Sony PlayStation 3 Slim Utilizes New Cell Processor

Cell Processor Transits to 45nm Fabrication Process

by Anton Shilov
08/21/2009 | 10:33 PM

Sony Computer Entertainment said that the new PlayStation 3 Slim utilizes Cell microprocessor (jointly developed by IBM, Sony and Toshiba) made using 45nm fabrication process. The new chip consumes less power.


Sony introduced PlayStation 3 Slim version earlier this week. The new console is about one third smaller compared to the original one. Besides, the slim version consumes approximately one third less energy, which means that the new video game system is powered by less power hungry components.

According to a claim posted at Sony’s U.S. web-site, the new PS3 uses a new version of Cell processor made using 45nm process technology.

The most expensive component of Sony PlayStation 3 is Nvidia’s Reality Synthesizer (RSX) chip, which used to cost Sony about $58 earlier this uear. Another important chip inside the video game console, the Cell processor, used to cost $46, while being made at 65nm node. The reduction of the pricing should be associated with higher yields as well as thinner manufacturing technology, which means that the new 45nm chip is much cheaper compared to the predecessor.

The new Cell processor is made by Toshiba Corp.

It is ordinary for game console makers to lose money on hardware, and make up for the loss via video game-title sales. Still, the size of Sony’s loss per unit is still a pity, even for the video-game console business. It is expected that Sony may reach the break-even point with the PS3 in 2009.