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Sony's PS4 Will Have Very Large Hard Drive

By - Source: Ars Technica | B 52 comments

Sony coughs up additional PS4 details this week at GDC 2013.

Sony offered additional information about its upcoming PlayStation 4 console at GDC 2013, hinting that it will ship with a "very large hard drive" without spilling the capacity details. It will also provide a mono microphone/headset right out of the box – no additional purchase is necessary.

Sony Senior Staff Engineer Chris Norden provided a detailed demonstration during the conference, explaining that the eight cores in the 64-bit x86 AMD APU are capable or running eight hardware threads. Each core will use a 32 KiB L1 I-cache and D-cache, and each four-core group will share 2 MiB of L2 Cache. The APU will be able to handle atomics, threads, fibers, and ULTs, with out-of-order execution and advanced ISA.

This APU, the result of a collaboration between AMD and Sony, is based on what Sony calls an extended DirectX 11.1+ feature set. This will include extra debugging support that's not available on the PC, and provide more direct access to the shader pipeline than what was seen with the PlayStation 3. That means developers can do "a lot more cool things and have a lot more access to the power of the system".

According to Ars Technica, the development environment coders will use is based on Windows 7 and is fully integrated with Visual Studio 2010 and 2012, allowing developers to debug PS4 just like they do with PC code. Tools will include C and C++ front ends that are "largely compatible with most standard compilers, and various binary utilities, including CPU and GPU analyzers that can run in real time alongside games".

The report goes on to talk about the console's DualShock 4 controller, the PlayStation 4 Eye camera, and the new user interface. This latter feature will focus on providing users with up-to-date information on all their games from a central menu including DLC news, social recommendations and more without having to actually load a game. The default home screen will provide a digest view of everything that's going on in the social PlayStation space. Sony has even increased the number of friends console owners can have.

As for the PlayStation Eye camera, two are mounted inside the console, each capable of a 1280 × 800 resolution and 60 Hz at a color depth of 12 bits per pixel. The resolution can actually be turned down to increase the response rate. Sony said the Eye will identify where players are physically positioned in a split/screen multiplayer session, and shift the windows around to best suit that player's actual location in front of the TV.

For additional details, check out Ars Technica's report here and CVG's smaller report here.

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  • 26 Hide
    abbadon_34 , March 31, 2013 5:28 PM
    "very large" will be "rather small" by PC standards
  • 18 Hide
    janetonly42 , March 31, 2013 5:55 PM
    "As for the PlayStation Eye camera, two are mounted inside the console," Call me paranoid but these will be covered with electrical tape at my house.
  • 11 Hide
    A Bad Day , March 31, 2013 6:07 PM
    janetonly42"As for the PlayStation Eye camera, two are mounted inside the console," Call me paranoid but these will be covered with electrical tape at my house.


    Don't worry. Microsoft has a patent that covers the concept of a console shutting off if "too many" people are watching a movie that has a set limit on how many people can watch it. The console will give a brief warning period before it stops the movie until the extra people leave.

    I'm fairly sure if that's ever implemented, MS would also ensure that should the camera get blocked, the console won't work.
Other Comments
  • 7 Hide
    danwat1234 , March 31, 2013 5:07 PM
    1TB is certainly possible since 5400RPM and 7200RPM (Hitachi Travelstar 7K1000) mobile drives are out, but more likely it'll be 500GB or 750GB so cost isn't too high
  • 26 Hide
    abbadon_34 , March 31, 2013 5:28 PM
    "very large" will be "rather small" by PC standards
  • 6 Hide
    anxiousinfusion , March 31, 2013 5:33 PM
    It's going to need to be large (by console standards anyway) if they plan to include downloaded games as a large part of their business.
  • -5 Hide
    CheesyHotDogPuff , March 31, 2013 5:36 PM
    This is old news... again.
  • 7 Hide
    bison88 , March 31, 2013 5:50 PM
    anxiousinfusionIt's going to need to be large (by console standards anyway) if they plan to include downloaded games as a large part of their business.



    Depends on whether or not both Sony and Microsoft will start to take full advantage of Bluray capacity and Full 1080p gaming. Textures will be drastically larger in comparisons to what both consoles are capable of now.
  • 18 Hide
    janetonly42 , March 31, 2013 5:55 PM
    "As for the PlayStation Eye camera, two are mounted inside the console," Call me paranoid but these will be covered with electrical tape at my house.
  • 11 Hide
    A Bad Day , March 31, 2013 6:07 PM
    janetonly42"As for the PlayStation Eye camera, two are mounted inside the console," Call me paranoid but these will be covered with electrical tape at my house.


