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Forums - Sony Discussion - IBM continues Cell development

Of course, we see a lot of melodrama on the internet. A finger cut quickly turns into a fatal aterial bleeding... Doom reports of course spread like wildfire, especially with wishful thinking involved...


"The cell processor has been a very successful part of the Playstation 3, able to munch through folding@home as well as the latest HD game demands. There have been many rumours around the net today that the followup to the CPU in the PS3 has been basically 'canned'. The story was that the new Cell Processor which featured two PowerPC processors and 32 SPEs will not be released and that possibly the whole range was going to be discontinued.

We managed to get hold of an IBM spokesperson an hour ago and they said that only one CPU development cycle is being 'halted' which is the successor to the current PowerXCell-8i cpu. IBM have said they are planning to work on other CPU's in the Cell Processor 'family' and we would assume that by the time the Playstation 4 hits market that they could very well be involved on some level."

To quote a buddy during all the doom and gloom reports (quite a Cell expert):

"Actually this is from a report form a German magazine which is rather different that the headline might suggest.

A never announced chip called the PowerXCell32iv has been cancelled. This isn't news, it's been known for months.

What was not announced is what they were doing with the technology, work was still continuing on Cell but no one knew what they were doing (other than the OpenCL compiler that was released recently).

Actually this confirms the architecture will continue, most likely in something like add-ons for BlueGene or big POWER boxes.

Of course what Sony (who use Cell) and Toshiba (who make them) have planned isn't mentioned."


Naughty Dog: "At Naughty Dog, we're pretty sure we should be able to see leaps between games on the PS3 that are even bigger than they were on the PS2."

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^ everybody read this.... this should put "the cell is PS3/PS4 is doomed" to rest now

Even if the Cell was cancelled, they haven't stopped developement of the POWER core or the interconnect/memory tech so a successor could be developed if Sony had the cash. No one should have thought this affected Sony's plans at all.

lol u have to laugh at them, instead of accepting the ps3 as a valid gaming platform some users on here are itching for it to drop off.

great find mike.

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Was this really necessary? Even all the threads about this quite plainly and obviously stated that while the Cell BE successor was officially stopped production, that did not mean the PS3 or other devices could not use a revised Cell. All they have to do is commission IBM to design it. The Cell architecture and aspects of the Cell will be used in future IBM products, but IBM will not be creating new "Cells". And since MikeB as well as his friends need some reassurance for their misunderstandings I'll clarify once more: This means they won't be making a DIRECT Cell successor with DIRECT Nomenclature (ie PoweXCell32) by themselves. Others can still have them design one for use. IBM will also be making new products using the ideas and architecture and elements of the Cell but they will not be Cell clones or successors. That's why it fits into the "Cell family" since they will share basic similarities but still be very different.

What a waste of time and a non-news story, MikeB.

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So in short, they're still continuing Cell Development and just a certain series line of Cell's have been halted and they're shifting their focus to a newer version of the Cell? Wow... That "stopped development" news got blown out of proportion big time...

4 ≈ One

nobody but nobody said the cell is doomed therefore the ps3/ps4 is doomed... and if they did they are being melodramatic.

Either way it appears that the cell development is changing.... but then its just another chip anyway.,... there are many ways to skin a cat. It isnt some mystical beast that can change the world. Sony has little involvement now I believe, isnt it mainly Toshiba and IBM that are driving this.

I'm not really here!

Thankx for clearing that up for me MikeB

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The current Cell processor design is pretty much dead. SPEs do not make sense anymore and IBM knows this. The new generation of Cell processors will be a few Power7 cores that manage a few thousand stream processors. Even if they call it "Cell", it is a completely different architecture. Granted, it will definitely borrow a few technologies from the current cell, but it will simply be a different processor with the same name.

This those effect the PS4, as it means that backwards compatibility is pretty much dead. If developers thought that porting games to the cell processor was bad, they are going to struggle even more with stream processors. Emulating a Cell with stream processors + a few cores is not hard, but it requires more power than will be available in the next generation of consoles.

Good news Everyone!

I've invented a device which makes you read this in your head, in my voice!

Power Architecture
This box: view • talk • edit

POWER • POWER1 • POWER2 • POWER3 • POWER4 • PowerPC-AS • PPC6xx • Gekko • AIM alliance

PowerPC • e200 • e300 • e500 • e600 • QorIQ • PA6T • POWER5 • POWER6 • PPC4xx • PowerPC 7xx • 7xxx • PPC970 • Cell • Xenon • Broadway • Titan

POWER7 • e700

Posted in the other thread too.
This is the Cell history on wiki.
PS3 uses a POWER4, which you can see on the chart is described as "historical". There already exist plenty of options for the next ps console to use.