Th Mobile World Congress happens to be one of the biggest events of note in the tech sector. As the name suggests it consists of everything and anything to do with mobile. Notably the launch of major smartphones and tablets occurs here. Ofcouse the major players are now drifting towards a more independent launch style for flagship products, the Apple Event being a prime example, but none the less the MWC 2014 will be the area to be for Mobile headlines and enthusiasts alike. MWC 2014 will take place in Barcelona and will begin on the 24th of this month on Monday. I.e. 2 days from the point of writing this article. An important thing to note this year is the Keynote address of Facebook’s founder Mark Zuckerberg. Now lets take a look at what to expect from the Mobile World Congress 2014.
Today, NVIDIA officially announces their GeForce GTX 750 Ti and GeForce GTX 750 graphics cards which are based on the first generation Maxwell core architecture. With almost twice the performance per watt of its predecessors, the NVIDIA Maxwell core architecture is going to become one of the most innovative GPU core architecture after Kepler in terms of efficiency.
NVIDIA Launches GeForce GTX 750 Ti and GeForce GTX 750
The first generation Maxwell core would be integrated inside two graphics cards known as the GeForce GTX 750 Ti and the GeForce GTX 750. These are the first mid range cards NVIDIA has launched in their GeForce 700 series lineup since the rest of the graphics cards were based off the GK110 or the GK104 Kepler cores. The Maxwell GPU for both cards is codenamed GM107 so we will talk about it first before moving in the specifications of the cards.
The NVIDIA Maxwell GM107 core is the first of two Maxwell based chips which will be based on the 28nm process . The GM107 which is already available on the GeForce GTX 750 Ti and the GeForce GTX 750 while the other chip is codenamed GM108 and is the base Maxwell model which would be available as a part of NVIDIA’s GeForce 800M mobility lineup. The GM108 would be fused in the entry level mobility chips which include the GeForce GT 840M and possibly a few more models.
NVIDIA will also unleash their GeForce GTX Titan Black graphics card today featuring the full compute power of the GK110 core. The GeForce GTX Titan Black is the second generation Titan graphics card featuring the GK110 core with double precision cores unlocked and faster clock speeds compared to the GeForce GTX 780 Ti.
NVIDIA GeForce GTX Titan Black Delivers Unprecedented Amounts of Power to Developers and Enthusiasts
NVIDIA had initially launched their GeForce GTX Titan back in February 2013 which was the world’s first graphics card to feature the GK110 core which was at the time being mass produced specifically for server needs. Super-computers such as the Titan which the card was named after was the first to utilize the latest core with its high performance CUDA cores, 2668 in count at the time. The GeForce GTX Titan was a great card but came at a big price so it was mostly a enthusiast only product but still outsold the GeForce GTX 690 which was NVIDIA’s Dual GK104 based card available at the same $999 US price range.
Moving forward, NVIDIA introduced several GK110 based cards, the GeForce GTX 780 and GeForce GTX 780 Ti. The Ti model was the first to introduce the full GK110 core to the masses (but still had gimped double precision performance). The card came at a lower $699 US price range and bested the Titan in performance. AMD on the other hand had some interesting Hawaii models in the pipeline with highly competitive pricing models which was a reason for their popularity among the buyers. The fight between the GeForce GTX 780 Ti and Radeon R9 290X still remains unsettled since both cards are good in their own terms. The GTX 780 Ti is faster in NVIDIA optimized games, runs cooler with a low TDP but costs higher. On the AMD side, the R9 290X performs fantastic for its price and even manages to outperform the 780 Ti in AMD optimized titles but runs really hot and loud plus you can hardly find one in the market due to the crypto mining craze.
AMD has officially launched their 14.1 BETA driver which adds support for the latest Mantle API in GCN enabled graphics processing units. The latest driver enables Mantle in Battlefield 4 which is the first game to adopt the new API delivering faster performance and improved frame pacing.
AMD Catalyst 14.1 BETA Finally Launched – Enables Mantle API
The Mantle drivers have been released and now available to download (please visit this page for download links and change log for the Catalyst 14.1 BETA driver). The patch for Battlefield 4 was released a few days ago which added Mantle support to the game but public was unable to use the API until the drivers were out at AMD’s end. We stated in our previous article that AMD would provide press with an exclusive testing time ahead of official launch. We were provided the BETA drivers by AMD a few hours ago and had only limited time in our hands for testing Mantle in a few games with AMD’s GCN enabled graphics cards which include the Radeon R7 260X, R9 270X and R9 280X.
So how does Mantle work?
The Mantle API is geared towards AMD GCN hardware which includes their Radeon HD 7000, 8000 and R200 series cards.While Mantle’s first focus would be the graphics processing unit utilization, from recent benchmarks we have come to the conclusion that Mantle’s initial focus would be to eliminate scenarios where the processor becomes the bottleneck of the entire system causing performance degradation. Mantle API helps by reducing the CPU load for better utilization of the system hardware.
[Editorial] Before we begin, let me clear the ruling criteria. All the games chosen have not been released yet. All of them have a tentative release date of 2014. It also goes without saying that only the media that has been released so far could be considered. I will look not only at the graphical quality of a game, but also at the scale. I.e. Impressive Graphical Quality but not enough Scale =/= win, likewise with Massive Scale but not enough Graphical Quality. To judge the graphical quality, we have taken into account the art style, environment detail, post processing, atmospheric effects, asset detail, character detail and also eye candy. All the screenshots and images have been (down) scaled to 1920×1080 for comparison purposes. Click on the thumbnails to enlarge them. Finally , that beauty is relative, as is this editorial, so just sit back, relax and enjoy the ride.
