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Cell: Multimedia Monster |

CellThe Cell Broadband Engine Architecture. The Cell processor. The Cell. This thing is the guts of the PlayStation 3. The processor. And it’s a beaut.

Spectrum Online has an article about this thing, and it looks like a mighty powerful beast:

So far, microprocessor watchers have been impressed with what they’ve seen of Cell. “To bring huge parallel processing onto a single chip in a clean and efficient way is a real accomplishment,” says Ruby B. Lee, a professor of electrical engineering at Princeton University and an IEEE Fellow.

A graphics-heavy item such as PlayStation 3 isn’t just a showcase for an unusual chip. For IBM it’s a philosophical statement. “Gaming is the next interface driving computing,” says James A. Kahle, Cell’s chief architect with the IBM Technology Group, in Austin, Texas … Just as moving from punch cards to electronic displays changed what people expected of computers, the highly collaborative, real-time realism of today’s games will set the standard for what people want from computers in the future.

IEEE Spectrum: Winner: Multimedia Monster

  • The who-hah over the CPU is all well and good but if cohesion with the nVidia GPU is not spot-on it will matter little. The XBOX360 GPU is more sophisticated; time will tell how the two chipsets will stand up. I’m disappointed with the PS3 up to yet, looks like a re-run of teh PS2 over-hype. We know of the XBOX360’s limitations, I feel SONY’s new console will be equally underwhelming and be no better than a High-End PC.
    I call it tyger’s law, new consoles are limited by the programmers grasp of the architecture, and by the time they have got to grips with the new technology the PC has already moved on.