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Why is the PS3 performance so good?

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#1 emilxp

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 17:41

I've been thinking about hardware recently. Especially for the PS3. My big question is how games like the Assassins Creed Series, Crysis 2 with 1.9 directx 11 update with high resolution textures, God of War 3 and many many other, can run on a system that has a graphics card based on the nvidia geforce 7000 series, 256MB main ram and 256MB of vram? Is it because of the CPU?

I don't thing the PS3 CPU is optimized so well, that can be faster than the GPU. And one more question. Why Crytek said before years that the consoles aren't powerful enough to run Crysis, but now they ported Crysis to consoles?


#2 +djdanster

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 17:44

Because the game code is specific to that hardware and the textures are not as high quality. On a PC, they have to cater to a larger amount of hardware plus the ability of the graphics is much higher.

#3 +Nik L

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 17:45

The console port is nowhere near as good or detailed graphically as the PS game.

And consoles do ONE thing, play games, they are 100% optimised for it.

#4 Audioboxer

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 17:46

I've been thinking about hardware recently. Especially for the PS3. My big question is how games like the Assassins Creed Series, Crysis 2 with 1.9 directx 11 update with high resolution textures, God of War 3 and many many other, can run on a system that has a graphics card based on the nvidia geforce 7000 series, 256MB main ram and 256MB of vram? Is it because of the CPU?

I don't thing the PS3 CPU is optimized so well, that can be faster than the GPU. And one more question. Why Crytek said before years that the consoles aren't powerful enough to run Crysis, but now they ported Crysis to consoles?


It's because the system runs on an OS made for gaming and not background tasks/reading your emails/running 20 applications at once (PC).

All consoles have that in common and it's why they produce great results on what some would call modest hardware.

#5 OP emilxp

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 17:47

Because the game code is specific to that hardware and the textures are not as high quality. On a PC, they have to cater to a larger amount of hardware plus the ability of the graphics is much higher.


That's true, but still it can run so performance sucking games. Why don't they make a PS3 graphics mode, where you can play your favorite games on a slower computer well? My computer has a lot more powerful GPU than that and still the games lag :(.

#6 articuno1au

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 17:48

Because the game code is specific to that hardware and the textures are not as high quality. On a PC, they have to cater to a larger amount of hardware plus the ability of the graphics is much higher.

This. Pretty much entirely this

The console port is nowhere near as good or detailed graphically as the PC (I assume he meant) game.

And consoles do ONE thing, play games, they are 100% optimised for it.

Which is what Audioboxer is talking about..

It's because the system runs on an OS made for gaming and not background tasks/reading your emails/running 20 applications at once (PC).

All consoles have that in common and it's why they produce great results on what some would call modest hardware.

Which is kinda true. You do get much better performance by building systems designed for a specific task as opposed to general processing, however it's primarily what djdanster said.

#7 Roger H.

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 17:57

Moved to Sony Console

#8 wwphil

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 17:59

When you have a unified plalform (ipod/iphone, blackberry, ps3, xbox, HP DC7100, etc...) It's relatively easy to code something to be really optimized for it, you don't need to account for a bug for some hardware that you know your software will never see, you can also code in a way where it is safe to ignore some timers or calls needed normally by the hardware/OS, in the interest of optimizing performance. Vmware is a very big champion of that. Installing Windows on directly on a pc takes longer than installing it in vmware on that very same pc.

Also, consoles and most devices besides PCs use RISC processors, so they are less versatile in what they can do, but what they do well will usually perform better in comparison to CISC processor of "equal" performance.

It's all very complicated and technical, but, in the end, the consoles are WAY behind the PCs and are holding back a lot of new technologies in the interest of making more money by making the software compatible with old hardware to get more customers.

#9 Audioboxer

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 18:00

When you have a unified plalform (ipod/iphone, blackberry, ps3, xbox, HP DC7100, etc...) It's relatively easy to code something to be really optimized for it, you don't need to account for a bug for some hardware that you know your software will never see, you can also code in a way where it is safe to ignore some timers or calls needed normally by the hardware/OS, in the interest of optimizing performance. Vmware is a very big champion of that. Installing Windows on directly on a pc takes longer than installing it in vmware on that very same pc.

