Will PS4 games really perform 50 percent better than Xbox One games?

The hardware battle between Sony's PlayStation 4 and Microsoft's Xbox One would seem, on paper at least, to be in Sony's favor. While both next-generation game consoles use AMD processors, the PS4's chip has 1152 GPU cores that are capable of generating 1.84 teraflops. The Xbox One GPU has 768 GPU cores that can only manage 1.23 teraflops. That means the PS4 should be able to outperform the Xbox One by 50 percent, in GPU performance.

That's the theory. In practice, the performance difference between the two systems in terms of the same game for both platforms may not be quite as large as the numbers suggest. Eurogamer reports that their Digital Foundry team decided to perform an experiment by building PC rigs with hardware that are based on the same basic AMD architecture as the PS4 and Xbox One.

After the rigs were built, several PC gaming benchmarks were run on both systems. The result was that while the system with the approximate PS4 hardware specs generated higher frames per second on those benchmarks than the rig with the Xbox One hardware, they didn't come close to a 50 percent increase. Indeed the percentages were between 17.6 and 33 percent.

The team then ran the PC version of Crysis 3 on both systems, since that game is perhaps the closest in terms of a next-generation console title that is currently available. Both rigs ran the game first with full 1080p resolution and in that test the PS4 test rig had only a 19.3 increase in frame rate compared to the Xbox One PC rig.

While the article admits it's still too early to come to any firm conclusions, they do say that for the launch period of both consoles, the differences between PS4 game performance and their Xbox One counterparts will likely be minimal. The hardware performance of both consoles may only manifest themselves in games during the third year of their lifecycles as developers learn to use more of their capabilities.

Source: Eurogamer

Report a problem with article
Previous Story

Analyst: Nokia Lumia 1020 sales off to 'modest' sales start

Next Story

Microsoft launches new Yammer extension for Google's Chrome

122 Comments

View more comments

shao said,
This quote about the Xbox ESRAM is where it gets interesting.

"DICE's BF3 reflects the parity in compute power, offering virtually identical performance, suggesting that sans MSAA, the tech isn't hugely reliant on bandwidth. Transplanting those findings across to the next-gen consoles, developers for the Microsoft console have their work cut-out in utilising the DDR3 and ESRAM effectively in matching the sheer throughput of the PS4's memory bus. Getting good performance from the ESRAM is key in ensuring that Xbox One is competitive with the PS4."

Considering AA can be done for 'free' on ESRAM this levels the playing field more than people are expecting.

Developers should be fine with taking advantage of the ESRAM in the XB1 since the 360 had it's own, though smaller, slice of embedded memory in the GPU that was also used for free 4xAA. I don't think it'll be hard for them to take advantage of, and I bet MS will make it pretty easy with the tools they give them.

only 33% faster - thats a lot!

DDR5 runs a lot faster than DDR3 - why do you think servers use DDR5? It can calculate a shed loads more faster than 3.

There is no such thing as DDR5. Its GDDR5 that the PS4 has which is the graphics equivalent to the DDR3 memory. GDDR5 isn't much faster than DDR3, especially when it comes to non-graphics things.

You need faster memory for transferring larger amounts of data, that is why Gddr5 is used, but DDR3 is better for transferring smaller amounts of data. If you notice, DDR3 video cards have mainly 64bit memory bandwidth or 128 (64x2), while gddr5 cards have 256 or 384 bit memory bandwidths.

nitroxhotshot said,
You need faster memory for transferring larger amounts of data, that is why Gddr5 is used, but DDR3 is better for transferring smaller amounts of data. If you notice, DDR3 video cards have mainly 64bit memory bandwidth or 128 (64x2), while gddr5 cards have 256 or 384 bit memory bandwidths.

That's all well and true if you want to brute force large textures down the GPU pipeline. But saying that, MS has already demonstrated how you can take advantage of large high quality textures in games without needing the massive allocation of textures and high bandwidth memory. Look at the new tiled resource feature in DX 11.2, it's made specifically to allow for high quality textures, or in this case, parts of them, to be used when needed and you don't have to load the whole thing up and brute force it through the GPU.

If this feature is taken advantage of the way it's suppose to be by developers then the bandwidth differences between the XB1 and PS4 aren't that important anymore. Where the PS4 has to load and stuff everything through it's GPU it's faster GDDR5 helps with all the large textures/data etc. Now the XB1 can use the bits it needs, freeing up the GPU and memory to do other tasks and not have to worry about how fast it can work through the large textures being rendered on screen.

mnl1121 said,
There is no such thing as DDR5. Its GDDR5 that the PS4 has which is the graphics equivalent to the DDR3 memory. GDDR5 isn't much faster than DDR3, especially when it comes to non-graphics things.
Sure, 1600MHz DDR3 is almost as fast as 5500MHz GDDR5!

startscreennope said,
PS4 can do tiled resources, it's a software feature, it can be coded in.

Actually it can't, at least not in a way to speed up graphics.

Windows NT is the ONLY OS that has a kernel level GPU scheduler. This is what allows the new DX 11.2 tiled resource to work and be 'fast'.

Even Windows 7's WDDM/WDM technology can't do the tiled resources of DX11.2, and it is only one step back in the progression of the WDDM/WDM technologies.

