Some 'reverse-engineering' of Zen

By: Jukka Larja (, November 3, 2015 2:41 am
Room: Moderated Discussions
nobody ( on November 3, 2015 1:35 am wrote:
> Jukka Larja ( on November 2, 2015 9:34 pm wrote:
> > nobody ( on November 2, 2015 8:19 am wrote:
> > > Symmetry ( on November 2, 2015 6:56 am wrote:
> > > > juanrga ( on November 1, 2015 8:16 am wrote:
> > > > > Games? Most people don't game on octo-cores, and many enthusiasts will prefer octo-core
> > > > > Skylake. You also seems to omit the DX12 benchmark given to you. Even assuming that Zen
> > > > > is 50--60% faster than Piledriver, octo-core Zen was behind quad-core Skylake on the game.
> > > >
> > > > I'd just like to point out that, baring causal gaming, most
> > > > people play on an XBox or Playstation so actually
> > > > do play games on octo-cores. Most modern AAA games are written for an octo-core system with PC support
> > > > frequently tacked on as an afterthought and now that graphics drivers are moving to multi-threading I think
> > > > that 8 cores or 4 SMTed cores will probably be the best gaming configuration going forward.
> > >
> > > Both consoles currently only have 6 cores used for games
> >
> > I think Xbox One has had "about seven" cores available since spring, unless
> > you want to use Kinect. PS4 should have seven cores available in new SDK,
> > but I'm not sure if any games have yet been released that support it.
> >
> > However, I'm somewhat skeptical about how well even AAA games are utilizing all the cores. Xbox 360 had
> > six threads available and PS3 had SPUs. It didn't follow that all AAA games were multi-threaded well.
> >
> > As for comparisons to PC, even though Jaguar core is great leap forward from Cell and
> > Xenon, it's still quite far from Haswell and Skylake. I wouldn't be surprised if a high-clocked,
> > dual-core desktop i3 beat consoles even on well-threaded game code. I'd be very, very
> > surprised if a quad-core i5 would lose with just about any game code.
> >
> > -JLarja
> How about with Steam,, messangers, browsers, etc.
> All open and more background stuff while running the game?

Probably only causing a fraction of a core's worth of load. Of course, there's always a possibility that something's wrong. A single webpage can consume a core on a browser and thanks to one process per tab, you could theoretically get an 18 core Xeon to 100 % utilization just with a browser :D .

> My i5 4570+750ti has trouble running a game that came out on the PS3 at 60fps. The game locks to 30 or 60.
> While 30 is still better then the PS3 (25-30) and blows the Xbox 360 out of the way (15-30) it takes having
> same AA, same resolution and lower shadow detail to run it at a mostly-stable 30fps with browser, etc open.

Do you think this has anything to do with processing power? Either you aren't comparing apples to apples (PC port can be total crap, console versions usually run with lower quality shaders, textures etc. than PC version, resolutions differ etc.) or there's something wrong with your setup. Also seems that you have vsync enabled (thus either 30 or 60 FPS) while PS3 doesn't have (it's common trick on consoles to disable vsync when FPS drops under certain limit, usually 30 on PS3 and Xbox 360).

> If I do parity with PS3 settings I get a solid 30fps in some
> areas and solid 60fps in others. With nothing else open.
> It is not a great port, but, the GPU is a good 4x faster and the CPU is a lot faster, 5-10x?

Well, certainly not a great port. If I had to guess, the original game was coded with 30 FPS in mind and getting from there to 60 FPS takes a lot more than double the processing power. How often you drop below 30 FPS is probably more meaningful comparison. 750 ti also isn't optimized for similar loads as PS3's GPU is. Newer graphics card aren't nearly as good as simple flops comparison would suggest in running older games.

The fact that it runs that much worse on Xbox also suggests that the code quality wasn't that great to begin with.

> Nice to see them freeing up another core on both systems!

Yes, it's another small incentive to do better multi-threading, which in turn is great for PC gamers like me, who have invested in powerful CPU for other reasons regardless.

By the way, if your point was that gamers should just get a console, since even wastly more powerful PC can't necessarily deliver an equal experience, I don't really disagree. Convenience is a big factor for some people. More serious gamers may want to get all the consoles and a PC just so they can play every game on the best platform (or at all, if the game's exclusive to one).

Personally, I hardly game on consoles at all (after two years of living in my current apartment, I still haven't gotten around to switching Xbox 360's HDMI cable to correct connector on an AV receiver), but that's mostly because the games I prefer either aren't available on consoles or are only available as dumbed down versions. Also, marginal cost of games (cost once you have the hardware) is a lot less on PC, thanks to Steam sales :) .

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