Also, consoles and most devices besides PCs use RISC processors, so they are less versatile in what they can do, but what they do well will usually perform better in comparison to CISC processor of "equal" performance.

It's all very complicated and technical, but, in the end, the consoles are WAY behind the PCs and are holding back a lot of new technologies in the interest of making more money by making the software compatible with old hardware to get more customers.


Rose tinted glasses much? No one's stopping developers creating for the PC.

#10 n_K

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 18:06

PS3 doesn't do much in the background, checks for network connection status, updates online stuff like friends, messages, etc. and plays a game from a dedicated storage medium.
A PC on the other hand, is checking network connectivity, checking hardware status (S.M.A.R.T.), checking for DMAs and IRQs and checking each hardware device attached to all PCI, PCI-X, AGP, etc. connections, controlling a USB bus and searching for devices on that, doing whatever background tasks you have open, plus anything any other users have open, plus other background stuff as other user accounts (defrag, computer browser, dns stuff, network stuff, loads of things)... And I could go on. Your PC kernel has a very complex security structure built into it with passwords and hashing and whatnot, the PS3 doesn't have such a feature and is limited to just running things with either full permissions or limited permissions (what the other OS function did), and it all runs as the equilivent as one user.

#11 threetonesun

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 18:11

Rose tinted glasses much? No one's stopping developers creating for the PC.


Well, a viable market is holding them back, and if you're going to go big budget, you've got to be able to sell to PCs and consoles.

#12 wwphil

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 18:13

Rose tinted glasses much? No one's stopping developers creating for the PC.


You're right. But logic tells you that the more people you can reach the more likely you'll make money. A lot of well known artists have to make a lot of compromises in the recording of their music to make it more mainstream accessible, not because they want to, but because publishers want to maximize their investment. Same thing applies to software developing.

I hate to think in these terms, but that's what most companies think about.

#13 Shadrack

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 18:20

That's true, but still it can run so performance sucking games. Why don't they make a PS3 graphics mode, where you can play your favorite games on a slower computer well? My computer has a lot more powerful GPU than that and still the games lag :(.


There is still an issue of the overhead associated with putting everything that needs to be in place so that the code runs on your hardware and runs on my hardware. Unless we all go out and buy the exact same computer with the exact same hardware then you will always have to deal with the fact that there is an overhead associated with the handling of code on a systems that support a lot of different hardware configurations.

There are some optimizations that are apparent. For instance, some games run better on nVidia graphics cards while other run better on AMD graphics cards.

I'm sure developers could target a very specific computer configuration and optimize the hell out of it. It would take a considerable amount of time and effort and they would be limited by a small market of users. That's why they don't do it that way.

Its a good question though.

#14 Audioboxer

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 18:24

Well, a viable market is holding them back, and if you're going to go big budget, you've got to be able to sell to PCs and consoles.


Holding them back how? PC games are incredibly scaleable in the first place (or are suppose to be), the lowest possible settings to run most games on these days would look/run worse than the console counterparts.

Sloppy PC ports, and lazy PC devs aren't held back by consoles, they're held back by being incompetent.

#15 madd-hatter

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 19:23

Holding them back how? PC games are incredibly scaleable in the first place (or are suppose to be), the lowest possible settings to run most games on these days would look/run worse than the console counterparts.

Sloppy PC ports, and lazy PC devs aren't held back by consoles, they're held back by being incompetent.

That's not true. It's all about the $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

Console's must be kept in mind while developing top-graphic PC titles in order to insure a profit. Even Blizzard, master of PC developing and heavy-profit PC titles, is thoroughly pursuing to get Diablo 3 on consoles...

It's more subtle than he made it sound, but regardless, the mainstream availability and price point of consoles does hold back PC gaming's performance peak. Crysis 1, when it was a PC exclusive, was essentially a benchmark test. But that was 4 years ago and no recent PC exclusive title has filled that role since. Benchmarking tests are much more capable and demanding than current PC games. But even with that said, PC graphics still blow console's away. The catch being the price multiplier...

The PS3 has such 'good performance' because it's the youngest of the current generation of home consoles and it's development is uniform across all PS3 systems. It's the closest thing to a console-PC hybrid yet. PC performance is complicated due to the multitude of components. What works for one may crash another.



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