Nintendo Switch Technical discussion [SOC = Tegra X1]

Discussion in 'Console Technology' started by Alucardx23, Mar 15, 2017.

  1. Shifty Geezer

    Shifty Geezer uber-Troll!
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    Nintendo have history with creating mid-gen refreshes for their handhelds. NSW fits the bill nicely IMO.
     
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  2. AlBran

    AlBran Ferro-Fibrous
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    Right so, update the node, and bam. Done (power savings and/or clock increases) :p

    What if it's already done if they're okay with rolling out higher-clocked modes on current units. xD Do we know how launch units compare to current ones :?:
     
    #1142 AlBran, Jun 20, 2019
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2019
  3. Goodtwin

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    Yes, but they typically arent all that exotic. I fully expect a Mini version to be announced, but a new versions with a big performance advantage over the original muddys up the waters. Even with the New 3DS, that was never supported in a meaningful way. It didnt make the older games run any better, and inorderd to utlilize the superior performance meant making it exclusive to the New 3DS, alienating the existing userbase. Dont get me wrong, I would love a scenario where a Pro model were offered that did infact improve the performance of existing games, and would buy one day one, but I just do not see it happening. The mini model makes ton of sense, with Pokemon Sword and Shield coming out later this year, having a Mini model that sells at $199 or less could be huge for the Christmas holiday.
     
  4. Shifty Geezer

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    The difference with 3DS is, potentially, Nintendo were responsible for the tools and API and they have zero skills there. For NSW, tools and API come from nVidia who are capable, we hope, of maintaining compatibility with software running on different builds of the same chip.

    I'm not sure a mini model makes a great deal of sense. The controllers are already small and wouldn't want to be any smaller, meaning a minimum height of the tablet of the same size as now. I think a Maxi, with a larger screen without bezel (same size base unit), makes more sense. Or just a more power efficient and/or faster model.
     
  5. Silent_Buddha

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    So here's some speculation on my part depending on whether Nintendo wants their next console (not an updated Switch but the next console) to maintain compatibility with NSW or not.

    If they don't, the Samsung/AMD licensing deal could lead to an SOC that could potentially be attractive for a future hybrid console like the Switch.

    While there is wording in the deal that precludes Samsung from using AMD IP in market segments where AMD already has products, this would be an area where Samsung could arguably make a device for Nintendo. While AMD is in the console space, they aren't in the small device mobile space for all intents and purposes. Since a main concern for Nintendo would be handheld operation that would mean current AMD products are not an option for the device. IE - Samsung is theoretically fine WRT the licensing agreement to make an SOC for Nintendo, if Nintendo wanted it.

    That would combine ARM cores with GPU cores potentially containing AMD IP blocks. Alternatively ARM cores with Samsung developed GPU cores which contain AMD GPU IP but not AMD GPU designs.

    I think that would potentially offer a compelling SOC for Nintendo.

    Now, going with that, it isn't necessary that they actually go with that. They could potentially still approach NV, but with some additional leverage in negotiating price. That could potentially get an NV custom SOC down into a price range that Nintendo would be comfortable with.

    And if that falls through, they could still potentially approach Samsung. They do lose out on NV's development help, however. To what extent that helps them currently though...

    Regards,
    SB
     
    #1145 Silent_Buddha, Jun 20, 2019
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2019
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  6. ToTTenTranz

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    Do we have developers on record making these claims or is this based solely on those release statements from nintendo nvidia?


    In what world does the Switch sell over 100 million units?
    In 2020 most console purchases will start gravitating towards the 9th gen consoles. You think the Switch hardware sales will keep their momentum for another 4 years?



    Here's the absolute craziest thing I think Nintendo could do in the short term:

    1 - Launch a $300-350 Pro Switch version with a 1080p screen and a Tegra X2 that runs current Switch games @ docked mode when mobile (obvious), current Switch is replaced with the $230 Switch Mini;

    2 - Launch a $200-250 Pro Dock for the Pro Switch that has:
    - a cheap SATA hard drive (e.g. 1TB HDD or 256GB SSD)
    - a dedicated stock nvidia GPU running from TX2's PCIe 4x bus. In here they'd put either a low-clocked and cut-down TU116 with 6GB GDDR5, a TU117 with 4GB GDDR5 or an older GP106 with 6GB GDDR5.

    With the Pro Dock they'd enable the Denver cores to make it 4x1.4GHz Cortex A57 + 2x1.4GHz Denver (maybe more if they downclock the iGPU). The iGPU could still be used for compute tasks but all the rasterization would be done on the dGPU.
    This is compatible with the original Foxconn leak that hit absolutely everything right about the Switch back in November 2016, except for the mention of an "advanced model" with the SoC + >200mm^2 secondary chip they were testing but never released.
    With GPU parity with the 8.5 gen consoles Pro/OneX, in this mode the console would run either Switch games at 4K and multiplatform titles that would be digital-only and downloaded directly into the dock's hard drive.
    nVidia would be charged with helping to port the PC versions of the multiplatform games into the Pro Swith+Dock. GPU optimizations for PC games are already done, so they'd need only to port the CPU optimization to their Denver + A57 cores. This is what nvidia's LightSpeed Studio has been doing for the Shield:



    And last year they had been.. porting Nintendo Wii games to the Shield TV.. but only for the chinese market (??).



