MIPS Unleashes New Aptiv Microprocessor Cores, Aims For Cortex-A15

US Semiconductor company MIPS has unveiled three new brands for its core product range in a move reminiscent of what Qualcomm did last year.

Rather than sticking to often confusing series (34K, 24K, 1004K, 74K), MIPS now has three clearly defined groups of cores. microAptiv, interAptiv and proAptiv, each of which target different segments in markets as diverse as mobile, home entertainment, networking and embedded.

The top of the range proAptiv aims to give ARM Cortex-A15 core a run for its money by offering equal DMIPS/MHz performance while shaving the silicon real estate used by almost half.

The company says that a dual proAptiv dual with 1MB L2 cache will have th same die size as the Cortex A15 dual core or a quad core proAptiv which could reach up to 14,000 DMIPS (at 1GHz), twice that of the CortexA15 dual or the dual core proAptiv Dual.

MIPS says that the up to six cores can be amalgamated in a coherent cluster with L2 cache sizes hitting 8MB. Hitting high speeds though is likely to be a concern.

A dual core ARM Cortex-A9 SoC has managed to hit 3.1GHz using a 28nm TSMC manufacturing process. MIPS says that it projects to reach 1.15GHz with the process (28nm TSMC) with some frequency degradation expected when going to six cores.

Surprisingly, MIPS aims for full production of the proAptiv by mid-2012, which should be within weeks from now.