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Innosilicon Fenghua 1: China's first server-grade GPU to feature GDDR6X VRAM and DirectX support

Dual-fan and dual-slot design with video ports (Image Source: Innosilicon)
Dual-fan and dual-slot design with video ports (Image Source: Innosilicon)
Without any actual performance metrics, it is not clear if the Fenghua 1 can take on AMD's and Nvidia's solutions. However, the integration of GDDR6X VRAM and the support for APIs like OpenGL, OpenGLES, OpenCL, Vulkan and DirectX, plus the inclusion of video ports suggest that Innosilicon's card could also act as a workstation or even a desktop GPU.

Chinese company Innosilicon first started out as a ASIC producer in the mid 2000s, then expanded into crypto mining in the early 2010s, currently also offering a wide array of IP solutions with enhanced performance and security features. In order to get access to diverse IPs, the company heavily invested in the development of the advanced production nodes at China’s SMIC foundries and among its latest ambitious projects we find the collaboration with GPU developer Xiandong on the production of a high-performance server GPU dubbed Fenghua 1 that is supposed to rival AMD’s and Nvidia’s models.

Unlike dedicated compute GPUs, the Fenghua 1 features video ports like HDMI 2.1, e-DP 1.4 and even the obsolete DVI, so it can be used as a workstation graphics card, as well. Innosilicon mentions that the GPU could act as a 4K desktop accelerator, as Fenghua 1 supports popular APIs such as OpenGL, OpenGLES, OpenCL, Vulkan and DirectX. The official announcement does not include any technical GPU specs or performance metrics, yet it does state that the Chinese GPU supports GDDR6X high-bandwidth video memory only available on Nvidia’s solutions, plus some other cutting-edge technologies, including Innosilicon’s Innolink chiplet and a patented physical unclonable function (PUF) encryption algorithm.

Additionally, Fenghua 1 features the PCIe 4.0 interface and is compatible with Linux, Android and Windows, offering support for data center-level multi-user application scenarios like cloud-based desktop and mobile games and 5G cloud rendering, plus AR / VR / AI workloads, metaverse etc. The Innosilicon announcement includes a multitude of buzzwords, but, without actual performance metrics, there is no way of knowing if Fenghua 1 is particularly proficient at any aforementioned use case. It may very well be used for crypto mining, too.

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Machine learning translation (Image Source: Videocardz)
Machine learning translation (Image Source: Videocardz)
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Bogdan Solca
Bogdan Solca - Senior Tech Writer - 1753 articles published on Notebookcheck since 2017
I first stepped into the wondrous IT&C world when I was around seven years old. I was instantly fascinated by computerized graphics, whether they were from games or 3D applications like 3D Max. I'm also an avid reader of science fiction, an astrophysics aficionado, and a crypto geek. I started writing PC-related articles for Softpedia and a few blogs back in 2006. I joined the Notebookcheck team in the summer of 2017 and am currently a senior tech writer mostly covering processor, GPU, and laptop news.
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2021 11 > Innosilicon Fenghua 1: China's first server-grade GPU to feature GDDR6X VRAM and DirectX support
Bogdan Solca, 2021-11-18 (Update: 2021-11-18)