• Hey, guest user. Hope you're enjoying NeoGAF! Have you considered registering for an account? Come join us and add your take to the daily discourse.

Rumor: Wii U final specs

japtor

Member
Mar 10, 2005
3,869
0
0
hippotrouble.com
Got bored and did some ghetto photoshopping since y'all were all yapping on about size:



Going by Nintendo's numbers the console is 10.6x6.75", figured the connectors front to back would approximate 10.6", then just did 6" for the height here...cause it was an easy number to round down to, and assuming the board doesn't go completely towards the edges in the case.

So from that, the chip looks to be around 1.5-1.6" square. Hard to tell cause there's only so many pixels left, but the CPU die (assuming the smaller silver block) looks around 5mmx6mm, or 30mm^2, then around 160-170mm^2 for the GPU die.

For a 45nm comparison, the A5X in "The new" iPad is 163mm^2, about the size of the Wii U's GPU die. Detailed layout here, the dual ARM cores appear to take up about 17mm^2 according to that picture.



...not that any of that helps to predict the CPU in the Wii U since the power envelope for it is magnitudes higher than ARM cores :p
 

ColdBlooder

Banned
Aug 24, 2006
2,199
0
0
you're talking more about build quality. besides, rrod was probably sort of a random thing that could have struck anybody.

there's lots of problems with nintendo hardware too like the 3ds hinge thing, and obviously it's easier to build reliable when performance is so far from cutting edge.
No they skimped on the cooling and thats why the chips melted.

Just google it. My OG Xbox 360 died on me too.
 

TheD

The Detective
Mar 29, 2012
3,575
0
0
The trash cans outside your house.
You do realise that Ivy Bridge = High End PC. This could be Extreme Edition with 6 cores doe all we know...
If you had any idea what you were talking about you would know that no Ivy Bridge hex cores are out and that is a shot of the quad core!

Yeah and it melted itself in what, 30% of cases. The 360 was basically high end tech shoved into a box and glued together with spit. I don't consider a machine with a failure rate that high to be elegant, efficient or optimised.
Just because it had heating problems does not mean the system architecture is bad.

Yeah yet everyone jumps to the conclusion: "Small die = weaksauce".

I don´t expect it to be a beast, no one does. But just to say "Small die = indicator of being weak" is also pretty dumb.
They only thing that is dumb is what you said.
 

specialguy

Banned
Feb 17, 2011
4,527
0
0
No they skimped on the cooling and thats why the chips melted.

Just google it. My OG Xbox 360 died on me too.
i thought it was a complex problem that i personally never clearly understood what exactly was the root, despite a million different claims to know exactly the problem.

but anyways we're drifting.
 

The_Lump

Banned
Feb 11, 2012
5,066
0
0
you're talking more about build quality. besides, rrod was probably sort of a random thing that could have struck anybody.

there's lots of problems with nintendo hardware too like the 3ds hinge thing, and obviously it's easier to build reliable when performance is so far from cutting edge.

Not his point at all. Point is, the hardware was very much cutting edge, and was nowhere near efficient to produce and run. The thing was huge and loud and hot.

That's not an insult to 360 or microsoft as that's what they were aiming for: cutting edge power. It's also an amazing piece of kit for its time, but for different reasons.
 

specialguy

Banned
Feb 17, 2011
4,527
0
0
looks around 5mmx6mm, or 30mm^2, then around 160-170mm^2 for the GPU die.
pretty dang big if your work is sound.

for comparison a cape verde (amd hd 7770) gpu is 123mm^2. pitcairn which is rumored to be in ps4, and the 7850-7870 chip and quite beastly, only 212mm^2.

then again, those dont include edram (which is the problem with edram, it's a silicon resources hog, far from free)

it could be the clocks are lower too. heat is the problem here.

The thing was huge and loud and hot.
it really wasnt big at all compared to an og xbox or a ps3, but yeah. compared to wii u it was. i also didn't have a problem with the noise but i'm not sensitive to that stuff.
 
Nov 8, 2010
10,115
0
0
you're talking more about build quality. besides, rrod was probably sort of a random thing that could have struck anybody.

there's lots of problems with nintendo hardware too like the 3ds hinge thing, and obviously it's easier to build reliable when performance is so far from cutting edge.
No, the original 360 was horribly designed. It didn't meet design standard procedures and as a result it's shoddy built quality made the problem even worse. The Air intake and chip placement on the architecture was just downright idiotic and lacked any kind of foresight.

