Summing up our today’s tests, we can say that the new Kabini processors for Socket AM1 are AMD's best processors overall. However, they can be regarded as such not because they have some extraordinary features but just because AMD offers no other solutions capable of attracting a mass user. The Kabini has some clear advantages considering its market positioning.
The Socket AM1 platform is positioned in the entry-level market segment due to its good combination of price and performance as well as performance and power consumption. Currently this segment is occupied by compact mainboards with integrated Intel Bay Trail processors or energy-efficient Celerons. AMD wants to oust Intel's offers by providing better specs and the potential upgrade capability. However, AMD's arguments seem questionable just like the overall potential of the Kabini on the desktop market.
The desktop Kabini is promoted by AMD as a cheap quad-core processor. Indeed, these Socket AM1 products deliver good performance at multithreaded loads where they are superior to their opponents such as quad-core Bay Trail-D and dual-core energy-efficient Ivy Bridge solutions. However, the Kabini is not so good at loads typical of entry-level desktop PCs: the senior model Athlon 5350 is considerably slower than the Celeron 1037U in this case. And, despite being based on the energy-efficient Jaguar microarchitecture and implemented as a system-on-chip, the Kabini is inferior to Intel's Bay Trail, particularly to the Celeron J1900, in terms of power consumption.
The Kabini might be saved by its integrated graphics, which is indeed better than the competitors’. Yet the graphics core is still not fast enough to ensure playability in latest 3D games. And the integrated multimedia engine is not compatible with AVC video at 4K resolutions.
So it turns out that the upgrade opportunity is the only indisputable advantage of AMD’s new platform. But frankly speaking, we doubt that many users will want to replace one entry-level processor with another. So even though it is the best solution AMD offers, its perspectives are vague.
It must be noted, however, that the Socket AM1 platform is targeted at the developing markets, specifically of the Latin American region. AMD claims such solutions enjoy high demand there. So perhaps our lack of interest in the desktop Kabini is only due to our different point of view in terms of sheer geography.