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The PS4 Pro has some unique GPU enhancements that are not in Polaris

The PS4 Pro has some unique GPU enhancements that are not in Polaris

The PS4 Pro has some unique GPU enhancements that are not in Polaris

The PS4 Pro has some unique GPU enhancements that are not in Polaris

 
 
When the PS4 Pro was announced a lot of gamers were disappointed in the system's specification, especially given Sony's marketing push with this console for 4K. After all, how can a console with 2.3x the GPU compute performance render games at 4x the screen resolution?  
 
Sony did say that their new system would contain a new AMD APU, which contained features that are so new that they are not present in AMD's Polaris architecture, which means that the performance gains provided by the PS4 Pro's new hardware higher than what the GPU TFLOP comparison below would suggest. 
 
 
  
 Original PS4PS4 Pro
CPU8-core AMD Jaguar8-Core AMD Jaguar
Memory8GB GDDR58GB GDDR5
GPU TFLOPS1.84TFLOPS4.2TFLOPs
Mass2.1kg3.3kg
Power consumptionMax 165WMax 310W

 
 
Recently Digital Foundry had gotten the chance to speak with VooFoo, the developers of Mantis Burn Racing, who are currently developing their game for PC, PS4 and PS4 Pro. The developers of Mantis Burn Racing revealed to Digital Foundry one of the PS4 Pro's new features, which allows the console to complete two 16-bit floating point (FP16) operations in the same time that the original PS4 takes to complete one.
 
From what we can tell, this means that the PS4 Pro has support for Mixed-Precision GPU compute, as traditionally most GPUs and games function using 32-bit (single precision) floating point operations. Today most GPUs are unable to complete both single precision (FP32) instruction and half-precision (FP16) operations at the same time, though it seems now that the PS4 Pro can thanks to some new GPU architectural changes. 
 
If the PS4 Pro does indeed support mixed-precision compute, it will allow the PS4 Pro to complete two FP16 compute tasks in the same time that it takes to do a single FP32 task, allowing the PS4 Pro to gain some extra performance by using FP16 operations whenever possible. 
 
This will not mean that the PS4 Pro will have 2x the performance using this technology, as a lot of tasks will require the extra accuracy provided by FP32 compute, though it will allow some tasks to be done using much fewer system resources when less precision is required. 
 
 
 
Supporting mixed precision compute is a task that will take developers a lot of time and effort to utilise fully, as most tasks will not be suited to lower precision compute. This feature will allow developers to push the PS4 Pro much further than the PS4, but only if they can compute data with lower levels of accuracy and still achieve the same visual results.
 
Mixed-precision compute is a feature that is not currently present in AMD's Polaris GPU architecture and is a feature that has only recently arrived on Nvidia GPUs with their new Pascal architecture. 
 
If the PS4 Pro does support Mixed-Precision compute it means that AMD plans on implementing it onto their PC hardware in the near future, likely coming as a new feature in their upcoming Vega GPU architecture. This has already been suggested in previous AMD Vega leaks, which point to half-precision compute performance as a major selling point for Vega for the server market. 
 

  

You can join the discussion on the PS4 Pro's secret GPU enhancements on the OC3D Forums

 

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Most Recent Comments

03-10-2016, 10:43:45

Kilbane
That's a big leap in GPU performance, a big leap in power consumption too!Quote

03-10-2016, 13:06:22

NeverBackDown
This would help in the long run as down the line devs get better at optimization for each specific platform. Hopefully Vega does indeed get this feature, would mean PC devs could take advantage of this for high end cards, don't know if it would be useful thoughQuote

03-10-2016, 13:35:22

WYP
Quote:
Originally Posted by NeverBackDown View Post
This would help in the long run as down the line devs get better at optimization for each specific platform. Hopefully Vega does indeed get this feature, would mean PC devs could take advantage of this for high end cards, don't know if it would be useful though
I don't think we will see this as a PC feature anytime soon, first because Multi-precision compute is Pascal only ATM and even after AMD gains this feature it will be a long time before devs will be convinced that it is useful.

it will also be something that APIs like DX12 etc would need to be updated for, and we all know how well devs are coping with DX12 ATM.

Right now it is a great feature for console devs as all PS4 Pro systems are the same etc and it can be implemented and fairly easily. With PC things are a little more complex. It will be the whole Async compute argument all over again.Quote

03-10-2016, 15:46:45

NeverBackDown
Yep I agree. I'd like to see some console technical demo's featuring one demo with this disabled and the other enabled. It would give us the best case scenario. I think it may be useful when consoles are trying to push 4k with the upscaling and/or 60fps but I would think it would only benefit more consistent frame rate rather than improve itQuote

03-10-2016, 17:35:46

Kushiro
Really tempted to get one of these just for FF VII remake. If they come out at roughly the same time, I will finally get a console again.

Only ever got the original PS and a Wii.

I would hope that the cooling on this one would be very good. Dont want to have to deal with those overheating issues, however rare they may be.Quote
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