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Submitted by Slapshot82 1161d ago | article

Breaking the Wii U down; what each bit means

Digitally Downloaded's Christopher Ingram writes:

"Want to know what the difference in a GPU and a GPGPU actually is? We’ve got just the information you need to gain a better understanding of what makes the Wii U tick, and bring it to you in such a way that makes it simple to understand by all." (Wii U)

YoungPlex  +   1162d ago
Very informative, very good article! I know that the Wii U's architecture was brilliantly crafted, balancing power and innovation, while keeping it affordable and entertaining. I have no doubt that a lot of developers will take advantage of all these little tricks and extra power on the Wii U. Great article!
Hatsune-Miku  +   1161d ago
The Wii u hardware bits means that it won't play next gen games on ps4 and xbox next because the hardware as a whole is too weak.

Everyday NES fanatics will dance and spin facts about the Wii u and try to lie to people about how its powerful but its all lies.

NES fanatics didn't care about graphics and hardware power supposedly, but when the Wii u was announced most all touted how much more powerful the Wii u will be over xbox and ps3. Some declaring it'll be 6 times more powerful shutting down any talks of common sense and logical opinions by anyone who counters theirs. The general consensus is that Nintendo tends to make weak hardware for its time of release.

N64 was released 2.5 years after ps1 but wasn't able to do what the ps1 could do even though it was a 64bit console. It took another year or so for Nintendo to release a replacement ram upgrade to compete with ps1.

GameCube came out over a year ater ps2 but it lacked the disc space capaity of DVDs like the ps2 . ps2 in the end factually produced better looking games than anything seen on the GameCube like the god of war series, Gran turismo series and others. Even the best looking game resident evil 4 was released to ps2 that people thought was impossible.

The Wii is a joke when it comes to hardware power and was competing with the ps2 in my opinion.

The Wii u is being touted as the best thing for gaming since ps1 but its already entering a market trying to emulate what the ps3 has been doing.

The ps3 with vita and move can already provide all the experience the Wii u can offer with better and more powerful hardware. Watch dogs, star wars 1313, crysis 3 on ultra, metal gear ground zeros, bf 3 on ultra is what next gen console the ps4 and xbox next will be doing on launch day with their tech . I know some NES fanatics don't like to hear that but the writing is on the wall. I don't see kojima releasing ground zeros on for computers and from the look of the games tech which will be early capabilities on next gen systems (xbox next ps4) these systems will be powerful.

NES fanatics didn't care for graphics and power but then they did when they heard of the Wii u and talked trash on old systems the ps3 and xbox because they thought the Wii u would be more powerful. Now its back to spinning and saying power doesn't matter because the xbox and ps3 are more powerful than Wii u. Newer game hardwares are just about upgraded graphics but about improvements overall. Improvements that can lead to better gameplay. If you can't quickly decipher if something in a game is a rock or a person quickly enough it can lead to bad experiences. If people don't care about graphics then they'd stick to ultra NES or super NES but they won't as gamers. Fanatics will say anything to spin negatives about Nintendo systems
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ahronith  +   1161d ago
Herp derp, im so hip with the no comment three dots.
SuperShyGuy  +   1161d ago
You know, you have some nerve to call anyone a "fanatic"

You who came to an article on a company you don't like and wrote an essay filled with non-facts.

I bet you are one of those "PS4 day one people" despite knowing nothing of the PS4 hardware and without seeing a single game. You have blind faith that Sony will be the most powerful don't you.

You are the biggest "fanatic" here.
daclynk  +   1161d ago
i find it entertaining when i see you in every wii u article trying to write nothin but garbage,useless and misleading words.In the end what will you achieve,its not like anyone is going to listen to you.You seriously believe that PS3 + Vita = Wii u.
SO Sad i guess in the end you are just a delusional Internet tool. Stupid Fanboys.
daclynk  +   1161d ago
sorry double post.
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--Onilink--  +   1161d ago
isnt this the same garbage comment that you put in a different article before?? if you are gonna be trolling every Nintendo article, at least try to post something else... This just screams uselessness/way too much free time on your part
herbs  +   1161d ago
Stop calling people Nes Fanatics when you are clearly a Sony Fanatic, its painfully hipocritical. It's also plainly obvious that the wii u is slightly ahead in terms of overall hardware, even if it is not by much. Assassins Creed 3 is the perfect example, its a game that basically maxs out PS3-360 hardware and it was a rushed port for Wii Us launch, yet it runs as good as the other versions with additional images being displayed on the Gamepad. Sadly nethier my super obvious hands on explanation or this informative well written article will do anything to change the twisted minds of the pathetic hater fanboys out there.
YoungPlex  +   1161d ago
And who might be these "fanatics" you speak so poorly about? I know it ain't me as a fanatic would only own and worship one particular item/person! I may be fanatical about games in general but pledge NO allegiance to any one company! You on the other-hand display fanatical, ideologist views, and are constantly aggressively trying to shove your views and opinions down peoples thoughts, without any factual information, to back your words up. You base everything off of trajectories and speculation!

