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Early benchmarks suggest NVIDIA's new Tegra chip outperforms Apple and Qualcomm

Sharif Sakr

The graph above comes courtesy of Tom's Hardware and, whichever way you look it, it suggests NVIDIA is onto a good thing. The company's recently announced Tegra K1 processor combines a handful of ARM Cortex-A15 CPUs with a GPU based on the same successful Kepler graphics architecture found in desktops and laptops. The result seems to be a minimum 25 percent lead over the current generation of flagship chips, including Qualcomm's Snapdragon 800 and Apple's 64-bit A7, as measured with 3DMark -- although this may not be an especially fair comparison since we don't know the precise wattage of the Thinkvision's processor (if it's more than a few watts, it shouldn't really be compared to the chip in a smartphone).

You'll find a roughly similar pattern in other tests over at the source link, but before you disappear into a new tab here's a couple more disclaimers: Firstly, these scores are based on a Lenovo Thinkvision 28 Android all-in-one (with a lovely 4K panel), which Tom's Hardware was led to believe (but not officially told) contains a K1. Secondly, assuming this is a K1, it's definitely not the 64-bit version; it's not running at NVIDIA's claimed max clock speed of 2.3GHz, and it's almost certainly not using market-ready drivers -- all of which suggests that 2014's crop of Tegra K1-powered tablets could be even more powerful than what we're seeing right now.

Update: More benchmark scores are spilling out. They still only relate to graphics, and they rely on a pre-release version of GFXBench, but these numbers would suggest that a Tegra K1 reference tablet can match or even beat the 3D performance of an Intel Haswell laptop with integrated graphics, despite the latter presumably burning many more watts.

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