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NVIDIA Tegra to be a Intel Atom competitor?

Posted on Wednesday, May 28 2008 @ 01:13:47 CEST by

Word is going around that the NVIDIA Tegra may be a new line of processors for UMPC-like devices. Rumour mill The Inquirer says the green team is going to release two ARM11-based Tegra CPUs at Computex, the CSX 600 and CSX 650. It's not exactly sure what the target market for these chips will be but I suppose it will be pretty multimedia oriented. These CPUs aren't x86 compatible but they should be pretty good for playing Full HD video.
The chip itself comes in a 144mm2 package, not die, and can do 720p encode and decode at 14MBps. It supports the same last gen features as much of the current GeForce line, can do AA and AF, and will support OpenGL ES 2.0.

The big brother CSX 600 and 650 is aimed at larger machines with screens between handhelds and real laptops. It runs Wince, not XP or Me II because it is not x86, and in general makes you question why they bothered. The chip itself has 256K of L2 cache and can be die stacked to keep the footprint small.

This one runs at 700-800MHz and will support 1080p at 24FPS, not the full 60. It also has hard disk support and can run video in under 3W. If you are keeping track, this is about what Atom can do, but Atom doesn't have that pesky FPS limit.
Charlie from The Inq complains the chip only does 1080p at 24FPS but I don't see why that's a problem as film is almost always encoded at 24 frames per second. And additionally, I don't know where he got the 60FPS number for the Atom.

NVIDIA is also expected to unveil a new low-cost computing platform in cooperation with VIA.



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