VIA says its just-announced Nano X2 dual-core chip brings advanced multi-core performance to energy efficient PCs without raising heat output.
"The VIA Nano X2 processor arrives at a time when software architectures are now optimized for multi-thread computing," commented Richard Brown, VP International Marketing, VIA Technologies. "Improvements in semi-conductor fabrication means we can now double the number of processor cores while maintaining the same low energy consumption levels that our customers are used to."
The new chip is built on a 40nm manufacturing process and is one reason why VIA says it was able to keep power consumption down. It's based on the advanced 64-bit superscaler "Isaiah" architecture of previous single-core VIA Nano processors and features SSE4, native 64-bit support, full processor virtualization support, pin-to-pin compatibility with other other VIA processors, and a few other odds and ends.
Do great minds think alike, or is Silverstone’s SG07 chassis just that cool? We suspect the SG07 is just that cool. After all, the chassis that CyberPower used for its LAN Party EVO Mini happens to be the same chassis we used for our “Wee Ass-Kicking Machine."
As with the WAKM, the SG07 limits you to a single PCI-E slot and a Mini-ITX board, but that doesn’t mean the CyberPower and WAKM are the same. In fact, they couldn’t be more different.
Texas Instruments claims to have raised the bar for mobile design with the launch of its new OMAP4440 applications processor, a dual-core chip ARMed with a pair of Cortex A9 cores and two Cortex M3 cores.
Also included is a POWERVR 3D graphics engine with support for 1080p stereoscopic 3D playback, as well as a dizzying amount of claimed performance improvements over the OMAP4430 architecture. Some of these include:
1.25x increase in graphics performance
30 percent decrease in webpage load times
2x increase in 1080p video playback
Improved video quality in low-light conditions
"The increased performance given by the OMAP4440 applications processor illustrates TI's ability to push mobile computing possibilities with the right processor architecture enveloped in the right platform," said Remi El-Ouazzane, vice president, OMAP platform business unit, TI. "We seized an opportunity to enhance the platform capabilities driving the OMAP4430 processor's success today."
Texas Instruments will begin sampling its new chip in the first quarter of 2011, with production expected in the second half of next year.
We now have a rumor about one of the "significant number of new tablets" Michael Dell promised earlier this month. According to StreakSmart.com, an anonymous tipster, who attended a private Dell presentation, passed on some nuggets about upcoming tablets from the erstwhile world no.1 PC vendor.
Apparently, Dell briefed attendees about an unreleased 5-inch tablet that currently likes to be addressed as “Opus One.” It is said to feature a 1.2GHz dual-core processor and a high resolution display (1280 x 800). He believes the device could succeed the Streak tablet/phone hybrid, even though there was no announcement to this effect during the presentation. Finally, Dell could launch the Opus One in May 2011.
Sources from Acer told Digitimes that the PC maker is confident of such an approach stimulating demand. It still has a lot of faith in netbooks. Speaking at the press launch of the Aspire One AOD255, Acer Taiwan president Scott Lin cited Gartner's positive sale predictions for netbooks to underpin his confidence in netbooks. Gartner expects global netbook shipments to touch 50 million units by 2014.
With tablets stealing the lime light, netbook announcements are few and far between, but not absent altogether. Later this month, Acer will begin shipping its new Aspire One AOD255 netbook built around Intel's dual-core Atom N550 platform.
"We have enhanced our best-selling Aspire One netbook line with the improved performance and better power efficiency to improve the mobile computing experience for consumers," said Pete Dailey, senior product marketing manager for netbooks. With the new Aspire One AOD255, users are able to multitask, explore the Internet, connect with friends, and enjoy entertainment applications, without worrying about battery life or being tethered to an electrical outlet."
Acer didn't throw us for any curve balls with the AOD255. The standard configuration applies: 250GB hard drive, 10.1-inch LCD screen, 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi, 1.3MP webcam, 1GB of DDR3 memory, and Windows 7 Starter. Microsoft Office Starter 2010 is also included.
