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All Three Next-Gen Consoles Sporting AMD GPUs?

By - Source: HardOCP | B 56 comments

Will all three next-generation consoles feature IBM processors and AMD GPUs?

Although AMD already announced that Nintendo is using a custom AMD Radeon RV770 GPU in the upcoming Wii U console, there's now talk that AMD GPUs will also be used in the next PlayStation and Xbox consoles. The news is based on a rumor stemming from E3 2011 claiming that it's literally a "done deal" with Microsoft and Sony. Unsurprisingly, this is the first we've heard of this particular GPU tale... there wasn't any mention of AMD hardware in a gaming console outside the Wii U, public or in private, during or after the show.

On the CPU front, we already know that IBM is providing the 45-nm multi-core "heart" of the Nintendo Wii U. As for the third generation Xbox, IBM is also supposedly lined up with a possible Cell processor. Current rumors indicate that Microsoft will reveal the console next year at E3 2012, but there's indication that the company may hold off an additional year or two due to the success of the Kinect. This little tidbit doesn't make much sense given that the next console will likely support both Xbox 360 games and Kinect anyway.

As for Sony's effort, reports on the PlayStation 4 processor are a bit more murky than the other two, ranging from an AMD APU (Bulldozer) to a newer updated 32-nm IBM Cell processor. The new Sony console is also expected to make an appearance next year at E3 2012, so we expect to hear something more solid before then. Again, like the Xbox, it is all mere rumor until we start getting closer to the next show and tidbits of more information are "leaked" out.

Honestly, if the Big Three manufactured consoles with IBM processors and AMD GPUs across the board, development would seemingly be a lot easier for those creating multi-platform titles. Even more, if all three integrated native support for a mouse and keyboard, there wouldn't be such a wide gap between PC and console gaming. The OnLive service and its mini-console, which is about the size of a Nintendo DS, has already proven that mouse/keyboard and gamepad control setups can coexist on one device.

Just recently OnLive's VP of Engineering Joe Bentley said that the company is now talking with Microsoft and Sony about bringing its tech to the consoles. "There are OnLive guys chatting [with Sony and MS], but we'll see where it goes," he said. "But it would absolutely work, we're ready to work with everybody. Our controller is a hybrid between a PS3 controller and an Xbox controller. It's all compatible, it would just work."

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Top Comments
  • 21 Hide
    saturnus , July 12, 2011 9:07 AM
    If true that one massive win for AMD and IBM.
  • 11 Hide
    kashifme21 , July 12, 2011 12:17 PM
    drwho1Consoles have a life span of about 10 years, so I do hope for something better than "good enough" when they decided which GPU, CPU, amount of RAM etc... Even better give us the freedom to expand our consoles by simply been able to add more RAM, add more video memory, or even change the GPU 5 years down the road if we want.


    Everytime i read some one asking for consoles with upgrade uptions i question wether people even think before making such wishes.

    Such options are available on PC because, PC parts are not only used by gamers they are used by millions of other consumers.

    If custom GPUs, RAM, CPUs, made it across to consoles it would have to made for that specific console meaning no one else around the world would be able to use it. The costs to make parts for a specific machine would be tremendous, and then console makers would like their own royalties on such stuff. Lets just say 2 gigs of ram bought on PC would be considerabaly cheaper then buying the console counter part. Due to much lower production, royalties to console maker.

    It would also eliminate the entire idea of a console, easy to use and single unified hardware. Where a developers knows exactly what they will be coding for. It would essentially become a locked down controlled PC (well they already are that), but i hope you get the picture.
Other Comments
  • 21 Hide
    saturnus , July 12, 2011 9:07 AM
    If true that one massive win for AMD and IBM.
  • 0 Hide
    DjEaZy , July 12, 2011 9:15 AM
    ... open standards is the key here... and because of that... it will be easy to program an port games to all platforms: Linux; Windows; Mac; Consoles... and maybe mobile devices too, as they get more powerful....
  • -9 Hide
    Dandalf , July 12, 2011 9:21 AM
    Yeah but open standards also means potentially easier piracy
  • 3 Hide
    blubbey , July 12, 2011 9:31 AM
    'Current rumors indicate that Microsoft will reveal the console next year at E3 2012, but there's indication that the company may hold off an additional year or two due to the success of the Kinect. '

    Microsoft should not do this. If Sony launch first, they'll have a much harder time trying to get sales if they don't release is for 2 years. Why did the Xbox have such good success in the first place? It was released ahead of the PS3. Most of the people I know who had PS2's waiting for the PS3 bought the 360 because it was there and are now Xbox fanboys.

    Unless ofc the PS3 is priced ridiculously...... Anyways grats to AMD. That's a massive win. How many consoles do you think will be bought? 20-30m or so?
  • 6 Hide
    DjEaZy , July 12, 2011 9:34 AM
    DandalfYeah but open standards also means potentially easier piracy

    ... maybe... but... then go to other selling models... many games are now free... but whit some twists... some offer faster upgrades for a fee... some offer DLC for free for a licensed game... or offer payed DLC for a free game... subscriptions... so many ways to go...
  • 0 Hide
    alidan , July 12, 2011 9:44 AM
    how much you want to bet that if onlive goes to xbox, they will use that to justify a price hike like they did with that espn crap
  • 5 Hide
    Rab1d-BDGR , July 12, 2011 9:52 AM
    I find it very hard to believe that the next XBox would have a Cell processor. When sony first dropped one into the PS3, loads of developers complained about how hard it was to programme for the cell. Have then now worked out how to get the most from it?

