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NVIDIA President and CEO Jen-Hsun Huang  (Source:
New NVIDIA/ARM partnership code-named Project Denver, targets PCs and supercomputers

NVIDIA, makers of the powerful Tegra 2 dual-core processor, yesterday at CES announced a partnership with ARM -- code-named "Project Denver" -- to build ARM-based CPU cores that could power PCs, servers, and supercomputers.

"With Project Denver, we are designing a high-performing ARM CPU core in combination with our massively parallel GPU cores to create a new class of processor," said Jen-Hsun Huang, president and CEO of NVIDIA, in a press release.

In fact, the project entails the NVIDIA CPU running the ARM instruction set, fully integrated on the same chip as the NVIDIA GPU. In addition, NVIDIA has obtained the rights to develop its own CPU cores based on ARM's future processor architecture. While the Tegra 2 combines two Cortex A9, NVIDIA now has also licensed ARM's Cortex A15 for future Tegra models.

"This marks the beginning of the Internet Everywhere era, where every device provides instant access to the Internet, using advanced CPU cores and rich operating systems," Huang said.

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ARM + Windows
By dj LiTh on 1/6/2011 8:49:48 AM , Rating: 2
Maybe this plus the fact that microsoft is going to enable ARM cpu's to use future versions of windows will finally enable that 'can-o-whup-ass' on intel

RE: ARM + Windows
By Da W on 1/6/2011 9:14:58 AM , Rating: 3
It was done before, it was called PowerPC, all MAC had it (yes made for APPLE), still it was a faillure.

Even if x86 is flawed, the x86 decoder takes less and less space on the chip and becomes slowly irrelevant. I have yet to see anybody come close to Intel in performance per watt.

Windows ARM will be mostly an option for tablets to go against ipad and android. Yet by 2012-2013, x86 processors from Intel and AMD might be power efficient enough to run a tablet.

The real winner here is Microsoft, as they are making the RISC-CISC instruction debate irrelevant, as long as you code for Windows in C#, C++, VB...

RE: ARM + Windows
By kattanna on 1/6/2011 10:56:15 AM , Rating: 2
windows also used to run on, at the time, a superior chip to x86 called alpha years ago.

so windows running on multiple CPU's isnt new.

on the desktop and performance markets i dont see ARM competing. on the netbook and phone market, i do.

RE: ARM + Windows
By mellomonk on 1/6/2011 11:48:13 AM , Rating: 3
The thing is that going forward the desktop and performance market is going to be a smaller and smaller piece of the pie. Tablets, phones, and other personal computing devices look to be the vast majority of the consumer computing market in the future. In many Asian markets the majority of internet access is through mobile devices. The developing world is likely to jump to these devices without going to very many desktops. Just as mobile phones spread through Africa before landlines became commonplace.

MS is making the smart move to be on the current dominate mobile architecture in preparation for such a future.

RE: ARM + Windows
By kattanna on 1/6/2011 12:02:20 PM , Rating: 2
very true.

heck, given the power of some of these lower end cpu's, they are almost good enough for general desktop use. i mean even now word or excel is waiting on you most of the time as it is.

i can even see business desktops going away and heading back to a more mainframe type approach from years past where its little more then a terminal on the users station.

also, i can see the performance market being completely swallowed by the workstation market. as it is now they already blur into each other.

RE: ARM + Windows
By Da W on 1/6/2011 2:21:06 PM , Rating: 1
The thing is that going forward the desktop and performance market is going to be a smaller and smaller piece of the pie.

Because the pie is getting bigger and not because the piece itself is getting smaller.

Yet, i can see a scenario where you would have a desktop in your living room, a 500$ piece of equipment that would act as a cable box, blue ray player, videogame console (with kinnect) and is also used for complete home automation (is that forgotten all of sudden?), that respond to touch, gestures (like kinnect) and voice command. That 500$ desktop, being the brain of your house, is also the center pice syncing your phones, tablets and god knows what devices together. The center piece of your all-digital world would still be a desktop, center of Microsoft "multi screen" strategy, running on ARM or x86 is irrelevant, as long as it runs on windows.

So i don't see the desktop fading away. It's too powerful for casual use now, but not yet powerful enough for complete home automation and server purpose at a low price point. But it's coming. I can do almost all of those with my HTPC, tablet PC and widows phne, although i'm a geek and it was expensive.

RE: ARM + Windows
By vol7ron on 1/10/2011 10:11:36 AM , Rating: 2
Yes, but as has already been stated. The smartphone market is already much bigger than desktops. More people use them and many people have multiple for whatever purpose.

