Sumo: Wii U specs are surprising; "way more memory" than PS3/360

bgassassin

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You gotta email me those pdf's then for me to believe you.

And it's not just about docs, it's what you said about the Wii U in general that I have little to trust you.
He's actually bothered to let himself be verified by a mod. But what he said is exactly why I believe(-d) him. He was essentially the first one to point us to the CPU "issues".
 

GDGF

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Now I'm shady? Its not my fault I am not an engineer and call them like the docs say. About the cpu I am sure of this. The term "enhanced broadway" is straight from nintendo.
If what you say is true that's quite the scoop.

People are going to be holding you to this. No middle ground here.
 

DynamicG

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If what you say is true that's quite the scoop.

People are going to be holding you to this. No middle ground here.
The context of "enhanced" is what is missing. There have been several reports of various cpu issues, those are consistent across almost all dev discussions of the hardware. I remember there also being speculation of different amounts of memory embedded in each of the cores from a while back. Maybe that was just in one of the WiiU speculation threads.

Would it be possible to have a custom CPU with an enhanced broadway as one or more of the cores?
 

bgassassin

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The context of "enhanced" is what is missing. There have been several reports of various cpu issues, those are consistent across almost all dev discussions of the hardware. I remember there also being speculation of different amounts of memory embedded in each of the cores from a while back. Maybe that was just in one of the WiiU speculation threads.

Would it be possible to have a custom CPU with an enhanced broadway as one or more of the cores?
The different L2 cache amounts come directly from Nintendo's target specs. And with the latter, some of us have speculated the CPU being made up of different cores (e.g. one POWER7 core and two 476FP cores).
 

DynamicG

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The different L2 cache amounts come directly from Nintendo's target specs. And with the latter, some of us have speculated the CPU being made up of different cores (e.g. one POWER7 core and two 476FP cores).
Ok, I thought I remembered some of that discussion from the earlier thread.

It seems like going through that much trouble to keep Wii BC is far from "cheaping out" even if they literally bolted 3 Broadway cores together that would be a custom product.
 

DynamicG

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Wouldn't that be more expensive, though?
I'd imagine their primary concern was a CPU that could give them full hardware BC with the Wii. They'll spend money on what they think is important even if it means cutting back somewhere else.
 

bgassassin

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Ok, I thought I remembered some of that discussion from the earlier thread.

It seems like going through that much trouble to keep Wii BC is far from "cheaping out" even if they literally bolted 3 Broadway cores together that would be a custom product.
Yeah that was one of the early tidbits we go. Now we know the main cores has 2MB of L2 cache and the other two have 512KB.

And I think they are as much concerned about the heat and ensuing noise level as they are about cost. Which annoys me.

Wouldn't that be more expensive, though?
"Core mixing"? Probably, but at the time we were trying to come up with a reason why the main core had so much addition cache.

I'd imagine their primary concern was a CPU that could give them full hardware BC with the Wii. They'll spend money on what they think is important even if it means cutting back somewhere else.
I don't see them having full hardware BC. Due in part to there being no BC for GC games. But I do agree with your last sentence. One of the things that annoys me with Nintendo.
 

shinra-bansho

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Such as? Sounds like it is predetermined bias on your part. If it's not positive, it must be bullshit.
There's a high degree of confirmation bias on all sides, really. But it will be interesting when the Wii U thread moves out of the safe harbour of Community and into Gaming side, where people are not all as enamoured with the system and the propensity for group think will be greatly diminished.
 

Lonely1

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Yeah that was one of the early tidbits we go. Now we know the main cores has 2MB of L2 cache and the other two have 512KB.

And I think they are as much concerned about the heat and ensuing noise level as they are about cost. Which annoys me.



"Core mixing"? Probably, but at the time we were trying to come up with a reason why the main core had so much addition cache.



I don't see them having full hardware BC. Due in part to there being no BC for GC games. But I do agree with your last sentence. One of the things that annoys me with Nintendo.
You are annoyed now. Last ray of hope lost. :/
 

DonMigs85

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Yeah that was one of the early tidbits we go. Now we know the main cores has 2MB of L2 cache and the other two have 512KB.

And I think they are as much concerned about the heat and ensuing noise level as they are about cost. Which annoys me.



"Core mixing"? Probably, but at the time we were trying to come up with a reason why the main core had so much addition cache.