    Don't worry. Microsoft has a patent that covers the concept of a console shutting off if "too many" people are watching a movie that has a set limit on how many people can watch it. The console will give a brief warning period before it stops the movie until the extra people leave.

    I'm fairly sure if that's ever implemented, MS would also ensure that should the camera get blocked, the console won't work.
  • 2 Hide
    jalek , March 31, 2013 6:09 PM
    I replaced my PS3 HDD, but the 60GB would have been fine. The options for anything stored on it are so limited that there's no reason to keep anything on it except games. It had the potential to be a good media server, but it never fulfilled that. I expect the PS4 to do the same, Sony never seems to adapt to it's market, it expects the market to adapt to it's dictates.
  • 1 Hide
    TheMadFapper , March 31, 2013 6:32 PM
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    That's not what your mother said last night.
  • 0 Hide
    edogawa , March 31, 2013 6:41 PM
    Very large hard drive? 2TB can run for about 100 bucks, probably 75 in massive bulk. I'm not sure how console gamers will feel about this added cost.
  • 4 Hide
    NightLight , March 31, 2013 7:02 PM
    i'm not a sony fan, but i'm glad to hear they are bridging the gap between pc and console, at least a little.
  • -9 Hide
    ddpruitt , March 31, 2013 7:57 PM
    Quote:
    Each core will use a 32 KiB L1 I-cache and D-cache, and each four-core group will share 2 MiB of L2 Cache. The APU will be able to handle atomics, threads, fibers, and ULTs, with out-of-order execution and advanced ISA.
    ....
    According to Ars Technica, the development environment coders will use is based on Windows 7 and is fully integrated with Visual Studio 2010 and 2012, allowing developers to debug PS4 just like they do with PC code. Tools will include C and C++ front ends that are "largely compatible with most standard compilers, and various binary utilities, including CPU and GPU analyzers that can run in real time alongside games".


    So basically this is an overpriced Windows 7 PC with substandard parts?

    Sounds to me like a more powerful version of a iSheep device.
  • 0 Hide
    shikamaru31789 , March 31, 2013 7:58 PM
    My guess is they'll have two SKU's with a 500 GB and 1 TB drive. I'd say 500 GB is the minimum with the increased focus on downloadable games. And if this rumor about the 720 requiring games to be installed on the hard drive is true, they'd better put a 1TB in the base model.
  • 2 Hide
    Azn Cracker , March 31, 2013 8:06 PM
    Phew. 40gb with my ps3 was too little. So prob 1tb HD since they are currently selling 500gb models atm
  • 1 Hide
    nieur , March 31, 2013 8:07 PM
    as the prices of hard drives are high now Hard drive should be replaceable so that we can replace it with larger drive after 2-3 years
  • 5 Hide
    invlem , March 31, 2013 8:14 PM
    "very large" is such a horribly ambiguous term to use (I'm sure it was intentional).

    Large compared to previous generations? that could be anywhere from 500gb+

    Large compared to current computer technology? 1tb, 1.5tb?

    Considering the focus is on installing every game I'm hoping for 750gb/1tb range. AFAIK 500gb is too small if I have to dump the entire game contents on my HDD before playing (considering the average game is 16-20gb now and isn't going to get smaller) 500gb just wouldn't cut it anymore.
  • -1 Hide
    thillntn , March 31, 2013 8:17 PM
    consoles spying on you with cams, not surprising from a company that had root kits on cd's,and systems that phone home without the customers approval. just support ntfs and people can use their own storage easily....oh that would be too convenient for the customer oops.
  • 1 Hide
    billgatez , March 31, 2013 8:53 PM
    Verry large by PC or console standards? Because if its PC then it will have to be over 1TB if console then over 500 GB. I hope Sony sticks with being able to use any old sata drive making upgrading easy.
  • 4 Hide
    samwelaye , March 31, 2013 9:00 PM
    thillntnjust support ntfs and people can use their own storage easily....oh that would be too convenient for the customer oops.


    Thats what they did with the ps3. you can use any 2.5" hard drive or even solid states. Do some research before spewing nonsense. and the sony of the past is not the sony of today. Its been many years since anything like that happened
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