Nvidia’s New Mobile Processor has 192 Cores. More powerful than Xbox 360 and PS3.

At this years CES Nvidia introduced their new entry into their mobile graphics processor line with the Tegra K1.

Mobile computing has been taking great strides in the last few years in terms of hardware. The gap between PCs and mobile devices has started to thin. Nvidia’s new mobile processor is looking to make it even closer of a gap. CES 2014 brought the announcement of Nvidia’s new chip called the Tegra K1. Inside this compact processor is 192 Kepler graphics cores at 2.5GHz. Just to put in perspective the Tegra 4 was a 72-core GPU at 1.9 GHz.

There will be two different versions with an “automotive version” for later. The two versions are one sporting a dual-core Project Denver processor with custom cores and one which will be a 32bit quad-core ARM-A15 version.

The K1 is more powerful than the Xbox 360 and PS3 (which mind you is 8 years old) according to Nvidia and even matches some Low-end to mid PCs; sharing common architecture with desktop GPUs. The Kepler architecture used to build this GPU is the same one used in Nvidia’s current generation desktop graphics cards. This choice also allows the ability for better game optimization and for easier porting of desktop games. An example of this was Trine 2 which was shown during the presentation running on the Tegra K1.

The K1 brings new and improved elements to the table for mobile devices such as sub-surface scattering, HDR lighting, global illumination, photorealism, physics simulation, in depth particle effects, and comes with DirectX 11 support, and OpenGL 4.4. Its pushing boundaries of whats possible on the mobile platform. And to those who this all this will come at the cost of battery life think again. The Tegra K1 only uses 5W of power which is incredible for everything packed inside.

Nvidia also is partnering up with Epic with the K1, getting support from Epic; Unreal Engine 4 is to be fully functional on it and optimized for it. Nvidia showed off the typical face demo we normally see with their desktop GPU demos as well as some UE4 demos. Some impressive lighting and room scenes running on Unreal Engine 4 were shown. One of those scenes can be seen in the picture at the very top.

No word yet as to when we will see the first device sporting the K1. Nvidia is aiming for a first half of 2014 release for the A15 and the Denver model sometime late 2014 release.

At the rate we are moving it won’t be long before we reach the power of a high end desktop PC in mobile form. It’s great seeing leaps in technological advancement. Hopefully the next thing to tackle other than graphical capabilities is battery life, the quality of mobile games and their troublesome touchscreen controls or else all this horsepower will be nothing more than eye candy at best.

  1. biglittleps’s avatar

    Its useless horse power for mobiles as they never utilize anything very well to create content because it will never mature and we will get a new update in a year with more horse power again. Technology is innovating horse power for the things we don’t need mostly but don’t try to improve things we need most.

    Reply

    1. Acid_Snake’s avatar

      I hear ya, there’s really nothing you can do with such a GPU as there aren’t that many AAA mobile games that even come close to the quality of a PS3/360, even if running on better hardware. This is another case of “I got the most powerful device out there that does the same thing as your less powerful one, love me please”.

      Reply

      1. quicksort’s avatar

        I personally developed a game for android in unity, It’s really hard to do something “pretty” because the lighting effects and shaders take up SO much resources a mobile can’t handle it. But now it is possible. People could basically make easier ports of games.

        As I said, since it is possible now I think more ppl will invest in it. It would be great if more 3D engines did support it.

        Reply

        1. M’s avatar

          There is no way that a ARM Cortex A15 could beat cell and xenon processors.

          Reply

        2. CycloneFox’s avatar

          Problem is not the graphics, but the content. As a gamedeveloper you should understand this frutration.
          Like biglittleps already said, the mobile market gets yearly updates. That is, by far, too short-winded for a serious game. It is alright to have short games with nice (but compared to what consoles do on weaker hardware, last-gen like) graphics on mobile devices. But to have a diversified and good game, current/last gen showed well enough, that alot of people to compress time just hurts the game in the end. You need to have time to invest into content like level design, plan story/world and have to stay as true as possible to the vision of little people. That just doesn’t fit to the mobile market at all. Not to even mention the huge handycap of smartphone controls.

