Nvidia responds to Intel’s anti-Ion propaganda

Written by Ben Hardwidge

February 25, 2009 // 10:02 a.m.

Tags: #1080p #10x #anti #anti-ion #atom #chipset #document #gaming #hd #intel #ion #nano #nvidia #performance #powerpoint #presentation #propaganda #responds #response #retaliates #via #video

The Nvidia and Intel battle is now in full swing, with PowerPoint slides being sharpened and handbags placed in full public view. Following on from Intel’s anti-Ion propaganda document that we saw yesterday, Nvidia has retaliated with a PowerPoint presentation of its own, which is intended to answer some of Intel’s claims.

Like the Intel document, Nvidia’s presentation also takes a swipe at the ageing technology used by its competitor. One slide compares Intel’s "four-year-old three chip design" with Nvidia’s "modern two chip solution." This two-chip system, says Nvidia, provides 10x the performance while taking up 55 percent less space. The performance claim refers specifically to the Ion’s gaming abilities from its GPU with 16 stream processors.

Nvidia also points out that Ion is fully WHQL-certified by Microsoft for Windows Vista Home Premium, and that an Ion-based PC can perform real-time video transcoding tasks using CUDA, as well as having the ability to output 1080p HD video with 7.1 audio. However, the former has already been dismissed by Intel, which said that "neither gaming nor video transcoding are relevant to netbook and nettop users."

Interestingly, Nvidia claims that Intel’s next-generation Atom (codenamed Pineview) will ‘force’ customers to use Intel integrated graphics with what Nvidia describes as "minor improvements." This would explain why Nvidia is opening up its second-generation Ion platform to support VIA’s Nano CPU.

Nvidia also dismissed Intel’s claims about power consumption and battery life, saying that "peak power is a very poor measurement" that doesn’t represent real-world use of a netbook. To make its point, Nvidia published results from MobileMark 2007, which tests battery life using standard apps and video playback. The results showed that an Intel 945GSE-based system lasted for two hours, 40 minutes, while an Nvidia Ion system lasted for two hours, 31 minutes.

As with Intel’s document, Nvidia took the opportunity to publish a few quotes from the press, including one from DailyTech that says that Ion "Completely obliterates anything Intel can currently offer," and one from PC Perspective, which says that "any company not at least seriously considering adopting an ION platform design has no desire to be on the forefront of PC technology."

Was Nvidia right to respond to Intel’s claims? Let us know your thoughts in the forums.

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