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Monday, January 06, 2014
NVIDIA Unveils Tegra K1 192-Core Mobile Chip

Nvidia at CES announced the Nvidia K1, a mobile processor with 192 graphics cores, which chief executive Jen Hsun Huang positioned as a mobile game console.

Previously codenamed Logan, the Tegra K1 mobile processor features the same NVIDIA Kepler architecture that powers the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 Ti GPU. It supports the latest PC-class gaming technologies -- including DirectX 11, OpenGL 4.4 and tessellation -- enabling it to run gaming engines like Epic Games' Unreal Engine 4. It also delivers advanced computation capabilities to speed the development of applications for computer vision and speech recognition.

"Over the past two decades, NVIDIA invented the GPU and has developed more graphics technologies than any other company," said Jen-Hsun Huang, co-founder and CEO, NVIDIA. "With Tegra K1, we're bringing that heritage to mobile. It bridges the gap for developers, who can now build next-gen games and apps that will run on any device."

Nvidia says that the Kepler GPU at the heart of Tegra K1 is 1.5 times more efficient than other mobile GPUs.

Tegra K1 is also the first mobile processor to support NVIDIA CUDA -- Nvidia's parallel computing platform.

The new chip is offered in two pin-to-pin compatible versions. The first version uses a 32-bit quad-core, 4-Plus-1 ARM Cortex A15 CPU. The second version uses a custom, NVIDIA-designed 64-bit dual Super Core CPU. This CPU (codenamed "Denver") delivers very high single-thread and multi-thread performance. It is based on the ARMv8 architecture, which brings the energy-efficient heritage of ARM processor technology to 64-bit computing.

The 32-bit version is expected in devices in the first half of 2014, while the 64-bit version is expected in devices in the second half of the year.

There will even be a third option for cars, which will run a variety of auto applications such as camera-based, advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) (pedestrian detection, blind-spot monitoring, lane-departure warning and street sign recognition). It will also monitor driver alertness via a dashboard-mounted camera.

In addition to computer vision, the Tegra K1 processor creates photo-real 3D graphics. Using NVIDIA's Material Definition Language -- which simulates how light reflects and refracts off of actual materials -- digital instrument clusters and infotainment systems can be customized with a wide range of virtual materials, from copper, titanium and brushed aluminum, to stitched leather and carbon fiber.

Tegra K1 will be available to automotive OEMs and Tier 1 suppliers as a visual computing module (VCM), a design first introduced two years ago. The Tegra K1 VCM delivers a full computer system for the vehicle, capable of running various operating systems including QNX, Android, Linux or Windows.

The Tegra VCM allows in-vehicle systems to be upgraded as newer hardware becomes available.


- GPU: NVIDIA Kepler Architecture
- CPU Cores and Architecture: NVIDIA 4-Plus-1 Quad-Core ARM Cortex-A15 "r3" Max Clock Speed 2.3 GHz Memory
- Memory Type DDR3L and LPDDR3
- Max Memory Size 8 GB (with 40-bit address extension)
- Display: LCD 3840x2160 HDMI 4K (UltraHD, 4096x2160)
- Package Size/Type: 23x23 FCBGA 16x16 S-FCCSP 15x15 FC PoP
- Process: 28 nm

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