GPU architecture delivers engaging visual experiences

09 March 2017

Imagination Technologies’ PowerVR Furian architecture is a new GPU architecture designed for next-generation consumer devices.

Applications such as VR/AR and convertibles require higher graphics resolutions and frame rates, and emerging applications such as ADAS and machine intelligence require increased compute efficiency. Devices designed for these applications are often designed in sub-14nm process technologies. Furian addresses these needs through a multi-dimensional approach to performance scalability, with an extensible design and a focus on easy system integration and layout in the latest processes. With Furian, embedded products will be able to deliver high-resolution, immersive graphics content and data computation for sustained time periods within mobile power budgets.


Furian’s architecture improvements are designed for enhanced power efficiency, widening the industry-leading performance per mW gap over competing solutions, with the benchmark already set by the PowerVR Rogue architecture. Going forward with both Furian and Rogue, Imagination will provide the industry’s most complete and efficient range of GPU IP cores across a wide range of performance operating points.


Furian Architecture Highlights


The Furian architecture incorporates many of the compelling features on which PowerVR has built its technology leadership. This includes Imagination’s Tile Based Deferred Rendering (TBDR), which has been proven over multiple generations of PowerVR GPUs to provide the most highly efficient embedded graphics.

Furian is designed for:


Multi-dimensional performance scalability: Designed to achieve the most efficient core utilisation and performance density via multiple approaches to scaling, Furian can address a wide range of markets and requirements. Different designs for low- and high-end IP cores prevent compromises in scalability.


Ease of SoC and system level integration: Furian is optimised for ease of layout in new sub-14nm processes, leading to reduced layout times and resources and enabling easier scaling to higher performance points.


Extensibility: Furian is designed to allow future function-specialised pipelines to be tightly integrated with the GPU to deliver functionality that may be too expensive or not feasible to implement on a CPU/GPU/DSP, such as ray tracing capability.


GPU compute: Furian is designed to address the increasing compute requirements across multiple applications and market segments with efficient use of compute APIs including OpenCL 2.0, Vulkan 1.0 and OpenVX 1.1*. Furian adds a bi-directional GPU/CPU coherent interface for efficient sharing of data; and a transition to user mode queues from kernel mode queues which reduces latency and CPU utilization for compute operations.


Significantly, Furian features a new 32-wide ALU cluster design for increased performance density and efficiency. A new instruction set architecture (ISA) in the primary and secondary ALU pipelines enables improved utilisation of resources and thus efficiency, and multi-threading optimisations allow efficient and very flexible access to on-chip local compute memory.


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