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Nvidia wireless multimedia processor with Fotopack technology

Posted: 18 Feb 2005 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:nvidia? wireless media processor? media processor? 3gsm world congress? goforce 3d 4800?

Nvidia Corp. is billing its new wireless media processor, unveiled early this week at the 3GSM World Congress here, as capable of realistic 3D gaming performance, 3Mpixel digital photos and camcorder-quality video capture.

Among a myriad of advanced multimedia features on the chip, the new processor, called GoForce 3D 4800, comes with Nvidia's patent-pending Fotopack technology. The new technology, a highly efficient encoding method that still produces JPEG files, can effectively triple storage capacity for digital photos, according to Manish Singh, director of marketing, wireless media products at Nvidia.

As more camera phones feature multimegapixel digital photography capabilities, "many consumers are finding that their handsets are running out of space to store their mega-pixel pictures," said Singh. "That results in stopping them from using their camera phone."

While encoding a photo, the Fotopack technology intelligently allocates the bit budget per macro block. If there is a large area with blue sky on a photo, for example, Fotopack allocates fewer bits and instead allocates more of the bit budget to the photo subject. The outcome of the photo is still JPEG-compliant, and so, JPEG-decodable.

The GoForce processor integrates a JPEG hardware encoder capable of capturing images up to 3Mpixels (2,048 x 1,536). It also incorporates an embedded hardware MPEG-4 codec, enabling OEMs to add high-quality camcorder-like video capability. The embedded codec supports VGA resolution MPEG-4 video at up to 30fps, according to Nvidia.

Further, it gives OEMs a playback capability for VGA- resolution video, including television programs or movies stored on an SD card at rates up to 30fps.

Leveraging Nvidia's graphics expertise, the wireless multimedia processor also offers a programmable pixel shader, four- and eight-bit texture palettes and support for up to six simultaneous textures. Its dedicated 3D hardware processor renders 100 million pixels per second and draws up to 1.5 million triangles per second.

The chip is sampling now, with production scheduled for early second quarter.

The target market for GoForce 3D 4800 are so-called "feature phones" which makes up the bulk of the current multimedia-capable handset market. The new chip, embedded with a number of hardware-based multimedia accelerators, will function as a coprocessor, sitting next to a baseband processor.

- Junko Yoshida

EE Times

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