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Last week at CES (The Global Electronics Consumer Trade show) gave the chance for all the popular technology brands in the world to show case their new inventions and new technology that will hopefully change the world of computing. Well, Nvidia had some cool stuff to show off this week and I delve into their biggest hits of the show to see if they are going to change the world of gaming in the next year.
Firstly Nvidia demoed a custom modded Asus PQ321Q 4K display with a G-Sync to show off how they can make Ultra HD Gaming (3840×2160) look absolutely immense. There’s been plenty of demos with the G-Sync running on the Asus VG248QE in 1080p but this really takes it to the next level! If you own the Asus PQ321Q don’t get too excited though as neither Nvidia or Asus have plans on offering an upgrade kit for this model but there are rumors of 4K Nvidia G-Sync monitors being worked on in the mean time.
The tech demo consisted of a pair of systems running Nvidia GeForce GTX Titan 6GB video cards running in 2-way SLI (Wow) with one monitor G-Sync enabled and the other not. Viewers could see a clear difference in the smoothness of the monitor and this is the first time that we were able to play a real game on a 4K monitor with the quality fully cranked up and not seeing any ripping or tearing! This is showing the path way to a new realm in gaming and I’m really excited to see how this develops.
Nvidia also showed the world the new Tegra K1 which features 192 GPU (graphics processing unit) cores, based on the same Kepler technology used in the US firm’s high-end PC components. It displayed the chip running Epic Games’ Unreal Engine 4 benchmark software at the show and explained the chip is intended to help Nvidia compete against Qualcomm and Samsung for orders from manufacturers. The company was recently beaten by rival AMD for the contract to make the graphics chips that power the next gen consoles, the Playstation 4 and Xbox One, so has developed and researched a competitor that should massively improve the quality of real-time animation graphics made possible by the new chip.
California-based Nvidia’s chief executive Jen-Hsun Huang described the Tegra K1 as offering next-generation graphics to mobile devices “for the first time” and explained that while the chip outperformed the last-generation consoles, it required just 5% of their power. He also explained that it would be released in two variants: one with a quad-core Cortex A15 CPU designed by the British firm ARM and the second with Nvidia’s forthcoming dual-core Denver CPU, which is a customized version of ARM’s more powerful 64-bit V8 architecture. Another massive leap by Nvidia as they attempt to sty one step ahead of the market and showing how much of a gaming and computing powerhouse the company is becoming.
One thing that surprisingly didn’t make an appearance at the conference was the Nvidia shield which is Nvidia’s first offering into the handheld market. If you have a GTX650 and above graphics card the shield acts as a portable handheld device that allows you to play games on from the library on your PC which is a real nifty bit of kit and I was surprised the success or in fact non success of the product was not mentioned. Nvidia also quietly released their GTX 780ti which according too benchmarks is the most powerful GPU on the planet and again I’m surprised they didn’t demo these or in fact use them with the GSync show off part of their presentation. Another strange move I feel and one I was quite surprised about.
Well that about wraps up all the main talking points of CES 2014. We will have to wait and see what AMD are offering in the next few months as competition to the vast array of interesting Nvidia offerings. One things for sure, AMD need to integrate a game recording service like Nvidia’s Shadowplay if they want to carry on competing at a top level.