Alternative distribution to optical disks : SSD, cards, and download*

Discussion in 'Console Technology' started by Cheezdoodles, May 26, 2008.

  1. Shifty Geezer

    Shifty Geezer uber-Troll!
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    What will the price be? $1? Or $5? Or $10. Not that I'm adding anything to MrFox here - he's covered all the salient arguments perfectly (they were all raised when this thread first fell into disuse before it's recent reawakening with a high density roadmap).
     
  2. Lalaland

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    Excellent post that highlights an issue I hadn't even begun to consider and makes flash carts a non runner full stop. Stamping has always been the cheapest form of fabrication because it's just so damn fast. No amount of cost reduction on flash will ever trump this, hell it's why PS games were so much cheaper than N64 carts back in the day.
     
  3. -tkf-

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    Sounds like the dream is dead, unless something crazy happens. 200GB might not be to much for the next gen, considering we are already at 50GB at the start of this generation. I do doubt that you can stamp a 500GB disc for $1 though. Afaik there is nothing that can do it now, and everything has revolved around Optical drives doing the more layer thing. Do you have something to back that up? Me being the optical guy around here would like to read more about it :)

    Earlier in this mega thread we did cover the aspect of manufacturing on Carts, your 100MB is a bit low, considering you can now write 500MB to a SSD on a slow interface, depending on chip setup, a nand cartridge could very well be faster, and depending on how you build you carts and duplication it could be possible. If the Nandtridges were to use a common interface like M2X4 it could be 1TB pr sec and the parts would be somewhat easy to come by considering it´s a PC standard.

    I agree that Nand is far off, at least from what we know today, but i think it´s worth to discuss how it would be used. For example, would the cost reduction on the Consoles be worthwhile. The next generation could store 12, 240GB games on a 6TB disk, making the biggest disk you can buy today the minimum size for next gen (it would be cheap of course).

    Would the reduction in Ram (?) be worth it, are the graphics engines going to rely on streaming to such an extent that Mechanical seek times would bring limitations to the next generation games, etc etc.
     
  4. MrFox

    MrFox Deludedly Fantastic
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    I meant in 2020, if they make a ROM version of the Archival Disc, it's just a completely wild guess, I'm making an association between the 2012 optical technology lecture about the future, the Archival Disc announcement, and some replication prices. At least, what I can understand from these sources. Maybe it would be more like $2. :lol:

    I assumed it will never go above three layers, that's what it looks like, with the BDA aiming at three layers for 4K, and the Archival discs being also three layers (although double side discs). The four layers BDXL 128 is pretty much a dead end, all the extreme layer count were engineering pissing contests and will probably never exist.

    Optical storage lecture....
    http://www.slideshare.net/rgzech/the-future-of-optical-storage-x-rg-zech-slide-share

    Replication cost...
    http://wesleytech.com/blu-ray-vs-hd-dvd-replication-costs-analyzed-again/113/

    BD-ROM replication was $1.30 SL and $1.45 DL back in early 2007, I find it hard to imagine three layers being significantly more than $1 by 2020. My conjecture is that the DSP modification in Archival Disks wouldn't need more expensive equipment on the replicator side. The hard part would be all in the mastering side. It seems to be up to the reading drive's signal processing to be capable of reading it. So with the three signal processing alterations, that would be a 500GB disc at three layers.

    Phase 1: Crosstalk Cancellation DSP, the tracks are placed closer to each other, despite the aperture not allowing that. So no mechanical change to the stamper. Mastered with less empty space between tracks.

    Phase 2: Intersymbol Crosstalk Cancellation, same thing as phase 1, but in the other axis, which again is a DSP process. Less empty space between symbols.

    Phase 3: Groves would vary in length to achieve MLR of 2x. Would this require more precision? Having "in-between" lengths of groves between small and long? I have no idea.
     
    #1904 MrFox, Jul 29, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 29, 2014
  5. eastmen

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    Samsung's road map is for V Nand their 3d Nand Currently they are using it on a 40nm process and its price is in line with other drives using 15nm nand while offering faster speeds and higher endurance. Samsung will continue to increase layers and decrease the micron process. I think the forcast you linked to will be wrong moving forward as more foundries move to 3d nand which they are all set to do in the next few years



    It is more layers. The 300GB disc will be Double sided 3 layers per side. So you have another layer to deal with aside from having to flip the disc over.



    You are right about duplication speeds. That can be a caveat when it comes to rom. Nand should only increase in speed moving forward and of course you can set up factories to write thousands of nand carts at once.

    With Nand the limit is Sata . Pci-e ssd drives can hit 1,170MB/s read and 950MB/s write. It would take less than 4 and a half minutes to write to a nand cart at that point. Then you'd get the benfit of the vastly faster read and seek times over an optical drive.
     
    #1905 eastmen, Jul 29, 2014
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  6. DSoup

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    You don't flip the disc, those drives come with heads top and bottom.
     
  7. eastmen

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    ah even more things to go wrong :)

    If next gen consoles depend on Disc's or even have drives in them I will skip out on them. My time with bulky slow media is over. I purged it from my life and love it

    I had a bunch of these horrible things in my place. Took up so much room and hten I had stacks of boxes in the corners of my room. Now all of them fit in a single hardrive
     
  8. -tkf-

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    I don't think it will be a technical challenge to produce a optical media that reads from both sides, at the same time, for even more speed.

