PlayStation 3 Ok, I'm damned impressed right now.

#1
In spite of being anti console, and in spite of all my friends hating the ps3, and loving the xbox. Which is a nice box and all, and I've played a lot on both the xboxes and the wii. And I hate proprietary solutions made for hypothetical users that don't exist. And I hate Sony for single- handedly causing the death of Symbian and UIQ when choosing Windows Mobile - which just results in wose phones for everyone. In spite of that, because I could get my hands on a cell- processor for almost nothing, I went out and bought a ps3 anyway.

And I have just one thing to say: what the hell is wrong with the 360 people? I know the theory behind the cell, the hypervisor, and so on - but good god. I've just played Lair, and it has more background computations in real time that you get on an xbox in a year. And where is the xbox fog? Nowhere, that's where it is. Up to seven controllers at a time - been trying four with an USB controller pulled in - and no lag. None. Split- screen actually works.

Oh, and did I mention the box is completely silent? My WD passport USB disk (just watched a film from it through the game- OS) makes more noise. Compare that to the xbox - riduculous. Parllel computing i coming with a vengeance to the consumer market, and thanks to the xbox fans who hate the ps3, and buy MS junk, I can now buy a cell- rig with all the accessories for almost nothing, far under the production cost. Perfect.

Now, I'm off playing "flow" while waiting for Mirror's Edge to come out. And then I'm going to install linux on it. Yeah, did I meantion you can install linux on it? First test- run yesterday went without a hitch. A ray- tracing scene I had laying around took about one percent of the time it took on my 2,4Ghz machine. Thank you and goodbye, x86 and intel.
 

agphoenix

Everything goes.
#2
I've got both and to tell you the truth, each ones got its pros and cons. Graphically, there's a nice little 'competition awareness' part on the GameSpot:Video Games PC PlayStation 2 Xbox 360 Wii PS3 GameCube PSP DS GBA PS2 PlayStation 3 site. They take screen-shots from various games from both consoles. And they do this great and nifty thing where you can roll your mouse over the screen-capture and it automatically switches to the other console's screen-shot of the same scene.
Technically, I honestly don't know enough and couldn't really care about 360 having 4 somethings and PS3 having 7 etc. etc. I believe it's in the way the developers manage to use the hardware. You'll notice on the site that the PS3 is superior in some games in different categories, and vice-versa. They also go over the animation at the time of the screen-capture. Extremely productive idea I think.
Here's the other part though; Blu-Ray. I've been keeping up with all the specs, reviews, costs and everything related between standalone players and the PS3's player. When I first bought the console I just thought to myself, 'Aaah...just a way to ask for more money...throw in what'll probably be an entry-level piece of s#!t Ray reader'. Not so. From a lot of looking around and comparing, it's actually very competitive, if not superior to many Ray-readers out there. THEN taking the console's price into consideration made a huge impact about how I compared the two.
Like I said, I own both and never have I jumped up and screamed OMG this is freakin' amazing while the other one is shiite. I'm not an on-line gamer so I couldn't care less. I'm extremely impressed by the PS3's BR.reader, but it's not going to be my primary player anyway. So I suppose I'm not a fanatic about either side as many are. Good God you should hear/read some of the noise some make!
Thanks for the tech. info though. Enjoy the games!
 
#3
:D ..one thing to be said about that test is that they pick up games that were initially made for a linear computing platform, and then adapted to a multi- process core afterwards. Even if the developers sometimes call that "cross- platform". But typically you have a set of processes that will be dependent on how fast the processor is on peak speeds, and then held back by the amount of computing done in the background.. Instead of really exploiting the ppc architecture, and just running it on the speed of the slowest and biggest process. Mostly the "increased image quality" crap comes from overlay functions in the hypervisor.

..just so we're clear on this. It's not that the xbox has four cores and the ps3 has seven(eight, seven usable to increase reliability on the production, and decrease returns). The xbox has four cores that distribute load on atomic instructions internally on the processor. The ps3(or any other distributed system) can complete different processes asynchronously. Which means that real- time computing of different objects can be designed so that it's done in a fraction of the time it would take on a linear system.

Think of it like this: if you wanted to calculate a sin(x) curve of some sort for a surface, then one option would be to calculate every single point on the curve. Which is what you would do on any core duo or amd64 system. And then one of these functions would need a couple of perhaps hundred clock- cycles to complete.

If, on the other hand, the curve is calculated (once, we presume), and you are simply doing a bunch of invariants of the same function then we could instead maybe calculate one sin(x) per clock- cycle. Meaning that the potential for saving clock- cycles is ridiculous - and the performance is really only limited by amdahls theorem on parallel computing.

So while I still enjoy playing games on the xbox, I really don't think there's any competition when it comes to computing power.. or dynamic backgrounds and 3d transformations. The xbox might be able in theory to pull slightly more gigaflops through the graphics card. But will only do so at the cost of framerate and playability. Meaning that the only benefit might be for the pre- rendered scenes.

And since I am an extremist :p it's obvious to me that the only thing that keeps the xbox alive is that it's easier to develop for it. But this will change very quickly once more developers realize what they can do here.
 

agphoenix

Everything goes.
#4
:D ..one thing to be said about that test is that they pick up games that were initially made for a linear computing platform, and then adapted to a multi- process core afterwards. Even if the developers sometimes call that "cross- platform". But typically you have a set of processes that will be dependent on how fast the processor is on peak speeds, and then held back by the amount of computing done in the background.. Instead of really exploiting the ppc architecture, and just running it on the speed of the slowest and biggest process....
I'll rephrase: I just about know how to turn on a computer! :D My experience comes from playing the games.

