The Fenghua No.1 GPU recently passed an important milestone for mass adoption in China. The GPU, created by Xindong Technology and Innosilicon, was initially announced in November 2021. We received some interesting but not entirely revealing performance indicators a month later. This month the GPU was certified for running stably and offering "outstanding performance on the Tongxin UOS operating system," reports ITHome.
Tongxin UOS is quite important in China as it was developed as part of a government initiative to usurp Windows. It is based upon Debian Linux and is adapted to support the latest homegrown silicon. So the Fenghua No.1 GPU certification is a significant step, alongside the implementation of support for Chinese-designed semiconductor products such as Zhaoxin CPUs and GPUs, processors from the likes of Sunway and Loongson.
The GPU sounds like it is definitely up to par for providing a 'Chinese' solution for graphics acceleration and other GPU tasks. We put the provenance in quotes as our previous investigations indicated that Fenghua No. 1 is based upon Imagination Technologies' PowerVR architecture, though we can't be 100% certain about this aspect of the GPU at this time.
The new GPU completed "comprehensive in-depth adaptation certification" in Tongxin UOS. Moreover, it could be China's first domestic " 4K-level high-definition desktop and high-performance server-level graphics card," to have been certified. It is claimed to exhibit "excellent performance, power consumption, reliability and compatibility, and fully supports mainstream graphics frameworks such as OpenGL/ OpenGL ES/ OpenCL/ Vulkan to achieve performance breakthroughs," says the Chinese source publication.
We hope to see systems featuring the new GPU available for sale soon, and some third-party benchmarks give us insight into the nature of this desktop GPU.
Before signing off, it would be amiss not to remind readers of the specs of the first Fenghua No. 1 graphics cards. In brief, we hear that the PowerVR architecture GPU is built on a 12nm process in China, and it supports up to 19Gbps GDDR6/6X. SKUs are being configured with 4, 8 and 16GB of VRAM, and outputs include HDMI 2.1, DP 1.4, and VGA with multiple monitor support. One of our December reports on the Fenghua No.1 GPU indicated that there would be a version of the card with dual GPUs, effectively doubling up all the specs such as FP32 and INT8 performance.
More GPU rivals are always welcome, and it would be a remarkable chain of events if the Fenghua No. 1 becomes popular in China. However, we aren't sure we need another company aiming for the near-RTX 3060 space.
Rather than wait for China to rescue the affordable GPU market, we already have hopes of a significant correction coming, as GPU pricing seems to be taking a nose-dive. While you wait for your own GPU pricing sweet spot to be reached, check out our Best Graphics Cards for Gaming in 2022 guide.
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Mark Tyson is a Freelance News Writer at Tom's Hardware US. He enjoys covering the full breadth of PC tech; from business and semiconductor design to products approaching the edge of reason.