MS rushed the 360 out of the gate and the original architecture is a telltale sign of that.
Later revisions moved the chips around, as well as shrinking the size to improve airflow and heat.

Also I don't understand what the hinge problem which is an assembly or material problem has anything to do with a hardware design issue. The RROD wasn't just down to sloppy manufacturing but was an inherent problem with the systems design that was made worse by the manufacturing mess.
i thought it was a complex problem that i personally never clearly understood what exactly was the root, despite a million different claims to know exactly the problem.

but anyways we're drifting.
The problem was manyfold that's true:

The basic problem was the unfortunate placement of the CPU. The second was the insufficient design of the airflow which was simply a desaster. Furthermore, the architecture was never properly reviewed by experts before it went to production. Skipping such a standard procedure saved MS time to get to market.
What made these problems worse was the shoddy build quality that skimped on cooling paste on the chip/Heatsink.

It's both an architecture problem, made worse by the shoddy manufacturing. ( one third of the original shipment was proven to be faulty, by MSs own account)
 

specialguy

Banned
Feb 17, 2011
4,527
0
0
Got bored and did some ghetto photoshopping since y'all were all yapping on about size:



Going by Nintendo's numbers the console is 10.6x6.75", figured the connectors front to back would approximate 10.6", then just did 6" for the height here...cause it was an easy number to round down to, and assuming the board doesn't go completely towards the edges in the case.

So from that, the chip looks to be around 1.5-1.6" square. Hard to tell cause there's only so many pixels left, but the CPU die (assuming the smaller silver block) looks around 5mmx6mm, or 30mm^2, then around 160-170mm^2 for the GPU die.

For a 45nm comparison, the A5X in "The new" iPad is 163mm^2, about the size of the Wii U's GPU die. Detailed layout here, the dual ARM cores appear to take up about 17mm^2 according to that picture.



...not that any of that helps to predict the CPU in the Wii U since the power envelope for it is magnitudes higher than ARM cores :p

couldn't the fact the pictures both of the board and mcm are at an angle (and probably not the same angle) throw your measurements off? can you just make them both horizontal like that and have everything scale correctly?

but anyways your numbers somewhat match with other early guesstimates so probably not too far off.
 

specialguy

Banned
Feb 17, 2011
4,527
0
0
No, the original 360 was horribly designed. It didn't meet design standard procedures and as a result it's shoddy built quality made the problem even worse. The Air intake and chip placement on the architecture was just downright idiotic and lacked any kind of foresight.

MS rushed the 360 out of the gate and the original architecture is a telltale sign of that.
Later revisions moved the chips around, as well as shrinking the size to improve airflow and heat.

Also I don't understand what the hinge problem which is an assembly or material problem has anything to do with a hardware design issue. The RROD wasn't just down to sloppy manufacturing but was an inherent problem with the systems design that was made worse by the manufacturing mess.
dont 3ds's scratch the screen when you close it? seems really idiotic to me. nobody's perfect.

also i think early ps3's had a problem with the nvidia gpu ball connection problems of the time.

anyways your word aside nobodies ever convinced me of the exact rrod problem, and i dont feel like studying it. wasnt their something about heatgunning it fixed it? x-clamping? wrapping in a towel? there was a million things, each of which seemed to assume a different problem, and each of which some people swore by.
 
Nov 8, 2010
10,115
0
0
dont 3ds's scratch the screen when you close it? seems really idiotic to me. nobody's perfect.

also i think early ps3's had a problem with the nvidia gpu ball connection problems of the time.

anyways your word aside nobodies ever convinced me of the exact rrod problem, and i dont feel like studying it. wasnt their something about heatgunning it fixed it? x-clamping? wrapping in a towel? there was a million things, each of which seemed to assume a different problem, and each of which some people swore by.

That is idiotic, and is indeed a design flaw that is made worse by faulty manufacturing. The og 3DS had some very weird design issues.
No one company is without flaws, these machines are designed by humans, and thus by definition never perfect.
But I'd argue that there has never been as much of a fuck up as the original 360.
It's the combination of rushing to market, cutting corners on quality control, architectural design and manufacturing that made the OG 360 one of the worst consoles of all time for me.
(in terms of hardware reliability not software or services)

To be fair to MS, only with NIntendo did I ever encounter a better customer service. Seriously, MS operators were great to deal with. Friendly, extending my warranty without needing to. (2nd 360 that broke down was out of warranty, but got it replaced for free)
They improved a lot since then and made the 360 not sound like a vacuum cleaner anymore, except for that disc drive.

