More rumors on Wii U's hardware specs hit the Internet

The Wii U is technically going to be the first of the "next generation" game consoles to be released, well ahead of the next consoles from Sony and Microsoft. The console is currently scheduled to launch sometime in 2012. However, if a new rumor news story is correct, the hardware specs for the Wii U look, at least on paper, to be pretty close to the current generation hardware found inside the Xbox 360 and PS3 consoles.

The WiiUDaily.com web site claims to have received the hardware info for the console from a game developer who is in the process of porting a current PS3 game to the Wii U. The source claims that the processor inside the Wii U is a 3 GHz PowerPC-based 45nm CPU with four processor cores. By contrast, the current Xbox 360 has a 3.2 Ghz PowerPC inside but with only three processor cores.

The story also says that Nintendo is actually testing out two versions of the Wii U. One of them has 768 MB of DRAM inside while the other has a full 1 GB of DRAM. Both versions have the memory embedded in the CPU and the memory is shared between the CPU and the GPU.

Finally, the source claims that the GPU is ATI-based but made on a 40nm process. No other info on the GPU was revealed.

While the Wii U could be somewhat more powerful than the Xbox 360 on paper, the big question is whether the combination of hardware inside the console will be enough to run high end games. Nintendo is most likely trying to strike a balance between hardware and low cost like it did on the original Wii.

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Even though some points above are Valid, 1Gb isn't a lot of RAM and it'll place the Wii U right at the bottom of the spectrum for the next generation. But hey, that worked for Nintendo with the Wii, so why not.

I still expect the PS3 and 360 successors to have at least 4GB of RAM and I agree with Crytek - it should be 8GB really. If I, as a consumer, can buy 8GB of RAM for £25, then I'm sure MS/Sony can do it for a lot cheaper (or rather, can get better RAM than DDR3 for about the same price).

dagamer34 said,

Keep in mind that consoles are really only designed to run games at 720p, not 1080p with high AA/AF. Plus, there isnt a full OS running in the background taking up RAM (no one shut down all their apps to play a game, they just buy more RAM).

Lastly, when you work on a low-level embedded system such as a game console (you get almost full control of every CPU cycle and RAM bit there is, so you can have a ton of crazy optimizations). It's easier to say that PC developers do not go to such crazy lengths simply because they can ask people to upgrade their systems.

And please, no comparing CPUs from different generations directly based on Ghz. That's like saying a 2006 Core 2 Duo at 4 Ghz is faster than a 2011 Core i7 at 3.4 Ghz if all you did was say the word "core" and CPU speed.

This next generation of consoles should be running things at 1080p. The next xbox and PlayStation probably will be 1080p and have at least 4GB RAM. I mean, when 8GB RAM costs the end user $30, how much can it possibly cost manufactures?

Kushan said,
Even though some points above are Valid, 1Gb isn't a lot of RAM and it'll place the Wii U right at the bottom of the spectrum for the next generation. But hey, that worked for Nintendo with the Wii, so why not.

I still expect the PS3 and 360 successors to have at least 4GB of RAM and I agree with Crytek - it should be 8GB really. If I, as a consumer, can buy 8GB of RAM for £25, then I'm sure MS/Sony can do it for a lot cheaper (or rather, can get better RAM than DDR3 for about the same price).


for example go check what kinda ram the PS3 is using. this isnt any normal ram for PCs.

If this is true, they're going to be causing a lot of fragmentation, again. It must annoying for cross-platform developers when they can't develop games for all of the big three consoles because of the Wii's relatively poor specs.

Meph said,
If this is true, they're going to be causing a lot of fragmentation, again. It must annoying for cross-platform developers when they can't develop games for all of the big three consoles because of the Wii's relatively poor specs.

Then once again Nintendo will have a "kiddie" system and developers won't target it for many of their games. After the Wii, everyone pretty much knows to get an Xbox or PS3 if you want any good games other than the few good games Nintendo develops.

There have been a lot of advancements since the 7000 NVidia series (cannot remember the ATI equivalent at the time). Thus, those cheering for camp Nintendo are hoping for a newer GPU unit from ATI - at least a last year to early this year GPU. It could be a great failure to not have graphics that are reasonably distanced from current generation, especially if Nintendo wants to release it so early.

mranderson1st said,
There have been a lot of advancements since the 7000 NVidia series (cannot remember the ATI equivalent at the time). Thus, those cheering for camp Nintendo are hoping for a newer GPU unit from ATI - at least a last year to early this year GPU. It could be a great failure to not have graphics that are reasonably distanced from current generation, especially if Nintendo wants to release it so early.

ATI X1900

Another thing I'm hoping for is memory improvements. The Wii contained 512mb of storage, you could get a few downloadable VC games and such till it's full. Having to rely on using the SD Card.
With the Xbox having 250GB and the PS3 now onto 320GB, I feel it won't catch on. I mean if they release downloadable HD games, it'd need a lot of storage.

They is no internal HDD in the Wii U.
http://e3.nintendo.com/hw/#/about
Though Nintendo will enable u to use external HDD's which is way better than what PS3/Xbox has to offer imo(especially compared to the original Xbox which only featured hdd's that cost crazy amounts of $).

Also it's been reported by some game devs that the CPU should be 50% faster than PS3.
Anywho the CPU is not the bottleneck nowadays so a Strong GPU should help alot more than a better CPU IMO.