OT: For you to dismiss any and all factual information makes you a blind fanatical fanboy/girl, therefore your opinion becomes invalid! This article in no way hypes the system up, rather it informs the general gaming community of misleading facts or information that is foggy to those that don't understand specs. (aka hieroglyphics) This is very informative and I for one appreciate the time and effort the author put into dissecting complicated information and helping us understand whats really going on. The media and trolls alike love to spin numbers stories, but people like the author always check them with factual information!
dantesparda  +   1161d ago
Nintendo fanboys are the saddest bunch of them all. The WiiU is weak get over it!
millzy102  +   1161d ago
first off, I'm not a NES fanatic I'm a gamer and I've owned every console on market since the NES came out, Nintendo's, Sega ps Xbox neogeo you name it I've had it and second you have no idea what you talking about, have you played the Wii u. thought not but I have and I can honnestly tell you its way stronger than ps3 and Xbox just on launch games. less jaggie edges, no screen tear better lighting just to name a few. second are you a programmer, I thought not so how do you know which system is strongest, oh yeah because you go by rumor on specs you can't even comprehend its obvious you don't know what your talking about look at all your dissagrees.
millzy102  +   1161d ago
how do you know are you a or program and do you know something about the ps4 no one else in the world knows. thought not and how do toy know how powerful Wii u is based on rumoured specs you don't understand and I have a vita and ps3 and I'm telling you there is no way that combo can achieve what wii u does. play it for your self and tell me it can (providing you actually have a vita, everyone who makes that argument don't own one and assumes it.can be done. second it is more powerful less jaggie lines, better lighting, no screen tear on rushed ports. ok I will give you that ps4 might play battle field 3 on ultra if the console was $1000. you need top of the line pc components to do that and they won't put that in a console because it goes against what console ment to be. grow up and be more mature you stupid kid. and if your not a kid you sure act like one.
millzy102  +   1161d ago
I love how Xbox and Sony fanatics say Wii wasn't compensating with 360 and ps3 but ps2 and Xbox when they were taken off the market how does this make sense. of cause it was compensating with ps3 and 360 and won. I don't care as I own all consoles but people bend the truth to make them feel better
corrus  +   1160d ago
Very good post but you have Disagree cos Nintendo fans don't like to hear the truth after all the truth is hurts
fatstarr  +   1160d ago
if your logic that the hardware is too weak, then ps3/360 shouldnt be able to play current PC graphical marvels. but it still happens, devs can make do. We all know Nintendo will provide the best graphics for thier systems
then 2nd partys will try
only some 3rd parties will try to go all out on the wiiu
Computersaysno  +   1161d ago
To be honest there is nothing brilliantly crafted or amazing inside Wii U. Fairly standard stuff, pretty old.

You know raving about MCMs as if they are something Nintendo are cunningly using when Xbox 360 used one to start with for the separate GPU dies, and even better than an MCM, now has all the chips integrated onto one single die. That even superior design.

Nintendo could have easily fitted everything onto one single bigger die if they were really playing this super smart and integrate everything. Obviously they must have struggled to get that sorted so went with the bog standard MCM option. MCM has been used for decades.

So yeah there is nothing here that is so special or amazingly new or innovative hardware wise.

If Microsoft or Sony turn up with a fusion like CPU/GPU combo from day one, everything integrated, that will be more like state of the art smart engineering and maximising efficiency. That does take a lot of collaboration or just working with one company like the rumoured AMD fusion based next Playstation.

All this doesn't mean Wii U won't get great games, but again the article goes on about 1080p when it is fairly obvious most retail titles are 720p and that is the aim here.

This aint really a downer on Wii U I am putting out here, just lets be realistic so we don't see some crazy hyping of pretty bog standard industry techniques used before.

Wii U will rely on Nintendo bringing the games.
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Slapshot82  +   1161d ago
Hi Computersaysno,

Thanks for your comment!

This article is not intended to hype, only to inform. I just wanted people to see that for Wii U, there's a lot that has to be taken into account for a true maximum clock speed to be achieved.

Is there a possibility that Wii U will receive lesser ports, or a possibility that it might not even see some major "next generation" ports released on it? I'd think that it's possible. I discussed this pretty thoroughly though in my previous article that I mentioned at the very beginning of this one, which is why I didn't get into that too here.

Like you, I'm very much a realist. I call things like I see them in an unbiased and realistic point of view.
Computersaysno  +   1161d ago
There are a few things developers can start to exploit better inside Wii U later but the question is who is going to get round to doing that and investing the time/money/effort apart from Nintendo if we end up with the same sort of performance gap we have seen between Wii and PS3/360 regards Wii U and nextbox/next Playstation.

But this article focused on Wii U's hardware. I only said what I did because for anyone who knows a little about the hardware industry, Wii U doesn't have anything in it noteworthily clever. It wouldnt be too unfair describing the hardware as an Xbox 360 with a mild chili in the tailpipe.

The AMD designed graphics core + eDRAM and unified memory pool is no doubt consciously ripped straight from the Xbox 360 school of hardware design if it aint broke......(just add more of everything)

Its kinda like writing about a car and saying well it has electronic fuel injection which makes it more efficient and electric windows which makes it better for the occupants. Woo. Welcome to the early nineties, where virtually everything built since then has has these things and therefore pretty much unnoteworthy and unremarkable in any article about a car.

