Who said PS2 graphics were bad???

Discussion in 'Architecture and Products' started by Yannis, Apr 14, 2002.

  1. Yannis

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    Hi,

    I just returned from my cousin who bought the PS2. Among the various games he got with it, there were ICO, Metal Gear Solid 2 na Maximo.
    I remember reading in various articles that PS2 couldn't produce very impressive graphics.
    I totally disagree! ICO has the most impressive animation I have ever seen. The river ridge is very realistic.
    MGS2 is also very impressive. When you dive in the water you think ytou are watching some kind of japaneze cartoon.
    Maximo has also great graphics, impressive colors and effects.

    On the other hand I saw XBOX on a demo. From the first moment I figured this was geforce. XBOX and PC seem to produce the same graphics. I cant really explain it, but the XBOX graphics did have a lot in common with my PC's (gf3 ti500).

    I think what differentiates PS2 from XBOX, is the animation and the effects. The underwater effect in MGS2, the animation in ICO and in Maximo are things I have never seen in PC graphics. Why...?

    Just food for thought
    Yannis
     
  2. Sabastian

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    Hmm, well I recently traded my PS2 + 100 $(Canadian) for a brand new x-box. Strangely enough and to my good fortune the guy seemed to think that the PS2 was better.( In terms of specs it is half the machine.) I am not sure this is the right forum to bring this up in but... Anyhow the xbox uses the NV2A (correct me if I am wrong here.) where the GF4 Ti series uses the NV25. I am not sure just what the differences are between the two.(If someone knows anything with regards to this an elaboration would be helpfull.) You are seeing a Geforce when playing the xbox but it is a different version or at least it is in name. I beleive the NV2A is clocked at 233 MHz which is considerably lower clock speed then the NV25. Now for some reason or other they claim that you will have better performance out of the NV2A then the NV25. I after having played a marithon of Halo am not so sure of this. I knowticed in a number of places the xbox had some rather low frame rates in game and on pre rendered scenes. Now I don't know if this was hardware or software related really so it is not possible to point at the machine.( LOL but I wouldn't mind a driver update.) Halo is arguably one of the best First Person Shooters I have ever played, but not because of the graphics. Although they are impressive I find them very much like PC graphics, but I think this is because they intend on launching a PC version of this particular game. In terms of comparing the two consoles in graphics it may not be fair. It may be a matter of time for developers to actually "get down to the metal" of the NV2A but so far nothing I have seen on the xbox impresses me the way Gran Turismo 3 has, so far. The PS2 has some very well polished titles under it so right now in terms of actual games the PS2 is the winner really IMHO. But to be fair the xbox has only been on the market for 5 months and to develope software of this magnatude it takes time.... At anyrate after Halo I am not entirely disapointed with the xbox but after seeing them slow downs in frame rate I am hopeing that MS sneeks a driver update in somehow..... 8)

    Sabastian
     
  3. jvd

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    well

    coming from someone who owns all the systems the best graphics are the dreamcast , very crisp and colorfull . that being said i'm sure you will all come down on me about my choice. The gamecube is the runner up on my list followed by the xbox and then sony...
     
  4. king_iron_fist

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    The Xbox's NV2A is basically a gf3 with an extra vertex shader added. Unfortunately it is only backed up with a sawn off 733Mhz P3 with some of its L2 cache removed. I guess this makes a lot of games cpu limited.


    IMO one of the major things that make the PS2 graphics special is its use of motion blur (sorry to keep on pimping it) which in MGS2 is nearly up to raytracer standards. This makes the animation very fluid and makes the game feel a lot realer than anything an xbox can do.
     
  5. Bambers

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    The NV2A does have an anti aliasing engine like the NV25 though. It can do 4 times as many AA samples as pixels/s the gf3 can only do twice as many.
     
  6. Sabastian

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    I read somewhere the NV2A carries some elements that will be on the NV30, does anyone know just what they are? As a result of this Nvidia representitives said that it should be labeled more accurately NV27.5. At any rate I still have not been overly impressed with the graphics on the xbox as of yet and would think that it is more in the hands of developers to actually reveal what it can do.

    PS if a game actually has 60 Fps does this not give you a natural sort of motion blur?

