Marvell announces first triple-core 1.5 GHz mobile processor

Sep 23, 2010 by John Messina weblog
Marvell logo

(PhysOrg.com) -- In a press release this morning Marvell announced the world’s first "ultra-low power, ultra-high performance" 1.5 GHz three-core processor that is the "first to feature 3D graphics performance with quad unified shaders for 200 million triangles per second delivered on mobile devices."

According to the press release, the Armada 628 can deliver dual stream 1080p 3D video and 3D graphics performance with quad unified shaders for 200 million triangles per second delivered on ultra-low-power, long smartphones and tablets.

The Armada 628 is also the first to incorporate a System-on-a-Chip (SoC) design with three ARM cores and six additional processing engines, totaling nine dedicated core functions. An Armada-equipped would be able to play 10 hours straight of 1080p HD video or 140 hours of music on a single charge.

Some of the key features of the tri-core processor include:

• Up to 1.5 GHz for the two main cores and 624 MHz for the third low power core
• 1 MB System Level 2 Cache
• 1080p dual stream 3D video applications (30 FPS, multi-format)
• Ability to project images on multiple simultaneous displays: 2 LCD’s, 1 HDMI, 1 EPD controller
• Peripherals supports: USB 3.0 Superspeed Client, MIPI CSI, MIPI DSI, HDMI with integrated PHY, UniPro, Slimbus, SPMI

The Armada 628 is the first mobile CPU to offer USB 3.0. The CPU is compatible with RIM OS, Android, Linux, Windows Mobile, and full Adobe Flash.

According to Marvell the CPU is currently available for sampling to customers but there is no word yet on when we can expect it to be incorporated into smartphones or tablets in the U.S. market.

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More information: Press release

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User comments : 10

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Bob_Kob
1.5 / 5 (2) Sep 23, 2010
Its funny, and at the same time almost scary that a mobile device could match the computer i'm using right now in processing power (~1.6 Ghz).

My computer is old, but not THAT old, it just seems that processing power is increasing so rapidly that it would be almost stupid to buy anything since in a few weeks something would come along thats twice as good and three times smaller.
snwboardn
5 / 5 (2) Sep 23, 2010
Maybe it is easier to get more speed on smaller devices faster... But on the desktop end they are at a wall as far as MHZ go, all they can do is add more cores.
John_balls
4.5 / 5 (2) Sep 23, 2010
Maybe it is easier to get more speed on smaller devices faster... But on the desktop end they are at a wall as far as MHZ go, all they can do is add more cores.

For you say they are the wall would imply that moore law has run out, which it hasn't
Skeptic_Heretic
not rated yet Sep 23, 2010
For you say they are the wall would imply that moore law has run out, which it hasn't
If Moore's Law does break, we're economically screwed.
that_guy
3.3 / 5 (3) Sep 23, 2010
I'm gonna call you guys what most of us are thinking. Idiots. The megahertz myth died years ago.

1. Just because the phone processor has the same clock speed doesn't make it as fast - although it may be somewhat close in this case.
2. Just because a processor can't do more cycles a second doesn't mean it can't do more per cycle. A computer processor has far more transisters than a phone processor.
3. The economy can go up or down regardless of moores law. It has for thousands of years, and will continue to go up and down as long as we do. If moores law ends, most likely the economy will become more stable and efficient, as programmers will spend time making things fool proof and fixing bugs, rather than straining just to keep up.
trekgeek1
3.5 / 5 (2) Sep 23, 2010
Maybe it is easier to get more speed on smaller devices faster... But on the desktop end they are at a wall as far as MHZ go, all they can do is add more cores.

For you say they are the wall would imply that moore law has run out, which it hasn't


He said MHz wall. Which is true due to the skin effect which increases resistance in the circuits and consumes more power. Moore's law deals with the shrinking of transistors and thus you can put more of them on a chip (more cores, just like he said). You have completely misinterpreted Moore's law.
John_balls
not rated yet Sep 23, 2010
Maybe it is easier to get more speed on smaller devices faster... But on the desktop end they are at a wall as far as MHZ go, all they can do is add more cores.

For you say they are the wall would imply that moore law has run out, which it hasn't


He said MHz wall. Which is true due to the skin effect which increases resistance in the circuits and consumes more power. Moore's law deals with the shrinking of transistors and thus you can put more of them on a chip (more cores, just like he said). You have completely misinterpreted Moore's law.

Adding more cores has nothing to do with moore's law ,try again.
trekgeek1
5 / 5 (1) Sep 23, 2010
Maybe it is easier to get more speed on smaller devices faster... But on the desktop end they are at a wall as far as MHZ go, all they can do is add more cores.

For you say they are the wall would imply that moore law has run out, which it hasn't


He said MHz wall. Which is true due to the skin effect which increases resistance in the circuits and consumes more power. Moore's law deals with the shrinking of transistors and thus you can put more of them on a chip (more cores, just like he said). You have completely misinterpreted Moore's law.

Adding more cores has nothing to do with moore's law ,try again.


In a way, it does. It states that the size of your transistor is cut in half every 18 months. This means you put more on a chip, which logically is done by grouping them into cores.
Skeptic_Heretic
1 / 5 (1) Sep 24, 2010
The economy can go up or down regardless of moores law. It has for thousands of years, and will continue to go up and down as long as we do. If moores law ends, most likely the economy will become more stable and efficient, as programmers will spend time making things fool proof and fixing bugs, rather than straining just to keep up.

Sorry, that's incorrect. The rammifications of Moore's law are economically focused. Our modern society runs on the ability to acquire and parse through mountains of raw data. There's no new algorythym or code complex that will defeat the limitations placed upon raw processing at the hardware level for an infinite amount of time. When applying Moore's law to economics, technology on the whole, and population growth you find that it is Moore that stops Malthus.
Quantum_Conundrum
not rated yet Sep 25, 2010
Moore's law probably isn't going to run out for at least another 10 years, since 4nm (7 atoms wide) silicon transistors have already been proven possible.

Then, if the transistor is 7 atoms wide that would make it about ~49 atoms square.

So if 4nm were arbitrarily close to the limit, we'd not have advancement as much, but surely everyone once in a while someone would figure out how to remove one of those ~49 atoms...

In 10 years, we will likely have 384 core, 5 ghz silicon based PC sitting on our desktop, well, some people will anyway, with a "3D quatron video card" that has a half million cores.