They say two heads are better than one, but in processors with integrated graphics -- think Intel's Sandy Bridge or AMD's APUs -- the GPU and CPU actually do very little communicating. For the most part, the GPU does its thing while the CPU knocks about on something else. There has to be something better! And as it turns out, there is: a group of researchers from North Carolina State University recently coaxed CPUs and GPUs on integrated processors into helping each other out, and they report a performance boost of over 20 percent as a result.
AMD began shipping 40nm C- and E-series Fusion APUs (accelerated processing unit) to vendors back in Novemeber, 2010 and products featuring these integrated chips began entering the market in late January. The Fusion chips currently on the market are only meant for netbooks and low-cost notebooks. That is set to change very soon, though. AMD has begun shipping the more powerful A-series “Llano” chips to vendors, the company said Monday.