I don't see them having full hardware BC. Due in part to there being no BC for GC games. But I do agree with your last sentence. One of the things that annoys me with Nintendo.
This may have more to do with the fact there are no GC accessory ports, and maybe the drive doesn't accept mini-discs either.
Anyway I'm surprised there's no detailed leak yet like there was for the Wii. Nintendo's NDAs and ninja force must be really scary.
 

DynamicG

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I don't see them having full hardware BC. Due in part to there being no BC for GC games. But I do agree with your last sentence. One of the things that annoys me with Nintendo.
It's certainly a frustrating quirk, but it's interesting if you enjoy reading about slightly exotic hardware decisions and the theories behind them.

Would it have to be some combination of hardware and software BC? I remember reading somewhere that the 3DS handles BC in that manner, but I don't think it was ever confirmed.



You are annoyed now. Last ray of hope lost. :/
You should check out the WiiU community thread, there is something that resembles hope in there.
 

bgassassin

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If that is true how does it play porting things? Why would nintendo have a need to do this?
I need a little more clarification as to what you are referring to as being possibly true and the ensuing question about porting.

As for the why I think some of us posed the idea that it may have to do with making it easier on the CPU for handling the OS. As for other possible reasons, this is where I would defer to someone like blu who has worked with past Nintendo hardware and would give a more insightful view as the "whys" Nintendo would do it.
 

bgassassin

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You are annoyed now. Last ray of hope lost. :/
Nintendo always does things to annoy me. Look how long I've been complaining about having USB 2.0 ports, haha.

This may have more to do with the fact there are no GC accessory ports, and maybe the drive doesn't accept mini-discs either.
Anyway I'm surprised there's no detailed leak yet like there was for the Wii. Nintendo's NDAs and ninja force must be really scary.
I would consider those two things as a part of it instead of giving more weight to it. And it seems Nintendo is intentionally leaving out certain things so even if there was a leak we probably wouldn't learn that much from it.

It's certainly a frustrating quirk, but it's interesting if you enjoy reading about slightly exotic hardware decisions and the theories behind them.
I agree which is why I am ready for someone to get one and do a tear down.

Would it have to be some combination of hardware and software BC? I remember reading somewhere that the 3DS handles BC in that manner, but I don't think it was ever confirmed.
I was given an indication it was a combination of the two. Just not how exactly it's done.
 

Lonely1

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LOL. I think we got enough info to say that isn't the case.
But three Wii's and a 3DS duct taped together would be an awesome new gen meme.

I don't know why don't just announce the specs. There's not like there's any room to change them at this point and the vast majority of people wouldn't care/know what they meant anyway so what's the point of hiding them?
What's the point of revealing them?
Kotaku: "We built a PC using the same specs as the Wii U, look how terrible everything looks!"
Ouya has morre corez!
 
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I don't know why don't just announce the specs. There's not like there's any room to change them at this point and the vast majority of people wouldn't care/know what they meant anyway so what's the point of hiding them?
There's literally nothing Nintendo could gain by doing that.

Kotaku: "We built a PC using the same specs as the Wii U, look how terrible everything looks!"
 

Fantasmo

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Nintendo is really an oddball. Its like an professional athlete that decided to stay in the game and refuse to do anything but stay in the news but play in the minor leagues but still makes major league money and major league moves. It won't play ball but its still succeeding just fine. I can't even explain it but obviously anyone reading this understands what I mean. Its like a dysfunctional success. Has any company in history ever done this?
 

Hiltz

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Right. Nintendo has nothing to benefit from by revealing the Wii U' s technical specifcations. It obviously doesn't want people to focus on the hardware power, but that's what the gaming media and gamers would be focusing on. We've obviously been doing that already, but it always happens whenever we start speculating on next-gen hardware. However, Nintendo has remained quiet on the subject as to not encourage it or attempt to embrass itself by releasing specific information which would ultimately underwhelm us. Also, most consumers do not care or understand the tech specs anyway. In fact, Nintendo has been downplaying the importance of graphics, but that has more to do with its goal of attempting to communicate to the press and to consumers what makes Wii U unique. Clearly, it still needs to work on that.
 

Ryoku

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I'm kind of expecting Sony and MS not to talk about their specs either.
Sony? Really? The least they'll do is tout the living hell out of 4k support, and how PS4 is the only machine with the power to do so.

I expect Microsoft to be somewhat along the lines of, "With impressive hardware, we are able to bring all of your living room entertainment into one box". They'll push the all-in-one feature more than the up-to-date hardware. I could be wrong.

