Complete breakdown by Digital foundry

This topic is locked from further discussion.

#1 Edited by The_Laughing_Man (13629 posts) -

Source

Ok gonna say right away 90% of this I do not understand but it looks like MS has optimize the hell out of their console. Maybe one of the more tech oriented bombers could break it down for us.

#2 Edited by RonGalaxy (3170 posts) -

Here's my breakdown: this doesn't matter until consumers have access to the console. A dude who worked on the damn thing can say whatever tech shit he wants, doesn't mean that it's reality.

#3 Edited by Istealdreams (153 posts) -

At this point I'll wait until people actually have hands in with it instead of trusting Microsofts constant fluffing.

#4 Edited by Darji (5294 posts) -

@the_laughing_man said:

Source

Ok gonna say right away 90% of this I do not understand but it looks like MS has optimize the hell out of their console. Maybe one of the more tech oriented bombers could break it down for us.

it all comes down to this.

X1 GPU:

1.18 TF GPU (12 CUs) for games

768 Shaders

48 Texture units

16 ROPS

2 ACE/ 16 queues

PS4 GPU:

1.84TF GPU ( 18 CUs) for games + 56%

1152 Shaders +50%

72 Texture units +50%

32 ROPS + 100%

8 ACE/64 queues +400%

They talk alot about balance but no balance of the world can make up for the huge differences between PS4 and Xbox One

this is quite telling as well.

The balance argument they are making is pointless at this stage. Why?

Well let's say the perfectly balanced Xbone had different component, each having a "relative power factor" of 1, then the system could be illustrated like this:

1 : 1 : 1 : 1

That should churn out a completely balanced 1 in final power.

I could get the argument if the PS4 was something like this:

2 : 0.8 : 0.9 : 3

And then you could argue the final power is 0.8 (cause of lack of balance and bottlenecks blah blah.

But in fact the PS4 rather have something like:

1.2 : 1.3 : 1.2 : 1.5

Meaning that even the weakest link of the PS4 is stronger than the comparable part in the Xbone.

You have a weaker console MS, that's just how it is.

The integration of Kinect is hurting them on a technical and power level which is quite a shame.

#5 Posted by The_Laughing_Man (13629 posts) -

@darji: great your still around.

#6 Edited by Darji (5294 posts) -

@darji: great your still around.

Why should I not? Look the Xbox one is a nice device and I am sure there are a lot of great games coming out for the system. But these are straight specs nothing else. It just only means the PS4 is more powerful and Microsoft now tries to "control" it by saying it is very balanced which maybe indeed true but It can not compensate for the less specs thanks to a forced Kinect which costs a lot of money. It is like with Nintendo and their Touchscreen pad which also made it impossible for them to put more power into the system. It is no bash it is just how it is.

#7 Edited by Nekroskop (2786 posts) -

The Xbone is a complete and utter disaster hardware wise. I bet it will sell ok in the US due to TV-implementation and brand-loyalty(always buy American), but in the rest of the world it will probably sell as much as the GC did at most.

#8 Edited by audioBusting (1550 posts) -

Holy hell, that is one long and exhaustive interview. I love it when tech guys talk through specific design decisions like that. That level of isolation between the game and system sounds neat, but that level of virtualization seems crazy to me. I doubt that they actually did it without cost, but hey what do I know.

Ultimately though, this still doesn't really matter to people who don't care about these things the same way the differences between CPU's in PS3 and 360 don't matter to end users now.

P.S. wow some of you guys are being real negative about this.

#9 Posted by CircleNine (381 posts) -

"Now sure, granted I don't understand the vast majority of what was said in the interview, but the guys being interviewed who worked on it and have an interest in it being perceived positively and selling well say that it's a real swell piece of hardware, and I trust them."

#10 Posted by The_Laughing_Man (13629 posts) -
#11 Edited by Sooty (8082 posts) -

@audiobusting said:

the same way the differences between CPU's in PS3 and 360 don't matter to end users now.

It's not the same way, the PS3 and 360 are practically equal. The PS4 and XBone appear to have a rather large gap, it will come back to bite them hard when games start to really tax the systems, or if indeed the rumours of 30 FPS on the XBone vs. 60 on the PS4 for some games actually come to fruition.

The casuals won't care, but that's not going to be the demographic that will upgrade to the PS4 or XBone quickly. (within 18 months)

#12 Posted by NoelVeiga (1100 posts) -

The Xbone is a complete and utter disaster hardware wise. I bet it will sell ok in the US due to TV-implementation and brand-loyalty(always buy American), but in the rest of the world it will probably sell as much as the GC did at most.

So you mean it will sell just as much as the Xbox One? The Xbox 1? The Xbox?

I don't think it's a disaster at all, by the way. I don't think you know if that's true, either, unless you're breaking a bunch of NDAs here.

#13 Posted by Blu3V3nom07 (4212 posts) -

Well that still sounds alright.

#14 Edited by Nekroskop (2786 posts) -

@noelveiga: Read my post again. I clearly said 'GC', not Xbox.

I'm breaking all sorts of NDAs

#15 Posted by subyman (624 posts) -

I think MS had a hard time pushing for selling at a high loss on their console again, especially with the Xbox division consistently being targeted by investors for a sell off. The designers were forced to make hard decisions to try to make the most out of the design budget they were given. It is quite obvious that the Sony designers had a lot more latitude with their design. Given a bigger budget a hardware engineer would pick exactly as Sony did: GDDR5, upping shaders, going big on graphics, etc. The Xbox guys had to be very creative with their resources so we get eDRAM and an up-clocked CPU. It is obvious to anyone that knows a bit about hardware what is going on here. The PS4 will be sold at a loss while the Xbone will probably break even or be a slight loss.

