First Time Build: AMD A8 $500-$600 Crossfire-Ready Rig


Jul 4, 2011
Firstly...WOW...TOM'S HARDWARE!!! Awesome community, awesome resource...reaffirms my faith in the internet!! Anyway, on to the details.

About me:

- Have an outsiders knowledge of PC components, build requirements all the general concepts, but not an expert

- Console gamer looking to get into the PC gaming scene w/out breaking the bank

- Been scouting recent knews about the AMD Llano series and decided this is where I should jump in

Goals for the rig:

- Want an A8 3850 in a setup that is Crossfire ready. Basically I want the A8 to get me going this year and if I need a performance boost next year I'll pair it w/ a discrete card/more RAM etc

- Want 4 Gigs minimum RAM, preferably 1866 given that all the performance reviews for the Llano series showed significant gains w/ faster RAM

- Want to keep the price sub-$600 before shipping if at all possible

- Probably looking to overclock the processor immediately a la this:

Any details I should consider in trying this?

- Would prefer a mid-tower at minimum, nothing fancy

- Hardware I do want/need: HDD (probably 500GB minimum), OS (Win 7 I guess), DVD drive for software

- Hardware I don't need: Display/monitor (using HDTV), Keyboard/mouse, Wireless card (for now, anyway)

- Hardware I'm unsure about: Power Supply requirements....would 450-500W be enough for the A8 (100W) plus a 2012 edition discrete card of medium/high performance?

Other ambiguities:

- How can I know which cards will be Crossfire compatible with my Processor/Mobo in the future? Do you experts anticipate Bulldozer/28nm AMD tech will work w/ my rig?

- Should I consider waiting for a pre-packaged unit in order to keep the cost down?

- Any cooling considerations? I know the APU is low power consumption, but with a discrete card in Crossfire down the line, should I scout for cooling hang-ups right now?

Sorry if this was a sloppy/wordy first outing, but I hope I covered all the bases. Thanks in advance for any advice!


Jul 4, 2011

Awesome...thanks. That chart to me is indecipherable "6550D" representative of the embedded card on the 3850 APU?

The link you put for the Mobo is actually the RAM the Biostar board Crossfire ("Dual graphics"...forgot the new nomenclature) compatible?

Anyway, here's a build I had played around w/ at Newegg:

HAF 912:
Win 7:

Comes out to $590...about $25 more than your build, but I do get a 500W PSU.



Aug 1, 2011
I was hoping someone could help me with my build. I have an AMD A8 and an XFX Radeon 6670. But I cant tell if its running in crossfire.... Catalyst doesn't show an option to enable/disable Crossfire and the computer will only run the display through the discreet card's output and not the motherboards....Can some one please help!!!

My System specs:
Motherboar: MSI A75MA-G55
CPU: AMD A8 3850
Grahics Card: XFX HD 6670 ZAF3
RAM: G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600
PSU: Antec Green 430W Continuous power ATX12V v2.3 / EPS 12V 80 PLUS BRONZE

I appreciate any help I can get. :)