ARM debuts second-gen MALI-T600 GPU

Posted by Aharon Etengoff

ARM has debuted its second-gen ARM Mali-T600 GPU lineup at SIGGRAPH 2012 in Los Angeles.



According to the UK-based processor company, the second generation GPU offers a dramatic performance boost for future tablets, smartphones and connected smart-TVs.



"Consisting of 3 different GPUs, the Midgard-based T600 series (Mali-T624, T628 and T678) features a 50% performance increase compared to the first generation," an ARM spokesperson told TG Daily.



"They are also the first to include Adaptive Scalable Texture Compression (ASTC) which significantly optimizes GPU performance and increases battery life in [mobile] devices."



Essentially, ASTC can best be described as an indigenously designed (ARM) technology that significantly optimizes GPU performance - while maintaining and even increasing battery life in mobile devices.



ASTC also supports a wide range of pixel formats and bit rates, thereby facilitating significantly higher quality than most other formats currently in use. 



"This allows the designer to use texture compression throughout the application, while choosing the optimal format and bit rate for each use case," said the spokesperson.

"Meanwhile, efficient texture compression standard reduces the already market-leading Mali GPU memory bandwidth and memory footprint even further to extend mobile battery life."  



As expected, each of the above-mentioned GPUs has been optimized to target specific markets, with the Mali-T624 (scaling from 1-4 cores) and Mali-T628 (1-8 cores) aimed at smartphones and TVs, while the T678 addresses rapidly evolving tablet market. 



"People [want] higher standards of visual computing on their smartphones, tablets and smart-TVs with seamless access to their digital world and personal content," ARM exec Pete Hutton explained. 



"GPU compute enables this as it increases the range of functions mobile devices can perform within the available battery life. [We] continue to focus on system-wide optimization by integrating market leading CPU and GPU technologies to drive both high performance and energy-efficiency."

It should be noted that all of the above-mentioned GPUs support a number of APIs, including OpenGL ES 1.1, OpenGL ES 2.0, OpenGL ES 3.0, DirectX 11 FL 9_3, DirectX 11, OpenCL 1.1 Full Profile and Google Renderscript compute.