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Old 06-28-2013, 09:02 PM   #1
galego
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Lightbulb The real reasons Microsoft and Sony chose AMD for consoles [F]

Some speculated that the reason was that AMD is cheap, but the real reasons are that competitors lacked the technology.

POWER, ARM, MIPS, or X86?

Power: No apps. Obsolete for the required performance per watt.

MIPS: Not enough developer ecosystem. Not enough horsepower to power the new consoles.

ARM: Not enough horsepower. 64-bit architecture wasn't ready.

Winner: X86

Nvidia, Intel, or AMD?

Nvidia: No X86-based SOC

Intel: No custom SOC. Bad graphics.

Winner: AMD

Now that is why Sony and Microsoft both chose a X86 design from AMD.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/patrickm...-for-consoles/
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Old 06-28-2013, 09:36 PM   #2
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Don't fool yourself. The only real reason is performance per dollar.
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Old 06-28-2013, 10:05 PM   #3
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every console was PowerPC last generation, and this yahoo just writes it off as if Microsoft/sony didn't even consider that option.

Microsoft chose AMD for price, Sony chose them for TTM (and price).
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Old 06-28-2013, 10:16 PM   #4
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AMD probably offered one heck of a deal to secure both consoles. Margins will likely be quite low in comparison though.
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Old 06-28-2013, 10:18 PM   #5
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I say it's because Microsoft and Sony wanted an APU - not a CPU with a GPU stuck on. There are only two companies in the world that make APUs. AMD were the better on price /performance.
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Old 06-28-2013, 10:23 PM   #6
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There are only two companies in the world that make APUs.
There are literally thousands of companies that make APUs.
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Old 06-28-2013, 10:38 PM   #7
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does any1 know how fast is the GPU inside both consoles? I mean in comparison to current stand alone gcards?
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Old 06-28-2013, 10:45 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Zodiark1593 View Post
AMD probably offered one heck of a deal to secure both consoles. Margins will likely be quite low in comparison though.
^

Intel gets cranky if its margins are under 60%.

I wonder what AMD's margin will be? 2-3%?
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Old 06-28-2013, 10:52 PM   #9
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2% - 3% margins on hundreds of million of units is nothing to sneeze at, however I would be surprised if it we not in the 15% - 20% range.
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Old 06-28-2013, 10:53 PM   #10
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Dumb question, but why are they x86 instead of x64?
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Old 06-28-2013, 10:54 PM   #11
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2% - 3% margins on hundreds of million of units is nothing to sneeze at, however I would be surprised if it we not in the 15% - 20% range.
If it was 15-20%, then everyone and their brother except Intel would have been wooing the next gen consoles.

AMD are the only people to show up for bidding.

Well, them and VIA.
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Old 06-28-2013, 10:58 PM   #12
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If ever there was an obvious and only choice for MS and Sony, this gen of consoles was it. Simply put no one else has the tech suitable for the form factor/performance/feature set. There is no other APU like device out there at any price that would meet the needs for the PS4/Xbone anyway, so the price argument is moot.
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Old 06-28-2013, 11:03 PM   #13
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Dumb question, but why are they x86 instead of x64?
x86 architecture w/ EMT64
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Old 06-28-2013, 11:05 PM   #14
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Dumb question, but why are they x86 instead of x64?
Every x86 chip is just called x86, whether it has 64-bit capability or not.

x86 also came from Intel's 8086 processor, which was 16-bit.
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Anyway, I believe AMD won because they had the right product. Jaguar and GCN sound like a good combo for an optimized console.
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Old 06-28-2013, 11:17 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by AustinInDallas View Post
Dumb question, but why are they x86 instead of x64?
Are x86_64. Both the new x86_64 and the old x86_32 are x86. The article is not wrong, but was not precise.

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If ever there was an obvious and only choice for MS and Sony, this gen of consoles was it. Simply put no one else has the tech suitable for the form factor/performance/feature set. There is no other APU like device out there at any price that would meet the needs for the PS4/Xbone anyway, so the price argument is moot.
Yes, evidently both chose AMD because neither Nvidia nor Intel could provide the hardware needed.

