XBox "Next" Dev. Kits are modified PM G5's.

Discussion in 'Games' started by BrianKonarsMac, Sep 17, 2004.

  1. BrianKonarsMac macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2004
    #1
    just got my game informer and it h as a small blurb about the irony of Microsoft using modified Apple PM G5's as development kits for XBox 2 (which are currently available, some of the next gen games look simply amazing, and i think are going to narrow the performance gap between home-made gaming rigs and consoles considerably, until unreal engine 3.0 at least :p). it doesn't go into details about the modifications, but i believe i read somewhere about the only change being so they could run Windows NT (presumably to incorporate Direct X without porting it to a Power PC compatbile code base?), if this is true, it speaks volumes for the capabilities of G5's as high end gaming rigs. If quality development houses were in line for G5 optimized development, I think the Mac gaming scene would be far improved, and would probably surpass the PC side in performance.

    Here's hoping this will give the Mac community a little more of a serious interest in gaming, rather than being an after-thought.

    o almost forgot...my REASON for posting this, does anyone have any links to articles on the internet providing more information? Xbox 2 previews? next gen game previews? etc. i know, we all hate M$, but if they want to sell me a console at a loss and keep me from blowing $5k on a gaming-rig that will need to be upgraded every month with the latest and greatest, i'll sink them into debt gladly (and then modify my xbox heavily :D).
     
  2. osprey76 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 3, 2004
    Location:
    Oklahoma City, OK
    #2
    I think AppleInsider.com ran some pictures showing the then brand new Power Macs sitting in Redmond's receiving dock. Supposedly that Microsoft employee was promptly fired.

    I'm curious where this will go. The XBox 2 is supposed to use 2 or 3 PPC 970's (or perhaps better). I've read somewhere that the PMacs are running a modified NT kernel. Ars Technica ran an article about MSFT is moving to something beyond DirectX that makes a unified game development platform for both computers and the XBox console.

    It could all end up being very interesting, but just because two things use the same basic processor doesn't mean that they are at all related.
     
  3. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    #3
    The PowerPCs didn't care which endian you used, it was bi-endian, and could even do edian translation on the fly using some of the psuedo-little endian instructions.

    Older copies of Virtual PC used these psuedo-little endian instructions, but VPC 7.0 needed a work around it because the 970 didn't support it.

    The Power4 locked users into a native big-endian, since it was designed to run their big-endian Unix, and the PPC970 most likely didn't change it.

    Since the endianess of the PPC970 is different from the x86 -- the Windows NT modification/update probably fixed the endian issues as they ported over enough of it to operate a game system.
     
  4. BrianKonarsMac thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Apr 28, 2004
    #4
    well i found it interesting because M$ is generally correlated with Intel, yet they seem to be shifting away from that relationship. i know this doesn't directly translate to being able to play XBox 2 games on a G5 or anything, but i find it amusing that M$ (who develops hardware as well) has chosen to use an Apple solution (since they are using the whole system, not just the IBM processor) in something as monumental as the XBox 2 (which will supposedly be a contender in the fiercest console war ever). they noted in the article that a little game going by the title of Halo 3 was scheduled for release on the same day as PS3, way to try and steal their thunder :D.

    microsoft has contracted ATI for this round of XBox's Custom GPUs i believe. i'm curious to know if the R&D going into this custom GPU will eventually make it's way into a retail G5 GPU? (since i'm assuming they will have to be built to fit the PM G5 dev. kits, which are pretty much your basic dual 2.0)

    all this talk of little and big endian, and endianness, has my mind swimming circles. grace us mere mortals with your knowledge!
     
  5. Zaty macrumors 65816

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    Mar 14, 2004
    Location:
    Switzerland
    #5
    I don't think MS has chosen an "Apple Solution" the have just chosen the PPC 97X as the platform for the next generation Xbox. That doesn't mean MS is turning a PM G5 into an Xbox, they just have to develop the software they need for the console on anything similiar. Since there are (AFAIK) no protoypes available, they decided to do work an a PM G5 because that's as close as you get to the Xbox 2 if all those rumours are correct.
     
  6. iJon macrumors 604

    iJon

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2002
    #6
    Isn't this old news. We've been hearing about this for a while now. Still cool none the less.

    iJon
     
  7. themadchemist macrumors 68030

    themadchemist

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2003
    Location:
    Chi Town
    #7
    What's UNCOOL about all of this is that Apple will no longer be IBM's largest customer for these chips, which means that it will be even tougher for Apple to get a large, steady supply of chips, considering IBM's fab problems. On the flip side, maybe having a demand as great as would exist for the XBox 2 will make IBM a little more serious about its manufacturing processes, meaning more chips for everyone.
     
  8. Poff macrumors 65816

    Poff

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    Sep 16, 2003
    Location:
    Stavanger, Norway
    #8
    ! :D
     

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