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Inside the PlayStation 4 With Mark Cerny

Cerny approached Gamasutra in the hope of delivering a "no holds barred PlayStation 4 hardware expose," he said, during the interview that resulted in this story. "That certainly is what we're here to do," said Cerny, before speaking to Gamasutra for well over an hour.

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gamasutra.com
majiebeast1102d ago (Edited 1102d ago )

"For example, this is his take on its GPU: "It's ATI Radeon. Getting into specific numbers probably doesn't help clarify the situation much, except we took their most current technology, and performed a large number of modifications to it."

They build it! We made it better!

Article is a good read thanks for posting it.

LightofDarkness1102d ago

More like: "They designed the original, we adapted it to fit our solution". Making it work with their design paradigm doesn't necessarily make it "better". But yes, I digress.

abzdine1102d ago (Edited 1102d ago )

The PlayStation 3 was very powerful, but its unfamiliar CELL processor stymied developers. "There was huge performance there, but in order to unlock that performance, you really needed to study it and learn unique ways of using the hardware," said Cerny.

I actually like the way PS3 was built, it helped me distinguish the good developers from the bad and lazy ones.
The problem with PS3 was only the launch price. If it launched at 400bucks PS4 wouldn't be as it is.
The reason why i'm writing this is that it wouldn't take to long before developers unleash full PS4 power if the architecture is known, we wont see as much evolution as we did with PS3. in the end life cycle will be much shorter.

NewMonday1102d ago

seems all of the internal hardware secrets are unveiled, the next mysteries are on the softwere side.

Minato-Namikaze1102d ago

@abzine

Exactly. The good devs learned to use the system and made amazing games. Lazy devs complained and tried to take shorcuts and their games suffered for it.

"If I’d asked people what they wanted, they would have asked for a faster horse" - henry ford

WUTCHUGUNNADO1102d ago

@Abzdine

The console cycle won't be shorted. In fact next gen has the probability of lasting longer than even this gen with the main focus going towards what features they can implement into the console itself.

"The reason why i'm writing this is that it wouldn't take to long before developers unleash full PS4 power if the architecture is known, we wont see as much evolution as we did with PS3"

That wasn't evolution per say... PS3 was always capable of it but it just took longer for the Devs to realize it due to the complications of learning the new tech. The PS4's architecture makes it easier for Devs to hit the ground running right off the back which is no where close to being something to be disappointed about simply because you'll see the console running at it's full potential sooner than the PS3 took. I'm in no way shape or form Pro-PS4 but I do understand that it will bring the entire industry to the level I want to see whether it's PC/720/PS4.

NeoBasch1102d ago

"The PlayStation 4's architecture looks very familiar, at first blush -- and it is. But Cerny maintains that his team's work on it extends it far beyond its basic capabilities."

I think this is sufficient proof that they at least believe its better. Now who knows if that's actually true. It's the kind of thing where you need to just decide for yourself if you agree. Hopefully, developers will be able to tap into it if true.

SHORYUKEN1102d ago

Dude Lightofdarknes.

PS4 is the best you can get.

Please stop being such a fanboy and just accept the benefits the PS4 will give you.

Free online playing with friends etc. you know it.

sengoku1102d ago

simply a beautiful design

nukeitall1102d ago

@abzdine:

"I actually like the way PS3 was built, it helped me distinguish the good developers from the bad and lazy ones."

Keep in mind that game design has little to do with the technical side of things. You can have "lazy" developers, but still create a great game and vice versa.

So I don't think that necessarily says anything. There is also a resource issue.

I think Sony's approach this time around with unified memory and ease of development is the correct path.

That said, remember when "unified memory" was supposed to be for cheap and low end PC systems?

MS changed that around pretty quickly, with the Xbox 360 and now it is more recognized as a genius move. Well played, well played!