Nintendo will..... Nintendo will Nintendo :/
 

LCGeek

formerly sane
I need a little more clarification as to what you are referring to as being possibly true and the ensuing question about porting.

As for the why I think some of us posed the idea that it may have to do with making it easier on the CPU for handling the OS. As for other possible reasons, this is where I would defer to someone like blu who has worked with past Nintendo hardware and would give a more insightful view as the "whys" Nintendo would do it.
I don't know the source of info so I can't verify such information haven't kept up with WiiU specs since most of it has been rumormill for quite sometime. Wasn't trying to start anything.
 

SolarPowered

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I'm kind of expecting Sony and MS not to talk about their specs either.
Doesn't matter if they show games that impress. Nobody would give a damn about the Wii U's memory or CPU speed if Nintendo would have shown an evolved Zelda tech demo or a new Metroid demo with insane presentation. This is where Microsoft and Sony can excel.

I'm expecting Sony to drown us in info when the time comes though.
 

Trevelyan9999

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Personally I don't think that Wii U is based on "Broadway" since Nintendo's own site says the Wii U CPU is a IBM PowerⓇ-based multi-core processor and the original Wii was a PowerPC CPU (code-named "Broadway") jointly developed with and manufactured by IBM.

http://www.nintendo.com/wiiu

http://www.nintendo.com/wii/what-is-wii/#/tech-specs


IBM Power and PowerPC CPU's are similar architecture but still a tad different....



From IBM's press release on the CPU for Wii U:

"Built on the open, scalable Power Architecture base, IBM custom processors exploit the performance and power advantages of proven silicon-on-insulator (SOI) technology. The inherent advantages of the technology make it a superior choice for performance-driven applications that demand exceptional, power-efficient processing capability – from entertainment consoles to supercomputers."

http://www-03.ibm.com/press/us/en/pressrelease/34683.wss

I'm not saying that developers aren't having issues with the CPU, but they may just need to learn it a bit before getting the full potential out of it. Porting is not simply going to be cutting and pasting Xbox 360 code on to the Wii U dev kit and expecting magic to happen......
 

Jet Jaguar

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Haven't we discussed the CPU 'issue' in one of the previous threads though?

I mean, wasn't it theorized that the GPU design is "future-proofed" in that it has GPGPU functions (or it's called something like that, meaning a lot of the CPU workload is handed over to the GPU and then there's the seperate audio DSP too). It was something along those lines.
 

DonMigs85

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Haven't we discussed the CPU 'issue' in one of the previous threads though?

I mean, wasn't it theorized that the GPU design is "future-proofed" in that it has GPGPU functions (or it's called something like that, meaning a lot of the CPU workload is handed over to the GPU and then there's the seperate audio DSP too). It was something along those lines.
Yeah but those stream processors could have gone to graphics work instead of general purpose computations.
 

bgassassin

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Sony? Really? The least they'll do is tout the living hell out of 4k support, and how PS4 is the only machine with the power to do so.

I expect Microsoft to be somewhat along the lines of, "With impressive hardware, we are able to bring all of your living room entertainment into one box". They'll push the all-in-one feature more than the up-to-date hardware. I could be wrong.

Nintendo will..... Nintendo will Nintendo :/
Oh they'll boast about things like 4k, but will you get the specs to support those boast when they could suggest otherwise?

I don't know the source of info so I can't verify such information haven't kept up with WiiU specs since most of it has been rumormill for quite sometime. Wasn't trying to start anything.
Haha. How could that be taken as you stating something? I'm just trying to make sure I have the proper understanding to

Doesn't matter if they show games that impress. Nobody would give a damn about the Wii U's memory or CPU speed if Nintendo would have shown an evolved Zelda tech demo or a new Metroid demo with insane presentation. This is where Microsoft and Sony can excel.

I'm expecting Sony to drown us in info when the time comes though.
I lean more toward that info not being specs to avoid comparisons to higher-end PC components. They will most likely let the visuals speak for themselves just like you said.

Personally I don't think that Wii U is based on "Broadway" since Nintendo's own site says the Wii U CPU is a IBM PowerⓇ-based multi-core processor and the original Wii was a PowerPC CPU (code-named "Broadway") jointly developed with and manufactured by IBM.

http://www.nintendo.com/wiiu

http://www.nintendo.com/wii/what-is-wii/#/tech-specs


IBM Power and PowerPC CPU's are similar architecture but still a tad different....



