Xbox in 2000, will its graphics still reign supreme.......!?

Discussion in 'Console Industry' started by Guest, Sep 25, 2002.

  1. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Since there are still DC gamers who felt PS2 tech was a disappointing compared to DC and are now gushing all above the Xbox, anyone wondered how the mighty Xbox(currently) would fare if it was released at the same time as PS2.

    Using PC technology at that time(early 2000), which components will be inside the Xbox?

    IMO, there could be 2 choices == Price or Perfomance

    Price(should MS chose this, bang for the buck and RP US$249, possibly lower)
    P3-500mhz
    32mb SDRAM
    GF2 GTS 16mb SDRAM
    SBLive
    DVD drive

    Performance(should MS chose this, price will not be a concern RP US$399, US$299 could be possible if MS felt generous)
    P3-550mhz
    32mb SDRAM
    GF2Ultra w/ improve register combiners 32mb DDRAM
    SBLive 5.1
    8GB HDD
    BB Network Adaptor
    DVD drive

    No nForce mobo, no DD5.1, no UMA, no fancy DX8 pixel/vertex shaders.

    Looking at the specs, Xbox(then) should still beat out the PS2 in texturing, but what about everything else....
    What j0o sayz? :oops:

    Feel free to correct my specs/price/whateever, am hazy today about older PC technology.
     
  2. zurich

    zurich Kendoka
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    According to Opening the Xbox, Takahashi says that when MS was planning for an October 2000 launch, the specs were:

    P2-400 (realistically would have been a P3-class Katamai for the SSE)
    GeForce 2 derived video (reg combiners)
    ~64 megs of RAM (it was never specified to be DDR or SDR, assuming slowish DDR a la GF1 DDR [166mhz/333mhz])
    UMA architecture
    Hypertransport
    2-4 gig HD

    Remember, the GDC launch used one of the first hot-off-the-fabs NV15 samples.

    The nForce existed back then, but without the fancy sound stuff. Takahashi writes that its been NVIDIAs baby for a while as it epitomised all their tech into one platform, but the PC launch was delayed as the 2001 Xbox took priority.

    So when you look at it, the only major change with the 2001 Xbox was the GF3-derived video. This is supported in the book as the negotiations between MS and NVIDIA over prices took up more than a few chapters. The platform is generally the same, just a few tweaks and the obvious graphics upgrade.

    The book goes on about how MS was hellbent on launching side by side with the PS2, but finally aborted in a gamble to beat Sony with upgraded hardware rather than launch mano-a-mano with ass software. ie: "the Xbox difference".

    So that said, I expect that a 2000 Xbox would probably produce pretty decent visuals, probably on par or so with the GameCube. No PC devs ever used the register combiners due to their static nature, but I'm guessing they'd fit in fairly well in the console world. There's still a decent hunk of ram for textures, and the processor isnt uselessly slow.

    The final result might have looked like GC image quality with sub-PS2 poly counts.

    zurich

    ps: its a damn good book, definitely worth a read.
     
  3. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Well, PS2 official launch was in March 2000. :p

    From the specs you posted, seems like the Xbox then(Oct 2000) will be T&L and fillrate limited. :oops:
     
  4. duffer

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    [Loved your title -- "Come to Life, Iron Chef!"]

    One other big difference -- the Xbox OS software wasn't ready until August 2001. If they'd had to launch a year earlier, they would have had to go with a different, quicker-to-implement, OS strategy.

    My guess is they would have gone with a GUI-less version of Windows 9x. That would make Xbox hacking more interesting, because presumably once the Xbox had been hacked it would have become a normal Win9x box, that could run normal Win9x software.
     
  5. Guest

    Guest Guest

    So does this mean that PS2 h/w is not as bad as certain people made it to be.. Sure, it is neither the messiah 3D rendering, but it is pretty good h/w for its time. :oops:
     
  6. marconelly!

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    "but it is pretty good h/w for its time."

    I've been saying that all along. With 400MHz P3 and a GF2 card (no vertex shaders) I don't think Xbox would really be able to compete at all.
     
  7. Ozymandis

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    Nope. It would have been like a Gamecube :lol:
     
  8. marconelly!

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    I don't think polygon count would be anywhere near as good as that of GC or PS2. 400MHz Intel CPU would just be terrible, can you imagine how games like MGS2 or Halo would run or look on that? What would the fillrate be like?
     
  9. Swiss2

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    .

    what about Naomi2? I'm not positive of the time frame of N2 but they could of possibly used a similar setup back then. Naomi2 games still look mighty impressive even today...
     
  10. PC-Engine

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    Re: .

    Indeed that's why I talked about how easily feasible it was at the time of the PS2 launch to release a NAOMI 2 based console. I'll try to find that thread 8)
     
  11. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Naomi2? Is that the SEGA arcade cabinet running VF4? If it is, you guys have to realize that it had buttloads of RAM. Something which is not too cost efficient for home consoles..... :oops:
     
  12. megadrive0088

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    and now there is talk about when Xbox2 might hit. M$ said that Sony will not have a head start with PS3 as they did with PS2. PS3 is set for a 2005 release, at least in Japan. does this mean we might see XBox in late 2005? maybe. console life span is typically 4-5 years.

    XBox2 might be:

    Intel Prescott 3+ Ghz
    Nvidia NV50/55 based video
    512 MB - 1 GB DDR2 or QDR memory
    100+ GB HDD
     
  13. Vince

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    My guess is more:

    AMD ClawHammer low-end derivative
    nVidia NV4A based video
    ""
    ""

    Does anyone expect NV40 anytime this side of 2004 (maybe Q4 2003)?CineFX is their first significant and truely new microarchitecture since Riva128. I don't expect it to go away anytime soon.

    Also, anyform of Next Generation media? enhanced DVD or BlueRay like?
     
  14. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Bleh, we are talking about Xbox1 in 2000 here, not Xbox2. :wink: :oops:
     
  15. PC-Engine

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    N2 uses cheap SDRAM. It got pretty cheap in 2000 8)
     
  16. Guest

    Guest Guest

    AFAIK, N2 had 32mb main RAM, 2 x 32MB VRAM, 32MB data memory and 8MB of sound memory. If Sony wanted to bleed some cash, they could have given PS2 64mb main RDRAM and 8mb of embedded RAM, that should have given PS2 some uber boost.

    But as with home console, cost efficiency comes in. Thus, not even Xbox in late 2001 had that amount of ram, what more of PS2 in early 2000. 8) :oops:
     
  17. PC-Engine

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    N2 didn't use DDR though it used regular old fashion SDR which was also a lot cheaper than RDRAM and DDR in 2000 making a N2 based console economically feasible in 2000.
     
  18. marconelly!

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    N2 console would probably be as economically feasible in 2000, as PS2 with 64MB RAM and 16MB video memory. That is to say not much :\
     
  19. PC-Engine

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    Actually in this thread http://www.beyond3d.com/forum/viewtopic.php?p=26960&highlight=#26960, I break the estimated cost of a N2 console and compared it to the cost of PS2 during that same time period. It's perfectly feasible according to my estimates.
     
  20. V3

    V3
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    N2 motherboard is pretty big as well. And the cost reduction over time won't be as good. Plus PS2 is probably more flexible than N2, even though it doesn't have the image quality.

    SDR is cheaper in 2000 compare to the likes of RDRAM or DDR, but N2 used quite a bit, wasn't it 32 MB for each segment ? And like I said before, cost reduction won't be as good over time.

    Afterall look at Sega, they are third party now and not doing all that well either, but better though.
     
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