Frostbite Tech Director: “We Don’t Need Mantle on PS4;” Talks About the PS3′s SPUs and PS4′s ACEs

A lot has been said about the enhanced performance of AMD's mantle, and Frostbite Engine Technical Director Johan Andersson has been one of the major evangelists of the new technology, but according to him it's not needed on PS4, that has a good API (Application Programming Interface) of its own, while also comparing the PS4's ACE with the PS3's SPUs.

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ZodTheRipper2300d ago (Edited 2300d ago )

Dumb question, has the PS4 an API on it's own? This statement is certainly interesting when looking at the fact that the Xbox One will get DirectX 12 soon. Can anyone explain?

ZodTheRipper2300d ago (Edited 2300d ago )

But Sony developed this one specifically for the PS4? Because it seems like developers are completely happy with it. I don't understand how Mantle could improve on that but I have no idea how this works of course :D

UltimateMaster2300d ago

By changing the coding to make it lighter and more efficient to run.

dantesparda2300d ago (Edited 2300d ago )


Yes they do, 2 in fact, GNM and GNMX, with GNM being their better lower level but harder to program for API and the other a "wrapper" code placed over the GNM called GNMX and thats their DX11.1+ like API. In other words, programming to that API is almost the same thing as programming for DX, only its specially designed to the PS4 hardware. But the really interesting API here is GNM, its the to the metal API one. Of course PS4 doesnt need Mantle, Mantle is just a lower level API (closer to the metal) than DX, so you get more/better performance than you would with DX, now X1 could actually benefit from Mantle more so than PS4 could simply because DX is far more inefficient than Mantle. But now with DX12 coming to X1, and it claiming to be closer to the metal, we'll have to wait and see how it compares to Mantle (i suspect we'll see give and take between them)

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TIER1xWOLFPACKx2300d ago

Ps4 has its own dedicated API built around it's hardware

Ju2300d ago

Yes, libgnm, gnmx and pssl. - beyond Dx11 (but I have no idea what's different to Dx12)

Tsar4ever012300d ago

The PSSL pdf doesn't mention anything about ps4 using libgnm, which is PS3's api, I read somewhere that libgmn was completely SCRAPPED!! And PSSL was Sony's new slate on it's graphics API tech, which support all the latest graphic API standard with some set features exclusive to PS4.

Ju2300d ago (Edited 2300d ago )

It still has 3 levels, PSSL is "PlayStation Shader Language" (similar to GLSL for OpenGL or HLSL in DirectX - in fact HLSL can be compiled into PSSL) and not the (supporting) graphics library, which is libgnm (low level, equivalent to PS3's libgcm) and a higher (macro) level which is libgnmx. PSSL is responsible for the shader access.

In the context of Mantel - which I haven't really looked into, tbh - gnm/gnmx gives you pretty much what Mantel does on the bottom end. Don't confuse shaders with "framework". Drawcalls go through the framework, shaders run on the GPU - the framework is just an instrument to get them there. DirectX is the "framework" for HLSL, OpenGL the one for GLSL, gnm/gnmx the one for PSSL.

imt5582300d ago

Well, just some features of DX12 will be available on Xbone. Just like DX10 came out and some features were available on X360. Primary, DX 12 is made for PC because growth in popularity of AMD's Mantle.

Charybdis2299d ago (Edited 2299d ago )

Think the big difference between dx11 is that dx12 in comparison it now also has more of a focus on tablets and phones. Or in other words support for low power mobile processing/devices.

Sy_Wolf2300d ago

Sony uses OpenGL on the PS4. They didn't develop it themselves and it is a very common API. It's actually what OSX uses.

Ju2300d ago

There is no OpenGL API available for the PS4.

Angeljuice2300d ago

OpenGL on PS4 is highly customised though (just thought I'd explain the disagrees your getting).

Ju2300d ago

I can repeat this until my bubbles are gone. Once again (and another 100 time if needed) as of today, there is no OpenGL for PS4 (not even customized). There maybe be one some day or there won't. But in the here and now, there is none.

2300d ago Replies(7)
deSSy27242300d ago (Edited 2300d ago )

First, almost every console has a low level API and DirectX is not an API, Direct3D is an API, Mantle is an API etc.

High level APIs are common for PCs, Mantle is an low level API for PC

NarooN2300d ago (Edited 2300d ago )

Indeed. DirectX is just the name of the package itself -- which includes Direct3D (the actual rendering API), DirectSound, DirectInput, etc. Although some aspects of the package have been either de-emphasized or abandoned altogether over the years, like DirectSound.

PS4 has no need for Mantle, because Mantle itself was roughly based off the PS4/X1's already-low level programmability. PC's desperately need lower-level API's like the consoles have had since the beginning, and Mantle is what sparked the fire under Microsoft's asses to get the DX12 initiative going.

It will be a while before DX12 gets here, but every gamer owes AMD credit for once again trying to push the industry forward for the betterment of everyone.

Tsar4ever012300d ago (Edited 2300d ago )

Concerning PS4's API, or PLAYSTATION SHADER LANGUAGE/PSSL, remember thses two names, Richard Stenson & Chris Ho

And also you should dload this pdf file: and last, look at this link: http://www.pcgameshardware....