Septic1102d ago (Edited 1102d ago )

I can see why Cerny's appointment as lead man for the PS4 was met with little to no resistance. Simply put, this man knows what he is doing and is undeniably very passionate about it too.

Hats off to him. He has already played a big part in making the PS4 a veritable 'beast' in the console arena.

Why o why1102d ago (Edited 1102d ago )

Its amazing that the hardest console to develop for yielded most technically advanced games this gen. Not to say Naughty Dog, Santa Monica or PD couldn't do wonders on the 360 mind you but the console that was the easiest to develop on should of yielded the most.....

microsoft should acquire more devs of the ilk sony have in my opinion or at least use the ones they do have to create more advance game engines and stuff

Like septic said, this guy seems to be on the ball and passionate about our industry. Lets see what naughtysantidigital and the likes can pull off on a console that's allegedly easy to dev on.

GraveLord1102d ago

Uhhh...yes it does make it better.

MysticStrummer1102d ago

Actually yes, that does make it better. Better for use in the PS4.

+ Show (9) more repliesLast reply 1102d ago
The_Infected1102d ago (Edited 1102d ago )

"The "supercharged PC architecture," that the team has come up with -- to use Cerny's term -- is designed to offer significant gains the PC can't, while still offering a familiar technological environment for engineers."

"If you look at a PC, said Cerny, "if it had 8 gigabytes of memory on it, the CPU or GPU could only share about 1 percent of that memory on any given frame. That's simply a limit imposed by the speed of the PCIe. So, yes, there is substantial benefit to having a unified architecture on PS4"

That's pretty awesome:)

The_Infected1102d ago

"One thing we could have done is drop it down to 128-bit bus, which would drop the bandwidth to 88 gigabytes per second, and then have eDRAM on chip to bring the performance back up again," said Cerny. While that solution initially looked appealing to the team due to its ease of manufacturability, it was abandoned thanks to the complexity it would add for developers."

Interesting wasn't the next gen Xbox rumored to use eDRAM to speed up the bandwidth? Cerny said they abandoned it due the the complexity it would cause for developers. Smart move Sony.

vulcanproject1102d ago (Edited 1102d ago )

Xbox 360 is already using a 128 bit interface, with EDRAM to help bridge the gap without using a wider memory bus. Its not unknown. Developers have been working this way on consoles for years.

It causes more complexity compared to a simple wider bus for sure, but it isn't insurmountable.

Microsoft by the looks of it could be going for the cheaper option with slower RAM and a big dump of on die speedy memory.

Have to just see how well priced their machine is I guess.

Ju1101d ago (Edited 1101d ago )

What's more interesting than how each company is overcoming the bandwidth issue is how they actually are integrating CPU and GPU. And what Cerny describes is quite interesting. And it looks like they did actually did put some extension into the design which are quite interesting. A "pre-vertex" stage is quite unique - I'd like to see what the the DirectX makers have here to counter that - that's like a massive "vertex" compressor which basically eliminates what's far away. Quite an awesome idea. Also, while DX had compute integration for a while, nothing like this has been done in HW to remove the bottlenecks. And it sure doesn't look like MS has a close CPU/GPU integration than Sony (but who knows).

It's far beyond "a APU using Jaguar cores". OGL has no full compute integration (basic in 4.3 - with pretty much no driver supporting it). OpenGL and OpenCL can have shared context but with what performance penalty? APUs still can't have "fully shared memory" - max amount the GPU can use is 2GB - no matter how much memory you have in your board and bandwidth is still limited to ~28GB/s (no GDDR version so far). Adding a "pre-vertex" stage in the render pipeline with full (!) compute support is a genius move!

