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back to article PSP 2 'as powerful as PS3'

The PSP 2 - or "Next Generation Portable", as Sony has codenamed it for now - has officially been revealed in Tokyo today, and the company claims it's as powerful as the PS3. As rumoured, the PSP 2 - sorry, NGP - has a high-res OLED touchscreen as well as a touch-sensitive back panel. It features front- and rear-facing cameras, …

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Bronze badge

If it is just a portable PS3...

If it's a portable PS3, there'd better be some way to synch across the games you've already bought and take them on the road.

But as it's Sony, there won't be, will there?

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Troll

Re: If it is just a portable PS3...

"there'd better be some way to synch across the games"

that would depend on the developer, I won't claim to know how much porting need to be done, but from articles else where, it seems like some 3rd party developers have been able to port that engine to the PSP2 quite easily. (check the MGS4 screen shot in the article).

also, some Japanese developers already give you the option to copy your saved games between the PSP and PS3. This way, you can switch between the devices and counties from where you stopped (although, it does require you to _buy_ 2 different copies of the game, one for each console).

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Anonymous Coward

why not?

you do know that if you buy a PS1 game from the Playstation Store then you can install it on your PSP and your PS3? (i think it actually says up to four devices or somesuch)

That would make me think that they *would* allow that - except nowhere does it say this is a handheld PS3, its says its a new platform; so it won't play your existing PS3 games. In addition, it doesn't have a hard-drive so how many PS3 blue-ray based titles do you think you'll fit on hand-held flash storage?

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Go

There might be...

You can already download minis from the PSN and shove them onto your PSP, as well as having them available on your PS3. Plus you can play some media (including games) using your PSP as a portal to your PS3 via the internet (the only stuff I can't get this to work with is, understandably, HD content).

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Anonymous Coward

It's not a portable PS3

The underlying hardware is very different with the PS3 being based on Sony's Cell architecture and the PSP 2 based on a quad core ARM architecture. Games would have need to be re-engineered to work across the two platforms and will not be compatible.

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FAIL

@The Indomitable Gall

It's not a portable PS3, it's allegedly as powerful as one. Different hardware (and controls!), so they can't play the same games. They have different processors and GPUs.

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Silver badge

Nah, the hardware's completely different

It's ARM + PowerVR, whereas the PS3 is Cell + RSX. I think they're just arguing that the graphics are similar to those of a PS3 (at a much lower resolution, one assumes, and therefore a lower processing cost — and getting a 1080p screen onto a PSP-sized mass consumer device just isn't going to happen very soon). So, no doubt, porting incurs costs and gives an opportunity for Sony to charge consumers that want both copies for (i) the additional costs of porting; and (ii) the content, a second time.

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Boffin

Bigger point

If it were "as powerful as a PS3", then they'd surely have made a PS3 that size already...

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Terminator

PSP2 for hardcore gamers? 3DS for kids?

If this thing is truly as powerful as a ps3, and isn't massively overpriced, then Nintendo with their 3D gimmick don't stand a chance. All the hardcore Gamers will buy this instead.

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Unhappy

@SpaMster

No change there then.

Currently, PSP1 for serious games, DS (i, XL, whatever) for fun / kids. Trouble is, there are a lot more handhelds bought for kids wanting a bit of fun than there are serious gamers with deep pockets, hence the sales figures.

It doesn't matter how good it is, the 3DS will outsell it by an order of magnitude or so.

Where they really need to take a leaf out of Nintendo's book is to make the sodding thing nigh-on impossible to fix and self-destruct when dropped six feet onto a hard surface / thrown at a sibling / subjected to harsh language. The first-gen PSP at home has been through three screens, a front case, a couple of batteries, an analogue stick and some microswitches. It's still going strong and it's a piece of the proverbial to maintain. I've lost count of the number of bloody DSs I've bought over the years. There's nothing like repeat sales to keep the figures up.

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There are a lot more kids than there are hardcore gamers

So the 3DS will do ok. The real problem for the 3DS is the cost, many parents are not going to spend that kind of money on a handheld for small kids. They just get lost and broken too easily.

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Stop

3DS haha

It will easilly outclass the 3DS, which is nothing more than a parrallex barrier gimmick. Whether it outsells it is another matter.

