Xbox One graphics capabilities, odd SoC architecture, and bus bandwidth confirmed by Microsoft

Here’s the important points, for comparison’s sake. The CPU cache block attaches to the GPU MMU, which drives the entire graphics core and video engine. Of particular interest for our purposes is this bit: “CPU, GPU, special processors, and I/O share memory via host-guest MMUs and synchronized page tables.” If Microsoft is using synchronized page tables, this strongly suggests that the Xbox One supports HSA/hUMA and that we were mistaken in our assertion to the contrary. Mea culpa.

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thetruthx12269d ago

"The underlying architecture is very similar to a super-charged APU with much higher internal bandwidth than a normal AMD chip"

Hmmm things are getting very interesting

4Sh0w2269d ago (Edited 2269d ago )

Nice deeper look at the specs from extremetech. X1 is customized up the ...! That chip is packing some surprising punch, with stuff like DirectX 11.1+, eSRAM, and the 109-204gb's of improved bandwith has my head exploding, plus no mention of the 8gb flash memory I read on a previous thread or am I confusing myself with something else? Damm its going to be very interesting to see the Digital Foundry bench tests once these 2 monsters release.

thetruthx12269d ago

Yup it'll also have 8 gigs of flash memory. Ms also said they have some things in the Xbox One that they don't want the competitors knowing about

4Sh0w2269d ago

I thought so. Are they purposely keeping some spec info under the radar? I wonder what the hell that 8gb flash memory does?

PrimeGrime2269d ago (Edited 2269d ago )


The internal flash is used to store the new Xbox One's massive OS and firmware updates, also to alleviate space on the non removable HDD. Nothing more, if you are hoping it can free up RAM usage that the OS will need. Well we aren't there yet.

That is just impossible to use flash memory to run the entire OS. PC's can't even currently do that.

So to answer your question that is what they are using it for to store the OS, it will still use a certain amount of the systems RAM to operate.

NextGen24Gamer2269d ago (Edited 2269d ago )

Developers have been pleasantly surprised by the extra power the xbox one has due to the custom architecture in the xbox one. 8 gigs of ram, 8 gigs of flash memory, 2 extra custom cores for the hd audio, etc....

Here is a quote from the article:

If the cache really is 1024 bits wide, and the developers can make suitable use of it, then the Xbox One’s performance might surprise us.

This technical unveil confirms much of what we suspected about the chip, but throws us for some curves in other areas. All in all, a great session.

slivery2269d ago


Those 2 audio chips are for the new Kinect and its audio processes.

PrimeGrime2269d ago (Edited 2269d ago )

Lol I love how many are disagreeing with pure facts. Flash memory cannot be used to run the OS but only to store it.

Why do you think the Xbox One's HDD and internal flash memory are using in conjunction with each other. Simple.

Jesus I am not shitting on the thing.

I am just explaining what the internal flash is used for. What else would be used for then? Since you can't use flash memory like RAM.

Please correct me then don't just disagree.

Lol ever since I got slasher716 or w/e his name is in trouble since then every time I comment. I get one disagree immediately..

Bennibop2269d ago

109 - 204 gb is theoretical bandwidth, this is just Microsoft spin the reality will be around 109 - 150. Sony I am sure could release some theoretical figures too!

kupomogli2269d ago


Since only the 32MB ESRAM is 204GB/s most of it's going to be 109GB/s. Developers will probably be able to have the 8GB of slower ram not drop the commonly used textures and stuff that's not commonly used might go onto the 32MB first and then drop off the 32MB after it's on the DDR3.

It'll work well if the game is developed well, but the GDDR5 will run at a static speed, so giving developers less of a chance to make a mistake on filtering ram back and forth when there's only one pool to do it.

NewMonday2269d ago

- 8g of Flash is most likely used to store the OS and system resources separately from the HDD, and that is to make it harder to crack.

- HSA/hUMA are not the same, hUMA concerns memory, HSA concerns processing, and the XB1 chip presentation did not state the use of hUMA or HSA or described a process that is similar.

NextGenHorny2268d ago (Edited 2268d ago )

Since the 8GB flash memory matches the RAM size, I guess it will be used for some kind of system suspension.
Instead of saving the RAM memory content to disk, it saves it to the flash memory, which I believe it's faster access than an HDD.

