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Nvidia Tegra 4 'Wayne' specs leak ahead of launch

Nvidia Tegra 4 'Wayne' specs leak ahead of launch

Nvidia's upcoming Cortex-A15-based Tegra 4 'Wayne' SoC promises significant performance improvements over its Cortex-A9-based predecessor.

Specifications for Nvidia's upcoming Tegra 4 chip, codenamed 'Wayne' in a continuation of the superhero-themed naming convention that brought us Tegra 3 'Kal-El,' have leaked ahead of an expected formal launch in January or February next year.

Designed for high-end tablets and smartphones, Tegra 4 builds on Nvidia's existing Tegra 3 chip and shares the basic design: four ARM-based processing cores are joined by a fifth low-power 'companion' core designed to keep the device ticking over when the screen is off without drawing excessive power. It's an approach adopted by others in the industry, and one approved of by ARM itself with its own 'big.LITTLE' design ethos.

As befits a next-generation part, however, Wayne is somewhat beefier than Kal-El - something Batman and Superman fans can argue about in the comments should they so desire. According to a slide leaked by sources unknown and obtained by Chip Hell, while Wayne will be limited to the same four-plus-one-core layout as Kal-El, the graphics portion will enjoy a significant boost with a 72-core GeForce graphics processor providing a claimed 6x performance increase over Tegra 3 and a 20x increase over Tegra 2.

The processing portion of the system-on-chip design is believed to be based around ARM's Cortex-A15, a next-generation replacement for the Cortex-A9 IP used in Tegra 3. Offering improved performance and some nice new features, including 48-bit memory addressing and hardware virtualisation extensions, Wayne should also boast improved performance for general-purpose compute, even if it launches at the same frequencies as its predecessor.

Other features promised by the slide include a dual-channel memory controller with support for DDR3L, LPDDR2 and LPDDR3 RAM, video hardware encode and decode at 2,650x1,440 resolution in VP8 and H.264 formats, and an eight-lane display serial interconnect (DSI) driver supporting up to 2,560x1,600 resolution displays, 1080p at 120Hz for 3D displays, or 4K resolution displays over HDMI. An imaging processor provides support for high-resolution cameras, and input-output capabilities include USB 3.0, SDIO, and SPI.

A shift to a 28nm lithographic process, combined with improvements in the Cortex-A15 architecture, will mean lower power draw compared to Tegra 3, although as yet Nvidia hasn't provided any firm figures as to actual power draw or overall performance.

With Nvidia expected to unveil the first Tegra 4 'Wayne'-based devices at either the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in January or Mobile World Congress (MWC) in February, fans of the company's high-performance system-on-chip products shouldn't have long to wait to see if the slide's claims are accurate.

18 Comments

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Madness_3d 19th December 2012, 15:54 Quote
O.O
rollo 19th December 2012, 16:53 Quote
Dont see how they will get a quad core to last more than a few hrs in a phone if its been used.
Gareth Halfacree 19th December 2012, 17:17 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by rollo
Dont see how they will get a quad core to last more than a few hrs in a phone if its been used.
Quite easily: the current-generation Tegra 3 is quad-core, and found in the HTC One X+ and other smartphones without issue. Samsung's Exynos 4 is also available as a quad-core part, and powers the Galaxy S3 - again without issue. As is Qualcomm's Snapdragon S4 Pro, which powers the Nexus 4.

Given that the Tegra 4 will be a lower-TDP 28nm part, I shouldn't think battery life will be a problem.
AmEv 19th December 2012, 18:02 Quote
^Plus, it has a "companion" core. It switches between it and the main. It's lower-clocked, and the two sets are never used at the same time.
Anfield 19th December 2012, 20:47 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gareth Halfacree
Tegra 3 is quad-core, and found in the HTC One X+ and other smartphones without issue. Samsung's Exynos 4 is also available as a quad-core part, and powers the Galaxy S3 - again without issue. As is Qualcomm's Snapdragon S4 Pro, which powers the Nexus 4

Depends on how you define no problem, personally I'm sick of having to charge phones and tablets each and every day. Plus the battery life of my Note 2 is so atrocious I have to carry a spare smartphone.
Nexxo 19th December 2012, 21:13 Quote
Companion core should take care of that.

Sounds like something from Portal...
AcidJiles 19th December 2012, 23:48 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Anfield
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gareth Halfacree
Tegra 3 is quad-core, and found in the HTC One X+ and other smartphones without issue. Samsung's Exynos 4 is also available as a quad-core part, and powers the Galaxy S3 - again without issue. As is Qualcomm's Snapdragon S4 Pro, which powers the Nexus 4

Depends on how you define no problem, personally I'm sick of having to charge phones and tablets each and every day. Plus the battery life of my Note 2 is so atrocious I have to carry a spare smartphone.

I thought the note had great battery life?
rollo 20th December 2012, 13:16 Quote
I dont really consider 3-4hrs of real usage great battery life. If i play a game on my samsung SG3 it lasts about 2-3hrs maximum, Before i get the 10% warning.

