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March 14, 2012

Samsung Exynos 5250: Dual-core or Quad-core GPU?

Tablets, mobile phone products based on Samsung 28nm Exynos 5250 processor are expected to be listed at the end of this year. We are quite familiar with the CPU section: integrates with two Cortex-A15 cores, with 2.0GHz main frequency and 12.8GB/s bandwidth. But the GPU section is still a riddle to users. News from GDC says that the new GPU Mali-T604 will be adopted by Exynos 5250, and most importantly it will be dual-core or quad-core GPU.

We all know that the modular design mode brought by ARM Mali-400 which can creating multi-core GPU, does not realize large-scale application. For example, Samsung Exynos 4210/4212 is with single Mali-400, but the graphics performance is excellent.

Exynos 5250 will have two or four Mali-T604 GPU graphics cores, and probably will be divided into two versions, including the dual-core version for smart phones, quad-core version for tablet or even laptop. ARM claims that Mali-T604 performance can achieve three to five times as Mali-400, but it does not specify how many cores will be needed to achieve this level.

For ARM and its partners, Mali-T604 will be landmark step for it not only has greatly improved the performance, but also transferred to the model based on Shader, be closer to the modern A card N card, so programming will be simpler, and it can be used in other graphics areas besides game. In Hardware specifications, Mali-T604 completly supports DirectX 9/10/11, OpenCL 1.1, DirectCompute, and the surface subdivision technology is supportable.

ARM also confirms that Exynos 5250 will not use the big. LITTLE scheme as expected which means that an auxiliary small core is excluded.

Finally, ARM also says that the Cortex-A15 performance will exceed Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 which owns excellent performance already.

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