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Old 28-Mar-2013, 18:04   #2476
Cyan
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Originally Posted by dobwal View Post
It might not be intended to be a frame buffer per se. But it seems MS at least at one time may have considered to use it at least a portion of the the gpu cache for tile rendering.

SYSTEM AND METHOD FOR LAYERING USING TILE-BASED RENDERERS
http://appft1.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-...ile)+AND+layer)



There is nothing to say Durango is slated to make use of this technique but Durango's design at least seems to suitable to employ such a technique. Memory bandwidth is an issue with Durango design and this technique supposely relieves some of the pressure that limited bandwidth can present.

My opinion is that 6T SRAM may be the more optimal choice as fast on chip ram for this type of setup as the on chip may add additional latency to the graphics pipeline that can't be addressed by the gpu.
That was a really good read, and it sounds reasonable that Durango might be tile based rendering machine, albeit that line of thought was debunked a month ago or so,well... sort of.

It's a good explanation and it makes sense to me. If the leaked specs were real, it's starting to look like the reason Microsoft went with DDR3 because if they are using TLR to an extent, you wouldn't need as much bandwidth as in the case of a traditional renderer.
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Old 28-Mar-2013, 18:40   #2477
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The specifications of next gen consoles remain unknown, according to Patrick Bach, Battlefield's executive producer. There are a bunch of reasons for this to happen, and my guess is that the real reason is that they don't want to expose the hardware right now, just in case there are changes and they might ditch developers' petitions to send them the final hardware until they are totally sure.

This might also explain why Mark Rein was happy and very surprised with the 8GB GDDR5 announcement for PS4 and was wondering how Microsoft would answer to that.

This is starting to feel pretty awkward if you ask me, an odd beginning for a new generation...

http://www.ubergizmo.com/2013/03/fin...emain-unknown/

Quote:
I don’t know if anyone has the next-gen hardware to be honest – really. There are versions of it, but does anyone have the final hardware? Do we really know what the final hardware will be? There are specs and alpha hardware, but nobody knows exactly what it will be.”
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Old 28-Mar-2013, 18:52   #2478
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Maybe that can be translated to:

"My bosses are currently ironing out a deal with Microsoft so the safest thing I can do is deny all knowledge"

Everyone knows the final specs of PS4 give or take a few mhz, so I smell BS on his part.
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Old 28-Mar-2013, 20:11   #2479
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Originally Posted by Cyan View Post
The specifications of next gen consoles remain unknown, according to Patrick Bach, Battlefield's executive producer. There are a bunch of reasons for this to happen, and my guess is that the real reason is that they don't want to expose the hardware right now, just in case there are changes and they might ditch developers' petitions to send them the final hardware until they are totally sure.

This might also explain why Mark Rein was happy and very surprised with the 8GB GDDR5 announcement for PS4 and was wondering how Microsoft would answer to that.

This is starting to feel pretty awkward if you ask me, an odd beginning for a new generation...
No kidding, but it'll all be sorted out soon. One way or another.

Anyway, throwing more fuel on the fire. April reveal has been pushed back.

https://twitter.com/thurrott/status/317348357150482432
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Old 28-Mar-2013, 20:34   #2480
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Wow....May 21st? :/
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Old 28-Mar-2013, 20:53   #2481
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Originally Posted by GrimThorne View Post
No kidding, but it'll all be sorted out soon. One way or another.

Anyway, throwing more fuel on the fire. April reveal has been pushed back.

https://twitter.com/thurrott/status/317348357150482432
I viewed it more as a revised guess, not confirmation that MS had April down but needed a change.
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Old 28-Mar-2013, 20:59   #2482
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Wow....May 21st? :/

was about the same time the revealed Xbox 360 as well in 05
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Old 28-Mar-2013, 21:03   #2483
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^ I seem to recall more notice and hype over the '05 reveal though. We still have zip from MS, which is fine, but no teasers even?

