Marvell Launches Fleet of Armada ARM CPUs

We may talk a lot about Core i7 and Phenoms, but one type of processor that never gets as big a spotlight is those based off of ARM technology.

ARM chips are hugely popular. According to analyst firm the Linley Group, ARM instruction set CPUs power 98 percent of all mobile phones and are becoming the standard for other forms of mobile computing.

Semiconductor company Marvell today announced a new family of ARM-based processors it is calling "Armada" designed specifically for next generation ARM instruction set smartphones, smartbooks, consumer and embedded devices, and displays.

Marvell's Armada fleet will consist of four models: the 100, 500, 600 and 1000, each with varying target segments. Some models are capable of supporting Adobe Flash technology and Blu-ray 1080p decode.

The Armada 100 series is aimed at mainstream Mobile Internet Devices (MIDs), connected consumer products, e-readers, and new personal information appliances. The specs for the 100 series are:
Marvell Sheeva ARMv5 at 400MHz –1.2GHz
Wireless MMX2
Up to 128K L2 cache
2D hardware accelerated graphics
WUXGA resolution with HD 720p MPEG4

The Armada 500 series is aimed at high-end smartbooks and tablets. The specs for the 500 series are:
Marvell Sheeva ARMv7 at 1.2GHz
Wireless MMX2
512K L2 cache
2D/3D hardware accelerated graphics
WUXGA, HD1080p video playback
Integrated SATA, PCIe and Gigabit Ethernet

The Armada 600 series is dedicated to high-end smartphones. The specs for the 600 series are:
Marvell Sheeva ARMv7 at 1GHz
Wireless MMX2
256K L2 cache
2D/3D hardware accelerated graphics
LP-DDR1/DDR2 and DDR3 support
WUXGA, HD1080p video encode/playback
HW security
Ultra low power operation

The Armada 1000 series is focused on Blu-ray players, digital media adapters (DMAs), connected digital TVs, streaming HD set-top boxes. The specs for the 1000 series are:
Dual Marvell Sheeva ARMv5 at 1.2GHz
Wireless MMX2
2D hardware graphics
Dual HD1080p video playback
High performance audio DSP
Integrated award-winning Qdeo video processing
Integrated SATA, PCIe, SDIO, USB, Ethernet, and HDMI

Marvell hasn't yet announced any product partners that will be using its chips, but the company expects them to look something like the product images used in this story.

Marcus Yam
Marcus Yam served as Tom's Hardware News Director during 2008-2014. He entered tech media in the late 90s and fondly remembers the days when an overclocked Celeron 300A and Voodoo2 SLI comprised a gaming rig with the ultimate street cred.
  • superblahman123
    But can it run Crysis?
  • kelfen
    yes it can run crysis! but who in there right mind would want to play at that resolution!
  • WheelsOfConfusion
    Armv5? What is this, 2002? The ARMv7-based (Cortex line) ones looks more interesting, at least for people who aren't building set-top boxes.
  • superblahman123
    kelfenyes it can run crysis! but who in there right mind would want to play at that resolution!
    I know right
  • amdgamer666
    w00t! 1ghz smartphones! when can I purchase one? the sooner the better
  • mlopinto2k1
    My smartfone is 2.4Thz but it only lets me text.
  • Silluete
    wow, can we see some benchmark ?
  • wira020
  • deltatux
    ARM ftw? nice, can't wait to try something out that ain't x86 on a netbook.
  • nachowarrior
    warning. mar\/ell has ne\/er made a product that isn't a piece of crap that i'm aware of. Oh and why should we trust a company that hates linux with a chip that will/should be running primarily linux? I ha\/e in the past, and will continue to refuse any mar\/ell products, including motherboards with their chips on board.