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Microsoft Durango: Is the next Xbox more powerful than we thought?

XBW investigates the latest rumours as Xbox 720 kits arrive with developers...

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ProjectVulcan2055d ago (Edited 2055d ago )

The article doesn't add much. As i have constantly said, we still do not know the performance of the GPU. For all the talk of 16 core central processors (which i for one believe is only a rumour and not true or particularly useful info anyway), the chip that really matters is the GPU and that is the chip we seemingly know virtually zero specifics on.

Captain Qwark 92055d ago

its easy to predict the power, as usual when its released both the 720 and ps4 will be as powerful as a high end pc at that time. and as usual in prob 6 months or less high end pcs will have surpassed them. so in conclusion...look to early/mid next years pc specs and we will know how powerful the consoles will be,

ProjectVulcan2055d ago (Edited 2055d ago )

Really its easy? I think not. The dynamics of the console gaming industry have changed a lot since you would automatically expect the very best hardware in a new console. In this case, it is very much a mystery, the tactics of Sony and Microsoft in building their new machine and business model.

As for everyone talking about this purported 16 core CPU which is a rumour right now still, raw numbers don't mean a whole lot. Even if such a CPU exists (there is no 16 core POWERPC on the market or roadmaps for this year, the massively expensive $5000+ systems with 8 core versions for servers are the current top dogs) we can not be sure of its exact configuration.

For example the triple core in 360's architecture is actually very small and pretty weak, comparative to even x86 dual cores of the mid 00's. Having that extra core and more threads, higher clockspeed- doesn't make the 360's CPU remotely as fast as a vastly more sophisticated out of order Intel Core 2 duo for example.

More cores do not automatically = lots more power. It is more like the size and sophistication and efficiency of a chip that are better guides for CPU performance. Anybody that has seen the market today sees how Intel's quads can and do beat up the 8 cores of AMD's bulldozer.

Of course ALL of it together matters, but the chip that matters MOST, the chip that determines the rough maximal graphical performance of a games console is always its GPU.

You can have as many CPU cores and as much RAM and memory bandwidth as you fancy, but if you fit the machine with a weak GPU, it'll be evident.

Captain Qwark 92055d ago

and despite all that you just posted there, look at history for a moment and see how each of the most powerful consoles were similar to a powerful pc at first or just behind it. almost everytime, thinking this will be different doesnt make sense. both sony and ms need to have powerful consoles since that is whats expected. add in the fact that each company needs components that wont drive the cost too high and all were going to end up with is a few custom chips that are decently powerful and can be effectively cost reduced in a short period of time.

the features of each console will define this next gen not power becuase pcs are clearly moving far beyond what consoles will/can be capable of while still selling at an affordable price

ProjectVulcan2055d ago (Edited 2055d ago )

All i am saying Captain Qwark is that we cannot be certain, while you are saying yes, this is a fact and this is exactly what is going to happen and both machines are going to be powerhouses.

History does not back you up, history shows if anything that consoles can throw you a curveball. Recent history is more important than anything else, that too might indicate either console may not be as fast you you might expect.

The fact most of the rumours up to this point actually support the idea of less than cutting edge machines should tell you enough about the current attitude- that it is no longer ASSUMED they will be powerhouses. You are assuming.

For the past few years questions have been posed about the business models of the console industry. Sustainability. Features over raw power. Online over single player. Times have changed dramatically in just a decade, rendering historical arguments mostly obsolete anyway.

After all the industry is about making yourself money- NOT about simply 'beating' your competition in pure sales or building the fastest machine. Making money is the real aim of the game, don't forget that for a second.

Sony should have now well learned that going mad, throwing billions at designing hardware, chucking everything into your machine so it costs a bomb....that is not a guarantee of making lots of money.

It could go either way. I just believe that at least one of these machines may be surprising hardware wise for you.

DeadlyFire2055d ago (Edited 2055d ago )

Power7+ I am thinking with 4 cores and 16 threads for Xbox 3.

Although there are theories of Power8 having 16 cores. Release is set for Mid-2013. It would be rough early prototype Microsoft funded if its a variant of Power8 coming to Next Xbox. Only other way would be two Power7 CPUs. I don't see how that would work unless they plan on using part of them as APU like design with AMD GPU cores.

So you never know. AMD certainly has 16 core CPUs ready and IBM certainly can make Power8 have 16 cores. I think dual Power7 + APU like design blended into it is most likely. As it would fit every rumor out there. The 16 core rumor, the dual GPU rumor, and so on. As two APUs (Power7 + AMD 7750) Just saying 7750 just for example. Blended inside the same chip. Could that work? I guess we just don't know just yet. E3 is only a month and few days away!!

Computersaysno2055d ago (Edited 2055d ago )

Its possible but not very likely that it could be a 16 core AMD or late 2013 POWERPC but they are expensive and still a long way off in the POWERPC case. A 16 core AMD Opteron system is about matched by an 8 core Intel Xeon system thats half the cores!! and badly crapped on by a 12 core Intel system.

Not surprised there is scepticism because it sounds like a typical overblown rumour taken well outta context. Like for example even CELL is often called a 9 core CPU with 8 SPEs and 1 PPE it just depends on how you define the word core.

You could have something that is claimed and resembles a 16 core processor, but it dont mean it will be waaaay faster than your average PC quad knocking about now

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Dno2055d ago

actually all of it matters. but one of the things needed to run 1080p, 3D and 60FPS is ram. Hardware Console companies always skip on ram. If its not 6-8 gigs of ram then we will have another current gen problem.