So there my parallel lies with stuff like MCMs or multi core processors being what I felt hyped for Wii U and raising expectations.

Hopefully people will think of that before disagreeing with my first comment.
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Shnazzyone  +   1161d ago
I know i was kinda shocked to see an article written by someone who knows about computers and can clearly decypher all the terms for what's going on with it. In the end, as expected, numbers don't tell the whole story. It is clearly pretty powerful but tech this new is gonna take a while to really unlock.

That being said, I imagine nintendo will be the ones to do it first.
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imdaboss1  +   1160d ago
Sony are known to put out the most powerful console out there.. just look at the PS3..Wii U is weaker then the PS3 but that doesnt mean it wont be a great system..Nintendo is all about gameplay and not the graphics..When the PS4 comes out I am sure the Wii U will continue to sell.Nintendo is aiming towards the younger kids like always...
chukamachine  +   1162d ago
Yet It still produces less fps then other consoles in the same titles.
Schawk  +   1161d ago
Wii u can have 2 people playing Black Ops 2 online at one time with a screen each using 1 tv and using one copy of the game.
something the other 2 can only dream of
1upgamer99  +   1161d ago
LOL freaking Troll disagreed with you, CLEARLY they have not played the game on Wii U, I mean sat and played it for hours. I have the PS3 version of BOPS2 and rented it for my Wii U, I loved the Wii U version, Sharper looking, and the gamepad is AMAZING. So go ahead trolls disagree all you want I LOVE the Wii U version. I am thinking about selling my PS3 version, and getting the Wii u version, it was on sale at target for $49.99
3dawg  +   1160d ago
hold up this is just a question because i dont own a wii u. u saying u can play blackops 2 online with split screen or one playing on tv and one on the tablet? the ps3/xbox360 have split screen online too, if its the latter then thats a great feature.
Schawk  +   1160d ago
@3dawg, online play, one player uses the tv and the other uses the tablet
PopRocks359  +   1161d ago
Any game will produce less frames per second if not properly optimized for the platform.
kupomogli  +   1160d ago
So what's the Wii U's excuse for every game running worse than every version released on both the PS3 and 360?
PopRocks359  +   1160d ago
Actually Assassin's Creed and Tekken run about on par if not more smoothly than the 360 version from what I understand. Nano Assault Neo also apparently has some graphical features that the 360 and PS3 versions don't and finally Gearbox has stated that the Wii U version of Aliens Colonial Marines will be the best one.

EDIT: To specifically answer your question, the Wii U's excuse is being new hardware with different architecture. If you're given about half a year to make a game for brand new hardware, it's practically asking for technical issues to come up. The PS3 processor is a perfect example of this.
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Picture_Dancer  +   1160d ago
No. There wasn't any next-gen console in history of video games, which at lounch had games looking worse that old generation games. Do you imagine first games for the X360 running on the lower resolition than games from last generation, which is PS2 so games running with reolution less than 480p? Now we have such case, WiiU which is supposed to be a next gen, and game like COD:BO2 is running in lower resolution 880x720 then avarage 1280x720 from current gereration (ps3,X360). Next gen with lower resolution than current gen (and much worse framerate). Do you imagine game for X360 running on 400x380 with crappy framerate and the same graphics as PS2 games?
PopRocks359  +   1159d ago

Point = missed.

Weren't all of the 360 launch games built on the ground up on the 360 hardware first though, including King Kong? Almost none of the Wii U launch games have that luxury. Not to mention that, again, they were developed in around half a year. Optimization. Half a year. Etc.
MegaLagann  +   1161d ago
And our word of the day is OPTIMIZING!
blackbirdi  +   1161d ago
do really people know whats mean optimizing a game ?
RuperttheBear  +   1160d ago
'do really people know whats mean optimizing a game ? '

I know what optimizing means but I'm more concerned with the fact that you can't string a coherent sentence together.
monkey nuts  +   1160d ago
I thought my brain fried had itself after blackbirds comment reading.
lilbroRx  +   1160d ago
You mean the 360. THe PS3 drop is a issue brought about by lack of optimization and its worse as well as more frequent on the PS3 than the Wii U.

The single drop that was reported in that shallow overview was in a custscene at the beginning, not during normal, regular gameplay.
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Slapshot82  +   1162d ago
@YoungPlex Thanks!

There are indeed numerous ways in the design of the Wii U that allows the CPU to be "boosted". It was obviously intentional and it will play a significant role into the overall speed of the CPU once used correctly.

Until I hear that all of these variables have been used to maximise the CPU's performance when testing its clock speed, then I consider it nothing more than a rumour.

I don't see it making a massive difference, but I'd like to think it can top the current generation consoles and run at a stable rate while doing so - a great thing for a console with so many gameplay options to play with.
cleft5  +   1161d ago
If someone is so hung up on what the WiiU can or can't do technically, then don't buy one. Instead spend some money on a good gaming PC. You will get amazing quality games and so much more. If you actually want to play a Nintendo exclusive then guess what, you have to buy the console.
guitarded77  +   1161d ago
Title = "Breaking the Wii U down; what each bit means"

Answer = each bit means 0 or 1... off or on in effect... high or low. Yea computer science!!!

