Velocity Architecture - more than 100GB available for game assets

Discussion in 'Console Technology' started by invictis, Apr 22, 2020.

  1. function

    function None functional
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    That's a good spot!

    MS were targeting ~5GB/s (after decompression) based on their profiling, but the decompression block didn't even work properly until this year. So 'early on' it would probably make sense to attain that speed using raw transfers and a none final setup.

    So basically a 5GB/s setup using all four lanes, swapped out for 2.4 + compression on later hardware.
     
  2. rntongo

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    you are 100% right!! I completely misread it.
     
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  3. scently

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    Have you listened to the interview? Can you point me to the exact point in the video where the Dirt 5 dev made the statement that it this is without the decompression block? Thanks.
     
  4. PSman1700

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    Yes otherwise it would be 7GB/s before decompression even comes into play.
     
  5. turkey

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    Not sure why but I trawled through for the "forum" aka racing BRiT ;)

    1:hr24m

     
    #265 turkey, Nov 20, 2020
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2020
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  6. rntongo

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    Again, you're absolutely right and I misread it. Otherwise it's still unclear how this 10GB in 2 seconds could be achieved. I remember seeing a linkedin screen grab of someone that had worked on Project Scarlett and the SSD was x4 lanes IIRC but then it later came out to be x2 lanes. So your hypothesis is possible that early devkits had faster SSDs. But that would mean the dirt 5 dev was misleading. If true he should have stated that clearly. Either way he claims the system can do more than 10GB in 2 seconds which is good because the chances of filling up 10GB in less than 2 seconds can mean having a larger active set of RAM just like Cerny showed for the PS5.
     
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  7. scently

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    Huh. Thanks. I heard the part where and when he said the hardware was capable of 10gb/2s and I thought that was what was referred to in the article and he never said anything about the decompression block. But having listened to the part you noted he actually made that statement.
    I am of the mind to believe him. The reason being he is not just a "dev" with that annotation attached to him just because he works in the game industry. He is an actual dev. A technical director who has had hands-on with the hardware early on so he knows what he is talking about. Also, one of the Xbox hardware dev did state that the 2.4gb/s was conservative and it could go higher than that but they just want to state the sustained speed.
     
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  8. pjbliverpool

    pjbliverpool B3D Scallywag
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    How do you explain that this claim would see the Series X significantly exceeding the theoretical limit of the PCIe 4.0 2x link which we know connects the SSD to the APU?
     
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  9. DSoup

    DSoup meh
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    Yeah. It's interesting because having made the 10GB/sec statement, one of the other guys on the stream challenges him on why Microsoft are marketing it at half that and he said something odd like you shouldn't be loading 1 texture at a time, you should be loading 500, which doesn't answer the question at all. I think he's just made a mistake, maybe he is mis-remembering the exact figure, maybe he's mixing up GB and Gb or maybe the between his "early testing" and production something changed. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

    It's possible that Microsoft have something additional on the I/O controller side that can boost bandwidth in certain situations but given how open Microsoft are when discussing their hardware, it is odd that they would not have mentioned it. Series X's system architect disused the NVME and I/O solution with Digital Foundry and there is no suggestion of anything more.
     
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  10. Johnny Awesome

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    No secret sauce. Xbox SSD is 2.4 GB/s. Period. SFS is going to help make up the difference, but Sony will always have the edge on I/O speed IMO.

    Despite being a proud XSX owner. I have to stay true to my belief that neither company has secret sauce.

    That's not to say that tools and dev skill won't greatly improve. They will.
     
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  11. DSoup

    DSoup meh
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    Perhaps not so much skill as experience. This console gen will represent a paradigm shift for devs in rethinking data; formatting data, storing data, and loading data - if they want to minimise load times as much as possible. It's not as easy as it sounds, hence why its around six seconds to get into Spider-Man but 20+ seconds to get into Demon Souls, a PS5 exclusive game. Decades of conventional wisdom needs throwing out. Hopefully Insomniac will share their experiences at GDC, as will other devs when they begin to wrestle with this.
     
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  12. John Norum

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    simply we have not access to real HW data, there could be some customizations on the I/O that we don't know about, I just believe the developer, he is a trusted actual dev working on the hardware, used to talk about data numbers, no need to think he was wrong, I think this is not the case. At the end of the day it is capable of 10 GB tranfert in 2 seconds
    Anyway game loading time is not double than ps5, are very comparable, in some cases slower, in some cases even faster, so there's something that we're missing
     
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  13. function

    function None functional
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    I'm sure the XSX and XSX are able to read 10GB / 2s because they have a PCI-E 4 interface and the IO stack is streamlined. That doesn't mean that the final consumer units will have SSDs in that can provide that.

    The early dev kits he specified didn't have a properly functional hardware decompression block (that came in 2020), so speeds that this early kit hit raw, later kits were able to effectively reach using HW decompression and cheaper, less power hungry drives.

    MS could probably put faster drives in the XSX later when they're cheaper and cooler (even the current controller can support faster speeds), but the baseline would always have to be what we have now, and that wouldn't make the IO block and its decompression hardware any faster.

    I think the setup has been designed with fast movement of a camera through a detailed gameworld, where the game is ideally using SFS, very much in mind. I expect MS will have done their homework, and that it'll hold up well to this. Most of the time, during gameplay, I think the bottleneck will be somewhere else.
     
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  14. PSman1700

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    Was expecting no load times at all after all the hype, or maybe a second or two. The biggest game changer was going to be the CPU DF thought.
     
  15. DSoup

    DSoup meh
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    Who to believe and who to think maybe got it wrong? Game dev or Microsoft technical fellow and Xbox system architect Andrew Goossen?

    Hmmm.. tough one. :nope:
     
    #275 DSoup, Dec 20, 2020
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2020
  16. Metal_Spirit

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    I cannot say this for sure, but I'm guessing the Dev made a mistake somewhere.
    The SSD has a sustained speed of 2.5 GB/s. Shure, it may go higher on peak transfers, but you cannot count on that.
    The controller also claims a maximum of 3.8 GB/s. So if this Dev managed to find a way to break the rules of phisics, he may as well share it with the world, because I would like to know how much a 5.5GB/s sustained SSD can transfer, although I'm guessing 22 GB in 2 seconds using the same math.
     
    #276 Metal_Spirit, Dec 20, 2020
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2020
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  17. pjbliverpool

    pjbliverpool B3D Scallywag
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    It's actually a peak transfer speed of 2.4GB/s. With very well managed data it may be able to hit and even sustain that at times, but it's never going to go above it without decompression. Not that that's anything to worry about. That's an insane level of real world speed compared to everything we've seen to date.
     
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  18. AlphaWolf

    AlphaWolf Specious Misanthrope
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    No. Not peak. That's a claimed sustained value.
     
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  19. pjbliverpool

    pjbliverpool B3D Scallywag
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    Yes and under ideal circumstances the peak can presumably be sustained. The reality is that the peak is determined by the controller capabilities and memory speed though, and Microsoft have based their specification on that (as have Sony).

    Let's say the XSX SSD really was operating with the fastest, most expensive memory that it's Phison E19T controller was able to handle meaning that it could transfer 3.75GB/s or 7.5GB/s with BCPACK compression. Do you seriously think that Microsofts multimillion dollar marketing machine wouldn't pick up on that fact and use it? And that they'd rather use the estimated real world throughput when Sony are by contrast using the theoretical maximum throughput?
     
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  20. BRiT

    BRiT (>• •)>⌐■-■ (⌐■-■)
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    Or maybe just maybe they went with sustained speed because they know its a major issue with throttling for PC NVME.
     
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