The Current PSP easilly outclasses the DS, but the DS outsells it. Quaility and sales don't go hand in hand unfortunately, marketing, spin all get in the way of that.

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WTF?

Eh??

The Wii sold bloody well too. Not because it was underpowered, or because of marketing, or spin, but because it allowed non-gamers to get in on the act. The DS sold because it's accessible to me, my mother and my grandmother.

I love that you're writing off the 3DS already as a gimmick without even trying it... Sony called by the way, they've got another shiny shilling for you.

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If it is just a portable PS3...

Why not make it the size of a Blu-ray disc and allow it to play Blu-rays and PS3 games straight from the discs?

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I wont be buying one

having been pissed off by Sony time and time again, but I was wondering whether it had a HDMI out? Not sure about the length of HDMI cable people would need to connect it to their HD TV's but if its a portable PS3 then would it be possible to use it as a full time PS3?

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Alert

Type your comment here -- plain text only, no HTML

It would be nice to see a mini-HDMI connection on it, but chances are Sony will want to keep their handheld and console systems separate, more money that way.

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FAIL

Enough to outclass the 3DS?

Probably not: the existing PSP technically outclasses the DS in almost every way and look at how that turned out.

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As powerful..

But no doubt not compatible with.

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Joke

As Powerful as a PS3

So the Arm Cortex-9 is as powerful as a CELL now is it?

Fuck me those ARM boffins have pulled their socks up haven't they?

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This post has been deleted by a moderator

why oh why....

I'm sure the hardware will be great.

I'm sure the games will look amazing.

I'm sure that in trying to compete with the iThings & Nintendo, Sony will have another flop on their hands.

It'll be too expensive for the 'casual' gamer, it won't be backward compatable with anything, and tha games won't be good enough for 'hardcore' gamers.

But I do love the idea of it. Maybe it'll be good once it's hacked: I'll have to wait an extra week to find out.

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Anonymous Coward

Yes because selling only 60+ million PSPs is a flop

Just because the PSPs haven't sold as much as the DS doesn't make it a flop. This isn't aimed at the casual gamer so I don't expect a lot of penetration in that market. The PSP games were good enough for the hardcore gamer and now that they have addressed the lack of a second analog stick I'm sure the upcoming games will be more than good enough.

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60+ million...

AC, I didn't campare the PSP to the DS. PSP games were never good enough for the hardcore gamer, the only ones worth getting were the PSP versions of much larger console games (unless you're talking about locoroco, but please don't try telling me that's a hardcore gamers game)

Atleast 4 incarnations and 7 years. Easy hacks available. UMD which as aweful, they even scrapped it themselves making early adopters games useless on new versions.

So yeah, to me that says: try, fail, try, fail, half try, more fail = flop.

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Anonymous Coward

Will it cost as much a PS3 too?

and remember - Sony struggled to make money on the PS3 hardware because the specs were so high. Apparently Sony are still using the same playbook for this.

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Happy

Sounds superb

As it's Sony the number of file formats supported will be limited. I await the first custom firmware to allow me to play any media format I want, then I'll happily buy one!

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It's not a portable PS3 just claime AS powerfull

I dont think it's going to be like that. The games will be different i think.

Even if it was i doubt Sony would let you port the PS3 games over to it considering the PSP Go won't let you do that with old PSP games. (At least last time I checked anyway)

So this PSP2 has a 4 core processor? Is Sony not continuing with the Cell chips?

I've heard the PS3 was hard to develop for because of the Cell, maybe things will be easier this way.

I think that the maker who build its console in a way that developers find easiest to work with will have the edge over the rest.

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FAIL

Yeah right

Didn't Sony claim that PSP was as powerful as the PS2?

Didn't Sony claim that the PS2 could render Toy Story in real-time?

Sony have made wild claims before and I shall be taking this one with a large bucket of salt.

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ditto

I'm sure I remember the claim about being as powerful as a PS2 as well, but really it was more in the ballpark of the PS1.

I'll be keeping my original PSP, I mostly use it as a video player these days anyway (not UMD movies though, they were a waste).

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Oh yes please!

