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RSX - Reality Synthesizer

The RSX 'Reality Synthesizer' is a proprietary graphics processing unit (GPU) codeveloped by Nvidia and Sony for the PlayStation 3 game console. It is a GPU based on the Nvidia 7800GTX graphics processor and, according to Nvidia, is a G70/G71 (previously known as NV47) hybrid architecture with some modifications. The RSX has separate vertex and pixel shader pipelines. The GPU makes use of 256 MB GDDR3 RAM clocked at 650 MHz with an effective transmission rate of 1.4 GHz and up to 224 MB of the 3.2 GHz XDR main memory via the CPU (480 MB max).


500 MHz on 90 nm process (shrunk to 65 nm in 2008 and to 40 nm in 2010) Based on NV47 Chip (Nvidia GeForce 7800 Architecture) early development tools had NV47 with 256 bit local memory interface and 16 ROPs later RSX with 128bit local memory interface and 8 ROPs Little Endian 300+ million transistors Multi-way programmable parallel floating-point shader pipelines Independent pixel/vertex shader architecture 24 parallel pixel-shader ALU pipes clocked @ 550 MHz 5 ALU operations per pipeline, per cycle (2 vector4, 2 scalar/dual/co-issue and fog ALU, 1 Texture ALU) 27 floating-point operations per pipeline, per cycle 8 parallel vertex pipelines 2 ALU operations per pipeline, per cycle (1 vector4 and 1 scalar, dual issue) 10 FLOPS per pipeline, per cycle Floating Point Operations: 400.4 Gigaflops ((24 * 27 Flops + 8 * 10 Flops) * 550) 24 texture filtering units (TF) and 8 vertex texture addressing units (TA) 24 filtered samples per clock Maximum Texel fillrate: 12.0 GigaTexels per second (24 textures * 500 MHz) 32 unfiltered texture samples per clock, ( 8 TA x 4 texture samples ) 8 Render Output units / pixel rendering pipelines Peak pixel fillrate (theoretical): 4.0 Gigapixel per second Maximum Z-buffering sample rate: 8.0 GigaSamples per second (2 Z-samples * 8 ROPs * 500 MHz) Maximum Dot product operations: 51 billion per second (combined with Cell CPU) 128-bit pixel precision offers rendering of scenes with High dynamic range rendering 256 MB GDDR3 RAM at 650 MHz Earlier PS3 Models: Samsung K4J52324QC-SC14 rated max 700MHz Later PS3 Models: Qimonda HYB18H512322AF-14 (seen on CXD2971DGB) 128-bit memory bus width 22.4 GB/s read and write bandwidth Cell FlexIO bus interface Rambus XDR Memory interface bus width: 56bit out of 64bit (serial) 20 GB/s read to the Cell and XDR memory 15 GB/s write to the Cell and XDR memory Support for PSGL (OpenGL ES 1.1 + Nvidia Cg) Support for S3 Texture Compression

More features are revealed in the following chart delineating the differences between the RSX and the nVidia 7800 GTX.

Difference RSX nVidia 7800GTX
GDDR3 Memory bus 128bit 256bit
ROPs 16
Post Transform and Lighting Cache 63 max vertices 45 max vertices
Total Texture Cache Per Quad of Pixel Pipes (L1 and L2) 96kB 48kB
CPU interface FlexIO PCI-Express 16x
Technology 40nm/65nm/90nm 110nm

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