Monday, May 30, 2011

Nvidia Demoes Quad-core Kal-El Chip

[Those who have read my previous posts about tablets probably know already about my fascination about the Tegra 3-powered tablets. I have literally shelved plans to purchase a tablet until I see these tech beasts in action.]

As reported here by Cnet News (and pretty much all major tech news sites), Nvidia earlier today released a demonstration of their upcoming Tegra 3/Kal-El chipset. I am very impressed to say the least.

The demo shown essentially details the graphics power of the Tegra 3's processors. As the Nvidia guy narrates in the background, the (scary clown) game demonstrates the Tegra 3's ability to render dynamic lighting. While dynamic lighting is nothing new in the gaming industry, it is a new development for mobile gaming platforms -- or gaming on smartphone/tablet devices. Such a feature requires an enormous amount of processing power, as the physics calculation for lighting must be executed concurrently in real time. One can see from Nvidia's demo that, aside from the lighting effects on the ball, there are also physic calculations applied to the curtains in the game. Good stuff.

Two main question marks at this point as: (1) release date, and (2) battery life. For the first, Nvidia promises a release date of August 2011 -- a sentiment echoed by the hardware manufacturer Asus. This means it is only 2 months away! The significance of the second question is relative to one's needs for a Tegra 3-device. I anticipate a similar battery life to the current generation (Tegra 2), because cores can be idled when the additional processing power is not needed.

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