CES is technically supposed to kick off from Tuesday, but that doesn’t stop manufacturers to get in a day earlier and hold a press event to introduce their products before the rush starts. In Las Vegas earlier today, Nvidia unveiled the next generation of its Tegra chip, the Nvidia Tegra 4.
Codenamed Wayne (after Batman’s alter ego Bruce Wayne) , the latest in the Tegra lineup brings a host of enhancements and improvements over its predecessor – the Tegra 3 which was used in top devices of 2012 such as the HTC One X and the Nexus 7. Nvidia is calling the Tegra 4 the world’s fastest mobile processor. Of course there will be time enough to test this claim out in real-life tests and benchmarks, but for now, lets take a look at what the new chip packs.
Quad-Core A15 CPU, New GPU & Onboard 4G LTE
The Tegra 4 is supposedly the first quad-core CPU based on ARM’s A15 architecture. This claim may be slightly debatable considering Qualcomm’s Snapdragon S4 Pro, a chip that is used in the Nexus 4, the Optimus G, the Droid DNA and quite a few of the upcoming 5″ 1080p devices, is also marketed as a A15-class chip. But that’s a thing for the techies to figure out and what we are interested in is real-world performance, which going by what we have seen with the Nexus 4, is pretty darn impressive.
The Tegra 4 CPU uses the same 4+1 core design seen in the Tegra 3, with the 5th low-power companion core being used for applications where energy efficiency is preferable over raw computing muscle. It also has a 4G LTE modem processor built in, which which means it’ll work on all of the US carriers unlike the Tegra 3.
The new GPU in the Tegra 4 is supposedly a whopping six times more powerful than on the Tegra 3, and this is made possible with the help of 72 GeForce cores that Nvidia have beefed it up with. This should provide graphical performance in excess of anything we’ve seen so far. There’s even support for ultra high-res displays, which should definitely become useful with tablet screen resolutions hitting the roof as we move along this year. Check out this screenshot which gives you an idea of the graphical beef this fella packs:
At the launch event, Nvidia demoed a comparison between the Tegra 4 and the Nexus 10 tablet, which is currently the most powerful tablet on the planet, powered by Samsung’s Exynos 5250 chip. I guess you don’t need me to tell you who won – it was an Nvidia event after all.
Support for dual-channel DDR3 memory and the transition to a more power-efficient 28nm manufacturing process sums up this impressive looking chip, and we look forward to devices that will launch packing this beast inside, perhaps quite a few of them over the next couple of days at CES itself.