Xbox Quote of the Year


Bungie community rep, Luke Smith, tries to do some damage control on the discovered Halo 3 resolution deficiency debacle:

“In fact, if you do a comparison shot between the native 1152×640 image and the scaled 1280×720, it’s practically impossible to discern the difference.”

Very true! Upscaling doesn’t improve quality at all! That’s why people are upset! ROFL! For once, I actually agree with something Microsoft says about upscaling :)

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Upscaling doesn’t add any more texture or model detail or sharpness, it just blows up the pixels.

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Then, the Microsoft rep proceeds to go off the deep end:

“In fact the reason we haven’t mentioned this before in weekly updates, is the simple fact that it would have distracted conversation away from more important aspects of the game, and given tinfoil hats some new gristle to chew on as they catalogued their toenail clippings.”

640p vs 720p? Sure, most people wouldn’t notice by themselves if they didn’t read about it. But the exact same thing can be said about the 30/60 Madden FPS issue that Microsoft trumpeted to the moon last month.

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UPDATE: OK, even though this is a PS3 fan site, we try not to be obnoxious and blatantly bash the 360. In rather short hindsight, this post was a little bit too much, so to balance this out a little bit, read this newer post.


Written by: Darrin - Contributing Editor


  1. #1 by John on September 30th, 2007

    Well, having a higher framerate in Madden not only makes it look better, but plays better too.

    Who honestly cares about Halo 3 having alternative way to display the image on the screen? You’re sad attempt at making this into a big deal has failed.

    This entire post reeks of Xbox hate.

  2. #2 by Sporty on September 30th, 2007 [ 95 Points ]

    Yea, it was a retarded comment that no one can see the difference between the same image in it’s native to it upscaled. Doesn’t make it a better quality image.

    Most likely reason for this is to save space on the DVD. Since more and more games are pushing the size barrier. It’s either drop the detail on the textures, shorten the games or spread them out to multiple disks. Looks like they lowered the resolution on this one and are now spinning it.

    Now, what’s the point of this thread here?

    It seems like its’ only flame bait to get the 360 fanboys panties in a bunch to come and defend their love with “Who cares” and “PS3 sucks” comments from here on out. Not to mention PS3 fanboys defending their system with attacks back.

    I’m going to grab some popcorn myself. But why can’t we just for the most part act like 360 doesn’t exist here? Some of us like me have all systems, I prefer to not see negative articles on any, I get that enough with bias review sites already. Concentrating on PS3 news for the most part might keep the flames down to a minimum

  3. #3 by busby on September 30th, 2007

    I agree with Sporty lets just keep this as a place for ps3 news I know there has been a little xbox bashing but lately there seems to be getting more and more, just stick to news about the PS3 if nothing else it will keep the comments tidier :-)

  4. #4 by MeeToo on September 30th, 2007

    Flame bait alert: Though most would probably be annoyed. He’s just venting out. Leave Darrin alone.

    720p would probably suck out all the juice of the CPU leaving out some of the dynamic lighting of the games. Both PS3 and X360 I think are still not powerful enough to truely maximized the use of 720p/1080p. There is just other factors to be considered other that resolution. Dynamic lighting and Frame rate issues should also be considered.

    This is probably not the “Xbox quote of the year”.

    I would suggest “Leaving Japan and concentrating more on Europe…” would be the xbox quote of the year.

  5. #5 by MeeToo on September 30th, 2007

    Another thing I don’t understand about X360 is where are the “FREE 4X FSAA”?

    Does anyone knows GearsOfWar and BioShock internal resolution?

    NVM… I’ll just google it.

  6. #6 by Emrah on September 30th, 2007

    I don’t agree on the 30/60fps comment, that “most people wouldn’t notice by themselves if they didn’t read about it.”

    For me, the difference is like night and day, and I am pretty sure almost half of us gamers would be able to spot it, and most of the rest who cannot, would say the visuals ‘feel’ better in a 60fps version of the same game, even if they could not pin-point the difference.

