Unlike their rivals who love to talk about the inner workings of their consoles, Nintendo has always been very tight lipped about what makes their machines tick. Since the day the console was launched, people have been doing tear down, benchmark tests, and so on so forth to determine the Wii U's power. Recently, we've got an up close and personal look at the Wii U's GPU, and I'm now able to say with confidence how the Wii U stacks up against its competitors.
Now, I may not be a technology expert of any sort, but I know how to read and write, so that makes me perfectly capable of commenting on the Wii U's power in relation to other consoles. I mean, I can tell which number is bigger than the other. What else do you need to interpret complex pieces of machinery?
Let's start with the Wii U's CPU. The Wii U's CPU has only 1.24 clocks. This is lower than other systems. For example, the X-Box 360 has 3.2 clocks. What this means, in layman's terms, is that the Wii U is not as good at telling time as the X-Box 360. This poses a significant problem when developing games that are highly dependent on clocks. For example, in a beta version of Animal Crossing for the Wii U, K.K. Slider's concerts were constantly late. The Wii U's clocks also prevented a Majora's Mask remake from happening on the Wii U. Nintendo tried to make the game for the Wii U, but the Wii U's slow clocks made the days too long, and it screwed up the game, so they remade Wind Waker instead.
Many developers are complaining about the Wii U's slow clocks. For example, Oles Shishkovtsov, who is a developer for THQ that was working on Metro: Last Light, said that the Wii U's clocks were horribly slow, and it made him late for a meeting with Nintendo. As a result of the horribly slow clocks, the Wii U version of Metro: Last Light was canceled. Nintendo has responded that developers simply need time to learn how to read their clocks. At this time, it is unknown whether the Wii U's clocks are digital or analog.
Moving on from the CPU, let's talk about the rams. The Wii U has 2 Gigs of rams. While cars are measured in horse power, consoles are apparently measured in ram power. The Wii U's power is equivalent to that of 2 gillion rams. Now, you don't have to be a genius to know THAT'S A LOT OF FREAKING RAMS!!!
Here is where things get a bit theoretical. There are many species of rams, and I'm not sure which species of ram the Wii U's power is being compared to. However, the average species of ram weighs about 140 lbs. Meanwhile, a fully grown draft horse weighs about 1400 lbs. So, 10 ram power is about 1 horsepower. By simple division, we come to the conclusion that the Wii U is about as powerful as 200 million horses. And THAT'S A LOT OF FREAKING HORSES!!! But that's not all! The Wii U also has 32 Ed rams. Ed rams are special “ED”ucated rams. Because of their education, Ed rams are more efficient than normal rams. It's estimated that each Ed ram is 100 times better than a normal ram, which gives the Wii U 3200 extra ram power or 320 extra horse power.
Now, the 2012 Dodge Ram 1500 has 310 horse power. If we divide the Wii U's 200 million and 320 horsepower by the horse power of the Dodge Ram, then we find that the Wii U is as powerful as 645,162.290322581 Rams. So, the Wii U has 645,161.290322581 Rams (note the capital R here). The X-Box 360 only has 512 Rams. This means that the Wii U is 1,260 times more powerful than the X-Box 360 in terms of Rams.
There are two other things important to consider in terms of graphics. The Wii U can produce 500 flops of graphics per second. This means that if you place a virtual fish on the ground in a Wii U game it could flop 500 times in a second. That's a good deal of flopping. This is going to be very important when Nintendo makes Pokemon for the Wii U. Finally, Magikarp will be able to flop enough to be realistic! Comparitively, on the PS3, a fish could only flop 400 times in a second. This may seem like a small difference, but games involving flopping fish will look significantly better on the Wii U. Due to this, I'd expect Nintendo to announce Rapala Pro Bass Fishing as a Wii U exclusive at this year's E3.
Last but not least, is the issue of shades. Shades are a very big deal when you're talking about a GPU. As we all know, shades are meant to keep out the sunlight. The more shades a system has, the better it will function in the sun. The Wii U is estimated to have 480 shades. This is the equivalent of 240 pairs of shades. This means that the Wii U can function very well even in bright sunlight. It's speculated that the Wii U has so many shades because it needs to shade the system itself and it also needs to shade the Game Pad. In comparison, the X-Box 360 only has 48 shades. That's only 24 pairs of shades, which is not enough to protect the X-Box from the sun. That is why the X-Box 360 constantly gets the red eye of death.
In conclusion, we can clearly see that the Wii U is a good console. It has a lot of shades and over 600,000 more Rams than its competitor. However, the Wii U still has a problem with its slow clocks. We'll have to wait to see if the Wii U's Rams and shades are enough to make up for its slow clocks.
(Just a friendly reminder to readers and some magazines out there. Don't start slinging around numbers until you have the full picture, and you actually understand them.)