Previous Generation Radeon HD Powers the Wii U

The big reveal at the E3 games show this year was the Wii U, Nintendo's next-generation gaming system that's set to appear in 2012.

Like the Wii, the Wii U appears to be using modest technology that's affordable today, rather than the state-of-the-art parts that Microsoft and Sony chose for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 over five years ago.

According to Japanese publication Game Watch, powering the graphics in the Wii U is an AMD Radeon HD 4000 series class GPU. Yes, this does mean that the Wii U, which is still a year away from market, is already spec'ed with a GPU that's decidedly last-generation.

Still, despite it being quite old in the PC world, it's still more advanced than Microsoft and Sony current offerings. The ATI GPU in the Xbox 360 and Nvidia GPU in the PS3 are of the DirectX 9 generation and feature Shader Model 3.0.

The Wii's GPU is based off of the RV770 core, which is of DirectX 10.1 generation with Shader Model 4.0.

Nintendo's use of Xbox 360 and PS3 game footage as its own at the E3 keynote may have raised a few eyebrows, but with this GPU, the Wii U should have no problem at least matching the graphical output of the current generation.

Create a new thread in the US News comments forum about this subject
This thread is closed for comments
145 comments
    Your comment
    Top Comments
  • whysobluepandabear
    This is beyond F'ing sad.


    I can buy a 6870 RIGHT NOW for $165 after rebate. I'm sure if Nintendo was approaching Nvidia or AMD, they could strike a handsome deal on something similar.


    Why are they going to charge in the range of $400, for a console that has CHEAP ASS hardware in it? Nintendo is seriously the Apple of consoles.
    26
  • cyb34
    THANK GOD WE HAVE PCs :P
    20
  • stm1185
    I just replaced an HD4870 from 2008 with a GTX 560ti. So the next Wii Console might be as powerful as my 3 year old graphics card.

    Hopefully the Xbox 720 will come out a year later then the Wii U sporting a HD8000 based GPU in it, and you know be caught up with the current PC hardware.

    The Wii U should have been called the Wii 2, it will be just as far behind and based around a stupid controller as the first one!
    20
  • Other Comments
  • whysobluepandabear
    This is beyond F'ing sad.


    I can buy a 6870 RIGHT NOW for $165 after rebate. I'm sure if Nintendo was approaching Nvidia or AMD, they could strike a handsome deal on something similar.


    Why are they going to charge in the range of $400, for a console that has CHEAP ASS hardware in it? Nintendo is seriously the Apple of consoles.
    26
  • dormantreign
    It really looks like toms hardware will be shitting on the wiiu untill its released....Zelda in 1080p...comeon that as to count for something...oh an first post
    -17
  • ben850
    Thanks for pushing the envelope Nintendo! Guess I'll be waiting a while before upgrading my video card again :(
    17