In reality, the article is actually pretty decent. The author did his homework, and is sharing knowledge and not assertions.
Slapshot82  +   1161d ago
Hi guitarded77,

Thanks for your kind words!

That's exactly what I wanted to do with this article: inform.

Sometimes it's easy to get caught up in all the talk/rumours, but in this situation, I felt that it was time that the rumours were put aside and share some basic information to those who may not understand what all is being said in these heated arguments about Wii U's CPU.

For me, I enjoy the games - I don't care what system I'm playing them on. But I've seen so many gamers trying to make sense of all of this and were struggling so hard to put two-and-two together - I felt this was a needed piece to be written.
Wigriff  +   1161d ago
Fantastic. lol
stragomccloud  +   1161d ago
It's pretty good overall. The only thing that is a bit incorrect is that developers would have to scale down graphics by running what are ordinarily were CPU only functions on the GPGPU. The system is designed to do these things, so there wouldn't really need to be scaling so much as there would a need for different programming.
GamersRulz  +   1161d ago
very informative article, but I think Nintendo dropped the ball by not opting for really powerful hardware design.

Ninty had the most cash this gen, they should have *ceased this opportunity and made the ultimate Nintendo machine !

I still believe Sony will produce the most powerful and innovative console next gen despite being in a serious financial situation.

* Seize not Cease...stupid mistake, forgive me!! English is not my native language but I'm trying very hard XD
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vulcanproject  +   1161d ago
I think they dropped the ball in that they didn't make a machine that is obviously and blatantly faster than PS3/360.

Not talking uber fast here, just plainly quicker. This isn't hard. Even using a crappy x86 dual core and a budget Radeon 7750 pummels all these consoles. We're talking proper, bonafide 1080p with filters for common titles like Batman Arkham City and Skyrim.

They didn't have to go mad, but had they built something that had all the best versions of third party games by head and shoulders then it would be a real good excuse for core gamers to justify buying one.

Because Wii U isn't going to offer significantly superior multiplatforms then it does eliminate a valid reason for someone to buy a Wii U, and said 3rd party games and software which helps power along hardware sales.
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GamersRulz  +   1161d ago
I completely agree with you. I still didn't get the mentality behind designing the Wii U this way. the machine is already obsolete by today's standards.

I think Nintendo was planning to imitate Wii success by capitalizing on gimmicks (second screen in Wii U case) rather than making powerful machine. This same mentality that led to Wii downfall later at his age.
Theyellowflash30  +   1161d ago
Are you guys even thinking about the cost of the Gamepad? The streaming technology in that thing is expensive and pummels what ever the PSvita can do. Nintendo couldn't make a huge graphically advanced system. The cost would have swung out of control. The Wii U is fine. So what if they have lower res games or ports. The Gamepad will make up for it in Gameplay. And nobody can really say the Wii U is weak. It can run Unreal Engine 3 and 4
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vulcanproject  +   1160d ago
You obviously didn't read what I wrote. I made great pains to emphasise Wii U didn't have to be hugely powerful to beat up current consoles.

Yes, I thought of the cost of the gamepad Theyellowflash30. Its fairly cheaply built. The screen is very low resolution and not multi touch. The streaming technology is licensed and not expensive.

Besides this extra cost is offset by the fact Wii U has absolutely no hard drive. I might understand if it even had the features of cheaper consoles like a decent sized hard drive but if you didn't buy the deluxe you pretty much have to buy a memory card and even if you did buy the deluxe you only get a pitiful amount of storage still after all the updates.

The question is do you realise how cheap hardware is that is much more powerful than PS3/360?

The answer is incredibly cheap really, a graphics card that utterly wipes the floor with 360/PS3 can be had for less than £75/$110 at RETAIL, thats with the cost of tax, licensing, and the board manufacturer's cut and board components, the fast memory, retailers profit and everything like that lobbed into it. The cost to actually make such a chip cutting out all the middlemen (as nintendo would as an OEM) is a fraction of that, around £25/$45.

Obviously you don't really realise that Wii U could have been quite a lot more powerful than PS3/360 without breaking the bank.

Certainly tech has moved on so far even very modest modern hardware trounces the consoles. A budget £100 2012 android phone is insanely superior to a state of the art £400 phone from 2006, like a Nokia N80 for example. Because technology moves on soooo quick.

I'm not talking using a massive GPU that comes in at £300/$500 at retail here. Just a budget one like the 7750 I mentioned is preposterously faster than what Nintendo have actually put inside Wii U.
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RuperttheBear  +   1160d ago
Do you run a business vulcanproject? If you do then you should understand that a business needs profit to survive. A graphics card is just one component of a console, and the card you mentioned eats up 43 Watts in power consumption at full load alone, and that's without the other components to take into consideration.

Cost, heat and power consumption is something to take into account with consoles. They are not pcs, they do not have a full pc case to share the air flow and air cooling. Something has to give, and these things need to be designed to take into account all these factors.

