Tech blog Digital Foundry reports that sources “intimately involved with the alliances and deal-making within their sector” have effectively confirmed that Nintendo and nVidia are teaming up for the next DS. The report also mentions that Sony has formed an alliance with IMG for the PSP2, which is expected to be a “technological monster.” While neither devices have been flat-out confirmed by both groups, Digital Foundry tosses around some tentative tech specs for the next generation of handheld gaming supposedly leaked by industry insiders.
Tech blog Digital Foundry reports that sources “intimately involved with the alliances and deal-making within their sector” have effectively confirmed that Nintendo and nVidia are indeed teaming up for the next DS iteration. The report also mentions that Sony has formed an alliance with IMG for the PSP2.
While neither devices have been flat-out confirmed by both groups, Digital Foundry tosses around some tentative tech specs for the next generation of handheld gaming supposedly leaked by industry insiders. It’s a long post, so we’ll just get a few snippets for each handheld.
Here’s what they can say about the DS2:
So, how does the Tegra 2 we expect to see in the new Nintendo handheld stack up? Let’s just say that it is a significant improvement, and a colossal jump in performance compared to the current DS. While the amount of vertex shader units remains the same, TMUs and pixel shaders are doubled, and as the chip will be manufactured at a physically smaller size (40nm perhaps, versus the current Tegra’s 65nm), we can expect a reasonable bump in clock speed too. Our sources can only speculate at this point, but suspect anything up to 300MHz is possible, depending on just how much the platform holders want to concentrate on battery power. The faster the chip, the more impact it has on battery life.
Regardless, there’s no doubt that the new Nintendo unit will have a useful graphical power boost over what’s been seen in the currently available Tegra devices, and in terms of the tech demo discussed previously, we also need to factor in that handheld consoles are unlikely to require full WVGA 800×480: an iPhone utilises a 480×320 screen, for example. Fewer pixels means more effects or potentially higher frame-rates.
And here’s what PSP fans can allegedly expect from the PSP2:
From what we’ve learned about the in-development PSP2, the device is going to be a technological monster. Insiders in the mobile space are fully aware that a deal has been struck between Sony and IMG (creators of the PowerVR derivatives found in the iPhone) and, as previously reported by Eurogamer, a multi-core variant of the forthcoming SGX543 looks set to the GPU of choice for the new machine. A four-core version of the chip appears to be most likely, and while this sounds like overkill, at 45nm you’d be looking at die of around 20 square millimetres based on measurement derived from IMG’s own whitepaper. That’s significantly lower than the silicon used by the current-generation PSP’s graphics unit, which should give some inkling of an idea on costs and power consumption.
The raw potential of Sony’s mooted solution is seriously impressive, to the point where you really have to sit down and take a deep breath before reading the next bit: we’re talking about a GPU with the potential to be a halfway house between the raw power of the original Xbox’s graphics chip and the Xenos GPU found in the Xbox 360, without factoring in all the advantages of running on a much lower resolution screen.
You can check out the full post by clicking the source link below. It’s long and filled with a lot of technical terms, but it does make for some interesting weekend reading, especially for hardcore technophiles.
Via Digital Foundry