    A Parker + Advanced Dock could have been in Nintendo's plans for a while, and they've just been waiting for the prices to come down.
     
  7. Shifty Geezer

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    Reference which I came upon yesterday.

    upload_2019-6-21_12-4-34.png
     
  8. Globalisateur

    Globalisateur Globby
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    When was the last time Nintendo did a software emulator to provide BC for their previous console ?
     
  9. BRiT

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    They haven't had to use Software Emulation since each console was just multiples of their previous console assembled, GC to Wii to WiiU. This is the first time in quite a while that doesn't follow that pattern, so it's a bit tougher trying to predict what they will do next.
     
  10. Shifty Geezer

    Shifty Geezer uber-Troll!
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    They've been happy to run emulators for their older systems too, so one assumes Nintendo would be okay with the idea. Whether they could pull it off or not is another matter though - it's a little more complex than their constant NES and SNES emulator updates. ;)
     
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  11. orangpelupa

    orangpelupa Elite Bug Hunter
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    Virtual Console Is An Emulator I Think.

    Why My Android Keyboard Keeps CAPITalizing randomly...
     
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  12. Goodtwin

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    https://www.gamasutra.com/view/news...g_for_the_Switch_9_indie_studios_weigh_in.php

    I am not going to track down every developer comment that I have read, but I believe Virtuous, Panic Button, and Sumo Digital have all gone on record talking about how easy it was to work on the Nintendo Switch. This isn't to say that the performance deficit is easy to deal with, but the development tools themselves are good. Lots of indies have expressed how easy it is to develop on, and that is probably more telling, because many of those games are on an even playing field, because the performance of the Switch is more than adequate for their game thus making the comparison to working on the PS4 and X1 more about the actual development environment, and not just about performance.

    I was actually referring to the Switch successor, and that Nvidia would be looking at developing a custom chip for a product that could potentially sell "upwards" of a 100 million units. As for Switch, it was sitting at 35 million units sold as of March 31st. This is without a price drop. I predict there will be a $199 SKU on the market this year, and with Pokemon releasing this year, moving 20 million units in the fiscal year is very likely. Nintendo has been top dog in the NPD sales for many months in a row now, and Japan is completely dominated by the Switch. Just like the 3DS continued to sell after the Switch, the Switch could sell for 2-3 years after its successor is released.

    9th gen consoles wont impact Switch in a meaningful way. They are two very different products. Switch is selling without the majority of games that thrive on those systems, so it should be obvious that they appeal to consumers in a very different way. Unique library, portability factor, and Nintendo exclusives. 3DS currently sits at 75 million units sold, and I believe the Switch has seen better reception in the US and Europe than the 3DS did.
     
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  13. glow

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    To be fair, the 3DS launched at $250, which dampened a lot of interest until Nintendo cut the price to $170 several months later.
     
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  14. BRiT

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  15. Shifty Geezer

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  16. Goodtwin

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    Nintendo shooting for better battery life is a given, and the potential to eliminate the fan cooling in a Switch Mini could be possible as well. A higher performance model would be possible thanks to this new revision, but will Nintendo want to add another performance profile? I hope so, but I am reluctant to believe they will. People who have overclocked their Switch have proven some pretty valuable gains can be made, and it doesn't seem like the cooling fan is anywhere near maxed out. If Nintendo does open up new higher performance profiles, I would "like" for them to give OG Switch models an option in the settings to use a boost mode. Turn up that fan speed and lets see what it can do. It seemed like the overclock to the CPU was very beneficial, with games like Doom and Wolfenstein 2 running at a locked 30fps with the CPU clocked at 1.4Ghz. One thing is for certain, the Tegra X1 will remain the processor, and its likely just a move to better manufacturing process.
     
  17. Shifty Geezer

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    Nintendo haven't shied away from a second more powerful variant of their handhelds - New 3DS vs 3DS. I think they'll want to have a more powerful variant as they gain from reselling to their core fans, mid-gen refresh style.
     
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  18. cheapchips

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    Pretty sure Nintendo will use the reduce power to make the battery smaller for the same okay duration. For a company that make such joyful games they're cold and calculating as hell. :-D
     
  19. see colon

    see colon All Ham & No Potatos
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    Virtual console isn't backwards compatibility. It' was more of a way for Nintendo to resell games from previous generations on Wii, WiiU, and 3DS, but it neither allowed you to play games you already owned (physically or otherwise) without buying them again, nor did it allow you to play games from the immediate previous generation (something Globalisateur mentioned in his question). If you look back at Nintendo's hardware, they've always used hardware solutions for backwards compatibility. Even things like Gameboy Player and Super Gameboy were hardware.
     
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  20. orangpelupa

    orangpelupa Elite Bug Hunter
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    How about an emulator that allows you to play your purchased games?

    Aren't these allows previous purchasers or not are separate from BC? It's more about licensing, I think.

    Hmm. So both technical and business policy are part of BC.

    (official) BC only works when they works together.
     
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