All those things are gone in the PS4. I'm quite impressed. Now its in the engine devs hands to take advantage of this. We'll see some great results - devs are familiar with compute and shaders; what was missing is the HW which made it feasible to actually push this technology.

flyingmunky1102d ago

"One thing we could have done is drop it down to 128-bit bus, which would drop the bandwidth to 88 gigabytes per second, and then have eDRAM on chip to bring the performance back up again," said Cerny. While that solution initially looked appealing to the team due to its ease of manufacturability, it was abandoned thanks to the complexity it would add for developers. "We did not want to create some kind of puzzle that the development community would have to solve in order to create their games. And so we stayed true to the philosophy of unified memory."

^^Isn't that what the rumored xbox is going to use? He basically just said MS's method is a cheaper, developer unfriendly, way of doing things. It will be interesting if MS has the box that is more difficult to code for next generation.

GiggMan1102d ago

You're right. All BS aside that was a great article to read.

ATi_Elite1102d ago (Edited 1102d ago )

" Getting into specific numbers probably doesn't help clarify the situation much,"

WTF! YES Specific Numbers would Clarify the situation. Why is SOny tap dancing around and not releasing specific GPU specs?

Can't wait till E3 and hopefully those specs are released.

Oh by the Way Knack Looks Awesome! Now THAT'S impressive.

ravinash1102d ago

Would the numbers help clarify the situation?
With the architecture so different to a standard PC, how would you compare them.

you would look at the basic numbers and think "Oh look, their lower than my PC so there for it can't be as good".

With all the changes, how you you judge that?

Cryptcuzz1102d ago

@ ravinash

Exactly as you said, took the words directly from my mouth as if you're a wizard :)

To say it in a slightly different way, if the numbers were released, all it would achieve is numbers PC extremists would simply use to compare the two platforms since the components are very similar.

That is not what they want to achieve, since it would totally overlook what they have carefully planned and engineered the components to behave and perform.

The result, a platform with familiar components that have been significantly modified to perform synonymously with one another to achieve performance not possible on a platform like a PC, where parts are just thrown together for brute force, but not efficiency.

Kenshin_BATT0USAI1102d ago

Actually, numbers would at the very least give us a vague idea where the GPUs power stands. We have all the other specs, if we had those numbers we'd have an extremely solid grasp as to what to expect.

Sy_Wolf1102d ago

As a heavily certified IT guy I can tell you it would help a lot. Modifying the GPU won't make it radically faster. Knowing the exact GPU that it came from would give an idea of what type of performance you can expect. It's not comparable at all to the PC because of the way a PC works, but it would give you an idea of what to expect.

+ Show (1) more replyLast reply 1102d ago
pain777pas1102d ago

Cerny is a Wiz kid. Seriously, he is a certified grade skipping complete college before 18 years old genius. Sony is in the driver seat........ again.

PeaSFor1102d ago

....Cerny could also be a supervillain

psn1_arakouftaian1102d ago SpamShow
jennifer22ward1102d ago SpamShow
Gamer19821102d ago

"One thing we could have done is drop it down to 128-bit bus, which would drop the bandwidth to 88 gigabytes per second, and then have eDRAM on chip to bring the performance back up again," said Cerny. While that solution initially looked appealing to the team due to its ease of manufacturability, it was abandoned thanks to the complexity it would add for developers.

Like MS has done so hes taking a cheap shot while pointing out games are going to be harder to develop for MS new console compared to Sonys.

Tsar4ever011102d ago

Ya'll think all this ps4 intel is cool then you'll LUV this link. http://www.neogaf.com/forum...

enjoy,

ps3_pwns1101d ago

so why do some people not want to get the ps4 with all this news and info is out? everything the xbox 360 has now is whats gonna be on the ps4 except for halo, gears, forza, and 60 dollar online fee and ads. dont see why you guys arent gonna buy a ps4 because thats also what your friends are gonna get especially if it comes out first. its time for people to be gamers and jump on board the best console so we can get the best games.

JsonHenry1101d ago

"That lead, naturally, to thoughts about what to do next. Musing on the architecture of Sony's next system, Cerny spent his Thanksgiving holiday reading up on the history of the X86 architecture -- realizing that not only had it evolved dramatically over the years, but that by the time the PlayStation 4 shipped, it would be powerful enough for Sony's needs."

