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Thread: News - Intel details 64-bit Atom mobile 'Merrifield', 'Moorefield' chips

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    News - Intel details 64-bit Atom mobile 'Merrifield', 'Moorefield' chips

    Qualcomm announces some 64-bit Snapdragon 600 series processors too.
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    Re: News - Intel details 64-bit Atom mobile 'Merrifield', 'Moorefield' chips

    Do mobile phones & tablets really need 8 cores?! Or is it just marketing hype like megapixels & digital cameras?

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    Re: News - Intel details 64-bit Atom mobile 'Merrifield', 'Moorefield' chips

    Quote Originally Posted by Jimbobgod1969 View Post
    Do mobile phones & tablets really need 8 cores?! Or is it just marketing hype like megapixels & digital cameras?
    AFAIK most of the are BIG.little, 4 powerful cores (e.g. A15, A57) and 4 wimpy ones (A7, A53) and only 1 set or the other is active at a time.

    MediaTek have a true 8-core A7 design I think but it sounds like a stupid idea to me, 2 or 4 faster cores is probably better in a phone.

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    Re: News - Intel details 64-bit Atom mobile 'Merrifield', 'Moorefield' chips

    Corporation President Renee James proudly boasted of Intel's 64-bit experience "Intel knows 64-bit computing, and we're the only company currently shipping 64-bit processors supporting multiple operating systems today, and capable of supporting 64-bit Android when it is available".
    From a company selling cpus that run AMD64, after the world rejected Itanium, I find that very funny.

    Oh, and I guess by multiple operating systems they mean Windows, because everything else is on MIPS64. Marketing people, pah!

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    Re: News - Intel details 64-bit Atom mobile 'Merrifield', 'Moorefield' chips

    Quote Originally Posted by kingpotnoodle View Post
    AFAIK most of the are BIG.little, 4 powerful cores (e.g. A15, A57) and 4 wimpy ones (A7, A53) and only 1 set or the other is active at a time.

    MediaTek have a true 8-core A7 design I think but it sounds like a stupid idea to me, 2 or 4 faster cores is probably better in a phone.
    The Qualcomm part is 4 efficient cores and 4 fast cores in organised in two groups. So it can work as a power saving 4 core, low thread count optimised 4 core, or a proper 8 core. Sounds like the Chinese market wants 8 cores for some reason, so we will see plenty of them.

    These low end cores are tiny and power efficient, so it can make sense to have a sea of these small cores vs a couple of big thirsty ones. The ARM licensing seems to prod people in that direction too.

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    Re: News - Intel details 64-bit Atom mobile 'Merrifield', 'Moorefield' chips

    Quote Originally Posted by DanceswithUnix View Post
    The Qualcomm part is 4 efficient cores and 4 fast cores in organised in two groups. So it can work as a power saving 4 core, low thread count optimised 4 core, or a proper 8 core. Sounds like the Chinese market wants 8 cores for some reason, so we will see plenty of them.

    These low end cores are tiny and power efficient, so it can make sense to have a sea of these small cores vs a couple of big thirsty ones. The ARM licensing seems to prod people in that direction too.
    I can see the benefit of mixing low-power cores & fast cores on a SoC, but I imagine it's only going to be as good as the OS scheduler.

    Eight full cores seems silly to me. The iPhone 5S SoC does pretty well on just two, which shows what can be done with the right design.

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    Re: News - Intel details 64-bit Atom mobile 'Merrifield', 'Moorefield' chips

    That Apple chip has some big cores though. The A53 cores are tiny and very power efficient, so as long as lots of them works when you need performance, the ability to gate the ones you don't need off seems like an advantage.

    Yeah 8 cores is OTT, but as a finesse of the 4+4 layout it seems pretty cool and it will be a lot smaller than a big.LITTLE setup as the A57 is a pretty big core. The A53 is 60% of the size of an A9 with the same performance. So in the silicon of a quad A9 you can get nearly 7 A53 cores, finding the extra space for another core and a third shouldn't be hard to justify.

    Edit to add: Have you played with a quad A7 setup like the Moto G phone? It works very well, so I can see quad A53 becoming the standard for low end & midrange phones before long. I suspect that Apple are aiming to replace the Intel chips with ARM in their laptops before long though, in which case they need the grunt of a big core.

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    Re: News - Intel details 64-bit Atom mobile 'Merrifield', 'Moorefield' chips

    Combination of Intel + PowerVR = crap support.

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