    Here’s a very good read:
    http://www.100fps.com/how_many_frames_can_humans_see.htm

  7. #7 by Aly on September 30th, 2007

    Yeah thats all well and good but Halo 3 is still one of the best games out right now and easily beats anything out now for the PS3.

  8. #8 by Sporty on September 30th, 2007 [ 95 Points ]

    So it begins….

  9. #9 by bobeotm on September 30th, 2007

    Ugh, such a flamebait post, but i’ll bite.

    If the lowered resolution was to save space on the DVD, that doesn’t bode well for 360 games. First PGR leaving out multiple times of day and weather conditions on the tracks due to it not being able to fit on the DVD. And Blue Dragon shipping on 3, Lost Odyssey shipping on 4. It seems like developers are already hitting the storage ceiling of the format.

    For all the flack Sony gets for including blu-ray, it seems more and more like it was the right thing to do. Regardless of whether it was to trojan-horse it into living rooms, having the storage seems like its more and more of an advantage. Whats going to happen when 360 games hitting the storage ceiling become the rule and not the exception? When Forza 3 has to ship on two disks, like the Psone gran turismo.

  10. #10 by Darrin on September 30th, 2007 [ 17143 Points ]

    I rubbed people the wrong way, and I’m sorry for that. I really do try to avoid bashing the 360 and I keep almost all of my posts focused on the PS3.

    John, I’m *not* trying to blow this issue up at all. I originally avoided commenting on this 640p debacle, just like I do with almost all other negative 360 stories, however the irony and humor in this was just too much. Specifically:

    1) Upscaling. Remember how much complete nonsense Microsoft spread about upscaling? Most of you probably don’t, but I do, and in that context, it was hilariously ironic to read this comment (which additionally doesn’t make any sense to say that given the current debacle), and I had to comment.

    2) Sure, there *is* is a human perceptable difference between 30/60 FPS and it’s more noticeable than the 640p/720p issue. However, in *BOTH* of those scenarios, the tech specs and political arguments completely overwhelmed the actual underlying difference in the game experience. And it’s hard to deny the irony. When it’s in their favor they trumpet to the moon, when there is a tech spec going against them, they get defensive and emotional.

    Thanks MeeToo, for pointing it out: sometimes I just need to vent. But, I will keep the posts positive. I’ll post something to counter-balance this later today or tomorrow.

  11. #11 by Segitz on September 30th, 2007 [ 1470 Points ]

    Resolution and discspace do not cancel each other out… Higher resolution ONLY taxes the hardware more, but does not (essentially) need more space… Just look at PC games… Mostly all of them support all resolutions provided by your monitor and the install size does not differ.

    But I must say, this “news” is flamebait in its finest fashion. I does not bode well, as we will be looked at as a fanboy site (i.e. only good news etc. for PS3 and some (but only) bad news about 360).

    Bungie themselves said it. The 360 cannot render this game as fluid in real 720P, so they need to use upscaling. On B3D, the presumptions were going so far to say, that the eDRAM (or the “lack” thereof) is the culprit, meaning that for real 720P resolution it is too small (as they need two render targets in memory all the time for each frame), hence they needed to cut back to fit it into the eDRAM. This also meant, that Halo would not get AA (or would severly suffer from it), as it would essentially double the memory footprint in the eDRAM (i.e. 640P with 2 RTs needs ~10MB, 720P 1RT w/ 2xAA needs 12MB and 640P with 2RTs and 2xAA would need 20MB and so on). This would have killed off any bandwidth left in the 360, as you would either have to tile your render (nearly impossible to implement later on) or swap between RAM and eDRAM (and here, the bandwidth is severely limited with 22GB/s).

    So… In the end, it is not that big a deal BUT the PR stuff (i.e. screenshots and videos) were all NATIVELY rendered at 720P including AA… THIS is what made me mad (and that the case of the game also says “720P”, which it REALLY is NOT!)

