Upgrading dual-core FM1 APU (A4) with a quad-core A6-3600, enabled a PC to watch 720P Twitch.tv.

Aug 25, 2001
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#1
Just a small FYI note, if you're still running an FM1 rig (surprisingly, still somewhat popular, due to price of new items on ebay), that's a dual-core A4 or the like, and wondering why 720P Twitch.tv is stuttering, trying dropping in a quad-core FM1 APU instead. I used an A6-3600. With 8GB of DDR3-1600, an SSD, and Windows 7 64-bit, it now streams Twitch.tv sufficiently well.

It wasn't my machine, so I didn't do extensive testing. I don't know if it can do 1080P YouTube or not. The connected display wasn't 1080P.

Edit: I can't wait for availability of the AM4 Athlon 200GE to improve, I will snag a decent A320 board and one of those ($100 total), and an 8GB (2x4GB) DDR4-3000 kit (another $80), and possibly an M.2 SSD ($100 for 512GB NVMe), and upgrade this person's rig. They should be impressed. (*)

(*) They would be forced to upgrade to Windows 10, though, as the Raven Ridge APUs don't work with Windows 7. At all.
 

SPBHM

Diamond Member
Sep 12, 2012
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#2
if you are using GPU decoding I would think even the A4 can handle 720P60?

the older AMD GPU decode block can't handle 1080P60, but works for 1080P30 and 720P60,
I have an HD 4670 and 5850 and both behave the same..

but if you are just using software decoding, then I can see the A4 struggling with 720P60 and the extra cores saving the day.
 

maddogmcgee

Senior member
Apr 20, 2015
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#3
Are they using VLC? Even though hardware decoding was set in chrome my 5800k wasnt able to decode a twitch stream at 1080p 60fps. Switching to a VLC stream helped a bunch.
 
Aug 25, 2001
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#4
Hmm, can you use VLC to watch twitch somehow? My friend uses the web site, and I think, had to install Flash Player, in Win7 64-bit, for some reason the native HTML5 player wasn't working in Firefox.

I'm note sure if the GPU decoding is working at all for Twitch.
 
Aug 25, 2001
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#5
I'm going to change my recommendation, slightly. IF you have the $$$, then drop $100 on a Ryzen 2200G, $60-80 on a B350 or B450 micro-ATX board with heatsinks on the VRMs, and drop $70-80 on am 8GB (2x4GB) DDR4-3000 kit of RAM.

I have a rig like that, overclocked even to 3.80Ghz and with the iGPU speed set on "Turbo" (Asus BIOS), with a single 4GB DDR4-3000 @ 2800 (wouldn't run at 3000), I couldn't watch "14 minutes of Forza Horizon (4K60)" without freezing up. (Could have been a Firefox nightly update, too, I suppose). But with both sticks of RAM in there, WHOA, SWEETNESS! 4K 60FPS UHD Smooth as silk full-screened, on my 40" 4K UHD display, via HDMI 2.0.

The difference between an FM1 APU (A6-3600 2.1/2.4Ghz quad-core, with 192SPs, and DDR3-1600, possibly running at 1333), and that (Ryzen 2200G overclocked with 8GB of DDR4@2800), is like a night-and-day difference.

That said, you can currently get the A6-3600 or 3620 for roughly $12-16 on ebay, and an A6-3670K (2.7Ghz) for $17.
 

Campy

Senior member
Jun 25, 2010
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#6
Hmm, can you use VLC to watch twitch somehow?
I use Streamlink Twitch GUI with Livestreamer.

I believe VLC will be the default player if you have it installed, but you can choose which player to use in streamlink settings. Choose "Livestreamer standalone" in Streamlink settings too. With Livestreamer you don't need Python installed iirc.
 

Malogeek

Golden Member
Mar 5, 2017
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#7
I could playback high bitrate h265 1080p10bit on an A6-3600. I shut down my HTPCs recently for Shields instead though.
 

