Now that we have the room, let’s be perfectly clear that these specs should still be filed under “rumor and speculation,” as this is still is reportedly a development kit model, and could change by retail. Some key things to notice in all of the facts and figures here is that the Wii U is running on a three-core PowerPC processor – the same as the Xbox 360. While there’s no indication as to what speed it’s running at (the Xbox runs at about 3.2 GHz), it’s safe to assume that it can run around that same speed as well.
Another interesting tidbit to look at is it’s GPU, which is one of the Radeon 4000 series: two generations newer than the Xbox, and nearly three generations newer than most standard computers. That’s some serious graphic prowess, something that Nintendo sorely needs to implement to prove they are in the arms race in the coming next-generation console battle.
Take a look at the rest of the specs, and tell us what you’re thinking.
Main Application Processor
- PowerPC architecture.
- Three cores (fully coherent).
- 3MB aggregate L2 Cache size.
- core 0: 512 KB
- core 1: 2048 KB
- core 2: 512 KB
- Write gatherer per core.
- Locked (L1d) cache DMA per core.
- Up to 3GB of main memory (CAT-DEVs only). Note: retail machine will have half devkit memory
- Please note that the quantity of memory available from the Cafe SDK and Operating System may vary.
Graphics and Video
- Modern unified shader architecture.
- 32MB high-bandwidth eDRAM, supports 720p 4x MSAA or 1080p rendering in a single pass.
- HDMI and component video outputs.
- Unified shader architecture executes vertex, geometry, and pixel shaders
- Multi-sample anti-aliasing (2, 4, or 8 samples per pixel)
- Read from multi-sample surfaces in the shader
- 128-bit floating point HDR texture filtering
- High resolution texture support (up to 8192 x 8192)
- Indexed cube map arrays
- 8 render targets
- Independent blend modes per render target
- Pixel coverage sample masking
- Hierarchical Z/stencil buffer
- Early Z test and Fast Z Clear
- Lossless Z & stencil compression
- 2x/4x/8x/16x high quality adaptive anisotropic filtering modes
- sRGB filtering (gamma/degamma)
- Tessellation unit
- Stream out support
- Compute shader support
- GX2 is a 3D graphics API for the Nintendo Wii U system (also known as Cafe). The API is designed to be as efficient as GX(1) from the Nintendo GameCube and Wii systems. Current features are modeled after OpenGL and the AMD r7xx series of graphics processors. Wii U’s graphics processor is referred to as GPU7.
Sound and Audio
- Dedicated 120MHz audio DSP.
- Support for 6 channel discrete uncompressed audio (via HDMI).
- 2 channel audio for the Cafe DRC controller.
- Monaural audio for the Cafe Remote controller.
- 802.11 b/g/n Wifi.
- 2 x USB 2.0 host controllers x 2 ports each.
- SDCard Slot.
- 512MB SLC NAND for System.
- 8GB MLC NAND for Applications.
Host PC Bridge
- Dedicated Cafe-to-host PC bridge hardware.
- Allows File System emulation by host PC.
- Provides interface for debugger and logging to host PC.
What do you think, Ranters — are these specs too good to be true, or rather, are they not enough? Give us your opinions, and we’ll track it down.