Karanlos said,
They is no internal HDD in the Wii U.
http://e3.nintendo.com/hw/#/about
Though Nintendo will enable u to use external HDD's which is way better than what PS3/Xbox has to offer imo(especially compared to the original Xbox which only featured hdd's that cost crazy amounts of $).

Also it's been reported by some game devs that the CPU should be 50% faster than PS3.
Anywho the CPU is not the bottleneck nowadays so a Strong GPU should help alot more than a better CPU IMO.

Thanks for the link. I guess that's a good thing then, I mean it's easy to find a 320GB USB External HDD for a decent price now. The site says the Wii U has 4 USB ports so even better.

Karanlos said,
They is no internal HDD in the Wii U.
http://e3.nintendo.com/hw/#/about
Though Nintendo will enable u to use external HDD's which is way better than what PS3/Xbox has to offer imo(especially compared to the original Xbox which only featured hdd's that cost crazy amounts of $).

Also it's been reported by some game devs that the CPU should be 50% faster than PS3.
Anywho the CPU is not the bottleneck nowadays so a Strong GPU should help alot more than a better CPU IMO.

Good move IMO. they should use the money they are saving here and beef up the RAM a little bit more.

So, based purely on this article, the only difference is 256MB of RAM? Why even bother with two different units then over such a small amount of RAM?

ir0nw0lf said,
So, based purely on this article, the only difference is 256MB of RAM? Why even bother with two different units then over such a small amount of RAM?

Costs. If the difference is $5 x 40 million consoles = $200 million for Nintendo which doesn't make money in anything else besides games.

dagamer34 said,

Costs. If the difference is $5 x 40 million consoles = $200 million for Nintendo which doesn't make money in anything else besides games.


OK, so make only the 768MB version then... ??? Is their honestly going to be a huge gaming difference between the two?

dagamer34 said,

Costs. If the difference is $5 x 40 million consoles = $200 million for Nintendo which doesn't make money in anything else besides games.

256MB RAM doesn't cost anywhere near $5.

8GB RAM can be bought for $30 easily online. Assuming that Nintendo will be paying street price for RAM, 256MB of RAM costs $0.94.

I doubt Nintendo is going to make a system with two different amounts of RAM, especially over $1. If they do make the two versions, then the version with more RAM will probably use the RAM for something other than playing games such as background apps.

mrp04 said,

256MB RAM doesn't cost anywhere near $5.

8GB RAM can be bought for $30 easily online. Assuming that Nintendo will be paying street price for RAM, 256MB of RAM costs $0.94.

I doubt Nintendo is going to make a system with two different amounts of RAM, especially over $1. If they do make the two versions, then the version with more RAM will probably use the RAM for something other than playing games such as background apps.


consoles usually dont use standard ram. ps3 and xbox dont. which where for time of release not the cheapest either and outperformed 2-4gb PC ram in its early days easy. remember what 4gb was 6 years ago? only the highest end systems had that.

Well also keep in mind since we knew this would be based on a Power PC chip that itnow that it is claimed to be a 4 core chip would be based off IBMs newest Power 7 chip so while it may be a quad core design it may also hold Power 7s quad threaded Per chip specs so this make it an 8 threaded chip ( Possible )

boobless said,
786mb of edram will make this a super computer. Highly unlikely Nintendo will go for such power.


they plan to go for Power this time for an HD system and what they showed off at E3 shows they want this to be a super system with some of the stuff they showed off

notuptome2004 said,
what they showed off at E3 shows they want this to be a super system with some of the stuff they showed off

You mean their highlight reel that actually used game footage from the PS3 and Xbox 360?

boobless said,
786mb of edram will make this a super computer. Highly unlikely Nintendo will go for such power.

Looks like Nintendo is going for another N64, when at the time was the most powerful console out there, and the GCN to some extent. Wii was a fail in terms of specs, but the Wii U seems to be a spec'd up version of the Wii...

We got a very pretty tech demo to show the system was doing something. The Xbox and PS3 footage could not be helped; they developers did not have the time to port any code.

How many comercials for games have used the better of the two HD consoles game footage. You had no idea if you were looking at Xbox or PS3 till you either saw a review or you bought it and brought it home. I can forgive Nintendo: not really a big deal (unless people want to make a mountain out of a molehill) since we were informed.

The point was to show content was on the way. You could argue that no new titles were confirmed. I'd rather bark about that, but we will probably hear news before and during E3 about that... It will be nice next E3 to see that ported content running on the hardware with with new exclusive content and gameplay additions to elevate it just from being a port. Lets hope that is what we will get, otherwsie the argument of why should we purchase the game again, and that ports will not be enough since most people will have probably 2 consoles already. Let's wish the developers luck and may the be plentiful with fun and exciting ideas that they can bring to market by launch and there after.

Wii U= fail. sorry nintendo, i love your wii and skyward sword is amazing, but im not going to buy into your silly new controller

jasonon said,
Wii U= fail. sorry nintendo, i love your wii and skyward sword is amazing, but im not going to buy into your silly new controller

Your Comment is a fail, Wii U is not even out yet. just wait till more solid info is out for it before making any such judgements. I think you better take a look at Sony's and Xbox motionless controller before calling it silly. Again wait until more solid info is out on both controller and system before making a quick judgement on the something that's not even out.

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