It's not enough to say 'Well this graphics card is more powerful and look how cheap it is', because you are thinking from a pc builders perspective. I could build a pc that is more powerful than current consoles, but could I build it to a much,much smaller and cheaper and more efficent build? Will it be reliable or will it set on fire?

There are more factors to consider than what you can get off the shelf, it's not as simple as filling a basket with pc components.
vulcanproject  +   1160d ago
Do you know much about the semiconductor industry Ruperthebear?

Graphics card is not a part of a console. A GPU is. A graphics card is a GPU placed on a SEPARATE, discrete printed circuit board with the components required to control its power, memory buses, external connecting bus to a motherboard and cooling systems.

I'll point out to you that when PS3 first arrived it had to dissipate nigh on 200 watts from its chipset. 360 a little less, but still over 150 watts.

You are looking at it without any real in depth knowledge of thermal dissipation. Even if Wii U had to dissipate 70 watts from its chipset, that is ridiculously easy.

The original PS3 slim models power consumption was nearly 100 watts (75w merely idling) , probably at least 85 watts of that is the chipset when gaming. A 360 slim is still 85 watts when gaming, most of that chipset. http://cleantechauthority.c...

What exactly are you trying to tell me? That dissipating 43 watts TDP is difficult or expensive??? When EVERY MODEL of 360 and PS3 EVER MADE SO FAR has to dissipate more because they use less efficient older designs and yet they are still built cheaply and sold at less cost than Wii U?

Please explain how your comment is relevant in light of this information.

Using a GPU that consumes 43 watts is still laughably small and would only slightly increase the cost/considerations of heat management, besides it is stupidly easy to undervolt the part and mildly downclock it for minimal performance loss but considerable TDP decrease.

Nvidia 9600GT green edition ring a bell?

A roughly 10 percent drop in voltage and clocks translates to a TDP drop of around 25 percent percent if such a chip was built on the same process....
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Argus9  +   1160d ago
@GamersRulz I don't know what "downfall" you're talking about - the Wii is the best-selling platform of the 3 current-gen systems, and they're still rolling out more. It may not be a console for hardcore gamers, but Nintendo found a niche and exploited it, with great success.

Nintendo was never about raw power with their hardware - it's always about innovation. Even if the Wii U doesn't have the raw processing power the 360 and PS3 have, it delivers a unique gameplay experience through the Game Pad and the software that exploits it. If that sort of thing doesn't appeal to you, you probably own a PS3 or 360, or plan to buy one, and that's fine. A little diversity in the market isn't a bad thing.
RuperttheBear  +   1160d ago
I'm well aware what a gpu is, thanks for the condescending attitude, I wasn't the one who brought up graphics cards vulcan -

'The answer is incredibly cheap really, a graphics card that utterly wipes the floor with 360/PS3 can be had for less than £75/$110 at RETAIL'

I'm asking you to tell us how you could build a more efficient console and more powerful console, given the size that console is being built to.

Take the size into account, take the budget into account, basically tell us how as a console manufacturer you could build something more powerful than the Wii U while still maintaining a business that will go on for many years. With your expertise in this area it should be easy to show us exactly how you would do it.

Take all the variables into consideration, all the parts that make a Wii U, and come up with something that will be profitable while more powerful.

You are the expert after all, you know it all.
vulcanproject  +   1160d ago
Taking it all into account, it'll be fairly easy with a small amount of design.

You do realise that a 13/14 inch laptop plugged in under load for example can exceed 50 watts total chipset power draw in a volume considerably smaller than Wii U. Depending on their CPU/GPU configuration.

Not just laptops. You can get teeny nettop computers which have volumes similar to Wii U and will exceed 60 watts. Especially ones you could get barebones and choose to use a 35+ watt TDP CPU coupled with a mobile class GPU.

If you built your own nettop using the first generation Intel atom and 945 chipsets (like I did) the total chipset draw was typically about 55 watts fully loaded. You could fit them in cases with volumes similar to Wii U (or just make your own) and they were pretty cheap to set up. Usually you needed nothing more than a pipsqueak single fan to pull enough air flow across the basic heatsink.

I'll emphasise the fact that the latter two solutions are pretty cheap at RETAIL (especially the atom based nettop) can be home built and thrown together. Superior airflow and cooling design would surely be easily attainable if the whole thing was optimised for that by a manufacturer.

I mean if you had a slightly superior heatsink/fan or maybe a heatpipe or two (as seen in slim PS3's) you could manage more TDP in such a confined space.

Plainly heatpipes aren't exotic or expensive items when they are shoved inside existing consoles like a slim PS3.

The best examples are laptops though. You can get fairly modestly priced medium size laptops that draw quite a lot more power than Wii U, in a similar or less volume.

This is what millions of laptops do under your very nose.

