Sunday, September 14, 2014
PS4 50 Percent More Powerful Than Xbox One – Report

PS4 50 Percent More Powerful Than Xbox One – Report

Xbox One’s specs are out in the open. Well, not quite. According to Eurogamer’s tech analysis arm Digital Foundry, Microsoft wasn’t completely forthcoming with the console’s specs at the reveal event, however slip ups by certain members of its hardware branch, and language used during the machine’s unveiling by some executives revealed enough to compare Xbox One and PS4 side-by-side. The results? PS4 turns out to be 50% more powerful than Xbox One.

Through a process of extrapolation from the drip-feed of hard facts, the make-up of the One’s GPU is confirmed – 12 compute units each capable of 64 ops/clock gives us the 768 total revealed by Microsoft and thus, by extension, the 1.2 teraflop graphics core.

So that’s another tick on the Durango leaked spec that has been transposed across to the final Xbox One architecture and the proof we need that PlayStation 4′s 18 CU graphics core has 50 per cent more raw power than the GPU in the new Microsoft console.

But that’s not all. Microsoft also went with GDDR3 RAM where Sony chose GDDR5, the latter being a much faster and efficient tech than the former. Thing is, Microsoft, because of its unflinching focus on TV and other multimedia offerings for Xbox One, had to secure RAM at an early stage of the console’s development, while Sony on the other hand could chase a moving target.

Here’s how DF puts it:

The answer to that comes down to a specific gamble Sony made that Microsoft could not – the utilisation of a unified pool of GDDR5 memory. In the early days of PS4 development, only 2GB of this type of memory looked viable for a consumer-level device. As higher density modules became available, this was duly upgraded to 4GB. By the time of the reveal back in February, Sony had confidence that it could secure volume of 512MB modules and surprised everyone (even developers) by announcing that PS4 would ship with 8GB of unified GDDR5 RAM. The design of its surrounding architecture would not need to change throughout this process – one set of 16 GDDR5 chips would simply be swapped out for another.

Microsoft never had the luxury of this moving target. With multimedia such a core focus for its hardware, it set out to support 8GB of RAM from day one (at the time giving it a huge advantage over the early PS4 target RAM spec) and with serious volume of next-gen DDR4 unattainable in the time window, it zeroed in on supporting DDR3 and doing whatever was necessary to make that work on a console. The result is a complex architecture – 32MB of ESRAM is added to the processor die, along with “data move engines” to courier information around the system as quickly as possible with bespoke encode/decode hardware to alleviate common bottlenecks. Bottom line: if you’re wondering why Xbox One has a weaker GPU than PlayStation 4, it’s because both platform holders have similar silicon budgets for the main processor – Sony has used the die-space for additional compute units and ROPs (32 vs. 16 in One), while Microsoft has budgeted for ESRAM and data move engines instead. From the Xbox perspective, it’s just unfortunate for Microsoft that Sony’s gamble paid off – right up until the wire, it was confident of shipping with twice the amount of RAM as PlayStation 4.

So PS4 is now way more powerful than Xbox One and that, it seems, is final.

Source: Digital Foundry.

About Ernice Gilbert

Ernice Gilbert here. Founder and Editor-In-Chief of Gamesthirst. Thanks for stopping by, make yourself at home!
  • Jason

    and the ps3 is more powerful than the 360. Doesn’t mean shit if its not the lead design console, that why sony is so itchy to got on x84 architecture

  • Billy Jester

    Judging the heat going around…I’d say the tides have reversed. This time will be determined by the games…just like last time. Early adopters have been scalded…surely they could have mustard at least ONE exclusive during the reveal…to give something to wet ones pallet. Instead the masses got the one game that sells easily on everything that computes games…why not go for CoD exclusivity??? That would have been very big, no ONE would have anything else to talk about.

  • sinn1

    Actually Jason you are incorrect the PS3 and the 360 have one on each other. The 360 has a superior GPU, while the PS3′s CPU is heads and shoulders better. It made both consoles equal. However the difference between GDDR3 and GDDR5…that’s like comparing a Camaro to a Porsche 911gt. In the graphics department the Xbox One is done. Unless there is something they held back and it’s possible.

  • Shaniqua1990

    you don’t understand the difference between DDR3 (not GDDR3) and GDDR5,

    GDDR5 is a subset of DDR3 and its optimized for throughout at the cost of timings. In layman’s terms when you need to push large amounts of data very fast, GDDR5 would perform better. When you want to push small amounts of data very fast, DDR3 is much better.

  • digitalicecream

    The company that lets me start a game on my pc, and complete the game on my console, gets my money.

  • Vincent Stimpson

    Here is a great video explaining the power of both consoles:

  • jackfaktor

    8GB of GDDR5 is totally insane and almost hard to believe even since it’s been confirmed. Microsoft designers must have had their jaws on the floor when they heard that. Mark my words, there will be PS4 shortages; GDDR5 isn’t exactly readily available. That’s the reason there’s still no PS4 release date.

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  • Erik Colquitt

    Its 2006 All over again.
    The PS3 was supposed to be twice as powerfull as the 360.
    Then Crysis 2 came and silenced the graphics pundits by having the best looking version on the 360.
    In fact All the 360 multiplats looked and played better on the 360.
    Sony is very good at letting the fanboys on the Forums and the Idiot pop press do all their Work for them.
    No one bothered to ask Why at E3 2013 that with the exception of Infamous SS, nearly All the X1 exclusives looked better than the PS4′s.
    But i guess PT Barnum was right all those years ago about Suckers being born every minute.

  • Ken6240

    Killzone was and is still the best looking game of any console shown to date.