A few weeks back we checked some availability figures for AMD’s new Brazos platform only to find that hardly any actual products were available in Europe.
System integrators and notebook makers were more than eager to get hold of the new chips and AMD was struggling to meet demands. However, AMD VP Leslie Sobon assured us that availability would pick up by mid-March and she was right.
Currently several Brazos boards are available in major European markets. Gigabyte, MSI and Sapphire lead the way in the ITX segment, but availability is still restricted to major outlets and very few shops carry the new boards. Still, you can get them, which was not the case two weeks ago. On the other hand, Asus mATX boards are widely available, so if you’re not limited to ITX, they are a pretty good choice.
As for mobile products, several Acer, Toshiba and Lenovo notebooks and netbooks based on new APUs are currently available, although only a few shops have them in stock. Brazos is also a very interesting platform for SFF and AIO designs, but no products are actually available, apart from Zotac’s stylish and price ZBOX AD03 barebone. We are also waiting for Fusion-based tablets, such as Acer's sleek Iconia W500.
We are still waiting for motherboards from a number of major vendors, as well as new thin-and-light notebooks showcased by several companies in recent trade shows. Despite the long wait, AMD’s first Fusion APU is already looking like a winner and a very good choice for entry level rigs in a number of market segments.