All I know is what Polyphony Digital had to say regarding (the more powerful) PS3 and GT5, which basically was... GT5 has not only tapped the PS3's full capability, but exceeded it, which is why some graphical aspects (mainly shadows) do not perform as well
as they would have liked. Now I'm sure games will still get better graphically this generation, but if developers are starting to out-program the machines, it's probably time to move on. In all honesty, MS & Sony probably won't have a choice now that Nintendo
will be entering the next generation without competition.
I think at this point in the life cycle of all the consoles, it's the job of the developers to become more innovative in how they work with the hardware limitations. These limitations may hinder ambitious goals, but they can also spark creativity in how
to deal with certain situations and ground game experiences (for better or worse). I think this is healthy for the designers going into gaming to not rely on sheer "horsepower", but on establishing practices that uniquely take advantage of static hardware.
Yeah the devs at Crytek made it widely known months ago that that consoles are a big headache for them spending more time optimizing their engine to run on the PS3 and 360 instead of creating new features. If you look at the last two years of Siggraph tech
papers most of them are one off techniques that can only be used on consoles and a completely different simple and better method on the PC version. Any AAA game is squeezing every last bit of processing out of the machines right now. There is no way to upgrade
the consoles. Hardware specs are set in stone until the next gen consoles are on sale.
If you check out the PC patch for Crysis 2 to full DirectX11 it's easy to see how aged the consoles are and what their limits are. It's not just more processing power either it's a lot of features introduced to the chip architecture with the DX11 API spec
that just can't be faked or approximated on a DX9 GPU.
It used to be that all hardware companys made new consoles every 5 years. That was the expected life span for the technology before it needed to be upgraded. Ever since Microsoft got in the console business for some reason its changed. They might want to
think about revisiting that idea with technology changing so much. Also what ever Nintendo makes wont really effect Sony and Microsofts sales that much if any. They always make games for kids or older people who arent part of the core sales group. I love Nintendo,
but they got really lucky with the Wii and I am waiting to see what they do.
Sadly this is true. Consoles are actually holding technology back. PC gaming wise. I believe 5 years is sufficient for a console and I do believe the xbox 360 has been out far to long. This is just personal opinion but we do need a console. :) And has far
has the ram goes it really is not that big of an issue. USB would also be to slow to use. It is just the GPU and CPU.
Using a feature from Windows 7/Vista/XP? aka ReadyBoost isn't going to make a difference. Yes, Xbox 360 has only 512MB of RAM, but its system of sharing RAM with the hardware is different from a computer, plus unlike
Vista/7, it doesn't need a lot of RAM for system use, and the only things ever running is chating systems and one game.
What is holding the consoles back now is the graphics processing. The Equivelent AMD/Nvidida cards are the X1950 XT/7900 GTX. Those are really really old cards. Most games these days are natively built for 720p (in a generation where 1080p is becoming the standard).
Few few games are native 1080p, typically Arcade games. Some games are actually under 720p, such as 600p or 660p. Examples of this are the Halo and CoD series games. Thats why most games are 30fps while only a few, like CoD are 60fps. So overall, the console
games are running at lower native resolutions and low framerates. Also, the cards are DirextX 9. Compare this to today's standards of 1920x1080 resolutions and easily getting over 60+ fps in games using DirectX 11. For example, last generations Nvidia GeForce
GTX 460 (which retails for $150+) is capable of running practically any game out there right now at 1920x1080, DirectX 11, Max Settings, and get over 30fps and even over 60fps for lesser intense games. The quality of the lighting from this card, detail of
the textures, etc. blows away the quality of the Xbox 360 GPU. It is surprising though what the Xbox is still capable of though, Crysis 2 is proof of that.