    You also skipped the One, so i lets see about that :)
    The problem that next gen is facing is bigger games and with DD still not a closed case they will have to pick some sort of DD alternative, optical has traditionally been the best solution. And you don't have to buy ugly cabinets like that to store you discs. Buy one of these and you are set for a generation.

    http://www.amazon.com/b?node=172542
     
  9. Npl

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    I think it is, otherwise HDDs would read from multiple platters/sides at the same time. And thats with way more mechanical accuracy than a loosely coupled optical disc could provide.
     
  10. DSoup

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    True enough. Every extra component in a device is something that can go wrong. However, if you're only using discs for installation - compared to the last three generations of console which ran games from disc, it's far less likely to fail. Arguably you can get away with cheaper, less robust drives.

    I'd like to. Except for for BF4 and Killzone Shadow Fall at launch, I've bought every other PS4 game digitally: Assassin's Creed 4, Thief, Lego Marvel Super Heroes, Watch Dogs, Infamous Second Son, Tomb Raider Definitive Edition. However I'm crawling along on a 18mbit (2Mb/sec in real terms, or 7Gb/hour) ADSL line with fibre coming "soon" (for 14 months).

    Although I have a 1Tb drive (about 750mb currently free) I'm thinking of the future when I need to start deleting stuff then considering how long it'd take me to download a title should I get the sudden urge to play it. Well The Last of Us is a 50Gb install, so the package is probably 40Gb and that's 5 hours. So I've pre-ordered this on Blu-rau disc, which will be a 10 min (at most) install.

    Hanging around for hours to redownload a game? OMG! First World Problems(tm).
     
  11. -tkf-

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    They do read from more platters
    [​IMG]

    I am just guessing of course, i think there would need to be more than consoles needs for a new optical format to emerge.

    It´s a real problem, Infamous took such a long time to download for me i could have had the disc shipped overnight. And i would have to spend serious money to get a faster connection, and the main use would be.. DD.. i don't think so.
     
  12. eastmen

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    the console's getting pre loading should help with this.

    As it is for both consoles installing from a disc takes enough time for a reinstall. You could go out for lunch or dinner before they are done
     
  13. MrFox

    MrFox Deludedly Fantastic
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    If there's hope, we''ll eventually see a new forecast that will reflect this. I follow analysts because their job consist of knowing much more than I do.

    They need a huge number of layers and masks for the higher capacities so I don't think it's that simple. Suppose a chip needs dozens of metal layers, this isn't nearly the same cost and yield than three layers. We know it's improving and they averted the wall of reliability, but they did so by going back to 40nm. We don't know how far this will keep improving.
    Oh, I don't think we'll see these flippers in ROM form ever again. Might as well put 2 discs in the box with a nice image on it.

    So three layers would be 150GB, 250GB and 500GB.
    Or two layers version, 100GB, 166GB, 330GB.

    Singulus Technologies already announced a triple layer replication machine. So it's fair to assume this will be a reality. And considering the difference between 1 and 2 layers is only 15 cents, how can the third be a huge amount?
    On XB1 perhaps... but have you seen the install time on PS4? It's less than a minute. As far as I'm concerned this takes care of any issue with media speed. the most important thing next gen is the speed of the internal storage

    http://www.thesixthaxis.com/2013/11/28/game-install-times-on-xbox-one-ps4-compared/
    This is a non-issue on PS4, I doubt next gen will have any problem with it either. The day I got my PS4, I put Knack in it, and I missed the install bar while I was looking at the settings menu. By the time I finished the first level, the disc had spun down and it was entirely installed. Local storage is the most important thing for load times.

    Food for thought... if we want BC, the drive is an important asset, to say the least.
     
  14. Npl

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    Nope, someone explained it once to me, as I dont understand the limitations. But HDDs only have a single head active at any time - it wouldn't be possibly to accurately position multiple heads on their surfaces.
    (Well, if you think about it, HDDs performance isnt affected by the number of platters, only the density)
     
  15. MrFox

    MrFox Deludedly Fantastic
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    I think that makes sense, looking at the HDD mechanism, there's only one servo motor moving the head as one big block.
    They'd need a separate motor for each head which isn't practical, it's a massive motor.
     
  16. Shifty Geezer

    Shifty Geezer uber-Troll!
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    Why can't data be spread across the HDD's platters? If the heads are in perfect alignment, they'll each be reading exactly the same sector from the same track at the same time. Or is the mechanical construction of the heads too course to enable such precision? I can see it being the case that two heads of the same length actually are a few tracks out in reality due to imprecision.
     
  17. MrFox

    MrFox Deludedly Fantastic
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    The track is only a few microns wide, I guess that can be a big problem. Maybe it doesn't take a lot of temperature or shock related changes to misalign the heads by a few microns between each other? The central bearing of the servo arm can't be perfect either so it wouldn't be able to keep that much precision.

    I'm not sure, but when in doubt, I go by the rule "if they could, they would" :lol:
     
  18. -tkf-

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    Most likely a question of the hardware having to decode data from more heads.
     
  19. -tkf-

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    How do I preload a game I haven't bought yet? A 200gb is going to suck ass.

    Disc install is so fast on the PS4, totally opposite the PS3.
     
  20. MrSpiggott

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    About 20 years ago I remember working with Fujitsu 2380 drives, and they ran their heads in parallel. It was the only way to achieve the throughput for recording SD video.
    The need for developing such complicated drives disappeared with the introduction of raided or distributed storage.
     
    #1920 MrSpiggott, Jul 29, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 29, 2014
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