I don't know why you are so upset by these facts. Perhaps because they kind of undermine your argument massively?
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Thepcz  +   1161d ago
nintendo could have released a £900 console, but, it would have been at an incredible loss...
and un-affordable in todays climate. Thats just BAD BUSINESS.

nintendo still sells wiiu at a loss, even with its 'modest' specs. so that should tell you something. its not 'cheap' or throw away old tech.

obviously the more 'powerful' nintendo made it, the more expensive it would cost to make, the greater the loss they sell it at, the more it would cost you to purchase. ultimately, the bigger the risk of not returning a profit.

its business.

plus, there is a worldwide economic crisis. consumers can not afford luxuries and are constantly being advised by government to live within their means. so having a £600 gaming machine at the very cutting edge of technology isn't going to go down well on the market. as ps3 proved.

nintendo did do the right thing with wiiu, it does the job, its affordable for the consumer, its profitable for nintendo, easy to make games on.

dont see what the problem is
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jmc8888  +   1161d ago
...and that was 2006, before the greatest depression in the history of mankind started to unfold (because it's STILL just starting). Say hello to over a quadrillion in worthless derivatives (aka worthless gambling bets that serve no purpose except to be bailed out above everything and EVERYONE else).

It also shows us that while the Wii U has the gamepad sucking up $$$ that could have been in the hardware, the 720 will be doing the same with it's Kinect 2 and hand manipulator. So for at least MS they won't be gaining any spec ground by not including a gamepad since their own add-on will be equally as expensive give or take a bit.

With Sony we don't know. But if they try a Vita, or to include an updated Move and Eye, it will take up some resources as well.

So we have pressures that didn't exist last time. They don't want it to be too expensive. Don't want it to lose much money. Want add-ins that didn't exist when their last consoles launched. Want it to be reliable. All those things point to a console that should be more powerful, but not vastly more than the Wii U.

Wii U is already cheaper than the 360 deluxe was when it came out. It's way cheaper than the PS3 when it came out. This is also with a dollar (or other currencies) that have devalued at least with the dollar about 75 percent of so against gold since Nov 2005 (when the 360 launched). Gold's not ~$585 an ounce. It's ~$1716 and within that last year or so was actually above $1900.

Nintendo did a great service to many gamers giving them an updated console with years of life ahead of it, with a gamepad, and with a very fair $299 or $349 price point.

To look at it another way, 1 ounce of gold would of bought you ONE xbox 360 with enough left over for just about two games.

Now 1 ounce of gold will buy you ONE Wii U deluxe, two games, and about $1200 dollars left over.
Qrphe  +   1161d ago
Although I do agree with the business aspect of what you talk about (it would have been a bad idea for Nintendo to release a costly system no doubt), if we are talking about specs in the general sense, the Wii U is not modest. As a matter of fact, the GPU inside the Wii U is a custom version of the Radeon HD 5000 series which were low-end already back in 2010.
MsmackyM  +   1160d ago
I could'nt have said it better myself. Nintendo understands the hardware business. I don't buy consoles because they are uber powerful. Cutting edge graphics will always hands down be the PC's strength. Nintendo focuses on ways to play that can only be achieved on a Nintendo while remaining affordable and profitable.
Campy da Camper  +   1161d ago
I think this will be a case of the "port problem" that the PS3 faces. If devs simply code for a different console and port the game, not utilizing the systems specific hardware, then expect nothing spectaculiar. However, there are devs out there (NaughtyDog, SuckerPunch, Media Molicule) that coded FOR the PS3 and well, those games look and play outstanding.

For me, I am all about the games that devs took the time to properly code and optimize. I am a huge SP gamer and could care less about the CAll of Dutys of the world. Give me Infamous, Little Big Planet, God of War, Uncharted any day over a bad port.
jmc8888  +   1161d ago
The thing is the PS3 was a vastly out in the woods architecture. Plus people hated the programming software as well.

The Wii U on the other hand utilizes an architecture that is becoming more common place and is likely to be emulated by at least the 720 and probably also the PS4, and was partially pulled from PC graphics cards that utilize a GPGPU. So it's more of, the devs will have to learn to code for these new features no matter who they code for.

So while they could bypass the PS3 way by porting the 360 games to it, with the Wii U, there is less of a need since the Wii U is embracing a common going forward tech.

Also the programming software isn't dog excrement like a lot of people felt about the PS3's.

So when you put those aspects together, you realize that it should be relatively easy to take common structure to make games more like semi-ports, since the architecture will be similar, and fewer things need to be changed or merely replicated again in a similar way just using Nintendo's software.

So I don't believe it will harm the Wii U that their system seems different now from the current gen's perspective, because to next gen's, it's going to be very similar to what they have. Plus like you said there will be companies that will strive to make good games focused solely on certain consoles strengths because they will be built with them in mind.

I really want to see how well Aliens: Colonial Marines runs on the Wii U. It should be the first showcase of what a game really can do by a 3rd party that did significant work to make the Wii U version really good.

Though we should remember that it is a game that has been in and out of production for quite a few years, so some things on all levels might lag behind in some areas.

But it should showcase alot, a good first taste of things to come when later things truly are built from the ground up and with experience which will come later. This game is the next step beyond the launch titles of showcasing what the Wii U can do.
Smokingunz  +   1161d ago
No matter how u slice it, the wii u is only a little bit more powerful than the 360 and ps3. It will be interesting to see how the big n is going to hold up against ps4 and 720.

