The curious people over at iFixit and Chipworks teamed up to find out what’s “under the hood” of Apple’s new A6 Processor. Using some crazy futuristic-looking machines, sulphuric acid, an ion blaster and a super strength microscope, this group of self-proclaimed uber nerds set off to discover what’s behind the curtain of the iPhone 5.
The results? You’re looking at it. The A6 is sporting two CPU cores, a full gigabyte of RAM and three graphics processing units.
The chip exploration mission also revealed that the 1GB of RAM was supplied by Elpida rather than Samsung. ZDNet‘s Adrian Kingsley-Hughes says, “this is another indication of the growing rift between Apple and Samsung”.
However, Samsung wasn’t left out altogether. iFixit says that the Apple rival is definitely present in the fabrication of the A6. But, just because it was manufactured by Samsung doesn’t mean it was designed by them.[quote]The Apple A6 processor is Apple’s first custom-designed processor. It’s based on the ARMv7s instruction set. Because Apple had complete control over the design of the processor, they were able to customize and tweak the performance to their liking.[/quote]
Another notable observation is that not only is the A6 much bigger than the A5, but iFixit believes Apple has laid out the ARM core block manually. We’re talking BY HAND, which is clearly a much more expensive and time-consuming process.
Check out the full process and more pictures here.