Tuesday, January 24th 2012

PowerVR Making a Comeback to PC as Discrete GPGPU, Real-Time Ray-Tracing in 2012

Remember PowerVR GPUs which last saw light when GeForce 3 and Radeon 8500 were around? The company behind it, Imagination Technologies, is working on a discrete PCI-Express GPGPU card for workstations targeting the media industry, which provides real-time ray-tracing acceleration. After its exile from PC graphics, Imagination Technologies worked on and achieved prevalence in embedded GPUs, GPUs embedded into ARM System-on-chips (SoCs), found in smartphones and tablets. This kept its GPU IP and R&D more than afloat.

In 2011, the company acquired Caustic Graphics, a smaller and much newer startup, which was working on dedicated ray-tracing accelerators, and had come up with a working FCPGA chip. Together the company is in the final stages of preparing a product that will bring Imagination Technologies back to the PC, only this time as a GPGPU (such as NVIDIA Tesla and AMD FireStream), and not a display-GPU. The product will be backed by OpenRL Brazil 3.0 SDK. This product will launch some time in 2012.Source: VR-Zone
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16 Comments on PowerVR Making a Comeback to PC as Discrete GPGPU, Real-Time Ray-Tracing in 2012

#1
ZoneDymo
Love it :P
Now where is Voodoo's real comeback?

Also just a matter of time before Nvidia absorbs the company ;).
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#2
DanTheBanjoman
SeƱor Moderator
Meh, rather see a new Kyro. They promised :(
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#3
RejZoR
I'd love to see a 3rd successful graphics vendor. I miss days when you could choose between 4 or more vendors.
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#4
btarunr
Editor & Senior Moderator
I think it's impossibly tough to become a third discrete graphics vendor. NVIDIA, AMD, and Microsoft are too entangled in a cross-licensed IP clusterfuuu for a third discrete GPU vendor to fit anywhere in, even Intel couldn't do it, and the last vendor with considerable amount of discrete GPU IP was VIA with its Chrome GPUs, it couldn't get the price-performance right due to its low volumes, and so it got kicked.
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#5
Ferrum Master
They have at latest DirectX 11 tech anyway, fastest Ericsson Novathor CPU had it first I think.... I think even PSP Vita has a powerVR... At least i hope they can deliver a GPU that doesn't skyrocket our electricity bill... :toast:

And... there is definitely place in the market! They have all ancient licenses to do so... even Intel uses a powerVR core in its IGPs...

We should wait for Matrox to return also some day from its medical equipment field... it will happen as soon APU reign will gain strong and low and mid-entry end cards will be obsolete... and makers will start making only flagships... it must happen...
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#6
quantumchief
by: Ferrum Master
We should wait for Matrox to return also some day from its medical equipment field... it will happen as soon APU reign will gain strong and low and mid-entry end cards will be obsolete... and makers will start making only flagships... it must happen...
Don't wait for Matrox to do the same, the two owners got into a dispute in 2003 and just settled in june 2011. This kind of childish attitude doesn't help a company already struggling on the video card market. You can read the details on translated page (from french):

http://translate.google.com/translate?sl=auto&tl=en&js=n&prev=_t&hl=en&ie=UTF-8&layout=2&eotf=1&u=http%3A%2F%2Fexruefrontenac.com%2Faffaires%2F217-justice%2F38825-matrox&act=url
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#7
Ferrum Master
by: quantumchief
Don't wait for Matrox to do the same, the two owners got into a dispute in 2003 and just settled in june 2011. This kind of childish attitude doesn't help a company already struggling on the video card market. You can read the details on translated page (from french):

http://translate.google.com/translate?sl=auto&tl=en&js=n&prev=_t&hl=en&ie=UTF-8&layout=2&eotf=1&u=http%3A%2F%2Fexruefrontenac.com%2Faffaires%2F217-justice%2F38825-matrox&act=url
Indeed bunch of silly Canadians...
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#8
Hokum
The Iphone and Ipad, plus most android phones/tablets have powervr graphics, all the SGX series...
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#9
Hokum
by: btarunr
I think it's impossibly tough to become a third discrete graphics vendor. NVIDIA, AMD, and Microsoft are too entangled in a cross-licensed IP clusterfuuu for a third discrete GPU vendor to fit anywhere in, even Intel couldn't do it, and the last vendor with considerable amount of discrete GPU IP was VIA with its Chrome GPUs, it couldn't get the price-performance right due to its low volumes, and so it got kicked.
S3 was bought by HTC... but I think they got rid of it recently.
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#10
NC37
Well Intel couldn't do it because they have no concept of designing for the discrete industry. It moves fast and it was clear from the start that Larrabee wasn't going to happen. Intel paper launched it all over and took their sweet time. Then by the time it came to maybe launching it, the tech was long obsolete.

If PowerVR comes back, then yay! But they gotta have competitive products and a solid roadmap in place for products coming after the initial launch. Last company I remember that tried for the 3rd player spot, released in the midrange segment then never released anything after that. Wasn't bad tech, they just lacked any staying power.
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#11
xenocide
by: btarunr
I think it's impossibly tough to become a third discrete graphics vendor. NVIDIA, AMD, and Microsoft are too entangled in a cross-licensed IP clusterfuuu for a third discrete GPU vendor to fit anywhere in
Capitalism at its finest.
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#12
Prima.Vera
Oh no! Not another add-on card for gaming...
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#13
Bjorn_Of_Iceland
they better have good drivers. Since when was the last time they did one for windows? :D
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#14
eidairaman1
PowerVR2 was the graphics backbone of the Sega Dreamcast
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#15
hellrazor
Oooo.... ray-traced gaming? Mmmm.... me likes the taste of that pussy.
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