    Well, it is about time they started talking seriously about a new generation of consoles!
  • -5 Hide
    Anonymous , July 12, 2011 10:28 AM
    I hope PS3 uses a brand new Nvidia GPU instead based off the upcoming Kepler design with Sony added touches. ^.^
  • 5 Hide
    g00ey , July 12, 2011 11:05 AM
    I'm actually begging that the GPU manufacturers are thinking really hard about what GPUs they are going to push into the consoles.

    Since the PS3 and the Xbox 360 have been around for so long and pretty much set the mark also for the PC games it might be worth the while if they put a really fast GPU into the next generation consoles even though it may be at loss of R&D expenses. (Or at least make them expandable or something.)

    This is because a beefier GPU on the consoles may create a market for video games that can more easily be ported to computers and fully utilize the extra power of better graphics cards on them and in that way create a demand for such cards.

    As it is now, it is the video games that set the pace of the development and with an old console not many games utilize the full power that is available on the current generation graphics cards that are available on today's computers which is damaging this market considerably.

    So I hope they will employ a strategy that will also benefit the PC graphics cards market.
  • -1 Hide
    rohitbaran , July 12, 2011 11:18 AM
    Quote:
    This little tidbit doesn't make much sense given that the next console will likely support both Xbox 360 games and Kinect anyway.

    It makes business sense for MS. They can sell more of their old Xbox 360 riding on the success of Kinect if they delay the launch of next xbox.
  • 2 Hide
    reggieray , July 12, 2011 11:47 AM
    DjEaZy... open standards is the key here... and because of that... it will be easy to program an port games to all platforms: Linux; Windows; Mac; Consoles... and maybe mobile devices too, as they get more powerful....

    Agree, but we know these hacks will want probably more proprietary DRM crap than the last set of consoles, we need controlled, sieg heil.
  • 11 Hide
    kashifme21 , July 12, 2011 12:17 PM
    drwho1Consoles have a life span of about 10 years, so I do hope for something better than "good enough" when they decided which GPU, CPU, amount of RAM etc... Even better give us the freedom to expand our consoles by simply been able to add more RAM, add more video memory, or even change the GPU 5 years down the road if we want.


    Everytime i read some one asking for consoles with upgrade uptions i question wether people even think before making such wishes.

    Such options are available on PC because, PC parts are not only used by gamers they are used by millions of other consumers.

    If custom GPUs, RAM, CPUs, made it across to consoles it would have to made for that specific console meaning no one else around the world would be able to use it. The costs to make parts for a specific machine would be tremendous, and then console makers would like their own royalties on such stuff. Lets just say 2 gigs of ram bought on PC would be considerabaly cheaper then buying the console counter part. Due to much lower production, royalties to console maker.

    It would also eliminate the entire idea of a console, easy to use and single unified hardware. Where a developers knows exactly what they will be coding for. It would essentially become a locked down controlled PC (well they already are that), but i hope you get the picture.
  • 9 Hide
    back_by_demand , July 12, 2011 12:30 PM
    PC gaming FTW!!!
  • -5 Hide
    stingstang , July 12, 2011 12:47 PM
    kashifme21Everytime i read some one asking for consoles with upgrade uptions i question wether people even think before making such wishes.Such options are available on PC because, PC parts are not only used by gamers they are used by millions of other consumers. If custom GPUs, RAM, CPUs, made it across to consoles it would have to made for that specific console meaning no one else around the world would be able to use it. The costs to make parts for a specific machine would be tremendous, and then console makers would like their own royalties on such stuff. Lets just say 2 gigs of ram bought on PC would be considerabaly cheaper then buying the console counter part. Due to much lower production, royalties to console maker.It would also eliminate the entire idea of a console, easy to use and single unified hardware. Where a developers knows exactly what they will be coding for. It would essentially become a locked down controlled PC (well they already are that), but i hope you get the picture.

    More expensive, you think? What I think is that these part are already being made, and are part of the price you pay when you buy a console. The only change they have to make to the current hardware inside the consoles is to replace the soldering with a removeable connection. Solved. It would save both the company and the consumer money if all they had to do in order to upgrade a console for another 3 years was replace 1-2 parts rather than the entire system. Do you not agree?
  • 2 Hide
    kashifme21 , July 12, 2011 12:50 PM
    stingstangMore expensive, you think? What I think is that these part are already being made, and are part of the price you pay when you buy a console. The only change they have to make to the current hardware inside the consoles is to replace the soldering with a removeable connection. Solved. It would save both the company and the consumer money if all they had to do in order to upgrade a console for another 3 years was replace 1-2 parts rather than the entire system. Do you not agree?


    Not at all, just a small example for you, note how much microsoft charges for stuff like Hard drives, Wifi devices for the Xbox. I can assure you unless off shelf PC parts are not used, console upgrade parts prices will be sky high compared to PC counterparts.
  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , July 12, 2011 1:48 PM
    good that they putting AMD gpu's in there. Then all the console ports will say "optimized for AMD gpu's" and not that crappy "the way its meant to be played" Nvidia optimization.
  • 9 Hide
    custodian-1 , July 12, 2011 2:05 PM
    if all the consoles have the same guts what will make them different?
  • 5 Hide
    jfby , July 12, 2011 2:07 PM
    I don't see how new consoles will really raise the graphics bar (in the long run). Sure for the next year or two they will help, but when the consoles debut, the GPU tech will already be 2 - 4 years old. In 2015 or so, we all might be talking about 'console ports' all over again. But then again, I'd rather take a year or two of awesome graphics, then not.
  • 6 Hide
    sunflier , July 12, 2011 2:18 PM
    By the time any of these consoles are released with both the AMD Radeon RV770 GPU and IBM's 45-nm multi-core a whole new generation or two will have already been on the market for PC's.
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