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No games are being announced that supports ATI's method, says AGEIA

Earlier this week at Computex, DailyTech reported that ATI officially announces its solution to physics processing. Called Triple Play, ATI's solution depends on three Radeon X1K series cards, two of which operate in CrossFire mode while a third card is configured for physics processing. The Triple Play solution, says ATI, uses the raw gigaflop performance of the Radeon X1K series to process physics, but users are concerned at the approach. The fact that customers are forced to buy three ATI boards ended up being questionable for many users as costs quickly escalate.  A system with two Radeons can still use one for physics calculations, but it is no longer dubbed Triple Play.

FiringSquad this week reported a response from AGEIA which attempts to explain the lack of value in ATI's solution. According to AGEIA, measuring the performance of physics processing by simply looking at the number of gigaflops in a GPU is analogous to saying that "the more wheels I have on my car, the faster I will go." AGEIA's vice president of marketing,  Michael Steele, said to FiringSquad:
  • Graphics processors are designed for graphics. Physics is an entirely different environment. Why would you sacrifice graphics performance for questionable physics? You’ll be hard pressed to find game developers who don’t want to use all the graphics power they can get, thus leaving very little for anything else in that chip.
  • “Boundless Gaming” is actually enabled by AGEIA’s Gaming Power Triangle in which the PhysX processor adds true physics to the mix instead of leaving it to a repurposed graphics processor.
AGEIA further says that developers are announcing more and more games that support its PhysX product, while no one is announcing support for ATI's method. Steele also mentioned that while he's glad that ATI has agreed that physics is important, ATI is delivering a "questionable" solution to physics processing.

Steele also emphasized that PhysX is available now while ATI's solution is not.


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Do we really need a PPU?
By Le Québécois on 6/10/2006 3:39:21 PM , Rating: 2
I mean, I know that I some point we might need them but look at a game like FEAR for exemple. I "think" all the physics and AI in CPU bound in this game and yet there's near to none improvement in fps (like 5% between AMD64 3000 and an FX-60) increase whatever CPU you are using for this game and I'm not talking about crazy 1600 resolution but even at 640 where the cpu is supposed to be a limiting factor.

Either Monolith has done a pretty impressive job with the havok engine and their AI or I missed something along the way that make that even a SLI-7800GTX 512 is a limiting factor in 640x480.

My point is that to me all that PPU talk is about programmers getting lazy and not trying to optimize their code to the max so the we can USE our current CPU to their maximum potentiel.




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