/kidding - maybe VG leaks is MS and it was all planned. 😁

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Old 28-Mar-2013, 21:10   #2484
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Are timely final dev kits really that relevant for the early unoptimized titles anyway? These consoles are PCs with a custom OS and a few tweaks. Getting early generation games running on a PC dev kit with less performance than the console should give a pretty close simulated environment for early titles.
Oh they matter, but you live with what you get.
There are always going to be performance gotchas you won't know about until you get something running on silicon.
And early titles aren't so much in optimized as they are optimized based on a premise that may not entirely be accurate.
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Old 28-Mar-2013, 21:50   #2485
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That was a really good read, and it sounds reasonable that Durango might be tile based rendering machine, albeit that line of thought was debunked a month ago or so,well... sort of.

It's a good explanation and it makes sense to me. If the leaked specs were real, it's starting to look like the reason Microsoft went with DDR3 because if they are using TLR to an extent, you wouldn't need as much bandwidth as in the case of a traditional renderer.
Well from that patent it seems like tile based rendering will be a good fit for durango, or atleast they might optimize it and provide tools that makes tile based rendering well suited for the system. I suspect the DMEs will play a large part in making this work efficiently what with their tile and untile functions. They will probably be used to quickly swap and move data from the eSRAM and the DDR3. The Feb 2012 durango doc does suggest that dev should look into tiling their resources along with a link to a paper/presentation on using tiled resources on dx11 and 360.
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Old 28-Mar-2013, 21:59   #2486
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Originally Posted by GrimThorne View Post
No kidding, but it'll all be sorted out soon. One way or another.

Anyway, throwing more fuel on the fire. April reveal has been pushed back.

https://twitter.com/thurrott/status/317348357150482432
It also confirms that MS are still expecting to launch this year...

Quote:
Paris ‏@1stClassParis 2h
@thurrott The silence has me worried if it will even launch this year.

Paul Thurrott Paul Thurrott ‏@thurrott 1h
@1stClassParis It will
Also, from his comments there's going to be a lot of Xbox stuff after May 21st.

Regards,
SB
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Old 28-Mar-2013, 23:17   #2487
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That tile based rendering patent is most interesting. Maybe there's something to that. Sounds like a good fit for Durango.
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Old 28-Mar-2013, 23:21   #2488
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Originally Posted by SenjutsuSage View Post
That tile based rendering patent is most interesting. Maybe there's something to that. Sounds like a good fit for Durango.
Yeah, the more I read it the more I am sure it was written because of durango. What with mentions of fast, low latency on chip smaller memory, data copy functions etc.
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Old 29-Mar-2013, 00:04   #2489
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I don't claim to be an expert, so please feel free to correct me, but from what I understand that patent reads like a fairly standard implementation of a TBDR, enough so that I would think existing products, like powervr's, would bar MS from being granted it (prior art and all). What exactly makes it seem especially more suited for Durango beyond the prior discussions about Durango being potentially tbdr focused?
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Old 29-Mar-2013, 00:45   #2490
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Originally Posted by Silent_Buddha View Post
It also confirms that MS are still expecting to launch this year...



Also, from his comments there's going to be a lot of Xbox stuff after May 21st.

Regards,
SB
Interesting, Paul has actually caught himself a few times when being asked about what the final hardware is, name of the console etc. He definitely knows why the event was pushed back, he's just not going to tell us. lol
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Old 29-Mar-2013, 01:08   #2491
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Originally Posted by AstoundingHolmes View Post
I don't claim to be an expert, so please feel free to correct me, but from what I understand that patent reads like a fairly standard implementation of a TBDR, enough so that I would think existing products, like powervr's, would bar MS from being granted it (prior art and all). What exactly makes it seem especially more suited for Durango beyond the prior discussions about Durango being potentially tbdr focused?

As a whole it just makes a ton of sense with relation to how Durango is designed. All 4 Move Engines can perform tiling and untiling.

Quote:
Such GPUs may have a fast on-chip memory smaller than the memory used for storing the rendered content (i.e., the image plane), and this on-chip memory may be used to perform certain GPU operations more quickly. Accordingly, in tile-based rendering, content may be rendered in portions, referred to as tiles, such that the GPU may perform operations on each such portion by using the fast memory as part of the rendering process.
This seems like a very decent idea of how the eSRAM might be used to possibly help Durango.