SPBHM

Diamond Member
Sep 12, 2012
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#8
I'm note sure if the GPU decoding is working at all for Twitch.
most likely not, if it was it would be performing better, on a Celeron e1400@2.5Ghz (20-30% load while streaming, so I'm pretty sure GPU decode is being used) and a HD4670 DDR2 on win 7 x64, with windows update drivers from 2011, and on the latest firefox the GPU decode works OK at 720P60,
I mean it's not perfect, after 5 minutes I see 100 frames skipped but it's very watchable, hard to notice the frames being skipped by eye, and I tested on a fast paced Fortnite stream.
 
Aug 25, 2001
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#9
most likely not, if it was it would be performing better, on a Celeron e1400@2.5Ghz (20-30% load while streaming, so I'm pretty sure GPU decode is being used) and a HD4670 DDR2 on win 7 x64, with windows update drivers from 2011, and on the latest firefox the GPU decode works OK at 720P60,
I mean it's not perfect, after 5 minutes I see 100 frames skipped but it's very watchable, hard to notice the frames being skipped by eye, and I tested on a fast paced Fortnite stream.
That's an interesting data-point, thank you.

Yeah, the way my friend was using it before, it would literally freeze for like 2-3 seconds on the video (with the A4-3420).

System has Win7 64-bit (updated? I think so, but not sure), and a 120/128GB-class SSD. (Not sure how full, either.) All I know is, stream was freezing up, swapped CPUs, had to wait for Win7 64-bit to "detect drivers" (for the CPU??? Weird.), and then eventually, time to reboot, and then re-test, and no more freezing up, was pretty smooth, though not 60FPS. (Stream may not have been 60FPS.)

Friend also installed Flash Player, so possibly it was doing software decoding entirely in Flash Player.

I wonder how GPU and SP decode works on an HD4670 versus the HD6xxx-whatever VLIW architecture on the A6-3600.

Internet connection is FIOS, not sure what speed, but they don't offer slower than 25/25 anymore. It's probably 50/50.
 
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SPBHM

Diamond Member
Sep 12, 2012
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#10
the bitrate of the video I tested was around 3Mb/s, so perhaps on the low side for 720P60.
also the playback resolution basically matched the video, so not a lot of scaling going on.


as far as I know the video decoding function is not affected by the amount of SPs, so the A4 and A6 should have the same performance for accelerated decoding, if you see a big performance difference it's more indication that software decoding was being used.

video decode on Llano was the same as the Radeon 6900 series (UVD3.0), this version still can't play youtube/twitch 1080P60, but works for 720P60, only the GCN cards and Trinity and newer APUs can play accelerated decoding 1080P60 youtube OK.
 

Spjut

Senior member
Apr 9, 2011
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#11
Haven't tried Twitch on that PC, but my A8 3870k has had video decoding working on youtube, netflix, prime video and kodi. Also worked on HD 5670, and HD 4870 functioned in Kodi at least. When using the browser, Edge has been the best IMO, both for my old PCs and my modern one.

I've seen users claiming that activating Win10 with a Win7 key still worked with Win10 1803 at least, so it might be worth a try if you are prepared to reinstall anyway.
 
Aug 25, 2001
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#12
Does anyone think that an Intel Pentium G3258 Anniv. Edition CPU, might perform better for video-decoding (Twitch, YT), than an A6-3600 FM1 quad-core 2.1/2.4Ghz APU? At 4.0Ghz for the G3258?

I'm thinking that it might have more raw CPU grunt, when overclocked. When not overclocked, it might be a wash.
 
Mar 10, 2004
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#13
Does anyone think that an Intel Pentium G3258 Anniv. Edition CPU, might perform better for video-decoding (Twitch, YT), than an A6-3600 FM1 quad-core 2.1/2.4Ghz APU? At 4.0Ghz for the G3258?

