multiple cpu machines Re: rogues galleries
trixter at oldskool.org
Wed Nov 29 17:32:19 CST 2006
arcarlini at iee.org wrote:
>>> How about the Sega MegaDrive/Genesis? That ran a 68000 and Z80.
There have been many multi-cpu consoles; the Sega Saturn had two Hitachi
RISC CPUs for core processing, plus a host of other stuff for CDROM,
display, sound... The PlayStation 2 is also dual-CPU. The PlayStation 3
is a Cell monster, 7 cores you can play with, although I think that's
been discussed here already by Mr. Brutman.
My favorite was the Atari Jaguar, which had no less than:
- a 32-bit RISC GPU
- a 64-bit RISC "object processor"
- a 64-bit RISC blitter
- a 64-bit general purpose DSP for audio and other functions
- a 68000 for general-purpose helper functions
And to shuffle memory around, a 64-bit DRAM controller.
The Atari Jaguar *should* have been the most kick-ass console of its
generation (the blitter in particular was certainly the most powerful of
all the 5th-generation consoles). But it was so complex that nobody
could figure out how to program it properly. Coupled with legendary
Atari marketing fumbles, it died a quick death before a suitable "killer
app" could be developed for it.
Most coders unfamiliar with the system would treat the Jaguar as a
68000-based machine with a giant framebuffer, like an Atari ST on
steroids. This was clearly not the best use of the machine. One of the
more depressing examples of the system is a 3-D racing game with a
completely unplayable screen update rate of about 3 frames per second.
Not a typo. 3 frames per second.
Jim Leonard (trixter at oldskool.org) http://www.oldskool.org/
Help our electronic games project: http://www.mobygames.com/
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A child borne of the home computer wars: http://trixter.wordpress.com/
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