Nvidia Talks Tegra, Reveals Quad-Core Roadmap

Paul Lilly

Project Kal-El is the codename for Nvidia's next generation Tegra processor, and if the spec sheet is any indication, it's going to be awesome. Nvidia says Kal-El is the world's first mobile quad-core CPU, and it just happens to contain a new 12-core GeForce GPU as well. Compared to Tegra 2, Nvidia says Kal-El is nearly 5x faster, and you can bank on Kal-El devices being able to handle high resolution content.

To prove it, Nvidia demoed the chip running an Android tablet at the Mobile World Congress. It was outputting 1440p video content running on a 2560x1600 panel, which isn't something you're going to do with your iPad or Galaxy Tab. In this video , you can see how Kal-El stacks up against a Core 2 Duo in Coremark.

Kal-El, Tegra 3, or whatever you want to call it, has the potential to be a game changer, and according to Nvidia, it's already started shipping samples to customers, who are planning production in August. We hope that will translate into shipping Tegra 3 tablets in time for this year's holiday shopping season.

This is just the beginning, folks. Nvidia said it plans to attack mobile graphics with the same "relentless velocity of innovation" that it brings to the desktop with its GeForce processor line and has the next three years mapped out. In 2012, Kal-El will be replaced by "Wayne" (Tegra 4?), which will offer 10x the performance of Tegra 2, followed by "Logan" in 2013 with a 50x performance boost. Finally, 2014 will bring "Stark," which Nvidia's roadmap indicates will run nearly 75x faster than Tegra 2.

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