"There you have it guys - a portable PS3, apparently. Enough to outclass the 3DS? What are your views?"

Yes, it blows away the 3DS.

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WTF?

So, does that mean.....

.... the end of a machine which is just a games machine ?

Why does everything have to be connected, wi-fi / 3g with gps blah blah.....

It does look like there is room for games only games machine, like the Game Boy used to be.

I wonder if Sega could be tempted to fill this niche. The Dreamcast [not hand held I know...] was a cracking good machine.....

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Doesn't matter

*sighs* Sadly I don't think it would matter if it was 40 times the power of the PS3, came with a built-in HD projector and could give blow jobs.

Sony have lost the plot when it comes to software development and marketing. Their pitiful handling of the PS3 shows a frankly superhuman ability to come in last on the fastest horse and I can't see that changing.

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Troll

as powerful as the PS3?

well the PS3 have 8 cores (1 is disabled, don't know when will they enable it) and it output at 1080i.

the PSP2 (NGP) have 4 cores (and according to the net, clocked at up to 1.5 GHz) and it output at 960x544 (i544?). So I guess if you keep the screen size in mind, the statement might be true. In fact, while keeping the difference in screen size in mind, the PSP2 might be able to do more the PS3, especially if they give it more then 512 MB RAM + 256 MB RAM for the GPU. You might even be able to play FFXIV on it.

now if they will give you a mini-HDMI port, then you should be able to use it to watch HD movies in your living room.

note to Sony, I am willing to pay an extra US$ 50 for an attachment that can load UMDs into this device.

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8 cores?

They cannot enable the 8th cell as the specs for the PS3 only ever call for 7. one ringfenced for the machine and 6 for software to access. This was chosen to get better yeild from the cell processor production. They could utilise all the chips that only had 7 cells working. If you activate the 8th, then some machines will never be able to use them and you cannot tell which ones can, and it would only make a small percentage difference anyway!

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your ps3

can only handle 1080i?

where did i get my 1080p one from? not that many games can do 1080p without being upscaled but some do. and they look so much better

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Flame

Let's stop repeating the "as powerful as the PS3" lie

Why do people keep repeating this clearly incorrect fact? It's an incredibly well specced portable device, but it's not going to be as powerful as a PS3, even if that system is approaching 5 years old.

For starters with a 960x544 screen it's not even going to be pumping out 720p imagery, and since the quad core GPU is likely to be clocked around 200MHz it's going to have about the same graphical power as the Xbox 1 (which for a device that size is incredible).

The specs on this thing are fantastic, but why keep saying it's something that it's not?

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WTF?

ARM vs Cell

So a 32-bit Quad-core ARM Cortex-A9 (up to 2GHz) is as powerful as a 64-bit 8-core 3.2GHz Cell processor? If they're comparing performance of a relatively low resolution portable device to a high definition console, that's not a real comparison.

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FAIL

Cell is not a 8-core processor FFS!

"So a 32-bit Quad-core ARM Cortex-A9 (up to 2GHz) is as powerful as a 64-bit 8-core 3.2GHz Cell processor?" No, because there is no 8-core Cell processor. Cell is a simple single PowerPC core with 8 co-processors (which are only fast for a few operations). This is far fom being the same like a symmetric 8-core processor, or even a quad-core processor.

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Def
Bronze badge

Re: Cell is not a 8-core processor FFS!

Technically speaking, the Cell architecture allows for any number of PowerPC cores to be coupled with any number of SPEs. (I'm not sure what the upper limits of each are.) The Cell implementation in the PS3 has a single PowerPC connected to 8 SPEs, one of which is disabled to improve production yields.

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Happy

Looks nice

I wonder how much it'll hurt the wallet though...

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Nice try, but too much competition and bad timing against it

As we know, the PSP has been utterly trounced by the DS, and looking at that PSP2 launch line-up, I can only see history repeating itself.

If this repeats the PSPGo sales model of only distributing titles online through PSN-Store, then it will be spurned by many from the start, as the PSPGo was.

And having read the various articles of grown-men weeping in reverence at Pro Evo Soccer on the 3DS, it could be game over already.