[Editorial] Something very interesting happened in the far reaches of the internet. A seemingly insignificant update of a Cryptocurrency called Protoshares made its rounds on the other side of clearnet. The update you see, opened up the full power of CUDA. AMD GPUs are very low on stock thanks to Litecoin, but there is an abundance of Nvidia GPUs to go around (in that regard). And it would appear it was inevitable that a new player would enter the scene.
Protoshares Unleashes the full power of CUDA at last, Will CUDA-Coins break the mining monopoly AMD has enjoyed ?
Basically Protoshares works on the Momentum Proof of Work Algorithm. Bitcoin uses SHA 256 as the Proof of Work Algo, and Litecoin uses SCRYPT for Proof of Work. Interestingly, Momentum was designed to be an algo that is impossible to be utilized by FPGAs and ASICs just like SCRYPT. But Unlike Scrypt, the Momentum Proof of Work Algo was so complex it was actually impossible to utilize it via GPUS as well (Quite Deliberately) . Therefore, you could only use CPUs, AMD Or Intel, to mine Protoshares. That is to say until very recently, a coder was able to use a CUDA enabled GPU to mine using Momentum.
AMD Kaveri APUs have officially been launched and now available to consumers around the globe. The 2014 AMD A-Series APU lineup consists of two new SKUs which include the A10-7850K and A10-7700K providing users with a wide variety of features inside an all-in-one package.
AMD Kaveri APUs Officially Launched – Steamroller, GCN and HUMA Fusion APU
The AMD Kaveri APU is the next step into the fusion between the CPU, GPU and Memory. Powered by the latest Steamroller core architecture, the Kaveri APUs enhance the IPC upto 20% over Piledriver while GCN cores deliver increased graphics performance compared to the older VLIW based integrated graphics. Both the CPU and GPU work in harmony through the HSA enhancements which provides a unified coherent memory access to both the CPU and GPU to leverage the performance and ease the development for this platform.
The AMD Kaveri APUs are built on the 28nm SHP process measuring at 245mm2 and features a total of 2.41 Billion transistors crammed inside the die. The Steamroller core architecture is a completely new design with each module featuring two separate threads are provided with their own parallel instruction decoder. AMD’s Steamroller architecture will aim to deliver faster processing power in a clock-to-clock comparison against the Richland APUs and is a step forward.
Consumer Electronics Trade Show ’14 is buzzing with the vibe of new technologies and attractive upgrades. Wearable technology and display screens seem to have triumphed upon the smartphone and tablets gaga. Not completely though. While some are aiming for ultimate elegance, others are going compact; and then there are these adventurous technologies too.
With no further ado, here we go with a short roundup of what caught our eyes in terms of technology that many people would be using in this year 2014.
CES 2014 Best:
- Sony Xperia Z1 Compact:
Sony has jumped up to please though who are not really wooed by larger display screens. While there is a trend set of launching cheaper variants flagships along with a trend of mini, usually specs get cut too. However, in case of Sony Xperia Z1 Compact, we are seeing a smaller 4.3 inch display screen but sporting the same specs as Xperia Z1.
One of the most anticipated gaming products this year are Valve’s new Steam Machines. Steam Machines differ from consoles and traditional gaming PCs in both the way they are built and the OS they come with. Valve Steam Machines are not tied to just Valve or a small group of contracted suppliers, anyone can build a Steam Machine.
In fact, you can install SteamOS on your PC right now and (by definition) have a Steam Machine. With the vast potential market share of Steam Machines, it makes sense to see so many PC vendors alongside Valve in their fight against today’s disappointing, watered down, and proprietary gaming consoles.
Valve Unveils Diverse Army of Steam Machines For PC Gamers
Valve has unveiled a wide and diverse variety of Steam Machines from various manufacturer’s which include Alienware, CyberpowerPC, iBuyPower, ZOTAC, DigitalStorm, Gigabyte, Next, Material, Webhallen, Falcon, Maingear and Alternate. So take a look below to see which Steam Machines are best for you in terms of features, specifications and performance:
At the CES 2014 conference, NVIDIA announced their next generation Tegra K1 SOC for mobility devices which will power a new era of tablets and smartphones. The NVIDIA Tegra K1 SOC codenamed Logan is the first processor to feature the Kepler core architecture alongside 64-bit ARM based Denver CPU offering incredible graphics performance with superb power efficiency.
NVIDIA Unveils TEGRA K1 192-Core Mobile Super Chip
The NVIDIA Tegra K1 features a heart built out of the Kepler architecture which has spanned two years inside desktop computers, notebooks and the world’s fastest TITAN supercomputer. Featuring upto 192 Kepler cores, the Tegra K1 is indeed a next generation mobile super chip aimed towards high-performance mobile devices.
NVIDIA has also announced their highly anticipated Denver CPU which utilizes specialized 64-bit ARM Cores which would be fused alongside the GPU die. The Tegra K1 chip would be available in two variants, the dual core variant with Denver CPU and 7 Way superscalar compute will feature the 64-bit ARM v8 cores and 192 Kepler cores with clock frequency of 2.5 GHz while the 32-bit Quad core ARM variant will be clocked at 2.3 GHz. The 64-bit Denver model comes with 128KB + 64KB while the 32-bit variant comes with 328KB + 32KB L1 Cache.