PS2 has 32 MB of RDRAM. the Ps3 has 512. thats 16 times the ram!!!!! if we do not see a boost of around that much then we are gonna be held back again. I mean ps3 can not even do voice chat because of it. theres lots of things they will add later on that will need the ram i mean when the ps3 dropped we didnt even have a guide menu in games, or trophies.

stonecold32055d ago

dust 514 developer already metioned voice chat for that game there alot of things 360 cant do like surf the web or even do steriostopic 3d to name a few standred dvd is not a hd format .

DeadlyFire2055d ago

16 times = 8 GB. I am doubtful they will load up that much RAM next gen, but can't say its impossible yet. They do want these systems to last 12+ years if PS2 life is any indication of what PS3/X360 and consoles beyond that are to live up to.

LightofDarkness2055d ago

I'm guessing 4GB of RAM, with a universal 64-bit addressing space. This would be a shared pool between GPU and CPU, making things FAR more efficient than even the best modern gaming PCs on that end.

Remember, RAM requirements are not the same for dedicated gaming consoles as they are for gaming on PC. PCs have various other elements to worry about that require more RAM. The solution above also vastly improves the relationship between CPU and GPU, as they no longer need to pass and translate adresses and data between each other's RAM pools, they now share one pool and speak the same language when adressing things.

suicidalblues2055d ago

I'd like to see how that 16 core chip factors into the retail price point. If the system has a ridiculous cost to it they may be putting themselves in Sony's shoes. IE- pricing above what a typical parent is willing to spend for their kids entertainment.

DeadlyFire2055d ago

Cost will be under $600 bucks as always for production. Likely 400/500 for purchase. Sony messed up by choosing Blu-Ray it was the only factor in blasting thru the the roof with production costs.

Ck1x2055d ago

@DeadlyFire: I think Bluray was one of Sony's better investments in awhile and they should start to see even more returns on their investment when it becomes public knowledge that both WiiU and Xbox720 both use a variant of Bluray. Their biggest mistakes with ps3 were trying to reinvent the wheel by manufacturing their own CPU and not including enough ram in the system from the begginning.

Wikkid6662055d ago

I don't know the specs... but I have heard the the CPU is in pre production right now. They are doing test runs and QA the wafers.

DeadlyFire2055d ago

Well Epic's powerhouse UE 4.0 engine will be a monster. They claim they will be pushing Sony/Microsoft hard to get the right tech to support it fully. I personally love this idea. As it gives room for other engines possibly in the pipeline for later to show up and kill us with pure excitement. Say Frostbite 3.0? :P

16 cores is interesting as it means PS4 will also likely be sporting 16 cores. I just wonder in what form. Interlagos based or Abu Dhabi based or Multiple APU based? Since rumors point to an APU.

GPU is very likely to be something 3-6 times what PS3/X360 GPU can do. To me that means something between AMD 7750-7770-7850 range. Maybe even 7870 or 7950 based.

dcbronco2055d ago

I think more cores will make a difference in this and future generations. We are reaching a point where the graphics are as good as they need to be. Physics and AI are the more important things to shoot for. So unless one of these consoles is going to be using something like AMD's HSA, the amount of cores will be important.

HSA allows the CPU and GPU to work together. Te GPU acting as a far more powerful CPU for physics and AI. MS and AMD work closely together so I believe that MS will most likely be the company that uses HSA. MS has their own chip design team and they exchanged ideas in the past. Sony may get some lesser version like what is in current AMD Fusion chips if they are truly going to use AMD.

I think the machine will have 16 cores. But not on a single chip. I believe it will be 2 8 core APUs. Previous rumors have had both the PS4 and next Xbox having dual GPUs. Having one mainly for graphics and the other for graphics support and helping with AI and physics would make a monster machine.

Also look up info on C++ AMP. Microsoft's work on that leads me to believe that HSA is definitely the direction they are headed for the next Xbox.

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Tyre2055d ago

Nevertheless, it makes me excited. Can't wait.

Colonel_Dante2055d ago

Sony, raw power please. and lots of it!
If the Vita is anything to go by, power is still the punchline the next playstation will throw.

Cant wait for next gen consoles!

BrutallyBlunt2055d ago

I've never seen that before on N4G, a member talking about Sony in a Microsoft article.

As for the next XBOX, i will wait at least a year this time before i buy one. After the hardware issues there's no reason for me to 'jump in' as Microsoft puts it.

RevXM2055d ago

Its not only about MS, but MS sure is the core focus of the article.

anyways I agree with him.
And I know that both ps4 and xbox3 will be mid end powered at the very least, and PS4 is the one most likely to be high end and to be the most powerful, seeing that they focuses on the core gamers and games moreso than the other ones. The push of games, and the power of the Vita testifies that the Ps4 indeed should be very powerful and a core experience centered machine that most likely will again be the prefered Home entertainment systems because PS3 is a excellent entertainment system and becuse Sony is big on tech, movies, pictures, music etc.

Xbox3 Imo should be powerful too but Ms might cut it a bit shorter to focus on casual and social experiences and services like they do today: Kinect, facebook, youtube etc.

We will have to wait and see though, Ill cross my fingers for Consoles with a lot of brute power, and games that matches that power offering not only better graphics but mind blowing AI and physics as well. The more power a console have the longer it will be relevant technically and that is a good thing IMO.

WeskerChildReborned2055d ago

Whoa this is making me wan't to see what Next Gen consoles are gonna be like.

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