17w ago - Following up on last week's PlayStation 4 rumors, today Kotaku (linked above) and Gematsu have revealed the rumored PS4 / Orbis final devkit specifications, touch pad controller details and new account system summary below.
To quote: SPECS
We'll begin with the specs. And before we go any further, know that these are current specs for a PS4 development kit, not the final retail console itself. So while the general gist of the things you see here may be similar to what makes it into the actual commercial hardware, there's every chance some - if not all of it - changes, if only slightly.
That being the case, here's what we know is inside PS4 development kits - model # DVKT-KS000K - as of January 2013. As you'll see, some things have changed since earlier kits became available in March 2012.
If you think the HDD is small, remember, these are the specs for a machine that developers are using to make games on, not the console you'll own and be storing media on. And don't worry about having two ethernet ports; as this is a dev kit, one is there for local sharing/testing purposes.
Interestingly, while some of these specs (such as the 8x core CPU) match with those reported by Digital Foundry only a few days ago, others like the RAM (DF reported 4GB of GDDR5, while we've heard 8GB) differ.
We've learned there's a headphone jack on the front of the console, but it's unclear whether that's just for dev kits or is an intended feature of the final retail console.
The PlayStation 4 Has A New Controller, Fancy User Accounts And Impressive Specs (So Far)
Ever since the release of the original PlayStation, Sony has maintained roughly the same basic controller design. This trend may be continuing with the PS4, because we've learned that developers are working with—and dev kits support—both the Sixaxis and DualShock 3 controller. This suggests that, for the most part, the design and capabilities of the PS4's controller will be similar to those on the PS3. The documentation also shows a Move controller, suggesting Sony's Wii-style motion wand will work with the new console.
There is a new controller in development for the PS4, though, known internally as the Orbis Development Tool, and while it keeps many of the same features as the current pads—like the four iconic PlayStation face buttons, two thumbsticks and shoulder triggers - there's one key addition.
THE CURRENT PS4 DEV KIT, AT A GLANCE
8GB system memory, 2.2GB video memory
4x Dual-Core AMD64 "Bulldozer" CPU, AMD R10xx Liverpool GPU
New controller features touch pad
Can link PSN accounts to controllers, allowing for multiple logins.
British site CVG speculated last week that, because they'd heard the PS4's controller was "trying to emulate the same user interface philosophies as the PS Vita", that meant it would feature a touch screen. Instead, the Orbis' controller features a capacitive touch pad, like you find on the back of a Vita (presumably it's also on the back of the PS4's controller), that can recognise two-point multi-touch. The entire pad can also be "clicked" for an additional input button.
The PS4's controller will again be capable of motion-sensing, like its PS3 predecessors, only now with improved technology like tilt correction. It will also feature vibration, which Sony has thankfully learned is a next-gen feature you need to launch with. It'll also have an RGB LED light in it.
While there have been reports of the PS4 controller featuring "biometric" technology, there was no mention of it in the information we were provided.
There's one other addition to the PS4's pad you won't find on a DualShock 3: a "Share" button. We're not exactly sure what it does. The most likely use would be to allow users to share some aspect of their gaming experience to Twitter or Facebook. Maybe a screenshot? We have no idea. But that Share button might have something to do with...
The PlayStation 4 Has A New Controller, Fancy User Accounts And Impressive Specs (So Far)
Sony is trying to change the way you think about user accounts with the PS4. As it stands now, and this applies to all current consoles the PS3 (and the Wii U), when you log in, you log in as a single user. With Orbis, Sony is moving the place of "ownership" away from the console, with something it calls "multi-user simultaneous logins."
Which means that the PS4 will let more than one person be logged into the same system at the same time. It achieves this by linking control pads to user accounts; as each new controller syncs with the system, that player's account can be logged in as well. Accounts won't be "locked" to a controller; you'll simply be prompted to sign in to an account every time an extra pad is connected to the console.
One application we learned about for this feature would be that, were four players in a co-op battle able to defeat a boss, then all four would receive trophies.
We only learned of this feature in relation to local accounts stored on the console itself. It's unclear whether you'd also be able to do this via the PlayStation Network if you were playing online.
That's it for now. Remember, none of this information is confirmed, and even the information that is locked down in January 2013 may change before the console's eventual release, which is likely not for at least another nine months, at minimum. This is just what we've been told Sony is working on and planning for as of today. That being the case, how do you think it's shaping up?