Still if it comes to their next gen system, I know I won't be an early adopter again. Being on my 4th 360, I'm just not trusting them at all at this point.

As for the RROD problem. The causes were allways the same: Melting connections at the GPU base due to heat not being transported out fast enough. Now this could be temporarily fixed with a lot of stupid homemade solutions, but the only real working solution was to get out the soldering iron and fix it (if you had the training and hardware), as well as replacing the crummy baked paste between the chip and the heatsink. Thanks to the horrible air tunnel design, and the idiotic chip placement, the system created a lot of heat in the casing, which the air tunnel wasn't able to get out. That lingering hot air was the main cause for RRODs.
My 3rd 360 was a refurbished one, I cracked it open, replaced the thermal paste, threw out the noisy fans and replaced them with a top mounted low RPM 18 cm fan, which I placed in the casing. My entire top casing is now a fan that spins at around 30-50 RPM without making a single sound^^
 

The_Lump

Banned
Feb 11, 2012
5,066
0
0
dont 3ds's scratch the screen when you close it? seems really idiotic to me. nobody's perfect.

also i think early ps3's had a problem with the nvidia gpu ball connection problems of the time.

anyways your word aside nobodies ever convinced me of the exact rrod problem, and i dont feel like studying it. wasnt their something about heatgunning it fixed it? x-clamping? wrapping in a towel? there was a million things, each of which seemed to assume a different problem, and each of which some people swore by.
Correct, no ones perfect. It's not an attack on microsoft so it's a bit silly to resort to picking spots off other products to try and defend it. DS and PS3 all had problems, but no one was discussing that. Just drags it into fanboy warz if we go down that route.....
 

I Stalk Alone

Member
May 20, 2010
2,484
20
690
dont 3ds's scratch the screen when you close it? seems really idiotic to me. nobody's perfect.

also i think early ps3's had a problem with the nvidia gpu ball connection problems of the time.

anyways your word aside nobodies ever convinced me of the exact rrod problem, and i dont feel like studying it. wasnt their something about heatgunning it fixed it? x-clamping? there was a million things.
I have done a lot of these x-clamp fixes for people in the past. It was just poor design on Microsofts part. I think microsoft over designed some aspects of that x-clamp and I understand why it was designed that way and it work in principal, but there just were other things such as the materials the x-clamps were made from that might have contributed to the problem. I doubt the chips were meant to get that hot in the first place to cause that much bending on the x-clamps. causing the heatsinks to have issues with conducting the heat away from the chips. even the subsequent heat sink redesigns didn't help in the beginning and they still kept the x-clamps. It wasn't really until the chips did not get a certain temperature in the new models that the x-clamps finally did their jobs.
 

japtor

Member
Mar 10, 2005
3,869
0
0
hippotrouble.com
pretty dang big if your work is sound.

for comparison a cape verde (amd hd 7770) gpu is 123mm^2. pitcairn which is rumored to be in ps4, and the 7850-7870 chip and quite beastly, only 212mm^2.

then again, those dont include edram (which is the problem with edram, it's a silicon resources hog, far from free)

it could be the clocks are lower too.
It seemed big to me too but comparing to pictures like this one (vs the Wii U one with the chip being held) it appears to be in the ballpark.
couldn't the fact the pictures both of the board and mcm are at an angle (and probably not the same angle) throw your measurements off? can you just make them both horizontal like that and have everything scale correctly?

but anyways your numbers somewhat match with other early guesstimates so probably not too far off.
Yeah it could definitely be off, I just threw it together pretty quickly. Squaring it all up was the easiest way to approximate measurements.
 

Mpl90

Two copies sold? That's not a bomb guys, stop trolling!!!
Mar 10, 2011
22,885
0
865
28
theflyingthoughtsblog.wordpress.com
Ok guys, so...what's the opinion about the hardware itself, now that we've seen more about it ( and consider me shocked that an Iwata Laughs is showing the components of the console :lol )
 

TheD

The Detective
Mar 29, 2012
3,575
0
0
The trash cans outside your house.
What use is that if it broke. Cooling is a big part of architecture design. It broke. It's performance level was paper weight.
That is irrelevant to what specialguy is talking about!