Since only NT is capable of this GPU control and granularity at the kernel level, it is means the FreeBSD OS the PS4 is using cannot do this. Even if the tiled resources are coded into the gaming framework, it doesn't mean it will be fast enough to be an advantage over just resource swapping.

***
When Vista was in development a lot of OS engineers like myself found that the GPU scheduling technology of the WDDM would be interesting and wondered if any other OS architecture would try to add this functionality.

Unfortunately, the rest of the world didn't realize what Microsoft was doing for a long time, and even now, it would take such radical breaks in the kernel designs of Linux and OS X that implementing this technology won't happen anytime soon. (This is one way the object model of NT demonstrated it is high extendible and flexible, as these changes were not hard for NT.)

So here we are with Windows having a lot of advantages and nothing else with kernel level GPU management, and it keeps stinging.

So PS4 with FreeBSD and OpenGL should just give up using tiled resources (also called PRT, a feature of AMD GCN APUs found in both the PS4 and X1) because they don't have a "kernel level GPU scheduler" so even if they try to implement it, it won't be in a way that "speeds up graphics". Grade A FUD and grasping at straws right there, seeing as the feature is already implemented and running in PS4 game engines.

But I suppose hair splitting and FUD about "tiled resources" is all that's left in the face of such an obvious hardware advantage.

In fact, doing a google search for "kernel level GPU scheduler" just leads to more FUD posts by you. LOL

Sony is past the Krazy Ken Cell spec overinflation. MS on the other hand has handily picked up the mantle with the laughable "infinite power of the cloud" marketspeak.

It is similar, but Sony is still using a bunch of numbers to make their console look better. The fact of it is that people have played the PS4 and were not impressed. Sub 30FPS for AAA titles shouldn't be happening. At least the cloud is actually benefitting people at launch, with hosted servers for multiplayer. Just to name one benefit.

quazl said,
It is similar, but Sony is still using a bunch of numbers to make their console look better. The fact of it is that people have played the PS4 and were not impressed. Sub 30FPS for AAA titles shouldn't be happening. At least the cloud is actually benefitting people at launch, with hosted servers for multiplayer. Just to name one benefit.
The vast majority of AAA games on PS3 and 360 were 30 FPS, sacrificing framerate for image quality. Expect the same next gen.

blah blah blah... GDDR5 better bandwidth on PS4 big strong wow. it doesnt neccesarily mean itll be better. Im not getting either console cus i dont like em but i think what MS is going to be doing with tile based rendering on 11.2 will defeat the PS4 or at least keep up with it...

Think of it like this... PS4 has 1meter x 1 meter tile in the bathroom. X1 has 1mx1m tile split into 100x 1cm tiles. you crack the PS4's tile youve got to replace the whole thing taking a long time. you crack 1 of the x1, tile it only has to replace that 1 cm tile... really short time.

Now AA, and particle effects is a bloody killer i remember playing BF3 when i got into the street with cop cars with flashing lights, my computers gfx got anihilated was pushing 2fps. the PS4 has to render the whole scene, the x1 only renders the lights and the extent to which the light reflections change the environment. which means it doesnt need as much rendering power to do the same thing, but cus these bits are smaller maybe the eSRAM can speed these little changes through really fast.

thats how MS will get around it in my opinion...

It is similar, but Sony is still using a bunch of numbers to make their console look better.

The fact of it is that people have played the PS4 and were not impressed. Sub 30FPS for AAA titles shouldn't be happening.

At least the cloud is actually benefitting people at launch, with hosted servers for multiplayer. Just to name one benefit.

PS4 can do tiled rendering.

It's ridiculous the minute things people are hanging their hats on to avoid the giant specs lead PS4 has.

Why not talk about how amazing the kinect is instead? I mean it's the albatross that caused the X1 to be overpriced and underpowered, so you'd better hype it up.

how does the PS4 do tiled rendering, cus MS can hold back the 11.2 from the PS4 or if they use opengl does that do it as well?

like i said i aint getting consoles cus i think there crap, im just defending the xbox abit cus i like the different approach MS are going

Kind of like the Cell?

Ease of Development and sales will win. The Kinect, if it is what they say it is, will be in demand and people will want it.

Anything MS can do with their X1 software, Sony can do with PS4 software, with more hardware power behind it.

PS4 will be easier to develop for, no ESRAM to worry about.

I don't think Kinect is going to move X1s, I see it more as an albatross weighing it down.

startscreennope said,
Anything MS can do with their X1 software, Sony can do with PS4 software, with more hardware power behind it.

PS4 will be easier to develop for, no ESRAM to worry about.

I don't think Kinect is going to move X1s, I see it more as an albatross weighing it down.

You really have no idea what you're talking about, do you. It's getting laughable.

spenser.d said,

You really have no idea what you're talking about, do you. It's getting laughable.

You really have no argument do you, it's getting laughable.

oh and another little thing maybe the x1 is able to achieve 60fps becuase its not really 60 FRAMES per second as its not loading the full frame because its more like 100,200,300,400 etc TILES per second, so maybe theres food for thought!!

Commenting is disabled on this article.