          Reply

          1. toaru_gamedev’s avatar

            +1

        3. toaru_gamedev’s avatar

          Less than 10% of smartphone games using intensive graphic processing capability of hardware. seriously, Android fragmentation is total shit. Only dedicated portable console could pull this kind of stunts, if they put this on smartphone then its just another medicority at best because none (or less than 10%) gonna use its full power.

          Reply

        4. Minimur12’s avatar

          Woooo! I gotta Nexus 5 that utilizes the SnapDragon 800 Quad-Core thingimajig CPU, and has 2gb of RAM, I’ve made so much use of it…… like Plants vs Zombies 2, blogging and reddit!

          It was once top notch but now it’s just dirt compared to that xD

          Reply

      2. Thrawn’s avatar

        I don’t understand why all of you believe that this cpu/gpu is going into smartphones?

        The tegra familiy is an energy efficient gpu/cpu family that is mainly designed for mobiles but not limited to.
        I see the main application for this in netbooks and notebooks as this tegra iteration looks like an atempt to wipe out amd and intel as well as texas instrument cpu/gpus in said market niche.

        I believe that this gpu would perform extremly well in a netbook or a tablet with adequat resultion (2560&1440).

        Reply

    2. igivenup’s avatar

      I disagree actually. Gaming seems to be moving into the direction of platform neutrality. Devices such as the Nvidia Shield will be helping to push forward the idea of actual console level gaming on mobile platforms. I think eventually everything will have a release for all platforms mobile and home…

      Reply

  2. paul’s avatar

    Nvidia are amazing. Not sure how much power the vitas graphics card takes up but im sure this would improve battery life. Probably not by much but every bit counts.

    With portable game consoles sporting this all we would need is a better battery and thered be little reason to own a home console.

    Please keep us informed if any cpus and batteries are made that are a leap forward like this was.

    Reply

    1. paul’s avatar

      Just read about microbatteries.

      Sounds promising. Lets hope we see a finished product we can buy in the near future. Although i dought it will happen anytime soon…one can always hope.

      Reply

    2. Tony’s avatar

      Well, I have a PS Vita. The graphics for expensive games like Need For Speed Most Wanted suck! I feel like I am actually playing PSx on my vita. It would be nice to get powerful hardware in mobile games. I really hate hard edges and pixelation on handheld devices that shouldn’t have that, like this PoS.

      Reply

      1. Wickedchew’s avatar

        Graphics from PS1? NS Pixelated? in PSVita?
        hope you live your childhood in 90′s

        Reply

        1. dislaire’s avatar

          yeah absolutely he’s right, like many games on vita the game is upscaled, it’s not native res and it just looks like a blurry pixellated mess. i hate when they do that on vita, just lower the graphics instead of lowering the resolution , it’s 10 times worse

          Reply

  3. toaru_gamedev’s avatar

    without put it in a dedicated portable console, its just a yet another medicore hardware.

    Reply

  4. x-eye’s avatar

    Which is why I’ve been saying the Vita is the future! Imagine it: a console in the future might be the size of a handheld device rendering current console sized devices irrelevant. And that’s why people not to mention Sony should take the Vita more seriously.

    Reply

    1. alpmaster’s avatar

      Nvidia Shield Rocks more powerful than the Vita. More bang for your buck.

      Reply

      1. toaru_gamedev’s avatar

        yet, not many games use its full power, so ?

        Reply

        1. MarSprite’s avatar

          Whatever, all you naysayers can shove it, because Nvidia Launched their GRID BETA in December. That’s right it doesn’t “only work on the home network” anymore. If you couldn’t see that Nvidia was positioning to pull this off, then you must not have been paying attention. Now, not only is it my favorite emulation device ever sold commercially, but it can let me have the use of desktop games around northern California where I live. Later, it will do so around the world.

          Reply

      2. condoriano’s avatar

        yeah enjoy playing fruit ninja.

        Reply

    2. Wickedchew’s avatar

      or Angry Birds? in 3D!!

      Reply

    3. 110706’s avatar

      By the way things look, Vita will be rendered useless even faster. Sony screwed up with all it’s proprietary stuff and expensive too.

      Reply

  5. Thrawn’s avatar

    Yeah epic and nvidia have a history… anybody remembering ut2k3 and ut2k4?
    Back then they basicaly pledged to each other and maybe even held a marriage ceremony behind closed doors XD

    Reply

  6. Reynkz’s avatar

    5 W power :O lol

    Reply

  7. Valhalla’s avatar

    WTF is horsepower in terms as a measure on processing power. Nvidia, you crack me up!