The 360 architecture was very good, it did not waste much space on features devs did not use, it was easy to program and things like the GPU EDRAM and unified shader pipeline GPU allowed games to get the most out of the hardware.
 

pottuvoi

Member
May 17, 2010
3,800
29
680
Ok guys, so...what's the opinion about the hardware itself, now that we've seen more about it ( and consider me shocked that an Iwata Laughs is showing the components of the console :lol )
From what we have seen, it's pretty much what was expected from Nintendo after Wii..
The 32MB eDRam could be quite interesting for developers IF GPU has a proper read/write ability to it. (multiple unresolved&resolved buffers etc.)
 

ColdBlooder

Banned
Aug 24, 2006
2,199
0
0
Ok guys, so...what's the opinion about the hardware itself, now that we've seen more about it ( and consider me shocked that an Iwata Laughs is showing the components of the console :lol )
Quite impressed with the overall design. Looks like Gamecube design plilosophy on a HD console.

Makes me all excited. Can´t wait to see Nintendos AAA franchises pushing the hardware!
 
Nov 8, 2010
10,115
0
0
That is irrelevant to what specialguy is talking about!

The 360 architecture was very good, it did not waste much space on features devs did not use, it was easy to program and things like the GPU EDRAM and unified shader pipeline GPU allowed games to get the most out of the hardware.
lol, yeah no it wasn't. At least not in the original. The architecture placed the chips in the middle of the casing, which was a desaster for heat dissipation, and could've been avoided had MS not cut corners by foregoing standard evaluation procedures to get their architecture checked beforehand.
MS cut corners like crazy to get to market and architecture itself was part of that.
 

ElFly

Member
Sep 3, 2006
16,567
0
0
Got bored and did some ghetto photoshopping since y'all were all yapping on about size:

Memory chips are interesting. The pair on the top look square, and the pair on the side look slim. Which could mean they are different kinds of ram. But they seem to have the same amount of connectors.

Weird.
 

specialguy

Banned
Feb 17, 2011
4,527
0
0
Memory chips are interesting. The pair on the top look square, and the pair on the side look slim. Which could mean they are different kinds of ram. But they seem to have the same amount of connectors.

Weird.
It's gonna be bad news if Nintendo somehow made half the RAM (for the OS) gimped.
 

specialguy

Banned
Feb 17, 2011
4,527
0
0
lol, yeah no it wasn't. At least not in the original. The architecture placed the chips in the middle of the casing, which was a desaster for heat dissipation, and could've been avoided had MS not cut corners by foregoing standard evaluation procedures to get their architecture checked beforehand.
MS cut corners like crazy to get to market and architecture itself was part of that.
architecture!=build design.

Anyways lets get off this 360 stuff.
 

Ryoku

Member
Jun 10, 2011
2,785
0
0
Washington, D.C.
Memory chips are interesting. The pair on the top look square, and the pair on the side look slim. Which could mean they are different kinds of ram. But they seem to have the same amount of connectors.

Weird.
Keep in mind that the picture is at a slight angle, which may affect how wide/long certain parts may seem.
 

MadeInBeats

Banned
Mar 25, 2012
1,022
0
0
England
Ok guys, so...what's the opinion about the hardware itself, now that we've seen more about it ( and consider me shocked that an Iwata Laughs is showing the components of the console :lol )
At a guess, PC power/performance envelopes and multipliers do not apply here. Their hardware and power performance designs are still something to be revered.
 

ElFly

Member
Sep 3, 2006
16,567
0
0
Keep in mind that the picture is at a slight angle, which may affect how wide/long certain parts may seem.
I think that it is in fact a little deformed. The side chips look squareish in the other pictures.

Gonna try my hand at this once I get to the office.

It's gonna be bad news if Nintendo somehow made half the RAM (for the OS) gimped.
Eh, OS RAM can be slow.

Only problem is that any hope of Nintendo shrinking the OS RAM to give more space to game RAM is suddenly dashed, or at least has to consider this.
 

specialguy

Banned
Feb 17, 2011
4,527
0
0
Eh, OS RAM can be slow.

Only problem is that any hope of Nintendo shrinking the OS RAM to give more space to game RAM is suddenly dashed, or at least has to consider this.
Yeah, that's been my concern all along until further clarification.