Tw1tch3D2268d ago (Edited 2268d ago )

@ Bennibop

"Theoretical bandwidth" makes no difference in either consoles, whether it be PS4's 176 GB/s or XOne's 204 GB/s ESRAM.

Sony's PS4 will NEVER hold a rate of 176 GB/s, but marking it at that point shows how much developers can work with. Same thing goes for XOne.

So if 109 GB/s is the minimum and 204 is peak and the ESRAM points to the GPU...well, that goes to show how much the developers can work with and not that they'll have difficulty going beyond 109 GB/s.

The question now is what is the ESRAM used for?!

...and the last question is a hint to Kupomogli on what his meaning of the term "commonly used textures" on the CPU, as if the CPU will be heavily used for graphics?! Doubt that!

@ newmonday

"..hUMA concerns memory, HSA concerns processing..."


There is no difference between the two, only that hUMA truly facilitates memory coherency. Do you understand what you post before doing it? Probably a twitter habit, right??

Computersaysno2268d ago (Edited 2268d ago )

The architecture is a bit of a mish mash created simply because Microsoft didn't think they could use faster memory in the shape of GDDR5.

In that sense it is overly complicated and patched up to try and help the weakness using DDR3 was going to create for the machine, that is not enough memory bandwidth for serious graphics performance.

We have to remember that is the only reason this complicated memory architecture exists, NOT because it is better than straight up massive chunk of unified memory.

Sony illustrated that they could theoretically have a small chunk of esram with bandwidth on the scale of 1000 gigabytes per second, but this was just not as good as having a large pool of memory with 'only' 176Gb/s.

If these small chunks of very fast on die memory were so helpful to graphics architectures, then PC graphics cards would be chock full of it.

The fact is its still a waste of die space for them. Its still much better to just use the space for extra shaders or TMUs and have a medium sized memory bus with high speed GDDR5.

Thats how every high end GPU still does it. Sony gambled choosing GDDR5 and it has paid off mega stylee. Microsoft have a slower architecture packed with more complex buses and a more difficult chip to get yields on.

Its hilarious really, Microsoft provided the best programming environment with the most straight forward machine in X360, and it worked fantastically for them. Sony created this fiddly machine in PS3 to accommodate their CELL processor and separate memory banks that devs grappled with for years.

This new generation is the ultimate role reversal.

Athonline2268d ago

^To some people above:

HSA is part of the Jaguar APUs' architecture. There isn't ANY way the XBox could have a Jaguar-based APU and not HSA. HSA specifications are set by the HSA Foundation:
which AMD HAS to implement and as a result, both Sony and Microsoft have to.

hUMA is AMD implementation of an HSA-like solution in traditional Von Neumann architectures X86(and X86-64) PCs to allow a shared memory pool to be used. hUMA is NOT part of the HSA specification and NOT the same. It is like an a poor, incomplete implementation of the HSA specifications, as HSA is NOT possible within a PC.
Similar to AMD's hUMA nVidia is launching Maxwell-architecture GPUs to allow shared memory access.

Both PS4 and XBOne got HSA in their APUs and none has nor needs hUMA.

HSA is an actual STANDARD set by a consortium of companies. hUMA is a MARKETING name for an AMD technology.

If you want, you can enjoy reading "brainless journalism", who try for a bit of internet traffic feed people with false info or incomplete statements.

aceitman2268d ago

the 8 gig of flash was rumored for the interactive ads.

+ Show (11) more repliesLast reply 2268d ago
ma1asiah2269d ago (Edited 2269d ago )

You got to love this bit s well

"Of particular interest for our purposes is this bit: “CPU, GPU, special processors, and I/O share memory via host-guest MMUs and synchronized page tables.” If Microsoft is using synchronized page tables, this strongly suggests that the Xbox One supports HSA/hUMA and that we were mistaken in our assertion to the contrary"

I mean it doesn't confirm that they actually do but it is more and more looking highly likely.

As for unrevealed details that only makes logical sense. I mean its not like you want to show all your cards too early it is a war after all.

Man that 8 GB of flash memory if they do the same as they did with the X360 by using that for the OS then we could see even more of the pool of DDR3 RAM freed up for other uses.

