Nintendo Switch Uses Standard Tegra X1 Chip

Details of the Nintendo Switch’s hardware have finally been uncovered, answering many of the prolonged questions about just how powerful Nintendo’s new console is after the hardware analysis site Tech Insights broke everything down.

One of the more interesting finds after the teardown is that the Nintendo Switch’s processor is identical to the standard Tegra X1 chip. The Tegra X1 can be found in the existing Android product, the Nvidia Shield. This means that the console/handheld hybrid is likely to only ever be as powerful as the revised edition of the Shield Android TV, a device released this year. Much of the other physical configurations of the Switch are also similar to the device, including the console’s surface-mounted capacitors.

This new information could be potential problem for Nintendo in the future as consumers already chastise the company for releasing consoles that are not up to par against its competition, the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. This has lead many to complain about frame rate drops in Nintendo Switch titles. In light of the recent technological specs analysis, it’s possible that the Switch’s processor is the reason why.

Earlier this month, Eurogamer performed a benchmark test of the 2013 reboot of Tomb Raider on the Shield TV, finding a number of problems in regards to visual rendering and frame rate pacing. This doesn’t necessarily prove that the Switch would be unable to perform more smoothly but that optimization could prove to be an issue.

Before the launch of the Nintendo Switch, Nintendo published a list of the new console’s specs, failing to detail anything about its CPU or GPU. Nintendo had announced that the Switch used a Nintendo Switch Hardware Review – Nintendo is Back “Nvidia customized Tegra processor” back when the console was revealed but both Nintendo and Nvidia publicly declined to reveal the chip’s architecture, processor clock speed.