Chip process evolution is a usual thing in a console’s lifecycle, but rarely has it been as important as in the case of the Xbox 360.
Known for its relatively hardware fragility, the original design of the Xbox 360 would frequently fall to the “Red Ring of Death” failure, which Microsoft terms as the three flashing red lights. While improvements in cooling and a CPU die shrink to 65nm in the Falcon revision have surely improved the situation, the problematic GPU still sits with its 90nm process.
The 65nm drop for the GPU in the Xbox 360 revision codenamed Jasper isn’t expected until August, a time frame backed up by a report from CENS. Microsoft has contracted Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC), Advanced Semiconductor Engineering Inc. (ASE) and Nanya PCB Corp. to build the chips that will ship with the Jasper consoles later this summer.
TSMC will produce the 65nm chips, ASE will package and test them, and Nanya will supply the flip-chip packaging substrates. Microsoft has supposedly booked a production capacity at TSMC estimated to be at around 10,000 300mm wafers.
Inventory of the existing Falcon chips are reportedly depleted, paving the way for the transition to Jasper. The next step for the Xbox 360 console is dubbed “Valhalla,” which will integrate both the GPU and CPU in a single package as a cost-cutting measure, isn’t expected until a year after Jasper.
quote: I was actually going to buy the PS3 version, as it was originally thought that because they are compressing the textures on the 360, that the ps3 version would look better. All the reviews seem to think that they look almost identical, so I changed my mind in favor of the extra content and the fact that online play seems to be better on the 360.(in my opinion)
quote: Exactly another misconception by the PS3 crowd that gets under my skin. The idea that because it has more graphical power than the 360 and has Blu-Ray, it automatically translates into a better experience for the end user. This is simply not the case. Games are not just going to magically " look better " on the PS3 over the 360 because of hardware.
quote: This is simply not the case. Games are not just going to magically " look better " on the PS3 over the 360 because of hardware.
quote: Hats off to rockstar on this, this only shows that DVD9 still has some life it it.
quote: Sure it does, but Microsoft got the 360 into the market first, thus it now has a larger userbase and more people to buy games.