1. This forum section is a read-only archive which contains old newsgroup posts. If you wish to post a query, please do so in one of our main forum sections (here). This way you will get a faster, better response from the members on Motherboard Point.

tidbit on ATi VPUs in next-gen consoles

Discussion in 'ATI' started by Radeon350, Sep 17, 2003.

  1. Radeon350

    Radeon350 Guest

    from Deano Calver on Beyond3D:

    "Dave is the journo so I let him to the real reporting but there were
    a few things that caught my eye/ear. As a non-NDA event the
    presentations were public infomation (of course, any gossipping over a
    pint isn't for public consumption ).

    ATI gave some infomation on video cards market pentration data, and
    had a quick gloat about being in both Microsoft's and Nintendo's next
    gen console, no real info on them (obviously) except for one tiny
    snippet, that we should expect at least Dx9 level shaders on both.
    Wether or not its the same basic core being used in both they didn't
    Microsoft showed off early version of there new graphics tools. GPA
    (Graphics Performance Ananlyser) is a tool that can sample whats going
    on in D3D. Its meant for performance monitoring while developing, but
    it may also be a handy way of looking inside other D3D applications.
    Also a D3D Helper library should make developing easier, by shadowing
    the entire D3D state, when debugging you can effectively 'see through'
    the COM interface to what D3D is actually doing. Its also includes
    stats and simple routines to dump states to screen, warning and
    erronous states are checked and generally alot of things to make D3D
    nicer to develop with. Also they are about to release the SDK update,
    a non-runtime update that includes lots of new documentation, D3DX
    functions and exporters. 3D Studio MAX 6 has been upgraded to
    integrate into D3D effects closely, combined with a new exporter it
    should improve artist work flow.

    ATI did more presentations on image-space post-processing. Re-covering
    some of the same ground they've done before, it did have some
    extensions of Masaki Kawase light steaiking filters and I hadn't seen
    the heat haze filters before. Microsoft gave a quick overview to
    Precomputed Radiance Transfer and Spherical Harmonics, while the
    technology is amazing convincing people to use it in real games seems
    to be the real problem. Lots of people were very negative on any
    actual non-demo use, personally I can see it being very useful but
    initially just the spherical harmonic irradience not the full on
    precomputed radiance transfer (though PRT for subsurface scattering
    objects would seem to make a lot of sense...). Intel did some talks on
    SSE, PNI (Prescott New Instructions) and Hyper threading, Intel were
    pushing HT as the way forward. A possible 20% extra performance on HT
    P3 today, 30% when Prescott is released, next one after that 40% and
    the long term aim is for 2x/4x performance.

    The most interesting talk in Beyond3D terms was Mike's very general
    talk about the next Direct3D. I'll let Dave do it properly but in
    general it was primitive programmability and single resource model
    (texture and vertex data interchangable etc)."

    also, discussion on Gaming-Age:


    So obviously we should expect DX9 3.0-level shaders in both the next
    Nintendo and Xbox. Vertex Shader/Pixel Shader 3.0 at least. This does
    NOT mean the next Nintendo will use DX9 or any MS API. It means that
    the shaders in the next Nintendo will be DX9-level or better. The
    Flipper in GameCube was beyond DX7 but somewhat short of DX8, although
    Flipper had its own bag of tricks to do some of the things DX8 could
    do. I'm guessing the next Nintendo will do anything DX9 3.0 shaders do
    and more, but perhaps will not *quite* be upto DX10 like the next
    Xbox. That does NOT mean the Nintendo console will be weak. It just
    means the two consoles are being designed with different goals. I am
    certain that the Nintendo and XBox 2 VPUs (I'll call them Flipper2 and
    XB2-VPU) will each have certain strengths over the other, much like
    Flipper and XGPU each had their own strong aspects over the other.

    I'd still like to see Nvidia involved in one of the consoles, in some
    way. if only for the fact that Nvidia has sooo much IP and many
    engineers from the best in the industry.
    Radeon350, Sep 17, 2003
    1. Advertisements

  2. Radeon350

    magnulus Guest

    Umm, that's great... but why cross post to a PC newsgroup?

    And just remember, XBox helped screw NVidia. All those engineers were put
    to work building chips for what would ultimately be low-margin parts for
    Microsoft when they could have been trying to make the GeForce FX better.
    ATI better watch out, because developing graphics chips for consoles could
    easily be a no-win game worthy of Sisyphus.
    magnulus, Sep 17, 2003
    1. Advertisements

  3. Radeon350

    Lenny Guest

    Why not? Don't wanna read, skip on to next post man.
    Like hell it did. Nvidia got into XB by their own free will, nobody forced

    Then they could use XB as a convenient excuse when things started going
    wrong in NV30 development (which was A LOT by the way).
    Low-margin? *chuckles* That's why M$ forced Nvidia into arbitration over the
    exorbitant pricing on the chips, because they were so cheap?! ;)
    Lenny, Sep 17, 2003
  4. Radeon350

    magnulus Guest

    Console makers are always looking for the cheapest deals. This doesn't
    really square well with PC graphic card makers because they are used to
    selling products at higher margins to enthusiasts.

    Hardware is all fairly irrelevent to a console anyways... all a console
    needs is a library of games with marketting behind them and maybe a few new
    ideas- most people are completely ignorant or uninformed of the actual
    hardware in a console beyond whatever buzzwords they read in a tawdry gaming
    mag ("Emotion Engine"- fancy way of saying the hyped-up innards from a Sony
    DVD player, and "NV2X" was just a cool way to say "GeForce 3 1/2", or
    "NVidia Media Processor"=some chips we found off a boat in Taiwan for 2
    bucks each).
    magnulus, Sep 18, 2003
  5. Radeon350

    Lenny Guest

    Sorry to burst THAT bubble for you, but the high-margin enthusiast cards
    make up an insignificant part of the revenue stream for a company like
    Nvidia. For every highest-end card they sell they sell several hundred
    lowest-end. THAT'S where the money is. Cheap crap to the masses.

    NV2X was priced VERY high (around $50 a pop I believe), and it's still
    expensive for M$ to buy. M$ console business as a whole is bleeding
    horrendous amounts of money, unlike Sony and Nintendo, who actually make
    profits (and big ones at that) on their ventures. That's why M$ is more
    sensitive on this issue than Sony for example. PS2 was incredibly expensive
    to manufacture initially, the chips in it were HUGE in their first
    incarnation, but software sales made up for that. M$ loses money AS A WHOLE,
    so they can't make up hardware losses with software profits.
    Uh, it's not quite that simple man, and the EE deserves something a bit
    better than that as well. ;)
    Check this out man:
    Lenny, Sep 18, 2003
    1. Advertisements

Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments (here). After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.