Quote:
[0005] Some content may comprise one or more content layers. Each content layer may comprise one or more primitives and/or may comprise any other suitable content. In rendering the content layers, the information in each layer may be combined such that the rendered information represents a composite of the information in multiple layers. Content layers may be combined in different ways to achieve different effects. For example, one or more layers may be presented as if partially transparent such that portions of an underlying layer appear through an upper layer. As another example, the layers may be clipped such that what appears on the display are portions of one layer combined with portions of another layer. Content comprising multiple content layers may be rendered one layer at a time and within each layer one primitive at a time, using multiple passes over image plane pixel values.
The above sounds like a dead ringer for what Durango's display planes do. In fact, they might as well be talking about a transparent game UI where the game world is visible through the transparency in one of those sentences, because that's more or less what it describes.

Quote:
Improved content rendering techniques may improve utilization of resources, such as power and memory, in a computing device containing specialized graphics hardware. Techniques include more efficient tile-based rendering of content comprising multiple content layers by optimizing the order in which operations in the rendering process may be performed. Specialized hardware for content rendering, such as a GPU, may be configured to render more than one content layer corresponding to a tile before performing rendering of content corresponding to other tiles. As a result, the number of times pixel values associated with that single tile are brought into memory may be reduced. This may make the overall rendering process more efficient than a conventional approach of rendering the content one content layer at a time, each content layer organized as multiple tiles, which leads to cache thrashing and poor overall performance. A more efficient rendering process may lead to reduced or improved utilization of resources, such as power and memory,
The talk of specialized hardware, although they reference a GPU, we have to keep in mind things like the move engines and display planes are considered parts of Durango's GPU. They are specifically stated in vgleak's information as helping in the area of improving utilization of resources, such as power and memory consumption. The move engines, display planes and esram all seem to fit perfectly with the goals and desires laid out in this patent. It's just a nice looking fit that seems to match up pretty well, and it helps that it's a Microsoft patent.

Also, the part about the number of times pixel values brought into memory possibly being reduced also sounds like a very good indication of ways in which the eSRAM may help Durango. As one implication of eSRAM is that certain data doesn't need to be put into system ram in order to be read by the GPU, because the ESRAM's flexibility helps in that regard. Everything that can technically be done with the DRAM can also be done with the ESRAM, which can cut down on the need for certain kinds of memory access. I mean, a rough and rushed explanation, but I think it's close enough.
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Old 29-Mar-2013, 02:18   #2492
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DJ12 View Post
Maybe that can be translated to:

"My bosses are currently ironing out a deal with Microsoft so the safest thing I can do is deny all knowledge"

Everyone knows the final specs of PS4 give or take a few mhz, so I smell BS on his part.
This.
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Old 29-Mar-2013, 02:28   #2493
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DJ12 View Post
Maybe that can be translated to:

"My bosses are currently ironing out a deal with Microsoft so the safest thing I can do is deny all knowledge"

Everyone knows the final specs of PS4 give or take a few mhz, so I smell BS on his part.
The business deals that must be in place for people at DICE and Crytek to be pretending like PS4 don't exist are pretty crazy. Polygon did a video interview with a Crytek rep today and Gies couldn't even get the guy to say "PS4". Arthur also commented on Crytek's struggles getting CryEngine licensees outside of Europe, but the way they are treating PS4 and the way Epic have reacted paint a pretty good picture of what is behind their relative success. If you want customers to license your tech it may not be a good idea to let a business deal with one platform holder prevent you from even acknowledging a major system that's already announced. Rein is out there for every new platform proclaiming, "Fuck yeah, Unreal supports it!" while Crytek is at GDC pretending like they don't know what a PS4 is.
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Old 29-Mar-2013, 02:37   #2494
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Originally Posted by scently View Post
Yeah, the more I read it the more I am sure it was written because of durango. What with mentions of fast, low latency on chip smaller memory, data copy functions etc.
Pretty sure I've mentioned it (and other patents) numerous times here.

