Utgard Shader Core

Utgard GPUs use two distinct shader core designs:

  • Vertex shading.
  • Fragment shading.

All Utgard GPUs support a single vertex shading core but the exact number of shader cores in a silicon chip varies. Arm licenses configurable designs to our silicon partners, who can then choose how to configure the GPU in their specific chipset, based on their performance needs and silicon area constraints.

Both the Mali-400 and Mali-470 supports up to four fragment shader cores, while the Mali-450 supports up to eight.

This diagram shows the Advanced eXtensible Interface (AXI) Data Bus of a typical Mali Utgard GPU interfacing with the level-2 (L2) Cache:

Utgard Top Level

Both the vertex shader core and the tiler share a small L2 cache that acts as a buffer during data exchanges in the shading pipeline. In turn, reducing memory bandwidth usage when data is passed onto the fixed function primitive assembly unit from the vertex shader.

The fragment shader cores share a larger L2 cache to reduce memory bandwidth caused by shared data fetches, such as per-vertex inputs or textures for primitives that span multiple tiles. The size of this L2 is typically 32KB per fragment shader core present, but is configurable upon request by our silicon partners.

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