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iPad 3 Release Date: Is Nvidia’s Tegra 3 Processor the iPad Killer?

ASUS stirred up quite a buzz by implementing Nvidia’s new Tegra 3 quad-core processor in its Eee Pad Transformer Prime tablet outdoing iPad 2 with power.

Nvidia originally listed the Tegra 3 chip under the name Kal-El, which was a reference to Superman’s identity on his home planet of Krypton.

The Tegra 3 debuted yesterday and Nvidia confirmed that ASUS’s Eee Pad Transformer Prime is the first device to take advantage of the technology.

It includes four ARM Cortex A9 processing cores that reach speeds of up to 1.3GHz. It also has a GeForce graphics processor that includes 12 cores for three times the graphics performance of the Tegra 2.

It can support dynamic lighting, physical effects, high-resolution environments and 3D stereo. Its power consumption is also 61 percent lower allowing the Tegra 3 to continuously render HD video for up to 12 hours with a single charge. It includes a fifth processing core that clocks in a 500 MHz.

This core takes the reins when devices using the chip need to perform undemanding tasks. The company promises this chip can help them crush Apple’s A5 chip in the iPad 2.

“Nvidia claims the Tegra 3 smokes the A5 in certain tasks, including 2x video transcoding and photo stitching,” said technology website 9to5 Google. “Tegra 3’s closest rival is Apple’s in-house designed dual-core A5 chip manufactured by Samsung, that powers the iPad 2 and iPhone 4S.”

Apple plans to update the iPad 3 with an A6 chip that will be more comparable to Nvidia’s Tegra 3. The A6 is rumored to be quad-core as well.

It should work at great clock speeds and display enhanced graphics. However, Tegra 3 will make the A5 obsolete, according to 9to5 Google.

Nvidia may keep the upper hand when it comes to graphics with the release of A6 on the next iPhone and iPad, since the Tegra 3 uses GeForce graphics processors that render scenes using more shaders that are sophisticated.

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