Plus the hypervisor which can dial up and down resource allocation to where most needed.

Loving the X1 more and more

NextGen24Gamer2269d ago

It's definitely good stuff. I'm with you. I'm loving the xbox one more and more as well. This is what they meant by saying it's rocket science stuff in the box.

It definitely looks like it. MS knew what they were doing all along. That's why they kept saying it's not only about the raw numbers that Sony was throwing out there.

What is even more interesting is they decided not to talk about specifics under the hood until Sony announced their launch date. Just to make sure they didn't change their tech in an attempt to compete.

kneon2269d ago (Edited 2269d ago )

If they used flash in place if ram not only would it be incredibly slow but it would burn through the read/write cycles of the chip in no time.

The flash is for storing the os or its another form of data cache, basically a mini ssd.

JP13692269d ago (Edited 2269d ago )

"What is even more interesting is they decided not to talk about specifics under the hood until Sony announced their launch date. Just to make sure they didn't change their tech in an attempt to compete."

Why would Sony need to change tech when they're already ahead?

50% More shaders
50% more texture units
50% more compute units
Twice the ROPS
Better RAM that is easier to get the most out of.
Also has dedicated audio chip

Sorry, MS themselves confirmed 1.3 TFLOPS, while PS4 is sitting at 1.8. No amount of spin and PR buzzwords will overcome that advantage.

juggulator2268d ago

This is a comment thread for an X1 article. Most people commenting here don't care that PS4s specs prove its 50% more powerful(except maybe you and me). To them those specs are "raw numbers" which begs the question, if Sonys PS4 specs are raw numbers then what is all those specs/numbers mentioned in this article?

JP13692268d ago (Edited 2268d ago )

" To them those specs are "raw numbers" which begs the question, if Sonys PS4 specs are raw numbers then what is all those specs/numbers mentioned in this article?"

Are you dense? You know exactly what those numbers are.
The reason I commented is to clear up the nonsense that people love to spew in articles like these. Saying that Sony needs to change tech to compete is, in fact, nonsense. Sony fanboys can be pretty bad as well, but I haven't seen as many of them willfully ignore the facts and succumb to hearsay, conspiracy theory and full-on delusion in an attempt to justify their purchase. The One will have great games and I'm sure millions of people will enjoy their experience with it. However, it won't be the most powerful console on the market, not by some margin. There's nothing wrong with that and - until recently - you heard many people in the MS camp say that graphics aren't all that important, yet it seems many of them have changed their tune now that official specs have been released. Unfortunately for them, all the specs do is confirm what we already knew. This is what is confusing and sad and pathetic about the situation; that is has remained pretty much the same, but a certain fanbase is acting as if some game changer just occured. Well, it hasn't. Deal with it.

ma1asiah2268d ago

Could Microsoft somehow have managed to have implemented Fusion ioMemory to work with in the architecture of the X1???? possibly maybe?????

The virtual memory subsystem abstracts logical data addresses from their physical location by creating a directory of data locations. In modern OSs, a 64-bit virtual address space is used to organize and partition data used by the applications and users. Below this virtual address space lays the physical RAM, which has a much smaller address space. Operating systems and applications use this virtual interface to RAM (called the page table) to look up the physical location of data using a directory rather than requiring massive quantities of RAM just to satisfy each application's memory address space.

Similar to page tables in the host virtual memory subsystem, VSL virtualizes Flash via "block tables." VSL translates block requests to physical ioMemory addresses, also analogous to the virtual memory subsystem. It's important to note that these block tables are stored in host memory. This is a key advantage over other solid-state architectures (e.g. SSDs) that store block tables only in embedded RAM, where block tables are accessible only behind legacy storage protocols.

MarkusMcNugen2268d ago (Edited 2268d ago )

"Sony fanboys can be pretty bad as well, but I haven't seen as many of them willfully ignore the facts and succumb to hearsay, conspiracy theory and full-on delusion in an attempt to justify their purchase."

Sure they have. Kinect spybox comes to mind. That is a conspiracy theory an full-on delusion that PS4 fanboys have been spouting to defend their purchase of a PS4 and convince others to do the same.

