Caleb History of Game Consoles

Report
History of Game Consoles
Caleb Baze
1977
Atari 2600

Introduced Microprocessor-based Hardware

Utilized Game Cartridges


Allowed unlimited games to be written for the
console rather than having to have the games hard
coded into the console
Simple 2D Graphics

Worked by processing what pixels and sprites needed
to be displayed before the next line of the television
was scanned
Atari 2600 Specs
Hardware
Spec
CPU
1.19MHz
RAM
128 bytes
ROM
4 kB
1983
Nintendo Entertainment System (NES)

Also utilized game cartridges

Lacked any sort of authentication hardware to
prevent unlicensed cartridges from working on the
system.


This was due to the unreliable 10NES authentication
chip used in the console. The circuit ended up being
removed from the console with the introduction of the
NES 2
Early games were designed by using LEDs on a grid
with a digitizer, as no design tools existed
NES Specs
Hardware
Spec
CPU
1.79 MHz
RAM
16 Kbit
Video RAM
16 Kbit
Max Cartridge Size
192 Kbit
1994
Sony PlayStation

Sony’s first major contribution to the gaming
console world

Made use of CD-ROM instead of the older game
cartridge

Introduced external storage in the form of 1MB
memory cards to save game data

True 3 dimensional games were popular now with
the increased hardware capacity
PlayStation Specs
Hardware
Spec
CPU
33.8688 MHz
RAM
2 MB
Storage
1 MB from each Memory Card
2000
Sony PlayStation 2

Built along the same lines as the PlayStation 1, but time
allowed for a large increase in hardware capacity

Allowed for much higher quality graphics in games

Implemented backwards compatibility with PlayStation 1
games.

At this point is where we start seeing a major increase in
hardware technology. Compared to the PS1, the PS2
included:

Around 30 x CPU speed

16 x RAM

Dedicated graphics chip
PlayStation 2 Specs
Hardware
Spec
CPU
294.912MHz
RAM
32 MB
Graphics
147.456 MHz
Storage
8 MB Memory Cards
40 GB Hard Drive Add-On
Connectivity
100 Mbit Ethernet
2005
Microsoft Xbox 360

Start to see a very rapid increase in technology at this
generation of consoles

The focus of the console merges with other forms of
entertainment other than just gaming

Apps for streaming videos, music, news and much more


Meant the console needed more processing power and storage to
efficiently handle games as well as entertainment applications
Introduction to high definition games

Developers start focusing on realism more and more
Xbox 360 Specs
Hardware
Spec
CPU
3.2 GHz
RAM
512 MB
Graphics
500 MHz
Storage
250 GB Hard Drive
Connectivity
100 Mbit Ethernet
2.4 GHz Wireless
2013
Microsoft Xbox One

The current generation of consoles

Acts much more as an all around home entertainment system

Multi-tasking with all kinds of apps and games

OS integrates fluidly with Windows 8

Much more similar to a personal computer than any console
that has come before

Development of the Kinect Sensor for the Xbox One has been
helpful in other fields of research using any kind of
recognition software
Xbox One Specs
Hardware
Spec
CPU
1.75 GHz – 8 Cores
RAM
8 GB
Graphics
853 MHz
Storage
500 GB Hard Drive
Connectivity
Ethernet
Wireless
Hardware Analysis – CPU Speed
CPU Speed by Console (GHz)
3.5
3
2.5
2
1.5
1
0.5
0
Atari 2600
NES
PlayStation
PlayStation 2
CPU Speed by Console (GHz)
Xbox 360
Xbox One
Hardware Analysis – RAM
RAM by Console (MB)
9000
8000
7000
6000
5000
4000
3000
2000
1000
0
Atari 2600
NES
PlayStation
PlayStation 2
RAM by Console (MB)
Xbox 360
Xbox One
Hardware Analysis - Storage
Storage by Console (GB)
600
500
400
300
200
100
0
Atari 2600
NES
PlayStation
PlayStation 2
Storage by Console (GB)
Xbox 360
Xbox One
Conclusion

Moore’s law apparent in hardware specifications of gaming consoles
generation to generation

In many cases, customer want for gaming consoles actually pushed the
research and development of better technology

Realism will continue to increase in consoles

Will we ever reach a point to where games can’t be distinguished from live video?

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