Marvell: CPU of new Chromecast is 2.5 times as powerful

Chip manufacturer Marvell has revealed which hardware is on board Google’s new Chromecast 2 and Chromecast Audio. According to the company, the 88DE3006 SoC is 2.5 times as powerful as the 88DE3005 found in the original Chromecast.

On board the 88DE3006, which Marvell also calls the Armada 1500 Mini Plus, is a Cortex-7 dual-core from the British ARM. The processor delivers a maximum of 4900 Dmips. This translates to support for 1080p60 output with 12-bit color depth. The company does not disclose a clock speed in GHz, apart from the statement that the cpu is ‘2.5 times as powerful’. In addition, the GPU has support for OpenGL ES 2.0 and there are several energy-saving mechanisms. Marvell doesn’t divulge such specs on the hardware of the original Chromecast, and teardowns haven’t provided all possible information.

For video decoding, Marvell uses its own Qdeo technology. It supports codecs such as Quicktime, AVC/h.264, Mpeg-1 and -2, DivX, VC-1 and Mpeg-4-Visual. In addition, it offers functionalities such as noise reduction, compression artifact reduction, vector interpolation and adaptive contrast enhancement. Marvell also says it supports DRM technologies such as Google’s Widevine and Microsoft’s Playready.

The radio chip on board the new Chromecasts is the Avastar 88W8887. It supports 802.11ac WiFi, Bluetooth 4.2, NFC and FM reception with RDS. Of these functionalities, the new Chromecast and Chromecast Audio only use the ac-wifi and its bandwidth of 433Mb/s. It is not stated on the product page of the new Chromecast whether the device uses the ability to display 60fps video in 1080p. There is in any case support from the hardware and, for example, Google’s own YouTube.

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