Middle Generation Console Upgrade Discussion [Scorpio, 4Pro]

Discussion in 'Console Industry' started by mpg1, May 25, 2016.

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  1. function

    function None functional
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    Maybe both? One thing that nVidia might be considering is that a 256-bit GDDR5X device might salvage into a lower performance GDDR5 part without leaving any of the 256-bit interface unused (while it might if the top end part used a 384-bit GDDR5 arrangement). That way you hit performance and market targets while minimising die area for all parts.

    I mean "top end" relative to its bus size . For example most 128-bit devices might use GDDR5, but the top end 128-bit device might use GDDR5X to hit a higher performance level and move into the gap below the entry level 256-bit device, while potentially still using less power.

    Yup. That's one of the reasons I liked the idea of HBM and DDR4, though as you say if the render is accurate that doesn't appear to be the case.
     
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  2. function

    function None functional
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    X1 seems ready made for this scenario - it's almost like esram and DDR3 was designed to allow super high BW where it was most needed (or perhaps slightly less than what was most needed :eek: ) while allowing gobs of ram for everything more low BW.

    PS4 was originally meant to be 4GB though, with the OS/Dash/General Shite presumably using far, far less than 3GB.

    "Cheap" low power GDDR5 on a wide bus might be a compromise between high performance and low cost, allowing Scropio to maintain a unified memory pool.
     
  3. Silent_Buddha

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    At 100 MB/s (faster than your average 2.5" HDD transfer speeds across the entire platter) that's going to be ~60 seconds or more to load just 6 GB of data. Do people really want to wait 2-4 minutes to load a new level? As well imagine how much texture pop-in you'll have with streaming solutions with higher quality (larger) texture data? HDD speeds aren't advancing in any significant way. And for higher platter densities, HDD speeds are actually going down due to the technology (SMR) needed to realize higher density. As I mentioned in another thread, HAMR has the potential to remedy the situation somewhat, but there is no manufacturer that has a credible roadmap for a drive based on HAMR. The earliest estimate of when they might solve problems related to HAMR such that a commercial product might be released is sometime in 2018. And that comes with a big maybe attached to it.

    So, if you're going to greatly increase the RAM used for games, you're also going to have to greatly speed up the storage medium you're holding it on. Currently that means an NAND based flash device which may become feasible by the time the consoles after Scorpio come out.

    But while NAND flash drives would be suitable to feed data into memory fast enough that you can load a level in time to be ready to play after you've eaten a burger or two, capacity is going to be an issue. Games would also likely take up 150-200+ GB of data to realize that increased texture detail (still highly compressed). And while SSDs may become cheap enough to use in consoles by the time consoles after Scorpio are released, it's unlikely to be affordable enough for consoles in the capacities needed to store games that would actually be able to take advantage of significantly more than 8-12 GB of memory.

    There are a lot of issues that need to be overcome before either Microsoft or Sony look at doubling the amount the memory used much less anything significantly more than that.

    You do realize that current games use 6 GB or less of memory. Another 4 GB of memory is increasing that by 50%. That's a rather significant increase.

    Regards,
    SB
     
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  4. turkey

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    So could the increased memory size be a way to offer staging space for games rather than add a flash drive / storage.
    Do 4K textures take up that much more space over 2K?
     
  5. AlBran

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    If the mobile SKU is 128-bit, the chip itself is perhaps not that demanding of bandwidth anyway and can get away with GDDR5?

    Either way, I suppose the margins for a top end laptop ought to be huge. :p
     
  6. AlBran

    AlBran Ferro-Fibrous
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    Well sure. Doughnuts are just a bonus. Apart from uncompressed textures in the PC space, there aren't many games utilizing the 8GB VRAM other than for larger streaming buffers. So... more doughnuts.

    Shadowmaps can be fat too, but um... gonna need ROPs & bandwidth.
     
  7. Nisaaru

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    SSD caching should offer an affordable solution to the problem.

