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The Steam Deck has an ‘optional built-in FPS limiter’ for better battery life – The Verge

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When Valve and IGN revealed last Thursday that the new Steam Deck handheld will target 30Hz gameplay, not everyone was impressed with that low bar — but Valve’s Pierre-Loup Griffais has taken to Twitter to clarify his original comment, and reveal a new feature of the portable console.

First, he says 30 fps is more of a minimum bar than anything else:

“The ‘30 FPS target’ refers to the floor of what we consider playable in our performance testing; games we’ve tested and shown have consistently met and exceeded that bar so far,” he writes.

In other words, when Griffais said in that IGN video interview that “We haven’t really found something that we could throw at this device that it couldn’t handle,” you shouldn’t take it to mean that every modern game runs at 60 fps. Expect less.

Intriguingly, a 30 fps mode will be something you can proactively turn on to get more battery life, too. “There will also be an optional built-in FPS limiter to fine-tune perf vs. battery life,” he writes. The company’s already said you can play Portal 2 for up to six hours at 30fps, compared to four hours normally.

Will it be a good 30 fps mode, though? That’s TBD. In the replies, Digital Foundry’s Richard Leadbetter says Valve confirmed to him that the Steam Deck doesn’t have a variable-refresh-rate (VRR) screen, and eludes to the idea that V-sync might wind up creating some nasty frame pacing issues if you try to lock games to 30Hz on the Deck’s screen. (Digital Foundry would know; it’s covered the issue many times across PC and console. Dark Souls and Sekiro developer From Software is notorious for inconsistent frame-pacing, for example.)

Griffais hasn’t replied yet. We’ll see!

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U.S. lawmakers urge speedy action on U.S semiconductor chips funding

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A bipartisan group of 38 U.S. House lawmakers on Thursday urged leaders in Congress to immediately set a path to advance legislation providing $52 billion for U.S. semiconductor production including $2 billion in support for chips used by the automotive industry.

The  U.S. Senate voted 68-32 in June to approve a sweeping package of legislation intended to boost the country’s ability to compete with Chinese technology, including providing $52 billion for chips, but the measure has stalled in the House.

The House lawmakers in a letter warned of the “dire consequences the automotive industry as a whole—and the nation—faces if we fail to advance legislation soon.”

 

(Reporting by David Shepardson)

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MacBook Pro's M1 Max GPU is Over 3x Faster Than M1 in First Metal Benchmark – MacRumors

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Multiple benchmarks have already given us a general estimate of the CPU performance of the M1 Max chip, but we’ve had little insight into GPU performance. The ‌M1‌ Max is equipped with up to 32 graphics cores, marking a vast improvement over the 8-core GPU of the ‌M1‌, which was Apple’s first chip.


The first Metal benchmark for the ‌M1‌ Max surfaced this afternoon, with the chip earning a score of 68870. Comparatively, the ‌M1‌ chip in the 13-inch MacBook Pro has a Metal score of 20581, and the Radeon Pro 5600M, which was the highest-end GPU option for the prior Intel-based 16-inch model, has a Metal score of 42510.

Compared to the fastest chip available in Apple’s previous-generation 16-inch MacBook Pro, the ‌M1‌ Max is 62 percent faster, and it’s 3x faster than the ‌M1‌ chip in the 13-inch MacBook Pro, based on the Metal score we have so far.

It’s not clear if this ‌M1‌ Max chip is the 24-core variant or the 32-core variant. This is also just one result, so we should be able to get a better picture of the graphics performance when additional benchmarks are available.

According to Apple, the 32-core GPU in the ‌M1‌ Max is up to 4x faster than the ‌M1‌. Apple has said that the chip delivers performance “comparable to a high-end GPU in a compact pro PC laptop” while consuming up to 40 percent less power.

Since we last shared CPU benchmarks for the ‌M1‌ Max/Pro chip, several additional results have surfaced. Comparing multiple benchmarks, the ‌M1‌ Max/Pro earns an average single-core score 1742 and an average multi-core score of 12135.

The chip has the highest single-core score of any Mac to date, and it is only beaten in multi-core performance by the 16, 18, 24, and 28-core Intel Xeon chips used in the higher-end iMac Pro and Mac Pro models.

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U.S. safety board says driver, passenger seats occupied during fatal Tesla crash

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National Transportation Safety Board(NTSB) said on Thursday that both the driver and passenger seats were occupied during an April 17 fatal crash of a Tesla Model S in Spring, Texas.

Local police previously said witness statements indicated there was nobody in the driver’s seat of the Model S when it crashed into a tree. The NTSB said a review of vehicle data show “both the driver and the passenger seats were occupied, and that the seat belts were buckled when the (event data recorder) recorded the crash.”

 

(Reporting by David Shepardson)

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