Chips based on this new multi-core design will be able to run at speeds of up to 2.5GHz. Performance-wise, the Cortex-A15 MPCore is said to be five times better than contemporary smartphone processors. The Cortex-A15 MPCore processor is now available for licensing to “and is targeted at manufacture in 32nm, 28nm and future geometries,” ARM announced on Wednesday.
“The launch of the Cortex-A15 MPCore processor marks the beginning of an entirely new era for the ARM Partnership. It brings together more than 20 years of ARM expertise in low-power design with a host of new and very aggressive high-performance technologies,” said Mike Inglis, EVP and GM, Processor Division, ARM.
The first batch of products featuring chips based on the A15 architecture aren't expected to come out before the end of 2012.
Samsung on Tuesday introduced its new dual-core 1GHz ARM Cortex A9-based processor designed for mobile applications. If all goes to plan, you'll soon seen this spunky chip in a variety of devices, including tablets, netbooks, and even smartphones.
"Consumers are demanding the full web experience without compromise while on the go," said Dojun Rhee, vice president of Marketing, System LSI Division, Samsung Electronics. "Given this trend, mobile device designers need an application processor platform that delivers superb multimedia performance, fast CPU processing speed, and abundant memory bandwidth. Samsung's newest dual core application processor chip is designed specifically to fulfill such stringent performance requirements while maintaining long battery life."
Built on a 45nm manufacturing process, the Orion processor, as it's being called, comes with two cores clocked at 1GHz, each with 32KB data cache and a 32KB instruction cache. There's also 1MB of L2 cache to help speed things up, Samsung says.
Interestingly, Orion also comes with an onboard native triple display controller architecture, so that a device equipped with this chip could support two on-device display screens and still have the chops to drive a third external display, like a TV or monitor via on-chip HDMI.
Select customers will get their hands on the new chip in the fourth quarter of 2010, with mass production to follow in the first half of 2011.
Intel's a little late to its own game -- a handful of dual-core Ion-based netbooks already exist -- but hey, we're all for closing the door on the single-core Atom netbook era. As of this moment, there are a dozen new netbooks based on Intel's new mobile dual-core Atom processors available in stores, the chip maker announced.
"In their short history, the netbook category has experienced impressive growth," said Erik Reid, director of marketing for mobile platforms at Intel. "Having shipped about 70 million Intel Atom chips for netbooks since our launch of the category in 2008, there is obviously a great market for these devices around the world."
Most of the heavy hitters have dual-core netbooks ready to go, including Acer, Asus, Fujitsu, Lenovo, LG, Samsung, MSI, and Toshiba. And according to Intel, it's Atom N550 chip offers "similar great battery life" as the single-core N450.
After playing with a smartphone equipped with a 1GHz Snapdragon or Hummingbird processor, it's hard as hell to go back to a last-gen mobile phone plodding along at 500-600MHz. The difference is really night and day. Be that as it may, are we on the dawn of a new smartphone era?
According to Networkworld.com, smartphones sporting dual-core chips are right around the corner. Qualcomm, the company behind the aforementioned Snapdragon CPU, has already shipped its first dual-core processor, the MSM8660, and later this year the company will start sampling a faster dual-core chip.
Qualcomm isn't alone, either. Texas Instruments is said to be shipping a dual-core mobile chip later this year, and if all goes to plan, it could show up in devices in the first quarter of 2010.
The question is, do we need dual-core processors in our smartphones? As far as we're concerned, the answer is a resounding "yes." While usage depends on the user, we often find ourselves using our smartphones for anything but making calls, and a dual-core foundation could open up a world of possibilities.
"This benefit allows for far more concurrency in applications. You've got an additional processor to handle background tasks, running multiple applications, or updating multiple webpages simultaneously," said Richard Tolbert, director of product management for the OMAP smartphone business at TI.
Hit the jump to find out what this would mean for battery life.