New Apple TV Will Be Powered By A5X Chip

The details about the next generation Apple TV continue to leak. We first got the hints that Apple was planning to launch the next generation Apple TV, when it quietly released the iOS 6.1 firmware for an Apple TV device with code named J33I (the code name of the third generation Apple TV is J33).

Then earlier in the day, an FCC document revealed that the new Apple TV will be slightly smaller than Apple TV 3.

AnandTech now reports that based on the code references discovered in iOS 6.1 firmware, the new Apple TV  will use the same WLAN+Bluetooth antenna/chip combo that the iPhone 5 uses and will be powered by Apple’s A5X chip. The dual-core A5X chip with quad-core graphic powered the third generation iPad (or the new iPad), which was discontinued last year.

AnandTech reports:

Instead of the A5R2 SoC (S5L8942) inside the Apple TV 3,1, this new device contains an A5X SoC (S5L8947) as shown in the screenshots I’ve taken of the Restore.plist file, though there are numerous others. It’s entirely possible that Apple is again using different bins of the A5X, it’s not possible to tell whether CPU or GPU cores are fused off at this point from my digging through the IPSW.


If you remember, Apple had used the 32-nm A5 processor in Apple TV 3, which was seen as a way to test the platform, so that it could ramp up the production of the processor for the iPad mini.

It looks like Apple is planning a similar approach, by using the A5X processor in Apple TV 4, it will test the platform and later ramp up production of the A5X processor for the next generation iPad mini. It remains to be seen if the quad-core graphics of the A5X processor will be used to power next iPad mini’s Retina Display.

Apple had unveiled the third generation Apple TV on March 7th, but looks like based on the number of leaks we’ve seen so far, it may hit the shelves sooner.

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  • bravo_007

    Awesome… might as well wait for it then instead of ATV3 :D

    • iPhoneHacks

      Yup, makes sense to hold off.

  • Astig_808

    why are they using the older chips?they should us the a6 or the a6x chip

    • Shrivatsa Somany

      but why? There is absolutely no way the Apple TV will ever use that much horsepower (unless they decide to make it a full-on game console…which isn’t going to happen this time around)

      • gorp

        i only have one thing for you “4K”

        • Shrivatsa Somany

          But not this generation though right? VERY few people have fast enough internet connections to stream proper 1080p, let alone 4k. Later on, yeah I completely agree.

    • Pacomacman

      Just think how fast the A5X would be if the iPad 3 didn’t have a Retina display? It’s a very compitent processor which can easily handle 1080p.

    • iPhoneHacks

      One of the reasons is to keep the costs low since Apple sells it for $99.