Yes if i use it as a phone email device it lasts the day but any form of music playing / light gaming and your taking the charger to work with you if you want it to last a full day.

Note 2 has good battery life if you dont really use it, Same as any smartphone. Put any sort of usage onto a smartphone be it web browsing 3d gaming or otherwise and the battery just tanks.

No smartphone has good battery life at the minute if you really use it as a smartphone. 3-5hrs is the best you can hope for with consistant usage.

Would personally like to see a longer battery life even if speeds were a touch slower on these quad core phones ( do we even need a quadcore phone, All the SG3 needs is a faster GPU the CPU in it is fast enough)
SchizoFrog 20th December 2012, 16:31 Quote
I wish people would stop complaining about the battery life of smart phones. It is what it is. You are getting a device that has that latest and greatest technology hardware and then complain that they don't last as long as old style mobiles. That is like buying a super car to replace your economical one and then complaining because it guzzles the petrol. You are not buying a smart phone for its battery, but for what it can do. If you want long lasting performance try buying an old style phone instead,
longweight 20th December 2012, 16:45 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by SchizoFrog
I wish people would stop complaining about the battery life of smart phones. It is what it is. You are getting a device that has that latest and greatest technology hardware and then complain that they don't last as long as old style mobiles. That is like buying a super car to replace your economical one and then complaining because it guzzles the petrol. You are not buying a smart phone for its battery, but for what it can do. If you want long lasting performance try buying an old style phone instead,

That isn't the right attitude. I would rather have a larger phone that actually lasts all day than the current iPhone / 920 / HTC handsets which do shutdown after 4-5 hours of proper usage.

I need my phone to work from 9am - 5pm as I am out of the office a lot, no phone does that yet.
BLC 20th December 2012, 17:28 Quote
Looking forward to seeing the SBCs are based on this. Quad-core tegra with full OpenGL compatibility? Sign me up.

Though somehow I suspect that the price tags, at least for reference boards, will be rather eye-watering at first...
SchizoFrog 21st December 2012, 03:22 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by longweight
Quote:
Originally Posted by SchizoFrog
I wish people would stop complaining about the battery life of smart phones. It is what it is. You are getting a device that has that latest and greatest technology hardware and then complain that they don't last as long as old style mobiles. That is like buying a super car to replace your economical one and then complaining because it guzzles the petrol. You are not buying a smart phone for its battery, but for what it can do. If you want long lasting performance try buying an old style phone instead,

That isn't the right attitude. I would rather have a larger phone that actually lasts all day than the current iPhone / 920 / HTC handsets which do shutdown after 4-5 hours of proper usage.

I need my phone to work from 9am - 5pm as I am out of the office a lot, no phone does that yet.

Not the right attitude? So complaining that something doesn't exist is? I am sure that if it was that easy then they would have done it by now. The fact is that you are in the vast minority and the masses would not buy a larger phone just because it lasted longer. All these smart phones are designer items whether you like a design or not and a design that was x3 thicker and much heavier just would not sell.
ch424 21st December 2012, 09:38 Quote
Where is this "3-4hours" battery life coming from? You would have to be pretty much constantly downloading over 3G to burn that much power. Are you running loads of crapware apps that are loading adverts?

I've got a Nokia E6 that does 2 or 3 days on one charge. I have it syncing on 2 email accounts, and each day do ~6 hours of listening to music and ~1hour of browsing. I know plenty of people with similar use patterns that get over a day from their Android phones.
steveo_mcg 21st December 2012, 10:45 Quote
Want more battery, buy a bigger battery! Sure it "ruins" the lines of the phone but if it extends the utility of the phone it must be worth it.
SchizoFrog 21st December 2012, 15:05 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by steveo_mcg
Want more battery, buy a bigger battery! Sure it "ruins" the lines of the phone but if it extends the utility of the phone it must be worth it.

Exactly... All these battery comments just sound like a spoilt kid in a toy shop having a tantrum at Christmas:

'I want, I want, I want...'
LightningPete 24th December 2012, 03:52 Quote
I
LightningPete 24th December 2012, 03:56 Quote
I have had the LG optimus 2x and now the 4X models (cores respective to their names) being tegra 2 and tegra 3 respectively, and I have to say im extremely impressed with Tegras capablities. Non gaming on my LG 4X battery power lasts much longer than expected for a quad core. Standby mode lasts even longer still. Shame im now on a 24 month contract for my newer model, as 12/18 month contracts were unfortunately higher initial upfront payments to get. Tegra4 with all the above with the possibility of same or better battery life. If youy havent got a tegra based phone and enjoy games/hd movies/ plugging your phones into HD TV'S at a friends house, you NEED one of these. Best handheld technology purchases in my honest opinion.
Anfield 24th December 2012, 14:48 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by ch424
Where is this "3-4hours" battery life coming from?

I said less than a day, not 3 - 4 hours, there is a massive difference between 3 - 4 hours and a day. 7am to midnight = 17 hours, so taking the 4 hours thats more than 4 times as much.
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