I believe THESE 2 links are the BEST source of info out there concerning the PS4's API.

da1writer2300d ago

To give everyone a general idea:

GNM - Low Level API

GNMX - Wrapper API

PSSL - Shader Language (DX11.2/OpenGL 4.4 level)

I also will add some good reads for everyone.

Charybdis2299d ago

From what I understand mantle is in a way trying to get the same low level accessibility (for pc hardware)across the board as consoles API have and had in the past.
In general mantle has no benefit for ps4 api because its optimization cannot approach the api of a single hardware format.

SaturdayNightBeaver2299d ago (Edited 2299d ago )

PS4 already has its low level API provided by Sony. Mantle is only for PC as DX11 is trash and makes big portion of hardware power go to waste.

neocores2299d ago

Dx12 wont hit xbox in awhile. If it did would still be a underpowered system.

senis_kenis2299d ago

directx 12 on xbone is nothing than a buzz word to fuel idiots like mistermediax. xbone api is already code to the metal and can use all hardware capabilities available.

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Kayant2300d ago

Well ofc they have PSSL(PS4's api) with *code to the metal* elements. XB1 has mono driver with *code to the metal* elements also.

Code to the metal for all (PC, PS4, XB1)

starchild2300d ago

Exactly. The purpose of Mantle was to give PCs lower level access and reduce API overhead similar to what is already found in consoles.

SourShoes2300d ago

Everything about the PS4 is a beast...except for DS4 battery life :(

THC CELL2300d ago

n rubber thumbsticks sadly

ZodTheRipper2300d ago

They improved the sticks, Sony exchanges all controllers with this problem within the warranty and you'll get a new one, probably from a new production.

Also I have to say that I don't have any problems with the battery life at all ...with 2 controllers you can always switch while one is charging.

SuperBlur2300d ago

i feel ya , the rubber on my ds4 is already peeling itself off and i barely use my ps4 extensively.

Utalkin2me2300d ago

I play my PS4 religiously and with launch controller and i have not had any problems with the rubber on the thumb sticks.

koolaid2512300d ago

My rubber on my controler is all the way off on the right analog and half way off on the left.

Tru_Blu2300d ago

The rubber on my sticks is almost completely gone.

BitbyDeath2300d ago

Must have got the better ones when they released down here in Australia, my daughter even chews on them occasionally and still shows no sign of rubber loss.

Rhythmattic2300d ago


Yep I'm in Oz and bought the KZ Bundle (arrived late December) ...... Neither of my DS4's have the rubber problem , so I'm guessing its a original production run issue ....

DeadIIIRed2300d ago

After playing Madden 25 and vigorously using the hit stick (sometimes with way to much force) I can say that the rubber thumb sticks are extremely durable.

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sAVAge_bEaST2300d ago (Edited 2300d ago )

Yes, unfortunately. :(

I hope they release a new controller, better analog sticks/battery life.

In the meantime, I'm going to mod a controller, by taking the battery, out of a spare ds3. and the analog sticks, from an xbone controller (hope it works out, i've read it does). -custom beast controller, for a beast system.

LonDonE2300d ago (Edited 2300d ago )

U think the dual shock 4 is bad? lol think about my wii u which gives me barely 4 hrs of play on the game pad! its terrible and great at the same time!
terrible because it needs constant charging and so is tethered so technically is not wireless, and great because the dam thing is comfortable as hell, lighter then expected and the game-pad works like a charm!
It super responsive, has decent picture quality, and allows me to play off tv in the rare occasion!

But hand me the pro controller any day of the week! its a monster with 80hrs battery life! and its a fusion of the dual-shock 3 and the x360 controller!
Without the flaws.

Back on topic i LOVE THE DUAL-SHOCK 4! seriously that damn thing is so comfortable, if Sony make a better longer life version i will so buy it.
But at the moment its not that bad, not as bad as the game-pad anyway! and averaging 8hrs is about perfect! the annoying thing is having to charge it everyday where as with the PS3 D3 i would charge it every few days!

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yewles12300d ago

He's not the first to talk about SPU's highly...

“The PlayStation 4's large memory size is a unique trait,” he said, “but in terms of CPU performance, the PS3's Cell chip, while difficult to handle, is really capable. They both have different advantages."

Cernunnos2300d ago

In terms of pure calculation power, the PS3 Cell is still a damn powerful CPU by today's standards. It was truely a beast back in 2006, but was sadly held back by a GPU that was pretty mid-end when it released, as well as a pretty terrible memory arcitechture.

The difference in CPU power between the PS3 and PS4 is much smaller than people think. The PS4 has huge advantages with everything else though, and the Cell was not easy to program for.

da1writer2300d ago

4A Games from Metro Last Light in particular loved the SPU's of Cell;

AshleeEmerson2300d ago

Stupid me I have 4 ps4 controllers because I thought COD ghosts would be 4 players multiplayer at home, the good thing though is that we have a charging station and honestly if you have even 3 controller you'll be fine. Gonna put those battery life's to good use today when we all play towerfall though... Can't wait til tonight.

ZodTheRipper2300d ago

That's actually the main reason I didn't buy CoD this year. I was shocked when I saw that it has only 2 player local coop.

classic192300d ago

do you play battlefield games?..

AshleeEmerson2299d ago

Yes, I love battlefield. I'm actually playing it now. Much better and challenging than COD. Although my game of choice which I pray they bring back is Home Front... Such a wonderfully designed game.

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