And if not to defend their purchase than to try and convince others to participate in the delusion and buy their preferred console.

Trust me, both sides are guilty. Xbox fanboys defend the Xbox One without understanding the specs and how they compare, and PS4 fanboys attack the Xbox One because of specs they dont understand.

juggulator2263d ago (Edited 2263d ago )


First let's get one thing straight. I've been gaming since playing Asteroids and Pole Psotion on an Atari and have a college degree in level design. I work with game engines like UE3 and CRYENGINE on a daily basis. I know exactly what the specs of boths systems are. I comment on here for recreation, you comment here for a living and I will not be disprespected by some incognito delusonal fanboy.

"50% More shaders
50% more texture units
50% more compute units
Twice the ROPS "

Yes but HOW MANY of each cuz you sound like your spitting out raw numbers. Sony has provided the exact specs of what their CPU/GPU. MS is saying "you may get over 200/gbps depending on whether or not the 32MB of ESRAM is properly utilized" and obviously there are devs that are doing that because Ryse and Titanfall exist and they look damn good.

The sad thing is that I was initially agreeing with you but the "blinders" have obviously blurred your vision. And I won't be issuing or accepting any apologies either. I want to remain as respectful as possible as I know this is a comment thread for an X1 article but I've been a PlayStation gamer for over 20 years and that won't be changing because some article comes out claiming there's "new info" about the X1's architecture when in reality it's stuff that I knew before MS's reveal prior to E3.

I may be able to tolerate being called dense on the day that I exchange my Dualshock for something else, until then I don't f**cking think so.

+ Show (6) more repliesLast reply 2263d ago
PrimeGrime2269d ago

Not trying to rain on your parade but it isn't anything new. I talked about this a couple days ago. Especially if anyone has been reading up on AMD's APU's lately.

Both the PS4 and Xbox APU's are based off of the same high performance technology used in the Kaveri APU planned to be released in early 2014.

The only difference is they are still based off of Jaguar cores and the Kaveri is steamroller cores but its still very new tech none the less.

They are both customized and everyone should be excited if you are Playstation fan or Xbox fan to see what these new APU's bring to the table.

kewlkat0072268d ago (Edited 2268d ago )

Nobody has yet to tell me what the 8GB flash ram is for?

I didn't know Microsoft customize that ship so much...

The XboxOne might not have the better GPU but if it were a Race car, it would have a more efficient and very very zippy Pitcrew looking at the architecture.

bromtown2268d ago

People have said above - probably for storing the operating system since the HDD is non replaceable. However it's not for running the OS as some people have been saying, a) it's not quick enough, and b) Flash memory has a finite number of read/write operations before it craps out, so running an operating system from it would kill it super fast.

NextGenHorny2268d ago

I guess it will be used for some kind of system suspension, as it matches the RAM size.

Omegasyde2268d ago (Edited 2268d ago )


Finally someone address that. The OS will be written to the HDD (despite not being able to be removed except by MS).

The 8 gig flash is a bit concerning as even the best quality flash drives have a limited read/write limit.

My guess is it used for storing background permanent information (I.e. "Software licenses") and has an advanced form of anti-hacking encryption on it. This leads me to believe that Major Nelson was right in a sense, that DRM can't be just turned off with a "switch".

IMHO, unless it was retooled for another purpose, the Xbox one might not even use the flash memory because of their reversal of policies after the FCC submission. It could possibly still store licences, but if thats true 8 gigs seems like overkill.

MarkusMcNugen2268d ago

"The 8 gig flash is a bit concerning as even the best quality flash drives have a limited read/write limit."

True, but it all depends on whether its SLC or MLC for how many read/writes it can take before the end of its life. Id also like to point out that every smart phone has flash storage as well, and most of those have yet to die from read/writes.

Pretty sure my android phone is writing to and reading from the flash memory storage a ton and its alive and well. Hell, my old iPhone 3G is still working fine and I cant tell you the number of times Ive had to reload my 20000 songs to it.