I'm thinking that it might have more raw CPU grunt, when overclocked. When not overclocked, it might be a wash.
X264 comparison to an A6-3650, if that's of any use to you:

https://www.anandtech.com/bench/product/403?vs=1265
 
Jan 12, 2005
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#14
I use a six plus year old Toshiba laptop with an A6 3400M and it has no trouble with outputing 720P to my TV.
 

SPBHM

Diamond Member
Sep 12, 2012
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#15
also the IGP on Haswell should be clearly superior for accelerated video decoding (and encoding).
 

maddogmcgee

Senior member
Apr 20, 2015
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#16
Hmm, can you use VLC to watch twitch somehow? My friend uses the web site, and I think, had to install Flash Player, in Win7 64-bit, for some reason the native HTML5 player wasn't working in Firefox.

I'm note sure if the GPU decoding is working at all for Twitch.

File
Open Network stream
Copy and paste the stream in. Works like a dream in Twitch 1080P which is not something the 5800k was doing before and has meant I don't really need to upgrade my ancient media pc's for another year or two or buy the recently updated Chromecast.

Edit:Read the rest of the posts. My 5800k is Trinity, so that explains why it works for me.
 
Aug 25, 2001
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#17
Found out that my friend in question likes to watch MULTIPLE Twitch streams. Can VLC do that too, or will that overload his hardware media-playback?

Btw, I helped my friend install the 16.2.1 Crimson (beta) drivers, rather than the 15.7.1 WHQL drivers. Then he got a BSOD using them to view streams. New (to the PC) A6-3600 borked? Software glitch? Or just Windows? He never used to see BSODs. It was a VPU recover that didn't work, btw.
 
Aug 25, 2001
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#18
I also have a BNIB FM2+ MSI mobo that I could donate to the cause, then they would have to buy a Kaveri APU (A4-7400K still available). That might work. But if they're going to spend money like that, I feel strongly that they should just get either a 2200G rig, or possibly an Athlon 200GE rig.

In fact, if I can afford the 200GE, I think I'll pick one up to play with.
 
Aug 25, 2001
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#20
That's good to hear. Which CPU has the HD4000 iGPU? (I've forgotten. Ivy Bridge i7-3770?). I've got a Haswell i3-based slimline rig next to me, that I just hooked up earlier tonight. I bought it two years ago, refurb, to soup up and re-sell, but as everyone knows, I sell like maybe 1-2 PCs a year. So most of my inventory that I have, doesn't move.

Anyways, it has an HD4400 iGPU, according to Device Manager. So you think that would handle 1080P streaming fine for Twitch? How many streams? (My friend likes to watch at least two.)

Edit: Hmm, darn Intel.

For the G3258, ARK only lists:
"Intel® HD Graphics for 4th Generation Intel® Processors "

They don't give it a number.
 

ZGR

Golden Member
Oct 26, 2012
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#22
That's good to hear. Which CPU has the HD4000 iGPU? (I've forgotten. Ivy Bridge i7-3770?). I've got a Haswell i3-based slimline rig next to me, that I just hooked up earlier tonight. I bought it two years ago, refurb, to soup up and re-sell, but as everyone knows, I sell like maybe 1-2 PCs a year. So most of my inventory that I have, doesn't move.

Anyways, it has an HD4400 iGPU, according to Device Manager. So you think that would handle 1080P streaming fine for Twitch? How many streams? (My friend likes to watch at least two.)

Edit: Hmm, darn Intel.

For the G3258, ARK only lists:
"Intel® HD Graphics for 4th Generation Intel® Processors "

They don't give it a number.
Good point, it is an i7 3720qm. 4c8t. I usually cap it at 2.6 GHz.
 

SPBHM

Diamond Member
Sep 12, 2012
4,858
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#23
multiple videos would be much harder, I think the hardware decoder on those APUs will not be able to handle 2x 720P60, on newer GPUs it's possible, as for software decoding, I think you are asking a lot even from the A6, if you are running 2 or more at once (keep in mind I think current chrome stops the video and just plays the audio if you are not watching that tab on twitch for a bit)
 

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