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TiPb Answers: Apple A5 chip -- what we know and what we guess

Just like the original iPad debuted with an Apple A4 chip, iPad 2 is coming with an Apple A5 chip. What does that mean? In typical fashion Apple has been short on details saying only that it's dual-core, 1GHz, 2x faster for computational tasks and 9x faster for graphics, all while preserving the 10 hour battery life that made the A4 famous. They don't think we need to worry about what CPU or GPU they're using and how much RAM is on board to let that power breathe. But here's the thing -- many of us want to know exactly that.

This is the chip that will also power the 2011 iPhone 5, iPod touch 5, and Apple TV. We want answers. We can handle answers! So... stick with us after the break for everything we know about the new Apple A5 chip... and what we can guess.

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iPad 2, iPhone 5 to have a dual-core PowerVR SGX543 GPU to drive Retina Display?

Citing sources, AppleInsider claims Apple is not only going dual-core for their rumored iPad 2 and iPhone 5-bound Apple A5 chipset's CPU, but also its PowerVR GPU as well.

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iPad A4 Chipset Uses PowerVR SGX Graphics Core

The iPhone 3.2 SDK for iPad has officially outs the PowerVR SGX as the graphics core inside Apple's A4 chipset:

Using OpenGL ES on iPad is identical to using OpenGL ES on other iPhone OS devices. An iPad is a PowerVR SGX device and supports the same basic capabilities as other SGX devices. However, because the processor, memory architecture, and screen dimensions are different for iPad, you should always test your code on an iPad device before shipping to ensure performance meets your requirements.

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Imagination at CES: POWERVR SGX545 Graphics Core... Could it be the 4th Gen iPhone GPU?

Imagination, which counts Apple as one of its owners, has provided the GPU (graphics processing unit) for every iPhone to date, including the current iPhone 3GS PowerVR SGX, so it's not unreasonable to assume the latest, greatest PowerVR SGX545 introduced at CES will be in the 4th generation iPhone, likely to be announced in June/July:

SGX545 will also deliver OpenGL ES 2.x and OpenGL 3.2 to deliver class leading 3D graphics performance, and will also support OpenCL 1.0 full profile capability which will enable mobile and embedded applications to take maximum advantage of the capabilities offered by these GPU APIs for both 3D graphics and general purpose applications.

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iPhone 3GS Graphics Even More Powerful than Imagined?

MacRumors is reporting that Apple's new iPhone 3GS, while indeed using Imagination Technologies' PowerVR graphics core, may just have a little more under the hood than previously thought:

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Inside the New iPhone 3G S Processors: More than Just Mhz

Anandtech gives their usual in-depth look at the processors inside Apple's new iPhone 3G S. First the CPU, the new ARM Cortex A8 and the short of it is -- if the iPhone 2G and 3G were old 486 PCs, the iPhone 3G S would be a Pentium:

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iPhone 3G S Uses PowerVR SGX to Become One with Speed Force

Apple Insider reveals that:

Sources have now reported that Apple has detailed that Imagination's PowerVR SGX is indeed the graphics processor used in the iPhone 3G S, and that it is "designed for OpenGL ES 2.0." The new 2.0 specification of OpenGL for Embedded Systems eliminates most of the fixed-function rendering pipeline for a programmable approach to 3D rendering using shader programs.

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