    Reply

  8. Wickedchew’s avatar

    yeah, next time they will say it 220mphs 1000Horsepower in Nvigia Tegra Z2000

    Reply

  9. Jah Nix’s avatar

    While I’m all for improving the processing grunt on mobile devices, no expandability on these things cut down the full crossover – I keep telling my wife that apple would make a billion if they released a proper dock for the iPad with USB/HDMI/HDD etc etc so you docked your ipad/iPhone and bang kept working, at home or in office – Now thats integration…!
    The way things are going by the time we get Skylake, it might be a reality…

    Reply

  10. Dark GOD’s avatar

    I want this in a Portable XBOX.
    Microsoft should really join in on the portable gaming market.

    A Portable system from them with this chip.
    WOULD PROBABLY DESTROY all other portables in sales.

    But still I wouldn’t mind seeing it happen.
    If it means better games.

    Reply

    1. fackukawololo’s avatar

      yeah with 15 mins battery life?.. as long as battery in mobile doesnt improve this wont happen good luck with that

      Reply

      1. Dark GOD’s avatar

        No, don’t you read?
        It said in the thread that it only uses 5W.
        That’s 95W less then PS3 and 360.

        This mean battery would be just as good as on the PS Vita.
        If not better.

        Besides battery tech is getting better and better.

        Reply

    2. CJW’s avatar

      I made similiar comments below wanting a portable/console hybrid from Sony/Nintendo…Ms would be welcome as well…..you know the easist thing might be to use this chip to make a portable ‘steam system’ that runs steam OS…..i personally have always wanted an x86 handheld that I could run the vast pc library on……steam portable could be the answer.

      Reply

  11. fackukawololo’s avatar

    and its battery life is approx 15min

    Reply

  12. fackukawololo’s avatar

    putang ina mo wololo…no to hacking kapa eh ung mga post mo nmn pang hacker hypocrite bobo ka tang ina mo

    Reply

  13. Pirate Cat’s avatar

    Raw numbers are so informative!

    Reply

  14. Z’s avatar

    Yes, mobile graphics are improving every year, but I don’t think that they’ll ever match a high-end PC, because the desktop graphics are also improving. Plus, this isn’t really comparable to a low-end/mid-end PC. The GPU in this SoC is half that of a GT 730M, and it’s designed to use even LESS power. So this is weaker than even a modern low end desktop GPU.

    Reply

  15. Dark GOD’s avatar

    I think NVIDIA might be ready to announce a new mobile device soon.
    That will make the SHIELD look like nothing.

    Perhaps a much better designed NVIDIA Shield?

    If they made the SHIRD in a sine liar design to the PS VITA form factor.
    WOW that would be the portable to have.

    Reply

    1. Dark GOD’s avatar

      *similar (iOS autocorrect typo)

      Reply

    2. Dark GOD’s avatar

      *SHIELD

      What the heck is SHIRD apple.. Where the heck do you get this correction that a shield should be a SHIRD. FACE PALM

      Reply

      1. Dark GOD’s avatar

        How do you disable this autocorrect SHIRD.. :P

        Reply

  16. CJW’s avatar

    My hope is advancements like this will leed to Nintendo or Sony making a true portable/console game system in the next generation. Imagine one sysyem to rule them all!

    When I was at best buy the other day I must admit ps4/xb1 demo reals sort of underwhelmed me. Sure stuff will look better with time but the new gaming hardware is really graphically not a big leap and won’t be until we get 4K gaming. So a portable hybrid that is sligjtly more powerful than ps360 (say like WiiU) could be a pretty awesome product if it was made by a major game company like one of the big 3.

    Reply

  17. Hellbelial’s avatar

    Sadly they will not release games like The Last Of Us,God Of War or Killer Instinct,they will release games like wow,lol and all that shit XD.

    Reply

  18. Jun’s avatar

    According to benchmarks…
    Tegra K1 is NOT faster than PS3.
    We are still far about 2 year for that to happen.

    http://www.engadget.com/2014/01/13/nvidia-tegra-k1-mobile-chip-benchmarks-vs-apple/

    Reply

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