+ Show (1) more replyLast reply 2268d ago
nosferatuzodd2268d ago (Edited 2268d ago )

when it comes to hardware we all know who's king Samsung GE sharp all get help by Sony on hardware if it was software related then Microsoft would have the advantage but hardware please we are not worried about their theory 204 gbs second its just wishful thinking to trick ppl on their under power console look at the fact no matter how they over clock and es ram they're just making the system more difficult to work with they're going to overclock until every Xbox one catch fire in ppl houses I'm going to laugh at the RRoD that's coming i don't trust Microsoft with a dish washer much less a console

+ Show (2) more repliesLast reply 2263d ago
stuna12269d ago

And from your comments I'm willing to bet that you think that Microsoft are the only one that have something up their sleeve that they don't want the competition to know about!? After all you are about the truth!

I'm sure both have secret sauce in their architecture.

ThatCanadianGuy5142269d ago

PS4: 1152 Shaders
Xbone: 768 Shaders

PS4: 72 Texture units
Xbone: 48 Texture units

PS4: 32 ROPS
Xbone: 16 ROPS

Doesn't change the cold hard facts.

ThatCanadianGuy5142269d ago

Facts are spam now?
How convenient.

Skips2269d ago (Edited 2269d ago )


But some don't like facts... They'd rather cling to "theoretical", "powah of ze ClOuD!!", and rainbows and dreams and whatnot... lol On paper, PS4 is definitely more powerful from what I understand...

And the games do show it, no doubt...

I admit, Forza 5 does look incredible...

But I could honestly say the SAME thing about DriveClub... lol

^^Courtesy of GribbleGrunger...

EDIT: @badkolo...

Not sure if serious??? :/

Anyways, as good as Titanfall looks. It doesn't even come close... lol

Ritsujun2269d ago

YeH yOu cAn'T beEt tEh pAwaA of za ClouDz.

badkolo2269d ago

skips, your first killzone pic is not gameplay , try harder. when the gameplay starts all that prettyness gets blurred, watch killzone videos again to see the truth

u got owned2269d ago

From "theWB27";

Bugattii- 1000 horsepower 270mph 0-60 2 seconds
Nurburgring- 7:40 mins
Top Gear- 1:16 mins

Nissan GT-R-Stats- 480HP 193mph 0-60 3.2 seconds
Nurburgring- 7:24 mins
Top Gear- 1:17 mins

Game design isn't a straight line."

enough said!

ALLWRONG2269d ago

The people who deny cloud or cloud computing (See OnLive) have the same mind set as those who thought electricity was magic. The same kind of people who tried to discredit Genetics or DNA.

In other words "denial"

JokesOnYou2269d ago (Edited 2269d ago )

ssshhh you're making too much sense. I keep telling them the performance difference is so close its mute, devs and money will determine quality of games. It will however be interesting to see the backtracking when real world bench tests highlight X1 advantages.

GribbleGrunger2269d ago (Edited 2269d ago )

@badkolo: I wasn't going to post anything until I saw your post.

"skips, your first killzone pic is not gameplay , try harder. when the gameplay starts all that prettyness gets blurred, watch killzone videos again to see the truth"

1080p comparison. Keep an eye on the shadows, lighting and reflections as well as the density of action and the near photorealism of textures:

Fun fact: The KZS footage is 1080p/60fps

Don't get me wrong though, Titanfall will be a fantastic game and well worth the purchase.

Deadpoolio2268d ago

It's amazing how with Xbots facts are suddenly Spam or just someone being a hater....It's weaker get over it, the One80 will never be as powerful, the cloud will never do what you people think it will especially graphically....

But that doesn't mean the One80 is a slouch, it's just weaker....So what games will still look nice on it

+ Show (7) more repliesLast reply 2268d ago
_QQ_2269d ago

PC> both,so why bother?

Arrrriibaa2269d ago (Edited 2269d ago )

More money > less money.

edit: oohh nice pc fanboys disliking a fact, nothing new them PC fanboys haha!.

madpuppy2269d ago

If you are so enamoured by the PC, why are you spamming console threads? wouldn't you just stay where you are with like-minded gamers?

_QQ_2269d ago (Edited 2269d ago )

Then why is he spamming XBOX threads? of course i'm not surprised, the white damage control knights don't come out on this site untill Sony gets criticism. plus why would i dislike someone claiming that i have allot of money?yeah more money,better graphics too,better indie scene, better options,better performance,better online community,More games. Cold hard facts right?