..just so we're clear on this. It's not that the xbox has four cores and the ps3 has seven(eight, seven usable to increase reliability on the production, and decrease returns). The xbox has four cores that distribute load on atomic instructions internally on the processor. The ps3(or any other distributed system) can complete different processes asynchronously. Which means that real- time computing of different objects can be designed so that it's done in a fraction of the time it would take on a linear system...
Again...:-/

...But will only do so at the cost of framerate and playability. Meaning that the only benefit might be for the pre- rendered scenes....
This part I do understand and disagree with just in practicality, not in terms of potential advantages. I do appreciate you trying to explain the terms and functionality of things, but I do know for a fact that there are games that are better-looking and have a better frame-rate on one console compared to the other. And I mean keeping all other aspects like surround sound, volumetric lighting, textures, resolution et cetera in mind. No, off the top of my head I can't name a particular game but if I was to go pop in everyone of my games in both consoles, I'm sure I could give you numerous examples. Again, I think that at this point in time, I don't believe there's a significant difference in performance, leaving hard specs out of it. Why leave the specs out of it? Because you're probably right about the ability to develop becoming a lot more efficient for the PS3 in the near future.

You could have a Lamborghini Gallardo and a Saleen race each other through town. Looking at the specs, the Gallardo ought to perform like a Pinto compared to the Saleen. But I guarantee you it'll get to the finish line a lot sooner if the driver knows what he's doing. And as an analogy, you're perfectly right about the fact that once a better driver for the Saleen jumps into the cockpit [!], it'll blow away the Gallardo. But for now...the frame-rate and playability issues are few and far between. And not very pronounced at that.

Btw that site also has a section that discusses very detailed internal specs and performance and technical jargon which you will obviously understand a lot more than I do! Like I said, I rate it by what I see today. But I hope you're right about the future!
 
#5
Mhm :) Actually, your analogy would be perfectly fine, except tha the punto would be the ps3, and the tricked out gallardo would be the xbox. Because it has better raw specs, but the architecture makes it fit for one type of processing only. And I'm not exaggerating when I'm mentioning they are only comparing games where the xbox is on level, simply because the asynchronous architecture isn't used in any good way.

For example, let's see Lair and flow run on the xbox? But - does that make the other games any more less fun - of course not. I'm just saying that the possibilities are utterly awesome here.

Btw, there was a good explanation on the idea behind it on "[email protected]" - a project where you can donate processing power to research on Stanford U.

http://folding.stanford.edu/English/FAQ-PS3
 
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agphoenix

Everything goes.
#6
That actually IS a pretty interesting article. Didn't try and understand all the details, but it was interesting as hell. Thanks. The FAH idea was nice.

...I'm just saying that the possibilities are utterly awesome here...
And like I said, I hope that comes true really soon, because then I'll have an even better machine to play with. If your thread is about being impressed by the PS3, then hell yeah, so am I. If the thread's about being impressed by the PS3 and not the X360...then you understand why I have both! Best of both worlds until one world gets better. Either way, no losses for me. Enjoying them equally right now and as soon as the PS3 kicks into that next gear, I'll be able to enjoy even more. Money well-spent and that makes me happy. :)
 
#7
Yeah. Imagine getting a desktop with 3d windows rotating on a cube doing real- time drawing of the program context it represents. Probably won't be "Minority report" just yet, but we're pretty close when it's possible to get something like this box for a reasonable amount of money.

Props to the linux- people at Sony as well, for making interfaces and modules for the system that works. (never thought I'd say something like that..)
 

agphoenix

Everything goes.
#8
I was watching some ad for a touchscreen scrolling laptop or something. I thought of Minority Report then too! HA! That'd be cool.
 
#9
Your PC says: :cry: { he'll be back, right? )

I love PC gaming and I most definitely has it's own place but I've always had consoles alongside it. You can't beat the true gaming experience of having a few mates over, pizza and beer supplies and some quality games beaming out your 40" flatscreen.

I really don't think you can go wrong either way this generation. Without getting into details, I think the 360/PS3 both have legitimate positives and negatives but the fact remains; you'll have a blast on either. That won't stop the fanboy wars though, even if they were both identical products with a different tag on top. Thanks to Sony's foot finding its way to its mouth, they had a slow start but it's slowly evening out. It's always a good time to be a gamer but these are champagne moments.

Glad to hear you're enjoying yourself. Let the good times (and corpse) roll! :D
 
#10
Your PC says: :cry: { he'll be back, right? )
I don't know. Once I have the time to compile all the programs I need, I'll have a functional linux boot for office, mail, browsing, ripping, videos, etc - and an awesome gaming platform, with a jukebox and so on.. and a (good)blu-ray player on both.

So I'll happily ditch pc- gaming, x86, 3d card drivers and wifi card problems - and the psu running to 400w, with a cooling solution that sounds like an idling plane (mine was a lot of low decibel papst fans, but the cooling on the graphics card and the processor..) - I have no problems getting rid of that.

Besides, I can still play ScummVm games, and most of the pc games I like on linux. Same goes for any win-only programs - they can be run in wine, or replaced altogether.

So it's basically time for developers to stop fretting about not being able to get direct access to the video ram, and just write good modularized and platform independent code. As well as start to presume generic parallel processing options.