I think Nintendo should've just made a powerful system and sell it at a loss and make up for it as costs comes down in the coming years. They make their money off of the games anyway.
lilbroRx  +   1160d ago
That has been repeatedly proven false, The console already has games running on it that can't be run on the PS3/360 without downgrades.
jmc8888  +   1161d ago
On the ram issue, while the numbers aren't 12.8 gb/s because that's how they would work in a PC system, the one thing people haven't figured out is that 'each' part.

If that is true, that would mean it's quadruple channel memory, which would at a base would quadruple that sectors amount BEFORE taking into account the architectural advantages over PC's that particular setup causes, and taking into account the ram timings/actual speed it's running at. So that number could easily be much higher.

Remember people if a 100 mph car needs to go 1 mile for a round trip, it can make 100 round trips. But if it only needs to go 1/4 a mile, the same car going the same speed can make 400 trips. Well that ram is a lot closer than in a PC setup and if it has four channels, then it should be quite powerful.
urwifeminder  +   1160d ago
This whole gen can be ported over for wii u great for devs to get in for a 2nd chance at cash.
dubal-e  +   1160d ago
Tzuno  +   1160d ago
Trying to save the day?
bobacdigital  +   1160d ago
I think we all need to simmer down on the 720 / PS4 specs until we know clearly what they will be.. We cant just assume the Wii U will have the same disparity to its counterparts as the Wii did because if you think about it .. If the Wii was HD in any way shape or form that gap wouldnt have been as big.. Only reason it was so dramatic was because it was 480p.

There are other factors at play in what Sony and MS can do in their new gaming consoles.. Sony wont be able to charge 550 to 600 on a console like it did in the previous year (Bluray shipped sailed). The vita is not doing well and they are already losing money on that venture so they will have to evaluate what they are going to do with the PS4 (Similar to what Nintendo did with 3ds when they planned the Wii U pricing and tech).

Microsoft is spread so thin between launching their new operating system for the PC / Phones along with the release of the Surface.. They gotta also streamline that across all devices which by rumor will include the 720. They have so many things they are invested in putting a billion dollars again into the xbox / kinect isnt going to be a decision they will just jump on as automatic.

The economy isnt what is use to be and less and less hardcore gamers exist when compared to casuals (adoption rate of COD and Halo are lower also).. More casual gamers are coming to gaming and that should also be taken into consideration when building a new system (Casuals dont rely on top of the line graphics to buy a game).

The new generation of consoles are not going to be like the prior generation.. Being a console and PC gamer I can tell you that substantially the difference between my PC years ago and my PC now in quality was the ability to run higher resolution at higher fps. The difference between medium settings and high (at same resolution) isnt THAT noticeable if you look closely (ruling out ultra cause consoles wont be able to do that at high resolution yet).

The fact of the matter is the graphics already look really good in games and they wont show a HUGE graphical jump on a budget of 350 to 500$ (not like ps2 to ps3). The next generation will be marginally better because Sony and MS realize they wont need to MAX specs out to get people to buy the next system.
#15 (Edited 1160d ago ) | Agree(3) | Disagree(0) | Report | Reply
ClaudiaBrown22   1160d ago | Spam
metroidfusion2  +   1160d ago
So many people are misinformed and assume things lol do yo research pr shut up and stop going off of rumors as facts and other dumbass shit now I'm not a tech person whatsoever but I will wait foor a full spec sheet to be releasrd and read the comments on multiple sites to see who knows what they are talking about but the games will speak for themselves nintendos first party launch titles are in native 720p and run at 60fps and I'm sure nimtendo will make native 1080p and 60fps games and 3rd party games are in native 720p and 60fps or native 1080p and 60fpds and as of now THE WII U HAS 9 NATIVE 1080P AND 60FPS GAMES THAT I KNOW AS OF NOW I WILL TRY TO KEEP TRAACK OF EVERY NATIVE 1080P AND 60FPS GAME and I don't get why this generation is so dumb and what everything immediately and can't wait like they did to see the graphics and sydtem itself improve but once again the games will speak for themselves and the wii u already has 90 games with more announcements coming so its on ha ha and nintendo will own in sales next year necause of all of the heavy hitters coming out next year andd so nintendo might exceed their expectations
monkey nuts  +   1160d ago
.............................. .............................. Please take some of my full stops , looks like yours run out just before you started typing your comment.
#17.1 (Edited 1160d ago ) | Agree(0) | Disagree(0) | Report | Reply
INehalemEXI  +   1160d ago
momthemeatloaf  +   1160d ago
Who cares about Wii u power. It will have Mario, Zelda and Mariokart in HD at some point.

And don't expect the next Xbox and Ps4 to be these super machines, they'll most likely only be slightly more powerful. Unless they want to release a 500.00 console and flop in sales
imdaboss1  +   1160d ago
Sony did with the PS3 and they are even in sales with the 360 right now..Sony will release a more powerful system bet on it..
Argus9  +   1160d ago
@imdaboss1: Don't count on it.

