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During his keynote at QuakeCon 2013, John Carmack, a man behind a number of legendary computer games, said that the next-generation Microsoft Xbox One and Sony PlayStation 4 game consoles offer similar functionality and comparable performance. In general, technical director of id Software is very satisfied with the upcoming game machines as they will move gaming to the whole new level.

“[The incoming console cycle are] obviously going to be a good thing for gamers, developers, and an excellent thing for AMD. […] It is almost amazing how close they are in capabilities, how common they are. The capabilities they give are essentially the same,” said John Carmack, when asked about the comparison between Microsoft’s Xbox One and Sony’s PlayStation 4, reports Polygon web-site. 

Both Microsoft’s third-generation Xbox as well as Sony’s PlayStation 4 are based on semi-custom AMD Fusion system-on-chips with eight Jaguar general-purpose x86 cores, AMD Radeon HD GCN architecture-derived graphics processors and other special-purpose hardware units. Both consoles will have hard disk drives as well as Blu-ray disc drives. In general, the manufacturing cost of both consoles should be comparable (PS4 uses more expensive DDR4 memory, but Xbox One has some additional multimedia-related logic inside). Microsoft Xbox One will come with bundled Kinect 2 motion sensor and will cost $499 at launch. By contrast, Sony will not include PlayStation Camera with the PS4, which will be sold separately at $59, but will sell the console for $399.

 

While many believe that Sony PlayStation 4 is considerably more powerful than the Xbox One from Microsoft, Mr. Carmack said he could not determine which platform actually has higher horsepower. He said he has not run quite enough tests on the hardware for the two consoles, but said they are both “very close, and very good”.

Back in the days, Mr. Carmack praised Microsoft Xbox 360 for being able to program console on low-level, getting close to metal, just like in his “good-old days” of DOS, Wolfenstein 3D and Doom. Sony was reportedly encouraging PS4 “Orbis” coders to “get closer to the metal” as well. But while at QuakeCon 2013 the legendary game programmer again confessed that in the current generation of consoles he preferred developing on Xbox 360, he did not say anything about Sony’s new software development tools. At the same time, he said that thanks to new architecture of Sony’s console will result in better software tools as well.

Tags: Sony, PlayStation 4, Playstation, Microsoft, Xbox One, Kinect, Business, Xbox, Xbox Next, AMD, Fusion, Jaguar, GCN, Radeon

Discussion

Comments currently: 10
Discussion started: 08/02/13 10:30:54 PM
Latest comment: 08/23/13 11:09:38 PM
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[1-4]

1. 
Anyone who makes a statement like that would lose credibility instantly, although Carmack lost his credibility a long time ago. Where's the proof of this DDR4 anyway? Wasn't it GDDR5 memory which isn't comparable to system RAM and is actually DDR3-based except significantly faster? With a GPU with 50% more capabilities and better memory, that means significantly more potential for GPU compute in games.

Render Out Pipelines:
PS4 =32
XB1=16

Gigapixels/s:
PS4 = 25.6
XB1= 12.8

Shader cores:
PS4 = 1,152
XB1 = 768

That's not very close at all... To say otherwise only means Carmack is biased towards Microsoft.
6 1 [Posted by: mmstick  | Date: 08/02/13 10:30:54 PM]
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0 4 [Posted by: redeemer  | Date: 08/03/13 07:54:25 AM]
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...I hope you realize that both of these consoles have the same architecture from the same vendor... I think it's time you woke up.
1 0 [Posted by: mmstick  | Date: 08/06/13 05:14:31 AM]
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That's right, PS4 does not use DDR4.
3 0 [Posted by: lol123  | Date: 08/03/13 08:41:10 AM]
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For developers that don't code at the kernel level, just the simple fact that DirectXBOX (for lack of a better term) uses resources more efficiently than OGL4 (when ignoring the code to metal aspect) means sony's paper advantage is useless.
0 0 [Posted by: basroil  | Date: 08/06/13 03:30:13 PM]
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John touched on OpenCL in the full talk. They haven't found a lot of use in the game engines yet for it other than doing lots of particles. So for AI, networking, gameworld management and most of the physics they're still relying on CPU, which is very close between the two.

It'll be some time before game engines take full advantage of GPGPU since they don't now and have hundreds of millions of dollars put into them and tooling around them.
0 0 [Posted by: KeyBoardG  | Date: 08/07/13 07:41:03 AM]
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2. 
Nobody has cared about anything that Carmack has said in about 10 years.
3 1 [Posted by: lol123  | Date: 08/03/13 08:39:48 AM]
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lol
1 1 [Posted by: redeemer  | Date: 08/03/13 04:30:04 PM]
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3. 
Carmack still lives in the '90s.
0 0 [Posted by: TAViX  | Date: 08/09/13 08:53:44 AM]
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4. 
My PC has more horse power in its little pinky that both of these crap boxes put together...I'll be able to run all their games across 3 monitors, max'd out and not break a sweat.

Console gaming is a JOKE!!
1 0 [Posted by: josh hummel  | Date: 08/23/13 11:09:38 PM]
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