    Sabastian
     
  7. king_iron_fist

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    60 fps just means that the transition between frames isn't noticable.

    With real motion blur things like textures and shapes should be slightly blurred along the direction of motion. If you watch a real life recording of an F1 race from inside the car and pause 1 frame you will see how blurred the surroundings are.

    You can see the difference motion blur makes by rendering some animations in a decent raytracer. Even though adding motion blur may triple the rendering time it will make it look much more real. Computer graphics tends to be too clean and sharp, in reality there are blemishes and blurs everywhere, this is what can make stuff look real.
     
  8. Sabastian

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    I disagree with your conclusion about framerates and motion blur. Motion blur is a natural occurance in the brain when the information being transported there is too fast for it to be processed. So naturally if a frame rate is above 60 FPS and one cannot see the the transistion in frames then a quick fast movement would be good enough to create motion blur. In real life... hmm, I don't really notice alot of motion blur unless I am taking some potent LSD. IMHO motion blur is like makeup on a woman if there is too much then yuk, however if it is on there and not knowticeable then all it does is make things look pretty. :wink:


    Sabastian
     
  9. Bambers

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    Motion blur is overrated. You will need at least 60 fps even with motion blur for a game to give a good sense of smoothness.

    Its fine for cutscenes but as soon as you start interacting with the scene then the framerate needs to be much higher.

    If I had a choice of 30fps with motion blur or 60 without then I'd choose the 60fps without anytime as I'd have much better feedback from moving the mouse etc.
     
  10. Sabastian

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    Yeah, there is one more thing I would like to point out about Halo that I just found today. I just checked out the multiplayer aspect of the game.... it is absolutly the best. Makes UT look bad. I mean it, I am hopeful that the multiplayer aspect online takes off soon. Because it is fantastic and I am not just saying that. Check it out if you have access to the xbox. I am really very impressed with it. Funny thing is I have never heard anyone say anything about Halo's multiplayer potential, this I find hard to believe. Anyhow just thought I would add this since I was complaining earlier about the slow frame rates in *some* of the single player portions.(For which it totally redeems itself.) The multiplayer aspect of this game makes toast out of anything that I have had the pleasure of playing. Looking forward to the online gaming with it.

    Sabastian
     
  11. OpenGL guy

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    Motion blur

    Motion blur is the blurring a scene can get when a photo is taken. If objects are in motion, then they will move during the time the film is being exposed, leaving a blurred image. The faster the shutter speed, the less blurring that occurs.

    In real life, the human eye doesn't normally see such blurring because everything happens smoothly. Films record "instantaneous" images of a scene, so motion blur helps smooth out transitions from one scene to the next. However, it's the shutter speed and the speed of objects in the scene that will determine how much blurring you will get. Remember, the shutter is always open for a a certain length of time (about 1/60th of a second for 60 fps). Motion blur is why films don't appear jerky on moving objects (however, I can notice things "jumping" from frame to frame in certain cases).

    Most games don't use motion blur, because it is rather expensive to implement. This means that you will see discrete images rendered on each frame; i.e. each frame _is_ an instantaneous snapshot of the screen. If the framerate is very high, the transition between frames will be small and no blurring is needed. However, if the framerate is low, then motion blur can help make things in motion appear to move more smoothly.

    On a PC, you can pretty easily give a good case for motion blur. For example, run Quake 3 and spin around quickly. You should notice that things sort of "jump" across the screen. This is because of the true instantaneous results the game renders and the lack of blurring between frames. I.e. at time t, the game engine draws the scene with object A at position x(t),y(t),z(t), thus there is no motion blur.
     
  12. V3

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    This motion blur was talk alot during Voodoo 5, but from there it seems, its still too expensive for real time.

    But motion blur would definetly smooth out transistion between frames. Maybe its possible to run game at minimum 24 frames/s and it would look smooth, but to implement motion blur, the frame probably need to be drawn multiple times, and it would be cheaper just to do it at 60+ frames or so.

    I think FPS is the game that needs motion blur the most, FPS also probably need pretty high sample for motion blur to look realistic because of the high amount of movement not to mentioned the speed of the movement for it too look better than typical video camera.
     