That all being said, the Xbox 360 runs on a PowerPC (which is a different architecture from the Intel i386/x86-64/AMD64 found in today's computers) 3.2 GHz Triple Core (no multi-threading) CPU that has up to an L2 level caching system. We need at least a Quad
Core, there really is no need for multi-threading though, with an L3 caching system. Something on par to what AMD's Phenom II X4 CPU's are capable of. An equivelent clock speed AMD CPU, 4 cores, L3 cache (the AMD Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition) goes for $120
retail and can handle anything thrown at it game wise. For RAM at least 2GB are necessary, (with at least 1GB RAM shared with graphics for today's detailed textures). The GPU needs to be DirectX 11 capable, handle 1080p native games, and on par with today's
Basically, the prices aren't that bad. An Xbox 360 with an HDD (which by the way is only 5400rpm, we need at least 7200rpm) goes for $300. A home built desktop with 4GB RAM, USB 3.0, SATA III, GTX 460, X4 955, can easily be built for $600.
I would pay $600 for a console at this level. Think of the Xbox 360 and PS3 in the early days. People payed $480 for the "Elite" while some people payed $600 for the PS3. Yes, these models didn't sell as well, but the pricing structure was essentially based
on the HDD size. Microsoft needs to do what Sony does and allow people to use their own HDD's and even support SSD's. The cost of HDD's are so cheap, and the difference between something like 250GB and 500GB HDD's are usually only $10-$15 at retail.
To sum it all up, yea, the Xbox 360 and PS3 are holding back Developers heck, the Wii-U is already holding back Devs (its GPU is on par with a 4000 series AMD, AMD is already working on their 7000 series cards), which is a shame for the PC comunity because
a lot of times, games aren't built to the performance that computers are capable of. For example BFBC2 at 1920x1200 max settings on the GTX 460, 37fps ave, while CODMW2 at 1920x1200 max settings on the GTX 460, 78 fps ave. It's not that MW2 is better optimized,
its that BC2 is more graphics intensive. MW2 was built for consoles, BC2 was built for PCs. Both games look great on console, but BC2 looks much better than MW2 on PC.
Just strong opinions I have on the entire subject of performance.
Actually, the main thing holding the 360 back is still the same thing that was holding it back in the 1st place. The fact that devs could not optimize the games for hard drive use while MS mandated that they had to work with systems without hard drives.
But as time goes one you will see more games pop up with the 'Hard Drive Required' icon, allowing developers to use better compression in conjunction with the hard drive similar to what is the norm for PC games.
Just strong opinions I have on the entire subject of performance.
[/quote]I agree with everything you said, Hellhog. Well, everything except the bit about a PC for under $600 anyway. That sounds like a very barebones PC using the cheapest components in each category, but that's not relevant to this.
I think that the new Xbox console will be released at either E3 '12 or E3 '13, likely in 2012. The consoles have been outdated for awhile now, some people may argue that but that's a given. When it comes to electronics it seems that everyone is an expert
yet no one is a professional, heh.
Microsoft is reported to already to have a deal with AMD for processing of the GPU chips, though it will likely be a proprietary chip and not just a rebadged HD6950 or whatever. I think the GPU they use will probably be about on par with the $350-500 range
of GPU available to consumers upon release. This likely won't make the console mega expensive though, since Microsoft's order will get them enormous bulk purchase discounts.
The CPU will likely be something extravagant. I remember when the 360 came out and the specs were released showing it to be a triple-core CPU, I couldn't believe it. I figured it might be a 1C 3T processor, but didn't actually believe it was a 3C CPU at
first. The new console will likely have a 6-8 core CPU and probably make due without 'HyperThreading'.
I don't think the new console will have USB 3.0, but it might. There really aren't many peripherals I can think of that would benefit from more speed than 2.0 offers. The Kinect perhaps, but they've already designed that for USB 2.0. HDD transfer cables
would be nice at 3.0 speeds, but it wouldn't make a huge difference.
My guess is that the new console will cost somewhere between $450-600 at launch, depending on where the economy is at that point. If things go south for the US with their current economic situation the console could be delayed to 2013 or even 2014, although
launch price would be closer to $450 then.
That all being said, the Xbox 360 runs on a PowerPC (which is a different architecture from the Intel i386/x86-64/AMD64 found in today's computers) 3.2 GHz Triple Core (no multi-threading) CPU that has up to an L2
level caching system.
Doesn't the Xenon Proccessor have two threads per core?