Ugh... this is the most self gratifying thing I've read in a long while.

It should have read 'we looked at the x86 architecture because all of the developers are familiar with it, it has a lower R&D cost, and the parts are dirt cheap and we don't have to come up with our own chips and decided we should have been using this all along'.

Seriously. ANYONE who knows even the smallest bit about hardware knows that the x86 platform has been MORE THAN POWERFUL ENOUGH since inception for any console to use.

I am extremely happy that Sony pulled their heads out of their asses. I will be standing in line to buy a PS4 come launch day which I haven't done for any hardware since the launch of the PS2. But please, Sony. Stop with the dumb articles and intellectually dishonest statements like the one I quoted above. It isn't doing you any favors. The hardware will speak for itself.

+ Show (9) more repliesLast reply 1101d ago
jc485731102d ago (Edited 1102d ago )

you know what's funny and I guess I'm one of the few that feel this way, but Mark Cerny kinda has become the center of attention ever since the announcement of PS4. I mean, he seems like a nice person and I think Sony saw that in him and it's using that to their advantage. Cerny simply looks like the guy you want to make friends with. just look at the photo!

delboy1102d ago TrollingShowReplies(3)
WeAreLegion1102d ago

Actually, Mark Cerny is a genius. He graduated high school at 12 and had his bachelor's at 15.

Sarobi1102d ago

Woah really?, that's pretty damn awesome.

WeAreLegion1102d ago

Yes, really. :) I've been studying him since the PlayStation Meeting. I freaking worship this guy now.

Marceles1102d ago

Cerny has that "Apple employee spokesperson from Apple ad" feel about him. I don't know his background but seems like he's genuine.

yewles11102d ago

Looks like they're really going for efficiency over pure power for this.

"When we say 1.8 TFLOP/s, we MEAN it this time... with a VENGEANCE!!!" in a nutshell...

I_am_Batman1102d ago

Exactly. Just like gaming PCs are build more for efficiency compared to a High End PC. The difference here is that Sony built a system from the ground that doesn't need to run Windows.

I like that they asked dev teams to come with their own ideas for the PS4. That's the reason why everybody seems happy with the final architecture of the system.

Is the PS4 a high end PC? No. More like a super efficient gaming PC.

ps3_pwns1101d ago

the ps4 is basically astro boy. small little robot who beats the crap out of huge monster atlus type robots. small but packs a huge punch.

Godchild10201102d ago

I hope they spread those titles out and not just release them in a 3 month window. These games need to be spread out, so the console stays attractive. Please don't don't release a great deal of games too early like you did with the Vita and have months with no retail titles.

I just hope they learn from their mistakes.

KwietStorm1102d ago

Learn from their mistakes? With the Vita? It's not up to Sony if developers simply aren't making games for it. It's foreseeable future is looking very good right now, but it's an entirely different situation with the PS4. It's a home console, and developers are very keen on working with it. If it went months or an extended time with no games, then that would mean developers just weren't producing anything, which just doesn't happen. It's not like it's the Wii U where many third party games pass on it.

Godchild10201102d ago (Edited 1102d ago )

I'm not talking development of the games, I'm talking about a lot of games with its launch window or its first month with no releases 2 months after its releases other than digital titles.

Why release 26 games within its first month and have only 2-3 games a month after its release. Home console or not, they have made mistakes with the PS3 as well. It's all about keeping the momentum and not hoping the current titles released will help keep the system selling.

And how about developer support from their own first party after its launch window and not just within it.

The first 3 months mean a lot for them, but the months after means a lot more for the system and the consumers.

GribbleGrunger1102d ago

Yeah, I agree. I think the 'big splash' in the hope that momentum takes care of itself isn't the best approach unless you have a hell of a lot of content to fill that launch window.