From IBM's press release on the CPU for Wii U:

"Built on the open, scalable Power Architecture base, IBM custom processors exploit the performance and power advantages of proven silicon-on-insulator (SOI) technology. The inherent advantages of the technology make it a superior choice for performance-driven applications that demand exceptional, power-efficient processing capability – from entertainment consoles to supercomputers."

http://www-03.ibm.com/press/us/en/pressrelease/34683.wss

I'm not saying that developers aren't having issues with the CPU, but they may just need to learn it a bit before getting the full potential out of it. Porting is not simply going to be cutting and pasting Xbox 360 code on to the Wii U dev kit and expecting magic to happen......
Power is IBM's general name for their CPUs. If you see Power (not in all caps), that could mean either PowerPC or POWER. So the press release doesn't negate any possibilities. It actually lends support to the notion.

Yeah but those stream processors could have gone to graphics work instead of general purpose computations.
Things are pointing to this being the case for all the consoles next gen.
 

lwilliams3

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Now I'm shady? Its not my fault I am not an engineer and call them like the docs say. About the cpu I am sure of this. The term "enhanced broadway" is straight from nintendo.
Thanks for that info. That would explain what Expresso said months ago. Gekko/Broadway design couldn't go beyond 1GHz, though, so there still had to be some significant "enhancements" done to achieve whatever the Wii U CPU winds up as.
 

jmls1121

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Nintendo is really an oddball. Its like an professional athlete that decided to stay in the game and refuse to do anything but stay in the news but play in the minor leagues but still makes major league money and major league moves. It won't play ball but its still succeeding just fine. I can't even explain it but obviously anyone reading this understands what I mean.
I don't understand what you mean.
 
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Nintendo is really an oddball. Its like an professional athlete that decided to stay in the game and refuse to do anything but stay in the news but play in the minor leagues but still makes major league money and major league moves. It won't play ball but its still succeeding just fine. I can't even explain it but obviously anyone reading this understands what I mean. Its like a dysfunctional success. Has any company in history ever done this?
Uh...







wat.
 

japtor

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Thanks for that info. That would explain what Expresso said months ago. Gekko/Broadway design couldn't go beyond 1GHz, though, so there still had to be some significant "enhancements" done to achieve whatever the Wii U CPU winds up as.
I don't think they were designed to be used in multicore implementations either.
I don't understand what you mean.
What, you don't get insane nonsensical sports analogies? Here's another! They're like Robert Horry. Not the greatest player but really good at a few things and manages to win a bunch of championships.
 

antonz

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Its literally impossible to be a broadway chip but as BG said a newer line derivative from broadways features is likely. To say its just a broadway chip though is on a level near trolling
 

TheD

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The trash cans outside your house.
What features does it have that Broadway lacks?
Uhh ten years of improvements for a start.

Broadway is closely related to the CPU called G3 by Apple.
3 of them would still be complete crap.


I mean, wasn't it theorized that the GPU design is "future-proofed" in that it has GPGPU functions (or it's called something like that, meaning a lot of the CPU workload is handed over to the GPU and then there's the seperate audio DSP too). It was something along those lines.
SMH

All modern non SOC GPUs from AMD and Nvidia are GPGPUs! even the 360 has a GPU that can act as a GPGPU.

A GPGPU is only suited to a smallish subset of tasks, it can not help a CPU on any problem that is not hugely parallel or in anyway latency sensitive and doing so will take away from graphics processing.

Sound processing is hardly a CPU killer, the transistors would be better spend in the CPU.
 

Sid

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Wth now the cpu is an upgraded broadway,that does not bode well for a supposed major upgrade from the ps3 does it?
 

antonz

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Uhh ten years of improvements for a start.

Broadway is closely related to the CPU called G3 by Apple.
3 of them would still be complete crap.




SMH

All modern non SOC GPUs from AMD and Nvidia are GPGPUs! even the 360 has a GPU that can act as a GPGPU.

A GPGPU is only suited to a smallish subset of tasks, it can not help a CPU on any problem that is not hugely parallel or in anyway latency sensitive and doing so will take away from graphics processing.

Sound processing is hardly a CPU killer, the transistors would be better spend in the CPU.
Sound can actually be quite intensive in consoles. Its a reason why Nintendo has put things like the dsp in the Wii u. Nintendo is giving tools to ease the cpu burden but its also an issue of programming to use it. Straight ports that arent tweaked to use all the bonus goodies nintendo has implemented in the hardware could suffer.