What I didn't know is that they considered MIPS and ARM before choosing x86. It was particularly interesting to read that simulated ARM performance.
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Old 06-28-2013, 11:29 PM   #16
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Yes, evidently both chose AMD because neither Nvidia nor Intel could provide the hardware needed.
This, naturally, is just another example of your Intelophobia. It is certainly not the case that Intel couldn't provide a custom SOC. It is simply that Intel didn't want to do so, because they didn't feel it was in their best business interests. AMD did.

And that hints at the important other half of the equation that is ignored by this article -- who wins a contract depends on the needs and wants of both parties. A company hungry for business will work harder to get that business. AMD was chosen in large part because AMD really needed to be chosen, and Intel didn't.

The "real reason" AMD won the contract is that it needed to, much as who gets a job sometimes boils down to who is willing to accept the lowest salary.

Personal attacks will NOT be tolerated. We are here to discuss technology; discussion of other posters is off-topic at best, and destructive at worst
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Old 06-29-2013, 03:59 AM   #17
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This, naturally, is just another example of your Intelophobia. It is certainly not the case that Intel couldn't provide a custom SOC. It is simply that Intel didn't want to do so, because they didn't feel it was in their best business interests. AMD did.
I wonder why you feel the need to ignore the facts before attacking me.
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Old 06-29-2013, 04:01 AM   #18
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This is pretty much what I said when people asked "why AMD?" when the selection was first announced:

ARM 64 bit was not far enough along, would have had to put off the console until at least next year's holiday season. Nvidia missed out on offering its own APU by a year or two.

Intel is too expensive and inflexible (even though they've started to give signals they want to change that, at least a bit). MS was burned by that with original XBox.

Take those two points and then throw in that AMD can offer a highly integrated CPU+GPU product.

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Old 06-29-2013, 04:09 AM   #19
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Intel is too expensive and inflexible (even though they've started to give signals they want to change that, at least a bit). MS was burned by that with original XBox.
Wasn't that Nvidia who burnt MS on original XBox?
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Old 06-29-2013, 04:11 AM   #20
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Wasn't that Nvidia who burnt MS on original XBox?
No it was Intel. Or rather MS inability to do a proper deal.
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Old 06-29-2013, 04:23 AM   #21
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I'd just like to say that I'm finding galego's sigs absolutely hilarious. Incredible wit.

edit:

And on topic.

"The requirement for a custom SOC removed Intel from the running, as well as their graphics."
"The requirement for an X86-based SOC ostensibly removed Nvidia"

No [surprise] sherlock, tell us something we didn't know.


No profanity in the tech forums, please.

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Old 06-29-2013, 04:40 AM   #22
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This, naturally, is just another example of your Intelophobia. It is certainly not the case that Intel couldn't provide a custom SOC. It is simply that Intel didn't want to do so, because they didn't feel it was in their best business interests. AMD did.
Whether or not Intel wanted to can be debated for ever - personally I doubt they cared. However, I see no way for Intel to get anything near the perf/Watt of an 8-core jaguar (30W) and 12-18 CU graphics for ~50-100W, in volume.
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Old 06-29-2013, 04:54 AM   #23
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If they had gone with Intel, they would have had to either go with an off-die GPU from Nvidia or AMD, or try to get one of them to put their tech on-die for some kind of Franken-SoC...

AMD was the only logical choice as far as I can tell.
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Old 06-29-2013, 05:06 AM   #24
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If they had gone with Intel, they would have had to either go with an off-die GPU from Nvidia or AMD, or try to get one of them to put their tech on-die for some kind of Franken-SoC...

AMD was the only logical choice as far as I can tell.
Considering that it doesnt support HSA. Ondie or not didnt matter much. Its all about the price. AMD was simply the company willing to go the lowest. And the result is anything but impressive. A mainstream GPU with an ultra lowend CPU.
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Old 06-29-2013, 05:10 AM   #25
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If they had gone with Intel, they would have had to either go with an off-die GPU from Nvidia or AMD, or try to get one of them to put their tech on-die for some kind of Franken-SoC...

AMD was the only logical choice as far as I can tell.
AMD was probably by far the best choice, because of cost and flexibility.

Intel would probably limit the level of customization, and production to their fabs
and probably the price was not right?

but I'm pretty sure, considering the iris 5200 that Intel could build a better GPU, if it made sense for them, like the consoles offer much higher memory bandwidth.
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