Processors have reached a plateau in performance in that we can't make them any faster with the materials we currently make them out of.

Think of it this way: The faster a processor operates at, the more heat it generates. Past a certain point, running the processor any faster will damage the chip.

The only way we can improve processors at this point is to add more cores to them, but this, of course, is also a balancing act in terms of reliability. This goes for CPUs and GPUs alike.

It's for this reason I think trying to enter the next console generation within a year or two is a big mistake. There really isn't much that can be improved in terms of power, so Sony and Microsoft will need to find some other appeal to draw in buyers if they want to avoid a financial disaster.
bobacdigital  +   1160d ago
No one is debating whether they are going to release a more powerful system than what they have now (it's a given) .. What is up for debate is HOW much more powerful will their next system need to be for people to upgrade?

Most people don't realize that the majority of PS3 and XBOX games arent even 720p / 1080p natively... Most of them are up-scaled from 540p/640p... Halo 4 was the first Halo to run natively at 720p which would explain why it struggles to keep its frames up in some areas (Split screen not at 720p runs noticeably worse than Halo 3 with 2 players or more).

The Xbox and PS3 were 450-600 respectively when released.. I expect the 720 / PS4 to be 400-500 MAX to adjust for the economy and what consumers consider an affordable console (not to mention bluray and memory are so cheap now).

What Sony is setting as a goal (1080p @ 60fps in 3D) is currently unattainable in that price range and form factor. That goal is barely attainable by the top PC gaming rigs (You would have to spend over 1k min to get that)... Unless they are gearing games to low settings that wont be possibly on 500$s

I fully believe that the next gen for Sony and MS will run MOST games natively in 720p @ 60fps and 1080p @ 30fps (first party titles IE Uncharted / Gears.)...

To get those numbers you dont need a 3 GHZ Cpu... You technically could run that on what the Wii U has inside of it when properly optimized and scaled...

My question is with the Xbox and PS3 still selling very well and Sony just now breaking even on the PS3 why rush into the next gen if Nintendo played it safe? Also, why put so much money into upgrading your current system if what its doing now can be done with less?

If you subtract costs associated with the gamepad you could easily double the specs in a Wii U and call it a XBOX 720 or PS4 (doubling specs doesn't guarantee double performance but it does guarantee an improvement when properly coded) ...
#19.1.2 (Edited 1160d ago ) | Agree(0) | Disagree(0) | Report
Argus9  +   1160d ago
Slapshot82, thanks for posting such an informative and well-written article.

However, I'd just like to point out that I think people are comparing the consoles in the wrong way. If each console just tried to be the one with the best graphics, the market would become incredibly stagnant, and choosing a console would be a much more moot point.

Instead, the differences between consoles give us, the consumer, a wealth of options.

On the one end, if you want cutting-edge graphics and performance, the PC will *always* win, there's no arguing that. However, such a computer can cost several thousands of dollars, and is really only an option for the most die-hard gamers.

On the other end of the spectrum, you have the Wii U, a solidly-built console with a wealth of innovations to change the way you play, with an affordable price. Nintendo's never been about raw power, it's always been about finding a niche and exploiting it. That's why the Wii was the best-selling console of this generation. The Wii U doesn't try to compete directly with the 360 and PS3 because it delivers an experience they don't.

If that doesn't appeal to you, that's fine too. The PS3 and 360 strike a balance between the two ends of the spectrum, offering good performance at a much more affordable price than a gaming PC.

Not only would Nintendo be selling the Wii U at an even bigger loss if they tried to outdo the 360 and PS3, but it would render the two consoles all but obsolete in light of everything the console can do. This would just brew more hatred in the gaming community, and that's the last thing we need.

In short, you have options, so instead of bashing a console because it doesn't line up with what you want in a platform, consider your options, and pick the right console for you.

TLDR: The Wii U isn't about raw power, it's about innovation and changing the way we experience games and media at an affordable price. The PC is king of raw graphical and performance capabilities at a high price. The 360 and PS3 are a balance between them.
younghavok  +   1160d ago
The Wii U will be fine when the next sony and MS consoles release. PC multiplats arent much better than current versions and PCs are far more powerful. Its going to be what it is now. Anybody expecting a radical difference is selling themselves dreams. Blops 2 on PC looks slightly better than its console counterparts, as does AC3. Trine 2 on PC and WiiU are pretty close but the differences on all 4 versions are pretty small. Nintendo made the right move, and in time we will all see.
jetpacksheep  +   1160d ago
Great article, made me understand much more about how to Wii U works. What blows my mind about the console is the latency between the console and gamepad (a 60th of a second), that's some awesome wireless tech right there.
t3rrorc3ll  +   1160d ago
It seems like a decent system. Not much more powerful than 360 or ps3 but others are right look at ps3 launch ports where horrendous, everyone said wait and see and now they are fairly well on par with 360, the Wii u will be the same. I really want one, if it had far cry 3 at launch I would have bought it. Would be nice to have the full map on the controller screen and be able to set waypoints etc on it. Fc3 is my game of choice atm. Also if Nintendo re did super Mario 64 on Wii u I'd be all over it like flies on shit

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