  13. rhink

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    >>At anyrate after Halo I am not entirely disapointed with the xbox but after seeing them slow downs in frame rate I am hopeing that MS sneeks a driver update in somehow.....<<

    Sure. Every X-Box game is statically linked to any needed OS components. There's not much on the X-Box in terms of OS and driver software.... a very tiny kernel, and the "dashboard" program that lets you configure a few settings. I'm willing to bet the latest NVIDIA driver for the X-GPU is linked into any new game.

    The advantage to this over being able to force a new driver on the X-Box, is the developer KNOWS a game is going to work with the driver it ships with, since there's no opportunity to patch the game after it ships... if you could update a driver, you don't know if that'd break some software... but each new game gets to ship with the newest driver, or at least the one that works best with that particular piece of software.[/list]
     
  14. 3dcgi

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    The Unreal 2 engine will support motion blur.
     
  15. Sharkfood

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    I believe Motion Blur should be treated as a cinematic effect, and not simply looked at as something to run 'full time' in all games.

    Look at the Matrix clone portion of 3DMark2001- the slow motion spots look hokey because there is no motion blur. Any time you have slow-motion for dramatic effect, a motion blur effect makes it look proper as slow-mo in cinematics is always accomplished with a small amount of motion blur natural to the filming process.

    MGS2 uses motion blur like this- for dramatic and cinematic effect. It's also in Jedi Knight II when one of those medical drones injects the player. For such effects, it yields a dramatic feel and greatly heightens the senses.

    On the original topic of the PS2- it's amazing just what pops out of this console. I'm still in total awe over ICO. The environments and engine are just incredible. Nice use of lighting, shading, texturing.. and all this without any mipmapping! Yes, the texture aliasing is ugly to look at... just a bit miffed there is no mipmapping to be found on this console. :(
     
  16. Simon F

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    Just to correct some of the misconceptions that are flourishing here:

    "Motion blurring" should really be called (approximate) temporal antialiasing. If you correctly antialias in time (just as you correctly antialias in screen space) you will get a better result. Just as trying to determine the value of a pixel by taking one point sample per pixel leads to screen aliasing, sampling a moving scene at one instant in time per frame leads to temporal aliasing. The animation is not smooth and can lead to other interesting effects like the infamous "wagon wheels going backwards".

    Films have some amount of temporal antialiasing but it is far from perfect. Although each frame lasts for 1/24th of a second, the camera's shutter is only open for about 1/2 of that time. If they could hold the shutter open for longer the animation would look better.

    I believe that video cameras do a better job. As suggested, if you look at a static frame of car racing, the cars are blurred, yet at full rate the animation is smooth. Watch out, however, for the special "sports" video cameras that are sometimes used for freeze frames - the frozen frames look very sharp but at full rate the video looks 'jerky'.

    Getting back to computer graphics, it would be better if there was some form of motion blur in real-time graphics, but the cost is probably prohibitive.
     
  17. OpenGL guy

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    Actually, films are made at 24 fps, but displayed at 48 fps (each frame is shown twice) to reduce flicker.
     
  18. nAo

    nAo Nutella Nutellae
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    umh..isn't it the same thing?
     
  19. Simon F

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    I wasn't talking about the display of the film (i.e. the projector) but the "recording" i.e. sampling, process done by the camera.
     
  20. pcchen

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    I was thinking about this: since current video cards are very fast for some old games, is it possible to modify the driver to automatically blend some frames for a motion-blur effect? For an example, suppose a video card can achieve 200fps on a specific game. With V-sync at 75Hz, it should be able to blend three "sub-frames" into one frame.

    This is a bit similar to current "force antialiasing" setup, but can be adaptive. I once tried to do such thing in my program, but I found that it is hard to cut it when vsync is near. So I think the best way of doing this should be maintaining a lot of back buffers (such as four), and let the program renders into these buffers continuously (without waiting for vsync). When the video card is ready to swap buffer (V-sync is near), it blends all rendered back buffers into frame buffer.

    Of course I am not sure about this. Perhaps it is not suitable for FPS games, perhaps adative motion blur is not a good idea. But I believe there will be some game types appreciate such effects, adaptive or not.
     
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