ION/integrated/SSE2 3D Mark Okay, technical Info, known issues and bugs

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3D.Mark.Okay for Graphic-Card: ION-integrated-SSE2

 1 36.23   Low  1024x768 0../img/icoGK/intel-ico.png   Intel(R) Atom(TM) CPU 330 @ 1.60GHz15.1.2600

The NVIDIA ION is an integrated graphics solution used in combination with an Intel Atom processor in small form factor PCs and netbooks. Here is some technical information about this graphics solution:

- GPU Architecture:
The NVIDIA ION is based on the GeForce 9M series and later on the GeForce 200M series from NVIDIA. This graphics solution is specifically designed for use in small form factor PCs and netbooks to provide improved graphics performance compared to Intel's integrated graphics solution.

- CUDA Cores:
The ION graphics solution has a variable number of CUDA cores, which may vary depending on the model. These cores are used for parallel computing and graphics processing.

- Memory:
The graphics solution typically shares system memory with the processor instead of having dedicated graphics memory. This means that graphics performance depends heavily on the available system RAM.

- Performance:
The NVIDIA ION offers improved graphics performance compared to Intel's integrated graphics solution and is capable of playing HD videos and some older games with acceptable performance. However, it is not suitable for demanding 3D games or graphics-intensive applications.

- Ports:
The ION graphics solution offers various ports including HDMI, DVI and VGA to connect various monitors and external devices.

The NVIDIA ION was a popular choice for netbook and small desktop PC manufacturers because it offered improved graphics performance compared to Intel's integrated graphics solution. It was particularly popular for multimedia applications and HD video playback on small devices.

ION/integrated/SSE2, known issues and bugs.

The integrated NVIDIA ION GPU is quite outdated, but is still used in certain applications. However, users have reported several recurring issues and errors related to this GPU.

1. HDMI Audio Issues:
Many users have experienced issues with HDMI audio output when using newer NVIDIA drivers. This problem seems to be prominent in Linux distributions like Ubuntu. While older drivers handle HDMI audio correctly, newer drivers have caused audio to stop working at all. This issue is particularly noticeable in setups that use the ION platform.

2. Compatibility with Newer Software:
The ION platform has issues with modern software and updates. For example, certain graphical interfaces such as Unity on Ubuntu have caused significant problems, including corrupted system fonts, black screens, crashes, and user interface glitches. These problems are often related to the NVIDIA 304 driver series, which is known to be quite buggy.

3. Performance Limitations:
The ION GPU is designed for basic multimedia and HTPC (home theater PC) usage, but struggles with more demanding tasks. Performance when gaming and playing high-resolution videos is generally poor, especially with modern software requirements. Users often find that the GPU cannot handle anything other than very basic tasks without significant performance degradation.

4. Driver Stability:
While NVIDIA regularly releases hotfixes and updates to address specific issues, these are often considered beta releases and may not undergo the same rigorous testing as their Game Ready drivers. Users have reported intermittent stuttering and stability issues with these updates, which may impact overall system performance.

For those still using the NVIDIA ION platform, some of these issues can be mitigated by sticking with older, stable driver versions and considering alternative, lightweight desktop environments. However, for optimal performance and compatibility, upgrading to more modern hardware is recommended.
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