Finally, from VGLeaks comes ORBIS Devkits Roadmap / Types below, as follows:
Currently, there are 3 types of devkits:
1) R10 boards with special BIOS, running in generic PC’s
2) “Initial 1″ - Early devkit
Model number: DVKT-KS000K
SCE-provided PC equipped with R10XX board
Runs Orbis OS
Available July 2012
3) SoC Based Devkit: early version of the ORBIS hardware
Available January 2013
Time to look inside of each devkit:
R10 Board (with special BIOS) Assemble in a Generic PC
Requires Windows 7 64 bit edition
Sandy Bridge (Intel) or Bulldozer (AMD)
Minimum 8 GB RAM (system memory)
650 Watt PSU
DWM (Desktop Windows Manager) must be turned off
Application will use Windows services for everything except GPU interface
SCE will provide “Gnm”, a custom GPU interface
Do you remember the first Durango’s pictures? This is a very early devkit based on Windows.
DVKT-KS000K ( “Initial 1″ )
Runs Orbis OS
CPU: Bulldozer 8-core, 1.6 Ghz
Graphics Card: R10 with special BIOS
RAM: 8 GB (system memory)
HDD: 2.5 ” 160 GB
Custom South Bridge allows access to controller prototypes
DVKT-KS000K SoC Based Devkit
Available in January 2013
CPU: 8-core Jaguar
GPU: Liverpool GPU
RAM: unified 8 GB for devkit (4 GB for the retail console)
Subsystem: HDD, Network Controller, BD Drive, Bluetooth Controller, WLAN and HDMI (up to 1980x1080 at 3D)
Analog Outputs: Audio, Composite Video
Connection to Host: USB 3.0 (targeting over 200 MB/s)
The last devkit is the closer one to the retail console. Expect a machine with these specs or similar to these ones. Obviously, Sony could introduce changes in these features, but don’t expect deep mods.
Stay tuned for more PS3 Hacks and PS3 CFW news, follow us on Twitter and be sure to drop by the PS3 Hacks and PS3 Custom Firmware Forums for the latest PlayStation 3 scene updates and homebrew releases!
Wii doesn't emulate GC, and WiiU doesn't emulate Wii. They simply use the same (well, 99% the same) hardware. So, the only N did is wrote different firmware to start GC/Wii mode. It's impossible with PS line where every generation use completely different hardware/architecture. And while it's easy to emulate PSOne, it's not so easy with PS2 and will be almost impossible to emulate PS3 on PS4. But i'm sure at 90% that most PS3 hits will be re-released on PS4.
It's been just over a month since IGN confirmed PlayStation 4 developer kit updates surfaced, and today Sony VP of Home Entertainment Hiroshi Sakamoto has hinted that a PS4 (Orbis) announcement my arrive in May prior to E3 this year.
Below is the scoop, to quote: "He told http://www.emol.com/noticias/tecnologia/2013/01/11/578693/ejecutivo-de-sony-adelanta-importante-anuncio-de-playstation-para-unos-meses-mas.html in response to a question about "a new announcement related to the new PlayStation," that while the news is "still a big secret," the PlayStation side of Sony, "are getting ready for it."
He of course doesn't directly refer to a "PlayStation 4" or the rumored "Orbis" internal project name. Sakamoto adds that the PlayStation team are "focused on E3," but, "the announcement could take place at that time, or maybe even before, in May."
Sounds like Sony's toying with a pre-E3 event for its next-gen console - E3 takes place on June 11 - 13 - though Mr. Sakamoto's comments are still ambiguous enough that we can't be sure. This is a company that launched three different major hardware iterations of the PlayStation 3, so anything could happen.
When the interviewer follows up on Sakamoto's tease-y answer by asking, "But are you getting ready for a big announcement or something complementary?," Sakamoto continues speaking in ambiguities.
"Probably the former, on that date we hope to deliver big news, but we must wait until May at least," he says. We've followed up with Sony for more, but don't expect to hear much beyond a wink and a smile."
Below are some purported PS4 / Orbis specifications courtesy of http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/df-hardware-orbis-unmasked-what-to-expect-from-next-gen-console, to quote:
Here are the highlights:
Both the next generation PlayStation - and its Xbox competitor - feature eight-core CPUs clocked at 1.6GHz according to sources trusted by Digital Foundry.
The main processor architecture driving both consoles is said to be derived the new "Jaguar" technology currently in development by Intel's arch-rival, AMD. These are low-power processor cores designed for the entry-level laptop and tablet market, offering an excellent ratio between power consumption and performance. The PC Jaguar products are set to ship later this year in a quad-core configuration - next-gen consoles see the core count double with some customisations added to the overall design.