  12. #12 by Rjcc on September 30th, 2007 [ 490 Points ]

    Um, what? where exactly did microsoft say upscaling improves pq? IIRC, the point was that it could be done without making the image look significantly worse, while the ps3 shipped with no scaling ability at all, even now can only do it in some situations.

    sorry to interrupt your revelry, I’ll go and throw away my 640p copy of Halo 3 and enjoy 1080p lair.

  13. #13 by mcloki on September 30th, 2007 [ 2355 Points ]

    Guys I do think this is a legitimate point to discuss. While it may be technical in nature. It does affect the way games are delivered. Like a digital camera that says it has 4.6 megapixels of interpolated resolution (FUJI) and only has 3 megapixels. These things do matter to some people.
    My personal example is my Sansung HDTV 4096D. When i bought it it said it was 1080p, But after posting my own wallpapers to the screen I noticed I was losing about 2 percent of my image. After a little digging I discovered to my dismay that my “Supposedly 1080p” HDTV had been factory over scanned to compensate. Now I know over scanning is a throwback to the old NTSC (Never the same Colour) days of standard Television. It servered it’s purpose on the analogue sets, but had no purpose on an HDTV set. I wanted a 1:1 pixel mapping HDTV set. Not scaled.
    Luckily with some digging I found a flashROM update that corrected the problem with my set. And Yes I’m much happier. My PS3 now works to it’s absolute top limit. My wallpapers look great. And I now know my Blurays are displaying properly.
    This is a case of improper advertising. It does not matter how small the perceived. difference is.
    Try this out.
    Go to Best buy . Get a copy of Halo 3 priced at $59.99. Walk up to the cashier and giver her $58.99 in change (pennies, quarters) and tell her, that from a distance the difference is barely noticeable. See how far you get out of the store with your copy of Halo 3.
    I am old enough to handle the truth. So tell it to me, Luke.

  14. #14 by Sporty on September 30th, 2007 [ 95 Points ]

    “Um, what? where exactly did microsoft say upscaling improves pq? IIRC, the point was that it could be done without making the image look significantly worse, while the ps3 shipped with no scaling ability at all”

    That’s what Microsoft did.. Your knowledge of this is completely based on BS Microsoft FUD that was accepted as fact. That’s what they did.

    Not most people know that you wont get downscaled on a TV with only 1080i unless your retarded and screw up the settings, and never did downscale without it being user error. And the PS3 is considered one of the best upscaling players around. BUT the FUD has stuck and some people believe it still.

  15. #15 by liar on September 30th, 2007

    @mcloki – exactly. Since when did telling the truth become bashing – and lying to people, then slagging them for calling you on it – deserve defending. It’s quite incredible how people sell their integrity even around facts for a paycheck. Just amazing to watch quite frankly. People have their life backwards.

    @John – what’s it like to work at Microsoft or be a MS partner? Maybe MS should have spent their money on building a console that you know worked instead of bashing the competition with continuous FUD and lies. And here we have the truth – something your not interested in obviously.

    HDMI isn’t needed – lie
    PS3’s new technology is unreliable – lie
    360 is built on proven technology and more reliable – lie
    We have no problem, 360 failures within industry standards – lie
    No 360 games will require a HDD so buy a Core – bait and switch – lie
    Blu-ray 50 BD will never make it to production – lie
    HD-DVD disks will be cheaper – lie
    HD-DVD logo but no HD audio support – lie
    Game review sites are honest and aren’t taking cash to skew reviews – lie.

    @Darrin – this site has hardly been giving the PS3 a “free” ride which just makes people like John even more obviously Xbot’s scanning the internet to defend his product. Yet again another FIRST post that either apologizes for anything MS or Bungie does.. and I’m sure he has a few FIRST posts bashing the PS3 whenever anybody says something positive about it. Amazing how they always seem to be first on the case? You would almost think it’s systematic.