Hmmm. This is kinda interesting. Found this in the most recent Mejdrich patent. The patent is pretty fresh. What is interesting is the graphics rendering pipeline Mejdrich et al chose to include in the patent as an 'exemplary embodiment consistent with their invention'...

Quote:
Originally Posted by patent1
Examples of supporting logic include DMA engines 422, 424, which are respectively used to DMA vertex data from a vertex buffer 426 and compressed texture data from a texture data buffer 428. A scratch memory 430, including an index array 432, vertex buffer 434 and compressed texture data 436, serves as a destination for DMA engines 422, 424. HIP 408 sets up a set of inboxes 437 in DMA engines 422, 424 to receive work requests from the HIP. One inbox 437 is provided for each DMA engine activated in the pipeline.
http://www.google.com/patents/US2013...ed=0CD4Q6AEwAw

Scratch memory, 'DMA engines', texture compression/decompression...sound familiar?

Another recent patent by Mejdrich. No idea what this one says, but others here may be able to explain it:

Quote:
Originally Posted by patent2
Therefore, consistent with one aspect of the invention, a processing unit includes a fixed point execution unit and a vector floating point unit, where the fixed point execution unit includes a plurality of general purpose registers, and the vector floating point unit including a vector register file. The processing unit is configured to cache state data including non-floating point state data used by the fixed point execution unit in the vector register file, and copy the non-floating point state data from the vector register file to at least one general purpose register among the plurality of general purpose registers. The fixed point execution unit is configured to operate on the non-floating point state data stored in the at least one general purpose register.
http://www.google.com/patents/US2013...ed=0CDUQ6AEwAA

Last edited by astrograd; 29-Mar-2013 at 02:45.
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Old 29-Mar-2013, 03:56   #2495
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Originally Posted by Brad Grenz View Post
The business deals that must be in place for people at DICE and Crytek to be pretending like PS4 don't exist are pretty crazy. Polygon did a video interview with a Crytek rep today and Gies couldn't even get the guy to say "PS4". Arthur also commented on Crytek's struggles getting CryEngine licensees outside of Europe, but the way they are treating PS4 and the way Epic have reacted paint a pretty good picture of what is behind their relative success. If you want customers to license your tech it may not be a good idea to let a business deal with one platform holder prevent you from even acknowledging a major system that's already announced. Rein is out there for every new platform proclaiming, "Fuck yeah, Unreal supports it!" while Crytek is at GDC pretending like they don't know what a PS4 is.
For everyone to watch
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ncORtSTpEAI
Yeah Crytek probably has a serious deal with Microsoft
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Old 29-Mar-2013, 04:28   #2496
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Originally Posted by xJumPeRJumPzZ View Post
For everyone to watch
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ncORtSTpEAI
Yeah Crytek probably has a serious deal with Microsoft
Or Crytek has been a source of leaks and are now being more careful.
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Old 29-Mar-2013, 04:52   #2497
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Originally Posted by Brimstone View Post
Or Crytek has been a source of leaks and are now being more careful.
Doesnt sound like that in that interview...
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Old 29-Mar-2013, 05:33   #2498
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Originally Posted by Brimstone View Post
Or Crytek has been a source of leaks and are now being more careful.
Eh, the interviewer specifically goes on a mini-speech about how almost no developers he has talked to will acknowledge the existence of the PS4. Not just Crytek.

Regards,
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Old 29-Mar-2013, 05:50   #2499
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Originally Posted by Brad Grenz View Post
acknowledging a major system that's already announced. Rein is out there for every new platform proclaiming, "Fuck yeah, Unreal supports it!" while Crytek is at GDC pretending like they don't know what a PS4 is.
Are you sure that's up to Crytek and not EA?
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Old 29-Mar-2013, 06:02   #2500
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Well, Crytek are making a game for MS. I think it's called Rise, or something similar, so maybe it's not middleware business shenanigans so much as being in an odd position to talk about a competitor platform when they're going to be one of the first games shown off in MS's introduction of Durango.
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