In a recent posting on Forbes.com, industry analyst Pat Moorhead made a posting
about Nvidia's upcoming 64-bit based SoC codenamed Parker, which should be the company's first custom-built 64-bit CPU. We at BSN* have talked about this project
countless times and we have seen it develop into project boulder
a full CPU, and ultimately a final SoC. As we've seen and stated before, we expect that Parker, Logan's successor will most likely introduce this new Project Denver-based solution. Pat confirmed from Nvidia stating, "It could be all of those, but what Nvidia has confirmed to me is that the Logan SoC follow-on for mobile devices does have a custom 64-bit processor core, based on Denver."
Parker, also to be known as Tegra 6, will combine the Kepler GPU cores from Tegra 5 (Logan) which we actually saw firsthand at Siggraph this year. It will combine both Nvidia's own 64-bit CPU IP as well as their own GPU IP that they've been so famous for.
What we're interested to see is how Nvidia positions Tegra 6 (Parker) in their product stack and how quickly we'll see these SoCs integrated into Nvidia's own HPC solutions to remove Intel and AMD from their designs. If Nvidia could sell their HPC cards without any Intel or AMD CPUs, that would mean that their customers could effectively spend more money on their GPUs and simultaneously get access to more consumers with smaller budgets. I suspect that Tegra 6 with the 64-bit architecture will be an absolute monster, however, Tegra 5 shouldn't be any slouch either. Although Tegra 5 is supposed to be an A15 + Kepler design SoC, it should still deliver a significant performance boost if it does indeed launch 2Q 2014 as a 20nm fabbed chip.
I don't think we have any idea how powerful Nvidia's 64-bit CPU will be, but if Apple's A7 is any indication, it will prove to be a huge improvement in terms of IPC and could make Nvidia's SoC faster and cooler at the same time. While Tegra 4 isn't necessarily considered to be the king of the crop of SoCs, I believe that Tegra 5 will most likely give Intel and Qualcomm a run for their money and Tegra 6 will likely be Nvidia's real competitive chip in 2015. However, as we all know the mobile industry moves at the speed of light and 2 years is a long way away.
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