well as a different hard drive.

If we had of found that the E-350 used more power than the Atom platform then I could understand your concern and we would try and find a different power supply to test with. However the fact remains that the other half a dozen or more reviews I have found online provided similar margins, despite using different boards and hardware configurations.

melvyn said:

Hi steve...thanks for the informative review..can u tell us what player (and player settings if any) you used to test HD playback? Does WMP12 in Windows 7 do hardware-accelerated (GPU) decoding out-of-the-box? I had read somewhere that mkv files rely solely on the CPU and cant be GPU-assisted? Your insights and advice would be helpful... I dont wanna use VLC as it violates DMCA laws by including DVD decryption.

Any suggestions from other users would be welcome..about legal media players..

Thanks...

Staff
Steve Steve said:

Hi Melvyn,

I am not 100% sure but I don't think WMP12 supports GPU acceleration by default, that said I don't really use it. For mkv GPU acceleration we use Media Player Classic Home Cinema, hope that helps.

Guest said:

Here is one comparing two different power supplies with the board

[link]

"I just compared my Asus E35M-1 with my Antec 500 80+ power supply to my Pico-150 power supply with 150 watt power brick. Pico-150 bounced around from lows of 20 watt at idle to 30 watts doing things. Antec 500 watt ran lows of 40 watts at idle to highs of 55 watts doing things."

Guest said:

Very apt and good lineup of computers for this test. The power supply however should have been of much less capacity (and the psu used for the atom computers is not specified), and I am surprised this was overlooked given the importance of the power consumption for this product. On a per clock basis the bobcat cores appear to be a far bit above 50% (some of the benchmarks suggest about 2/3's) as fast as the Phenom II tested, which is impressive. Future bobcat variants are likely to move that significantly higher.

I need to note that I am not sure about the technicalities of comparing per clock performance, it assume it is straightforward however.

The bulldozer will certaintly be a much different story though.

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