Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 21st Feb 2013 18:18 UTC, submitted by twitterfire
Games Late last night, Sony unveiled the PlayStation 4 - sort of. It's got a custom 8-core AMD x86-64 processor, 8GB of GDDR5 RAM, and a custom Radeon-based graphics chip. It's also got additional chips to offload specific tasks like video (de)compression (livestreaming is built-in!), and there's a large focus on streaming games, but most of it is "an ultimate goal" instead of a definitive feature. It won't play PS3 discs (but will eventually stream many PS3 games), and, while there's some weaselwording involved, second hand games are safe. The biggest surprise? The console itself wasn't shown because it's not done yet. No joke. No price, no release date (other than somewhere before the holidays).
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RE[2]: Not impressive
by tylerdurden on Thu 21st Feb 2013 19:58 UTC in reply to "RE: Not impressive"
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Not necessarily, the amount of wasted cycles depends on the workload as well. Incidentally, gaming workloads tend to have higher computational densities than IO-bound workloads, e.g. databases. Which means gaming processors tend to have high utilization rates.

Furthermore, unified memory models usually lead to an even bigger central bottleneck. Which means that a faster memory bus is required, just to keep up with "traditional" distributed/multi bus designs. However, the PS4 memory bus, albeit faster than the one found in off the shelf PC parts, is not orders of magnitude faster than a commodity part. So the claim of "orders of magnitude" increase in performance is baseless. The use of DDR5 does address some of the issues with traditional AMD's APUs crippled by DDR3 channels though.

Unified memory architectures are usually done for cost reasons, not performance. In this case, the goal of the PS4 is to offer a comparable level of performance to a modern PC, with lower overall cost (smaller motherboad, reduced amount of components, higher levels of integration, etc).

Edited 2013-02-21 20:06 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: Not impressive
by phoenix on Thu 21st Feb 2013 21:43 in reply to "RE[2]: Not impressive"
phoenix Member since:

Note: DDR5 doesn't exist yet. This is GDDR5, which is many, many, many times faster than current-gen DDR3 and even soon-to-come DDR4.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[4]: Not impressive
by tylerdurden on Thu 21st Feb 2013 22:35 in reply to "RE[3]: Not impressive"
tylerdurden Member since:

The main differences between GDDR and DDR are regarding voltages and burts capabilities, but for the most part they end up implementing the same memory technology.

And yes, GDDR5 is somewhat faster than DDR3. I, however, would not refer to a 50% improvement as "many many many times over," perhaps "half a time over"... ;-)

The point here is that although the DDR5 may finally help the GPU in the APU get the data at the rates it needs, that bus still has to keep 8 x86 cores fed on top of that. It is a definitive improvement over the current APUs which are BW starved under DDR3, but it is not going to offer superior performance to off the shelf PCs.

Edited 2013-02-21 22:36 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 1