But as of now it's nothing but baseless conjecture on my part.
 

blu

Wants the largest console games publisher to avoid Nintendo's platforms.
May 4, 2007
13,663
213
1,240
Memory chips are interesting. The pair on the top look square, and the pair on the side look slim. Which could mean they are different kinds of ram. But they seem to have the same amount of connectors.

Weird.
Photoshop correction to a perspective image. Nothing to see here, move along.
 

ElFly

Member
Sep 3, 2006
16,567
0
0
Can't make the board look right on my own.

Doubt that image posted is too deformed, though, seeing how the capacitors look circular.
 

blu

Wants the largest console games publisher to avoid Nintendo's platforms.
May 4, 2007
13,663
213
1,240
Can't make the board look right on my own.

Doubt that image posted is too deformed, though, seeing how the capacitors look circular.
Perhaps. But until we see a clearer picture, those chips are not necessarily all RAM - could be flash just as well.
 

Earendil

Member
Feb 28, 2012
1,732
0
0
The EDRAM has been speculated at 23mm^2, based on IBM's stated density of 11Mbit/mm^2.

EDIT: We also haven't seen the underside of the board yet.
 

ElFly

Member
Sep 3, 2006
16,567
0
0
Perhaps. But until we see a clearer picture, those chips are not necessarily all RAM - could be flash just as well.
Dunno. Flash memory probably doesn't need that amount of connections to the cpu. Also, it'd mean that the RAM is put in two chips.

Or maybe there are more chips on the underside? I think the original 360 board was like that.

If you just zoom the original pic all the RAM chips looks close enough to the same size and shape to me.
That puzzles me. They look square when they should look trapezoidal in that picture.
 

AlStrong

Member
Aug 9, 2007
5,867
0
0
The EDRAM has been speculated at 23mm^2, based on IBM's stated density of 11Mbit/mm^2.
Different fabs have different transistor densities btw (sounds like you're talking about the 32MB) - unless you're saying the GPU is being fabbed by IBM.
 
Aug 19, 2006
25,598
1
0
That puzzles me. They look square when they should look trapezoidal in that picture.
Low resolution will do that.
At first glance they looked different shapes but I think if you account for the height of the side of the chip blending into the top it's probably all the same thing.
 

blu

Wants the largest console games publisher to avoid Nintendo's platforms.
May 4, 2007
13,663
213
1,240
Dunno. Flash memory probably doesn't need that amount of connections to the cpu. Also, it'd mean that the RAM is put in two chips.

Or maybe there are more chips on the underside? I think the original 360 board was like that.
Easily. RAM is among the biggest trace consumers, spreading the packages across the two sides of the board is common.

That puzzles me. They look square when they should look trapezoidal in that picture.
At this magnification you're looking at the shape of the pixels, which are, well, square.
 

Earendil

Member
Feb 28, 2012
1,732
0
0
Different fabs have different transistor densities btw (sounds like you're talking about the 32MB) - unless you're saying the GPU is being fabbed by IBM.
There was an IBM whitepaper someone linked to a while ago that listed their EDRAM density at 11Mbit per square millimeter, though I do not recall what node that was on. But if the EDRAM is being fabbed by someone else, then obviously that figure gets thrown out the window. For now though, it's the only solid number we have to go by.

(And no, I didn't mean to say that the GPU is being fabbed by IBM. It's still early here and my son kept me up half the night, so coherence is not one of my finer points atm.)
 

Nightbringer

Don´t hit me for my bad english plase
Nov 1, 2004
1,044
0
1,455
36
Barcelona
bblover.blogspot.com
Something that I have done.



The text is in Spanish since I have done it for my personal blog, I have took the image of the entire board that I have seen here and from it I have extrapolated for the finl composition. I have observed doing it that the system uses 2 different types of memory for it's main RAM. 2 GDDR5 modules (256MB each) and 2 DDR3 modules with 768MB each.
 

blu

Wants the largest console games publisher to avoid Nintendo's platforms.
May 4, 2007
13,663
213
1,240
Something that I have done.



The text is in Spanish since I have done it for my personal blog, I have took the image of the entire board that I have seen here and from it I have extrapolated for the finl composition. I have observed doing it that the system uses 2 different types of memory for it's main RAM. 2 GDDR5 modules (256MB each) and 2 DDR3 modules with 768MB each.
You got all that from the extrapolating that blog picture? : ]
 

pestul

Member
Jun 13, 2004
10,517
0
0
I don't think those ram chips differ in size.. I think you're just being fooled by perspective.