    I've never understood why MS didn't just offer it with USB/UASP support to allow people to optimize their XB1 setups with affordable solutions as it's technology they already have.
     
  8. Silent_Buddha

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    Textures can take up as much data as you want, regardless of the final rendered image. Rage for example used well over 100 GB of texture data for a game that was meant to be viewed at 720p-1080p. Which then had to be aggressively compressed (some areas a LOT more than others) to fit onto finally shipping media.

    BTW - the working texture size they had still wasn't enough to offer really high detail for close textures due to the use of virtually unique textures for any location in the world.

    That would only help mitigate the issue, not solve it. It would still require a lengthy amount of time to fill the SSD cache (say 256-512 GB cache) with the most accessed parts of 1-4 games (of the hypothetical massively increased RAM console and the hypothetical games that could actually take advantage of all that memory). After which it would mostly offer the benefits of an SSD, until such time as you wanted to run a game which didn't have most of it's frequently accessed assets in the RAM cache, or you accessed a level that hadn't yet been loaded into the cache.

    You could get around that last bit by aggressively caching the entire game, but that would just lengthen the amount of time before you could realize some percentage of the benefits of a faster SSD. Meanwhile, that SSD cache is already potentially as large as an SSD would need to be to serve as a main drive in current console.

    Regards,
    SB
     
    #708 Silent_Buddha, Jun 24, 2016
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2016
  9. shredenvain

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    I think it is too early to determine if the Scorpio is "next gen". In my mind a jump in Tflops and memory isn't what I consider nextgen. In my opinion its the difference in architecture that makes a generational leap. We will have to wait and see exactly what Ms will change aside of course from tflops.
     
  10. Cyan

    Cyan orange
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    what silent_buddha said.. What's now with all those people playing at 4k on 1080p monitors? Haven't been Phil Spencer's words eye openers? I mean, I haven't even tried because I play great games on my slow laptop that aren't very demanding specs wise, but I see people bragging about their GPUs and how they are running games at 4k and 60 fps, and now we realised that 4k gaming makes no sense if you are on a 1080p -or less- screen. :)

    Regarding the SSD, well, I hope cartridges are back when Neo, Scorpio and NX are out. I find the hard drives and optical discs to be quite slow these days.
     
  11. eastmen

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    Why SSD caching, I think the endurance would be a problem after a point. You'd be constantly writing to a small amount of nand. If we assume they are going to go with 100 gig Bluray discs , a future game could have you rewrite that cache each time you switch to another game.


    We have a thread about this , but we are getting to the point where SSDs are not fully out of the question


    Crucial's MX300 750 gig drive just released using 3D nand. It has 220TB of endurance and built in TCG opal 2.0 @ IEE-1667 encryption

    It has sequential reads of up to 491MB/s for 18minutes and uses just 1.96w doing it. It costs $200

    Sandisk has the new x400 it has 320TB of write endurance , Has TCG opal 2.0 Encryption has sequential reads of up to 54MB/s and is $230 on amazon.

    These are brand new drives not clearance drives


    Compare that to a Hybrid drive. A 1TB with 8GB of Nand is $80 and a 1TB with 32gigs is $115. This drive would only hit a 120MB/s

    MS can do their own approach and get a traditional drive and put a 128 or 256 gigs of Nand on the mobo and set up their own caching scheme. But then your paying for up to a 4th of the nand anyway plus the traditional drive.

    There is a years worth of time for the tech to drop some more also. It allows MS to slip into th esame situation they are in now . Launch scorpio with 1TB ssd . Update Scorpio in year 2 or 3 with a 2TB drive.


    I know people will say i'm crazy but hey at $200 Amazon has to make a profit , Crucial has to make a profit , the company selling them the nand has to make money as does the company making the controller. So it might be quite doable. As doable as adding a traditional and cache at least.
     
  12. eastmen

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    I hope MS is smart enough to put more than 12 gisg in the the console.

    24 gigs wouldn't be bad.

