Industry observers estimate the new chips could be ready for the Xbox One and Sony PlayStation 4 in about two years
"Microsoft's Xbox One and Sony's PlayStation 4 are due for release next month, but chip supplier Advanced Micro Devices is already teasing chip upgrades that could make the game consoles faster and more power-efficient" Interesting. Faster and more power efficient, im all for this.
"Interesting. Faster and more power efficient, im all for this" Me too. Just not sure how I feel about buying a new console every two years.
Anyway you buy new phones every year even more expensive
That they're working on more power efficient chips that could also be used on next-gen consoles doesn't necessarily mean that we'll see an upgrade to the console hardware in the near future, that'd be a somewhat contradictory practice to the nature of 'close-box' gaming consoles that we're used to -and more importantly- we all love, as it's undeniable that console gamers are more interested in comfort and ease of use than 'upgradable hardware' and 'more power'. I don't know how this could work with the developers either, if there was a newer, upgraded hardware available, they'd have to write two types of codes that would benefit older and newer chips, and games would look different, which is the type of thing you see on PC gaming, and not on consoles. I doubt console gamers would want or like that.
This will be the exact same machine. No performance "upgrade" will happen on an SKU base. What it will be is a cost saving version, smaller, cheaper to build. But that's about it. - BTW: In the future - which is already starting now - devs will have to develop for a broader range of HW. SteamBox is a nightmare in that respect, but also PS360/PS4One/Vita/Mobile...and PC. Developers are adjusting to that changing infrastructure, we might as well see a broader range of devices in 2-5 years. SteamBox is to consoles what Android is for Mobile. Fragmentation is coming.
For those who can't read between the lines, smaller chips that use less energy produce less heat. This results in fewer failure rates, as heat is usually what melts some of the seals causing the yellow light of death on the PS3, and RROD in the xbox, cooling systems be damned. This is not something that's going to run games better, although this 'closed box' model that everyone is alluding to is ridiculous. If you can buy a $700 iPhone every year, why can't you buy a $400 console every 3 years? I'd like to be able to upgrade and catch up to the PC's of that time, it's ridiculous that it's been 7 and 8 years before a console upgrade.
Its nothing new to the industry or particularly exciting. The console specs are now fixed, have been for months. They are both in full production, so obviously their hardware performance is now set in stone for their lives. These will just be the designs for the 20nm fabrication node which should hit properly next year. Full mass production on the node at TSMC hasn't actually started yet- its not due until February 2014. It'll be May 2014 before a couple more 20nm production lines start up. I wouldn't expect consoles with 20nm chips arriving much before this time next year... Both machines have been designed and launched on existing 28nm hardware which has been around for large dies at TSMC since early 2012, 18 months ago. The latest node will be ready for full production in about 4 months, whereupon we'll see a brand new generation of fast PC graphics, drastic reduction in the price of existing cards and the consoles transitioning eventually to the smaller newer node. The shrink should reduce the chips power consumption and eventually the cost of them. The problem is at the moment going to 20nm will be more expensive early on because of the major technical challenges posed by this process. It will come down however, in time. Its standard procedure. The faster you get on the latest process generally the better because it allows you to cut costs and the cost of the console of course. Smaller chips on good yields cost less. Smaller chips make less heat. Less heat means less cooling requirements. Less cooling requirements means cheaper cooling solutions. Consoles won't likely move onto new processes until after Nvidia and AMD have launched their 20nm graphics cards. The reason for this is that they buy up so much of the manufacturing capacity for their cards and pay a premium for it, that the consoles have to wait a bit until more capacity is around.
Not gonna happen as older consoles wouldn't be able to play the newer games they cannot put out a new console every couple of years. People who use phones as an example of how it can work have to look at the bigger picture. You don't buy £60 games for your phone. It's as simple as that. They could upgrade the chips to make them cooler and the consoles smaller and cheaper. But they have been doing that for years. That's no doubt what this is really about and somebody is getting ahead of themselves here.
If I gotta get a console every two years, I might as well upgrade my PC; it's at least useful for more than entertainment: I can make money on my PC.