Married to the eight-core processor, Orbis also features Radeon HD graphics hardware. We've previously suggested that AMD's mobile "Pitcairn" design - the Radeon 7970M - could be a strong basis for a next-gen console graphics core in terms of power consumption and die-size. Running at 850MHz and featuring 20 of AMD's "Graphics Core Next" compute units, our information suggests that Orbis shaves off 10 per cent of that number, offering up 18 CUs in total, and sees a mild downclock to 800MHz. Incorporated into a design dedicated to cutting-edge visuals and gameplay, this hardware has some serious potential.
However, there's a fair amount of "secret sauce" in Orbis and we can disclose details on one of the more interesting additions. Paired up with the eight AMD cores, we find a bespoke GPU-like "Compute" module, designed to ease the burden on certain operations - physics calculations are a good example of traditional CPU work that are often hived off to GPU cores. We're assured that this is bespoke hardware that is not a part of the main graphics pipeline but we remain rather mystified by its standalone inclusion, bearing in mind Compute functions could be run off the main graphics cores and that devs could have the option to utilise that power for additional graphical grunt, if they so chose.
We also have hard data on Orbis's memory set-up. It features 4GB of GDDR5 - the ultra-fast RAM that typically ships with the latest PC graphics cards - with 512MB reserved for the operating system. This is in stark contrast to the much slower DDR3 that Durango will almost certainly ship with. Microsoft looks set to be using an offshoot of eDRAM technology connected to the graphics core to offset the bandwidth issues the use of DDR3 incurs. Volume of RAM is the key element in Durango's favour - there'll be 8GB in total, with a significant amount (two sources we've spoken to suggest 3GB in total) reserved for the OS.
Finally, Sony is also expected to drop their popular DualShock design with PlayStation 4. Below are some excerpts from http://www.computerandvideogames.com/387287/cvg-sources-sony-to-abandon-dualshock-design-for-ps4/ and http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2013-01-18-sony-to-drop-dualshock-for-the-next-playstation-report, as follows:
Apparently, the new system's controller has undergone a number of different designs, only a few of which resemble the DualShock.
This is what CVG reports:
A senior games studio source working on an upcoming Sony game says the new system's controller has undergone numerous iterations, few of which resemble the DualShock build that has become synonymous with PlayStation.
Experiments within Sony's R&D department are thought to have been extensive. Versions of the new PS4 pad include biometric sensors on the grips and an LCD touch screen, the development source claimed.
A second source, working in a separate part of the industry but still connected to Sony, said PlayStation engineers are "trying to emulate the same user interface philosophies as the PS Vita". This is likely a reference to the touch-screen capabilities of the PlayStation handheld, and a suggestion that Sony will tightly integrate its portable and home systems.
The new console - codenamed Orbis - will be revealed in a matter of weeks, not months.
Sony has declined to comment. And, what Eurogamer said matches with the above:
This information tallies with what Eurogamer has heard from our own sources. We understand that as of six months ago Sony was testing a controller that had an LCD touch-screen on the front and biometrics functionality on the back. These designs, we were told, have changed almost every month, but are for the controller for the next PlayStation.
Biometrics technology captures data from the player's body, such as temperature and heart rate. Half-Life developer Valve has been experimenting with the tech, trying to discover new game experiences that would benefit from it. Sony did not comment.
PS3 can run PS1 games decently but not PS2, why not? PS1 games are lighter and simple, ps2 games are way more complex, as for PS3, even more. The further the console generation, the harder It will be to emulate the games and the more expensive It will be to have backwards compatibility.
It's kinda like how you can run windows XP decently on virtual with like 200MB RAM and 512MB total PC RAM, but you can't do the same for Windows 8, which requires way more RAM, probably at least 1GB just for the virtual machine, but then you'll also require more RAM for the rest of the computer.
That's not exactly how It works, It doesn't depend only on RAM, but that's a good enough for you to understand It. For a perfect PS2 emulation PS3 would probably be more expensive, and for a perfect PS3 emulation PS4 would be WAY more expensive and I dunno, perhaps by PS6 the additional costs to have BC for PS5 games would be more expensive than PS5 itself.
Just because the original PS3 /w BC failed to emu ps2 games doesnt mean the ps4 will fail at playing ps3 titles (heck, nintendo wii could emu gc games, and xbox 360 can run xbox games too... So i dont see how sony cant pull this of). Even though i simply dont understand how a powerful console like a ps3 can run ps1 games yet "supposedly" fail at runnin ps2 games.... Its all a lie, its sonys fault for not testing more instead of ditching it like idiots.
Nintendo =/= Sony, as far as I know, It's easier to emulate GC and Wii games than PS2 and PS3, I'm incapable of getting technical on this though. Anyway, PS3 already did a poor job at emulating PS2, PS4 emulating PS3 would probably be crappy enough to make gamers cry out of frustration.