“Our next-generation Tegra processor is widely known as the world’s first quad-core mobile chip,” said Nvidia’s Senior Product Manager Matt Wuebbling in a press release.
The quad core Tegra 3, formerly known as Kal-El, offers three times the performance of Tegra 2 while consuming 61 percent less power. Tegra 3 is based on the ARM Cortex – A9 MPCore architecture and each of the four cores are clocked at 1.5GHz.
Nvidia pulls of the drop in power consumption through a process known as Variable Symmetric Multiprocessing (VSMP). VSMP works by using a fifth companion core that is used for low intensity tasks instead of the four primary cores, saving battery life.
A press release by Nvidia announcing the release of Tegra 3 quoted Nathan Brookwood, a Research Fellow at Insight 64, as calling the concept of the fifth core “ingenious”.
“NVIDIA’s fifth core is ingenious,” said Mr. Brookwood. “Tegra 3′s vSMP technology extends the battery life of next-generation mobile devices by using less power when they’re handling undemanding tasks and then ratcheting up performance when it’s really needed.”
Nvidia says that Tegra 3 will offer a substantially improved web surfing experience to Tegra 2: smoother webpage scrolling, faster flash performance with higher frame rates and smoother animation; smoother steaming video performance; up to three times faster HTML 5 and Web GL performance.
The Tegra 3 quad-core CPUs are complemented with a new 12-core NVIDIA GeForce GPU, which allows for dynamic lighting, physical effects and high resolution environments, and support for 3D stereo. Nvidia claims that this new GPU will provide a gaming experience comparable to a console.
The Asus Eee Pad Transformer, the first device to be bundled with a Tegra 3 chip, is scheduled to be released December with an MSRP $499. More Tegra 3 devices are expected in the coming weeks.
Tags: Tegra 3