    For those saying that no one wants to wait for 24 gigs of assets to be loaded well you'd most likely se aside 8 of it for streaming and apps in the backround . That would double the current 4 gigs . You'd have 16 gigs left for data. I am sure not all of it will be textures. But

    16 gigs of textures from a 2.5 inch drive would be 2.2minutes. Throw in an ssd . If you order your data right it would be about 30 seconds.

    The idea of Ram as a storage is silly since it would cost as much a ssd and hold a fraction of the data.

    Ram is getting cheaper as always. AMD is releasing a $230 video card with 8 gig of ram that in Tflops is almost as fast as Scorpio will be. Nvidia has new cards with 6 and 8 gigs of ram. I am sure over the next year that 6 and 8 gigs will start to filter down the stack all the way to the lower end cards. During scorpio's life I would not be surprised to see 16 and 32 cards
     
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  13. function

    function None functional
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    Well I'm thinking in the same way that there's room for a GDDR5X 1080 on a 256-bit bus there might be room for a GDDR5X 128-bit chip, especially where power is a big issue. I suppose we'll see if it's worth going the X route for mobile 1080 ... maybe it won't be.

    I wonder if a low enough clocked 1080 / 1070 might work out on a 128-bit GDDR5 setup? Fewer chips to power, more efficient memory standard? :???:
     
  14. fehu

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    xbox one ha 8GB of emmc (or like) just for copying the memory content and do hybernate fast boot.
    I don't know why they don't use as a bluray cache when in game mode
     
  15. bgroovy

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    Are we sure all the RAM chips in Scorpio are the same density? What if it's 8GB from 4 1GB chips and 8 512MB chips?
     
  16. mrcorbo

    mrcorbo Foo Fighter
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    We're not sure, no, but I don't think it makes any sense for them to do that. Higher res needs more memory.
     
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  17. mpg1

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    12GB unified memory makes sense to me. It's only recently the average has moved from 4GB to 8GB on graphics cards. So having 12GB with about 8GB available for games seems about right.

    Neo will supposedly only have about 5GB to developers and at a lower bandwidth than scorpio. So why Microsoft would want to go beyond 8GB for games wouldn't make sense.

    Microsoft wants to release a console that will beat neo in various spec areas by 30%+ but is still close to it in price.
     
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  18. Nisaaru

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    A SSD which covers the usual footprint of 1-2 games should release a lot pressure in real gaming situation.
    How often do you switch between games? I usually play them one after another. Then you reload levels/areas a lot. The hit/miss ratio should be extremely high. I can't really see how such simple uncritical cache scenario would even run into endurance problems:)

    Techreport had a SSD endurance test running for a long time which burried a lot of my preconceptions if you just look at the numbers.

    All this could be offered optional.
     
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  19. -Sweeper_

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    I think it will be 12 (8 Gb density) chips at around 7 Gbps @ 384-bit bus for 12GB >320 GB/s. Regarding the iGPU I'm with DF, probably along the lines of a cut down Vega 10 (bigger than Neo's) at modest clocks. They seem pretty confident about having the more powerful console, I think they will match any clock bump planned by Sony with their owns adjustments.
     
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  20. Silent_Buddha

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    eMMC has generally quite bad write speeds (at best slightly better than HDD at worst it's worse) and mediocre random read speeds. It has decent sequential read speeds (slightly faster than a good HDD with high density platters) and write (still slower than a good HDD in general). It does have better latency, as long as you don't run into writes stalling reads on a full drive. That makes it ideal for fast resume (sequential read and delayed writes aren't an issue) from a power off state (hibernation) and light caching (where contents aren't written to much and drive isn't in danger of filling). It doesn't help with resume from a sleep state, however, as memory remains powered while the rest of the machine is in a power off state.

    I don't think MS are using it for memory copies although they may be using it cache some things for the OS side of the XBO so that access to files when the HDD is in use isn't impacted.

    Regards,
    SB
     
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