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Troll

Re: Nice try, but too much competition and bad timing against it

"If this repeats the PSPGo sales model of only distributing titles online through PSN-Store"

as it have been pointed out in the article, it will use memory sticks for games, instead of game cartridges or discs. Those will be physically bought from stores.

note this memory stick will be different from the SD card used to extend its storage space. Also the space on those sticks will depend on the game, developers won't be restricted as far as I know.

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Uphill struggle

Can this thing survive, given an 8-month headstart for 3DS, dual-core smartphones almost upons us, the lighter and more portable iPad2, and having no HDMI out, which is a big minus for many people.

Being powerful isnt a USP. As Wii & DS sales testify.

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Beyond the hype, key points here:

* A non-final hardware design, (every picture says design and specifications subject to change).

* Some lovely looking games technology demos from many industry big hitters. What may happen is lots of game+ editions (MGS4+, MHP3Turbo, etc) with new content, extra levels and so on in the first few months.

* A code name - NGP will not be the final system name.

* Battery life is being quoted at 4-5 hours

* Sony will sell the unit at a loss, so price could be lower than expected

* Some big names still not on the publishing list

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Boffin

Not necessarily

That battery life doesn't sound great for a portable, which makes me wonder whether Sony will then play the usual game of silly buggers with replacement battery pricing.

In terms of pricing, I wouldn't rely on "selling at a loss" meaning "reasonable price". Hell, the PS3 has always been sold at a loss and still spent several years costing a frankly stupid amount of money.

The tech in it is fabulous, but it's useless without a decent library of games - the PS3 before it also had fabulous tech, and yet Sony managed to fumble the software library side of things so badly they now have to use "It's not just a games console" as the sales pitch.

It could be nice, but with Sony's handling of the PS3 I wouldn't take it for granted.

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Its just a little bit of history repeating....

One does have to question whether Sony have really learned from their mistakes here.

For me, the biggest problem with the original PSP is that they didnt understand the hand-held market.

In a hand-held, i dont want to play cut down versions of full console games, i dont want the full console experience in my pocket. I THOUGHT i did, before i had it. But then i realised that the hand-held is all about those 5 minute experiences while waiting for a train, pick up, put down, without having to retain anything in between.

Thats why the DS won, and as much as i respect this technology hugely if it is as good as it says, it smells a little like Sony have failed to learn from their mistakes last time around.

Time will tell i suppose.

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Except there were some true hits

Some games (for example the Monster Hunter series) managed to hit the high-end mobile market just right - beautiful graphics but intentionally short action episodes, perfect for commuter train journeys.

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Troll

Re: Its just a little bit of history repeating....

you do use portables consoles for long gaming sessions, example, waiting at the airport, staying at a hotel or long road trips. Also the flexibility of being able to use it (almost) anywhere means you can play it from your bed.

from my point of view, 5 minutes gaming sessions is what the smartphone is for.

any way, now that the PSP2 (NGP) have a touch screen.....

I wander if I will get my LovePlus++ on it :-p

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Bub

The right market

"In a hand-held, i dont want to play cut down versions of full console games,"

... so use your iPhone or your DS.

There are lots of people, myself included, who *do* want to play proper console games on a handheld. The original PSP wasn't quite good enough for this - the lack of dual analogues being a massive factor.

The new PSP is aimed at a market that neither Apple nor Nintendo nor Microsoft is competing in. Makes sense to me.

If Sony had aimed squarely at competing with the iPhone and DS markets they would indeed have been making a bad mistake.

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Silver badge

Of course it's not as fast

It probably shares the same relationship to the PS3, that the PSP did to the PS2. On its best days you could almost be fooled into thinking this was a home console, but usually it fell short. Compare the best of the PSP, games like GTA VCS or God of War: Ghost of Sparta. You could *almost* mistake them for home console games, but the compromises they make are still noticeable.

That's not to say the PSP2 won't be a good handheld. It looks like a kick ass handheld with specs that massively outclass the 3DS and most phones. Of course better specs do not mean more sales. I suppose the way the market will go will rest on whether people want 3D (in an otherwise fairly lacklustre handheld), or no holds barred mobile performance.

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Battery life?

I may have missed it, but there didn't seem to be any mention of battery life. I can't imagine playing for many hours on a device with this spec!

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