Its not really a new console. It will probably be just like releasing the ps3 slim and super-slim or the xbox s. If they will make it faster it probably won't impact gameplay in any way except a couple of faster fps.
Does anybody else remember Perfect Dark... what about the Expansion Pack it required to be plugged into your N64 just to access the Campaign in Single Player? I wish it were this simple again to double the power of a gaming console
I would support a new console generation every 4-5 years. 8-9 years was absolutely garbage.
Aha but that's where a 2 year warranty comes in handy!
Well these probably won't be put into the next gen console 1-2 years. This gen we seen CPU and GPU process go from 90nm to 45nm. Both next gen consoles are starting out at 28nm. I wonder how low will next gen goes before this generation is over.
Depending on if they get TSMC or GloFo to do the chips, they might get down to 14nm FinFets or something.
It's becoming increasingly difficult to manufacture that scale and beyond I hear. This (and battery limitations etc) is why we can see some stagnation in mobile devices. Maybe we will see some massive, "quantum" ;) leaps though with some revolutionary technology. 28nm Is already pretty darn amazing imo.
And you think that they'll use that extra power? It's not going to happen.
It doesn't matter if the games are designed to use it or not, if there are any performance issues like frame rate dips and the newer chips are actually faster, it would give better performance at least in those areas.
@flyingFoxy: You don't want fragment your user base in the console world. One good thing about developing for consoles is that you have set performance that you can optimize to. Making faster consoles inside a generation will ruin this. Do you not think they could have upped the clocks on the RSX (ps3)? They could easily have. But the RSX inside the latest PS3's have the same performance of the first PS3 that's rolled out. It's not as if they couldn't make a faster RSX.
At most you might see improvement in UI functions and things not really related to games. Games will use the initial specs of the system, and Sony would not open up that power to be used on newer games for the sole reason of it fragments the user base. They could become more reliable, if that happens to be an issue early on, but until these consoles are in use for the consumer, it is unknown if that is even neccesary. It's a cost saving thing, and a way to reduce the form factor like they do with slim models.
Upgrade will be CHeaper to make NOT faster or more power. Imagine having a Day 1 box then 2 years later that same box has a more powerful chip. Now Devs are gonna make games using the better chip thus making you have to go out and buy another Box. see the problem. So cheaper to make is about all your gonna get and maybe more watt efficient.
Exactly. Even if the chip is a hair faster, we're talking about something so minuscule, you won't Eben notice.
What if the new PS4 is up to 10 - 20% more faster and efficient ? What if next gen games will have an extra sticker on the back cover like : Gran Turismo 8 (2018) "Works only with PS4 Rev. 2.0 2015+"
"AMD hints at faster, more power-efficient Xbox, PS4 chips" And this is another of the reasons I'm only purchasing my next gen console next year. No RUSH!
Going down in chip size will greatly reduce heat output and power consumption. But it wouldn't make sense to give them any upclocks due to it alienating consumers within their own brand.
does that mean that consoles will be upgradeable kinda like PC's?
If it's like what Nintendo did with the N64 and the memory upgrade I'd be all for it. It has to be something everyone can plug into their console... Having to buy a new model is going to make half your market mad.
Next thing you know we will be having contracts for consoles. This way when we are done for the two year plan, we can just trade it in for a new one,SMH!
maybe ill buy one in 2-3 years
There is no way they'd fragment their base like this . People need to let go of their weird dreams of an upgradable console ... it makes little sense and goes against the purpose of consoles . Get a pc already if you care about that . Only way it will happens is if future consoles go cazy about clouds and streaming
"People need to let go of their weird dreams of an upgradable console" No need to let go of "weird" dreams. Steambox is upgradable. so if its a big deal for someone, then they can do that.
And steambox is a console ? Nope . It aint even there yet to boot , let alone fragmenting any kind of market
steambox is just a branded pc like alienware with its own O/S. Doesnt make it a console.
The faster more power efficient chips would probably be put in the "slim" models a couple years down the line.