LucasEVille2269d ago

What's wrong with choosing a console and using your pc? Unless your just staying with pc in which case why are you even commenting on console articles?

Narutone662269d ago

Since your beloved XB1 is losing on specs, you have to resort to PC to win an argument.

kneon2269d ago

Why bother? Because the games you want to play are only available on one of the consoles.

That's the only reason you need.

_QQ_2268d ago

@Narutone Yep my beloved X1,I guess being unbiased now days means you are a fanboy. I don't give an ass about the X1.

wtopez2268d ago

I agree with Lopez_Josue. If you're gonna swing your PS4 specs d*ck around an Xbox thread, don't moan when a PC user drops, as DayZ would put it, "cold hard facts".

PS4: 1152 Shaders
GTX 770: 1536 Shaders

PS4: 72 Texture units
GTX 770: 128 Texture units

This is from a Mid/High end GPU that has been out for months. By the time the consoles are out, AMD will have launched it's new line of GPUs and Nvidia will have revised it's GTX 700 series. That is only this year and it happens every year.

Sevir2268d ago

Sooooo are you going to Spend $600 to upgrade so you can PLAY the SAME multiplatform Games which currently have PS3/Xbox 360 as their BASELINE, just so you can GLOSS over Framerates and Resolution? the overall story and gameplay dont matter, EVEN if its just a high res console port!?

LOL keep playing the resolution and framerate game.

But if a game runs steady and looks pretty on one console the overall experience is THE SAME across the board, even with high res assets and higher frame rates!

Just saying.

+ Show (6) more repliesLast reply 2268d ago
maniacmayhem2269d ago

All of that and the games shown for Xbox One still look excellent.

torchic2269d ago (Edited 2269d ago )

I don't think anybody ever said that they wouldn't look excellent.

they just won't look as good as PS4, (especially 1st party) that's it. that is nothing to be ashamed of though, 360 users enjoyed their 1st party titles even though they didn't look as good as PS3 1st party titles.

Death2268d ago

The same ones talking about PS4's superiority also claimed the PS3 would be "TrueHD" 1080p for everything released. They also said Blu-ray made PS3 games look better.

Here's a nice flashback to 2005

The PS3 GPU was also rated at 1.8 Tflops by Sony so you will have to excuse me if I don't seem to overly excited by Sony's claims for the PS4.

torchic2268d ago

holy fudgecakes! disagrees! what did I say wrong?

1st party PS3 games looked better than 1st party 360 games.

devs already saying that PS4 versions of multiplats will look a bit better (Rivals, Warframe)

these are indisputable facts people! not trying to trash 360 or Xbox One!


if that's somewhat directed at me, just note that I was 12 in 2005, blissfully unaware of such topics.

nightfallfilms2269d ago

No its SPAM when you post it in every single article. I could probably go onto a non gaming website and find you posting this crap.


What about xbone fans with the no game spam

MarkusMcNugen2268d ago


They are both stupid. Fanboys are stupid, thats all there really is to it. Not stupid as in unintelligent, stupid as in blind to anyone elses interests other than their own.

tuglu_pati2269d ago


Spam much...

i don't see any mention or comparison with the PS4 in the article. So its obvious that you are trolling.

corvusmd2269d ago (Edited 2269d ago )

@ Day Z Well this is based on old SUSPECTED figures..not to mention it's just a SMALL slice of the over all picture, you keep focusing on the paper specs you'll get left in the've been warned.

PS3 did this SAME thing last gen...and it's still getting whooped at the end of the gen in graphics and playability. Open your mind a little, and stop focusing on paper specs that are outdated and mean little to nothing

cell9892269d ago

Um... Show me something on the 360 that looks and plays better than The Last Of Us, Uncharted 3, God of War Acension, or Two souls. Exactly stfu and try harder

ziggurcat2269d ago

Suspected specs that are confirmed.

How is PS3 being whooped? Because it's widely known that graphics in 1st party titles have far surpassed that of the X360. 3rd party titles have also reached parity in terms of graphical fideltiy, and are increasingly surpassing the X360. And where are you getting that nonsense about playability from?

gamertk4212269d ago

@cell. Easy. Halo 4.