A central syncing device, whether in the cloud, or at your home is only necessary if the devices can't coordinate amongst themselves.

Desktops might be replaced by smart-TVs. An idea that was thrown out before, but wasn't marketed well. I think the success will only be seen by how upgradeable it is and how modular it is. Meaning, if something happens to the TV itself, can you salvage anything by putting old parts in a new TV.

Already, the line between monitor and TV is thin. It's a matter of subtle improvement and combination of features. Much like the smartphone did to the Palm Pilot/Pocket PC.

RE: ARM + Windows
By omnicronx on 1/6/2011 12:55:25 PM , Rating: 3
Its not exactly the same situation now though is it?

PPC was essentially an IBM/Apple venture that never really materialized to more than Apple computers and IBM supercomputers.

ARM is already quite prevelent in the smartphone space, and is widely used low power integrated parts around the world.

ARM is also very cheap, it does not cost much at all to license.

This is a lot different than PPCvsIntel..

RE: ARM + Windows
By Flunk on 1/7/2011 12:15:37 PM , Rating: 2
Actually you missed the most popular use of ARM, games consoles. PS3, Xbox 360, Wii and Gamecube all have them.

By Da W on 1/6/2011 9:05:47 AM , Rating: 3
you must mean Nvidia

By LordSojar on 1/6/2011 9:15:42 AM , Rating: 5
Power efficiency? Are you serious? Considering Tegra2 is quite possibly the most power efficient platform on the planet (at this time)... it's safe to say nVidia MIGHT know what they are doing...

I, for one, am extremely excited by this announcement. nVidia has a lot of expertise in developing ground up architectures. It's safe to assume the product that is the fruit of this project will be at least decent and not a complete failure.

ION literally has nothing to do with this endeavor. Literally...NOTHING. It's a 9400M chip designed to function with Intel's Atom CPU platform. How is a graphics chip coupled with an x86 CPU even worth mentioning in relation to this announcement? The fact you mentioned AMD is making me think you might have absolutely no clue what you are talking about. I'd like to be wrong in this instance... but I'm afraid I'm not.

nVidia is adjusting to a drastically changing market landscape. This decision is a very risky, but potentially has a huge payoff. To be able to drop Intel and AMD out of the HPC and server sector within the space of 10 years would be jaw-dropping amazing. Do I think they can do it? I think they have the ability to do it; will they? No idea. It's ambitious, high risk and ballsy. It's also very necessary to make this move now, as it has the potential to propel nVidia forward as a company. The next 5 years are going to be VERY interesting.

By omnicronx on 1/6/2011 1:18:43 PM , Rating: 2
Well to be fair, Nvidia is a traditional core licensee, which basically means they use the ARM designs in their native form.

I can pretty much guarantee that they will not be on the forefront much longer when Qualcomm, Samsung or Texas Instruments design their own cores around the ARM architectural.. (i.e when they release their own CortexA9 variants)

Nvidia will certainly have their work cut out for them because of such, and personally I think they will be much more successful in the desktop/mobile space than the server space.. (where things like the Tegra2 mean nothing being a media centric SOC)

By Taft12 on 1/6/2011 11:15:32 AM , Rating: 2
gpu's don't seem to follow in the footsteps of modern cpus at all.

I don't know if you're talking about desktop GPUs or Tegra's market, but modern desktop GPUs throttle down to use VERY little power compared to previous generations.

The 6970 uses about 20W at idle and the GTX 580 ~30W. Do you think the X850 and 6800 Ultra were capable of this??? There's no reason not to think Nvidia and AMD will continue to push this down in future generations.

By tastyratz on 1/6/2011 2:07:08 PM , Rating: 2
impressive, I was not aware they throttled down that much. I typed Amd instead of nvidia buy accident, but I retract my previous statement

By mindless1 on 1/8/2011 12:48:48 AM , Rating: 2
It's a bit apples:oranges if you consider that a progressive improvement, the power consumption reduction is mainly due to lowering frequency and voltage, something that would have been relatively easy to do years and years ago and would have been if developing the tech had been important in keeping the average power consumption envelope lower on their higher end, high profit parts.

Remember when several hundred dollar AGP video cards used only 40W peak and that was considered a lot at the time?

By vision33r on 1/8/2011 10:26:43 PM , Rating: 2
I've owned mostly Intel CPU the last 8 years and haven't looked back at AMD since the K7 days.

I'm just sick and tired of Intel's lock on the desktop and notebook market. Luckily Intel skipped the mobile market and now they're working on it.

Intel is the biggest bully in the tech industry.

"Well, there may be a reason why they call them 'Mac' trucks! Windows machines will not be trucks." -- Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer
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