    Darrin you have nothing to apologize for – they perpetrate the same lies and misinformation about HD-DVD in order to confuse consumers as well. Calling them on it when they have spent such amounts of money and efforts to make sure we don’t get the best technology – because they failed to deliver it for their own profit and monopoly ambitions is absolutely nothing to apologize for. The 360 is an xbox 1.5 that costs you more than a PS3 in the end and the next xbox will have even less inovation than this one. Let’s face it..Vista is WORSE than Win95 – and every version since win95 has offered only incremental improvements – that’s the future of the xbox as well – and Halo 3 is the shining example of hype over substance and another incremental improvement.

  16. #16 by Darrin on September 30th, 2007 [ 17143 Points ]

    “Um, what? where exactly did microsoft say upscaling improves pq? IIRC, the point was that it could be done without making the image look significantly worse, while the ps3 shipped with no scaling ability at all, even now can only do it in some situations.”

    Where? Start here. They even go as far as to show a close-up glamor shot of the scaler chip. There was tons of other articles like this spread all over the Internet. I remember reading Dean Takahashi citing Microsoft PR about upscaling as well, but can’t find the link at the moment. There was a huge amount of misinformation spread here.

    rjcc, are you implying that the PS3’s limited upscaling is a deficiency? Aside from the rare case with certain older HDTVs, I must disagree. And I did say in the original post that the 640p issue wasn’t a big deal by itself and almost no consumer would notice if it wasn’t pointed out to them.

  17. #17 by Darrin on September 30th, 2007 [ 17143 Points ]

    Thanks liar. I agree with basically everything you said. There are a ton of dishonest and manipulative statements regarding the console war, however, we are trying not to sink to that, and to keep things positive, etc. (with occasional venting aside)

  18. #18 by Sporty on September 30th, 2007 [ 95 Points ]

    What’s worse is that entire PR push MS did for “ANA” the secret scaler chip was BS to begin with.

    It’s not a scaler chip, it’s an encoder they just showed it to Arstech as a PR stunt to play up the scaling issues at the time. Microsoft have since admitted it’s only an encoder chip. But the damage was done and the truth was barely reported.

    http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?p=10791437&&#post10791437

    http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?p=10796096&&#post10796096

    Here’s an article about PS3 scaling
    http://www.beyond3d.com/content/articles/16/

    The main problem is user’s being ignorant in the settings. The only legit problem with scaling was BD not playing in 720p but that’s been fixed for awhile.

    Just another lie from Microsoft that made an army of ignorant people believe in FUD

  19. #19 by liar on September 30th, 2007

    @Darrin, neither am I – calling out the liars isn’t sinking though – just stating the facts :) They don’t like that.

    Now correct me if I’m wrong but isn’t the 360 just a simple hardware scaler that thinks all source material need to be treated the same , whereas the PS3 uses the power of the Cell to provide smarter software upscaling algorithms based on the source material…it’s the difference between the cheaper T.V upscalers and the better video processors found in A/V equipment. And of course they can keep tweaking and upgrading it into the future as different formats are available…like how they have recently added Audio upscaling to 88 and 196 KHZ for audio CD’s. Don’t think the 360 scaler is capable of doing that right?

    In fact if you have a HDTV that upscales the 360’s simple scaler is redundant where as the more sophisticated PS3 upscaling will improve your DVD experience because it will be better than all but the most expensive T.V.’s or standalone A/V processors.

    But hey Sony are really an engineering company with deep experience in the professional A/V industry and filmmaking- what would they know in comparison to a marketing company like MS when it comes to things like upscaling and video processing. God forbid the obvious and common sense ever enter into the discussion..that’s why it’s called FUD and one company continually invests in it – be it Consoles, Linux, ODF, AVC, Blu-ray. Disinforming people is very profitable in comparison to investing in innovation.

  20. #20 by liar on October 1st, 2007

    Thanks Sporty – you can add that lie to my long list of them. Actually my list is the seriously condensed version. And the major media has been complicit in most of it by simply releasing what are nothing more than MS press releases as their “stories”.


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