If you want more evidence that MHz isn’t everything, a little birdie points out that Durango (Xbox 720) is specc’ed to have a 1.6GHz CPU.— Hector Martin (@marcan42) december 1, 2012
Famous Wii hacker Hector Martin broke down the Wii U’s CPU and GPU, as reported last week. He discovered that the Wii U’s CPU runs at 1.24GHz, which puts it behind both the PS3 and Xbox360 in the CPU department. But, according to the same hacker, the NeXtbox’s CPU will run at 1.60GHz, relatively not much higher than the Wii U’s. Above is what he had to say:
It seems Microsoft has decided to go for lower speed CPU’s as well. After all, new CPU’s are structurally superior to the ones 7 years ago and they are more efficient, and faster. It’s not known or rumored what the Nextbox’s GPU will run at, but the Wii U already has a head start with it’s GPU running at a solid 550MHz, and is much more efficient than the Xbox360’s 500MHz. As was stated in this report from Nate, the Wii U uses a GPGPU, a GPU which does some of the basic calculations the CPU normally does. Unless Microsoft decides to put a GPGPU in its new console, the Wii U might have the edge this time around. This is without thinking about the PS4 that will most likely come, and the beast it might be, although Sony isn’t doing well at the moment.
It seems more likely the Wii U will be in the same league as the PS4 and the Nextbox the next generation. Sony can’t afford any risks with a new console, as its game department is the only thing that makes a profit for them at the moment. A high price will be one of those risks, and they can’t do what they did last generation, namely selling the PS3 at a ridiculous price, and with a loss per sold console. Microsoft might have deep pockets, but these pockets aren’t bottomless pits. They can’t do what Sony did last generation. The best thing for them is to make a relatively cheap console, where they make some profit. These consoles will undoubtedly have a higher price than the Wii U, but compared to last generation they have to be cheap. No one but the fanboys wants a $500 console again.
It’s good the Wii U isn’t far behind next generation. We can get some great multi-platform games, without having to worry about these games being reduced to rubble, like what happened with the Call of Duty games on the Wii. Developers have mostly complained about the slow CPU, but when they figure out how to use the GPU in the right way, we are able to get some good next-gen games.