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Slim Xbox One plans teased by ‘cost-reduced’ processor

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Xbox One

Microsoft could be setting up to launch a new model of the Xbox One with a more cost-effective processor than the one found in existing versions.

The current Xbox One uses a 28nm processor, but the mystery model will make use of a smaller, more efficient 20nm variant.

The news comes courtesy of the LinkedIn profile for the Senior SoC Physical Design Manager for AMD – their main chip guy, basically.

AMD, of course, makes the chips for the Xbox One, which means this nugget from the LinkedIn bio is especially interesting: “Successfully planned and executed the first APU for Microsoft’s Xbox One Game Console in 28nm technology and a cost-reduced derivative in 20nm technology.”

This ‘cost-reduced’ tech means the new chip actually measures in at 8 thousand-millionths of a metre smaller than its bigger brother.

There’s been no official word from Microsoft on the matter, but it’s fair to assume the firm would be keen to find an edge over Sony’s PlayStation 4.

This means that we could soon see a slimmed-down Xbox One, largely because the internal cooling rig can be smaller, along with the chassis, due to the decreased chip size.

It also means we could potentially see a price-slash, as smaller chips are cheaper for Microsoft to make because, well, they’re smaller.

Unfortunately, Eurogamer points out that there’s a bit of a waiting list to snag access to chip-manufacturer TSCM’s 20nm production line – Apple’s first up in the queue for the A8 and A8X processors, with Nvidia and AMD closely behind in their quest for next-gen graphics cards.

Read More: Xbox One vs PS4

Via: Beyond3D/Mosen

Chris B

November 4, 2014, 11:31 am

"This ‘cost-reduced’ tech means the new chip actually measures in at 8 thousand-millionths of a metre smaller than its bigger brother."

This is not accurate. What the change from 28nm to 20nm means is that the data "trackways" on a chip are made thinner, which means more transisitors can be fitted in the same space (thus needing less silicon for the same functionality), as well as being more energy-efficient, and so cooler.

Hamish Campbell

November 5, 2014, 11:58 am

I'm no expert (no really, not at all), but if more transistors can be fit on the same space, and we are putting the same number of transisters on, then won't it be smaller? Presumably we don't want to make the connections between transisters really long.

Chris B

November 5, 2014, 12:11 pm

It will be smaller (which is why I said you would need less silicon for the same functionality), but the difference will be measured in millimetres - and in all likelihood the actual chip size will be the same (as it uses metal pins to plug into the motherboard, which can't be shrunk too much) - but my original point stands - the chip itself won't be 8 thousand-millionths of a metre smaller, and exposes quite a fundamental gap in knowledge of someone posting on a supposedly technical article.

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