I don't think MS as a whole is looking years ahead anymore. The investor call for Bill Gates to step down is a huge sign of this. If they do get him to leave, we will see MS making poor decisions for short term gains while investors and executives cash out. I hope this doesn't happen, but when looking at product decisions such as the XOne's specs, we have to think of the climate of the business. Xbox One will look comparable for the first year or so, but the PS4 will quickly become the graphics leader. Its the difference between putting a 7850 or a 7950 into a computer. Theres no graphics massaging that will cancel that power gap.

#16 Edited by Kidavenger (3556 posts) -

@subyman said:

call for Bill Gates to step down.

You mean Ballmer? If anything I'd imagine they'd be begging Gates to come back.

Edit: holy crap, they are trying to get rid of Gates, insanity...

#17 Posted by RonGalaxy (3170 posts) -

Sidenote: if MS actually does get devs to bottleneck ps4 performance on multiplat games to make the xbone look better, I'm going to completely lose my shit. That would be be the biggest dick move ever committed in the history of video gaming...

#18 Edited by Darji (5294 posts) -

@subyman said:

I think MS had a hard time pushing for selling at a high loss on their console again, especially with the Xbox division consistently being targeted by investors for a sell off. The designers were forced to make hard decisions to try to make the most out of the design budget they were given. It is quite obvious that the Sony designers had a lot more latitude with their design. Given a bigger budget a hardware engineer would pick exactly as Sony did: GDDR5, upping shaders, going big on graphics, etc. The Xbox guys had to be very creative with their resources so we get eDRAM and an up-clocked CPU. It is obvious to anyone that knows a bit about hardware what is going on here. The PS4 will be sold at a loss while the Xbone will probably break even or be a slight loss.

I don't think MS as a whole is looking years ahead anymore. The investor call for Bill Gates to step down is a huge sign of this. If they do get him to leave, we will see MS making poor decisions for short term gains while investors and executives cash out. I hope this doesn't happen, but when looking at product decisions such as the XOne's specs, we have to think of the climate of the business. Xbox One will look comparable for the first year or so, but the PS4 will quickly become the graphics leader. Its the difference between putting a 7850 or a 7950 into a computer. Theres no graphics massaging that will cancel that power gap.

The problem is their forced Kinect and I bet they have spend a lot more money than Sony on stuff like that. Microsoft never wanted to have a gaming console. They always wanted to conquer the living room with a set top box. That was their plan from the beginning and the XBOX was a stepping stone for that. Now they are really going for this set top box more than anything else. It is not a focused gaming machine.

Also the PS4 will not be sold at loss Yoshida already confirmed that. That is why they concentrated all their money in specs and design of a gaming machine in the first place. They don't have a strange controller, or Kinect as forced feature which they have to consider and that is why they have the best gaming platform in terms of power and specs. Also their messages that this is a console for gamer helps a lot with their publicity and getting Indies on board.

MS has a lot of catch up to do.

@naru_joe93: There are rumors liek that yeah but they can not do it for long when all PS4 exclusive games will look much better.

#19 Posted by Nictel (2412 posts) -

ESRAM is mentioned 48 times in that interview. Seems they are betting a lot on that.

My take on it is that when you buy a graphics card, do you go by the specs or do you actually run some benchmarks?

Well I have yet to see a graphics card with better specs but worse benchmark results. But ok.

Maybe it's me but reading that interview it seems a lot of not so important numbers get thrown around, "[...] said that the minimum bandwidth we want from the ESRAM is 102GB/s. That became 109GB/s". 9GB/s for the ESRAM is that really that much? That's less than a 7% increase.

Reading that interview, even though I don't understand the hardware parts of it fully, make me worried. It's language like:

At our peak fill-rate of 13.65GPixels/s that adds up to 164GB/s of real bandwidth that is needed which pretty much saturates our ESRAM bandwidth. In this case, even if we had doubled the number of ROPs, the effective fill-rate would not have changed because we would be bottlenecked on bandwidth.

So the ESRAM bandwidth is a bottleneck. Seeing as they are saying they could have doubled the ROPs but not increase the bandwidth.

Another very important thing for us in terms of design on the system was to ensure that our game had smooth frame-rates. Interestingly, the biggest source of your frame-rate drops actually comes from the CPU, not the GPU.

Honestly I can't remember the last time lack of CPU power was causing drops. If this is the case on PC, why would it be different on consoles? Are they using such weak CPU's?

Of course it all will be clear when both consoles are out. If it all matters and how.

#20 Posted by Kidavenger (3556 posts) -

@nictel said:

Another very important thing for us in terms of design on the system was to ensure that our game had smooth frame-rates. Interestingly, the biggest source of your frame-rate drops actually comes from the CPU, not the GPU.

Honestly I can't remember the last time lack of CPU power was causing drops. If this is the case on PC, why would it be different on consoles? Are they using such weak CPU's?

AMD was saying the same thing last week when they announced their GPU line, it made no sense to me either.

#21 Posted by ManMadeGod (1561 posts) -

The Xbone is a complete and utter disaster hardware wise. I bet it will sell ok in the US due to TV-implementation and brand-loyalty(always buy American), but in the rest of the world it will probably sell as much as the GC did at most.

Do you really think people buy an Xbox because it's "American" (made in china)? That's not the reason the 360 sold so well in the USA.........

This edit will also create new pages on Giant Bomb for:

Beware, you are proposing to add brand new pages to the wiki along with your edits. Make sure this is what you intended. This will likely increase the time it takes for your changes to go live.

Comment and Save

Until you earn 1000 points all your submissions need to be vetted by other Giant Bomb users. This process takes no more than a few hours and we'll send you an email once approved.