Nvidia finally unveiled the latest generation of Tegra processor called Tegra 4 in the International Consumer Electronic Show (CES) 2013. It is the successor to the Nvidia Tegra 3 which was released in the last year. According to Nvidia, Tegra 4 is currently world’s fastest quad-core processor for mobile devices packing four ARM-Cortex A-15 CPU with 72 cores GeForce GPU. It offers 6 times more GPU power  and 2.6 times more CPU power compared to Tegra 3. Last year’s Nvidia Tegra 3 is powering many popular Android mobile phones and tablets like HTC One X, LG Optimus 4X, Google Nexus 7 tablet and Microsoft Surface tablets. Tegra 4 supports LTE, 4K ultra-high-def video.

Nvidia Tegra 4

Tegra 4 Key Features

  • GeForce GPU with 72 custom cores
  • Quad-core ARM Cortex-A15 CPU, plus a 2nd Generation Battery Saver Core
  • Computational Photography Architecture
  • LTE capability with optional Icera i500 chipset
  • 4K ultra-high-def video support

Nvidia Tegra 3 vs Tegra 4 comparison: What is improved?

Performance: Nvidia Tegra 4 is currently fastest quad-core mobile processor. It has 6 times more graphics power and 2.6 times more CPU power compared to last year’s Tegra 3 processor.

Improved Battery Life: Nvidia Tegra 3 was a capable quad core CPU but there were some drawbacks like poor power efficiency, poor memory bandwidth and no built-in LTE support. Nvidia Tegra 4 is coming to solve all the problems of Tegra 3. The main problem of Tegra 3 was poor power efficiency, older generation 40nm Cortex-A9 cores were not battery friendly in spite of the 5th low power core. This time Nvidia is using latest 28nm fabrication process and four ARM Cortex A15 CPU which which are known for great performance and power efficiency. Tegra 4 uses same 4 plus 1 architecture of Tegra 3. That means there are 4 CPU cores and one low power CPU core which helps to extend battery life when the device is idle. This time Tegra 4 has 2nd Generation Battery Saver Core. According to some tests, Nvidia Tegra 4 uses 45% less power than its predecessor.

LTE Support: Another problem with Tegra 3 was that it didn’t have built-in LTE support. For this reason manufacturers were using Qualcomm’s dual-core Snapdragon S4 and quad-core S4 Pro CPU which comes with LTE modem. This time Nvidia Tegra 4 brings the global LTE connectivity using optional the fifth-generation NVIDIA Icera i500 processor.

HDR and 4K Ultra HD video support: Nvidia Tegra 4 supports Always-on  HDR (high dynamic range) camera with features like live HDR preview, instant HDR photos, HDR video, HDR burst, and HDR Flash. Tegra 4 powered devices will support ultra high definition video at 4K resolution.


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