AMD debuts quad-core Fusion laptop platform

AMD Llano
The new AMD Vision laptop platform offers quad-core computing and gaming graphics

AMD is looking to steal a march in laptop graphics with its new 32nm mainstream platform offering true gaming graphics and quad-core processing in a single, power-efficient AMD A Series Fusion chip previously known as Llano.

You'll see laptops in stores featuring the previously-used AMD Vision branding as well as the processor names A4, A6 and A8. The new chips also have USB 3.0 support and promise battery life up to 10 hours.

Intel may have had the upper hand in laptops for the last few years but with its latest launch AMD should give us all serious food for thought when we choose our next laptops.

As our AMD A8-3500M review found, the new platform offers serious graphics performance and, providing the price is right when units hit the stores, is ideal for mainstream laptop gaming – this top-end chip features 400 DirectX 11 shader cores. Considering AMD's top-end integrated laptop graphics previously had 80, that's a whole lot more grunt.

What's more, the new platform also offers excellent battery life, too - though we'll wait to see shipping hardware before passing full judgement on that.

The new platform should ensure further success for AMD in 2011 – the company sold out of its first Fusion chips, the C and E Series Intel Atom-bashing netbook processors based on AMD's low-power Bobcat core.

The Fusion chip is a long awaited launch from AMD, building on the graphics expertise garnered from ATI which it bought in 2006.

The AMD A8-3500M is that it's AMD's first full-power Fusion processor combining CPU cores and graphics in a single chip - its four cores are derived from AMD's Stars architecture.

Stars is the processor core design found in existing AMD Athlon II and Phenom II CPUs.

Check out our AMD A8-3500M review.


Dan (Twitter, Google+) is TechRadar's Former Deputy Editor and is now in charge at our sister site Covering all things computing, internet and mobile he's a seasoned regular at major tech shows such as CES, IFA and Mobile World Congress. Dan has also been a tech expert for many outlets including BBC Radio 4, 5Live and the World Service, The Sun and ITV News.