Pandora outdated?


MrChops

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I thought today's dilbert fit some of the conversation going on here eerily well:


152554.strip.gif
 

anexanhume

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ED, your statement about A15 is not correct either. Samsung is launching the dual core Exynos 5250 next quarter (Q2, dual core A15 on 32nm node). Tegra 4 will also be out before year's end if Nvidia stays on schedule, and that will feature A15 cores on a 28nm node. Then OMAP 5 and NovaThor A9600 will hit next year.


It's almost important to note that Qualcomm's new Krait architecture is essentially a hybrid of the A9 and A15 architectures. It can triple issue instructions and is rumored to have 3.2 DMIPS/Mhz compared to 3.5 DMIPS/Mhz of the A15. (A9 was 2.5 DMIPS/Mhz).
 
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klapse

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To sum it all up: people have different ideas about what constitutes "outdated" hardware but while the Pandora SoC could be called outdated, the Pandora itself (as a system) can NOT, because it has not been succeeded by a newer palm-size multipurpose gaming-console/computer.


It seems important to me to emphasize the distinction between a -system-component- and a -system-. Pandora owners are finding out that their devices are in a class of their own and like Psion owners of old, will be using them for a long, long time.
 

00001111

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I think this post is wishful thinking for the most part. I have a Pandora and I just got a $56 JXD and the snes and n64 with the 1ghz arm9 is a hell of a lot better than Pandora. I really didn't buy Pandora for n64 and while these cheap handhelds don't directly complete there is no denying that a JXD can now do a lot of emulation really really well. So this crap hardware is cheap and no so crap an more. I'd say it's about time to consider a serious upgrade for the Pandora when a $56 handheld can compete in most areas
 

Binky

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How much does the ethical/European production angle affect the price?


Local production by people who are paid properly in Germany is a somewhat unusual aspect of the pandora.


The pandora project is very lucky that there are no direct competitors.


Hopefully the P2 with its interchangeable processors will solve the "outdated" problem, while maintaining the unique aspects of the P1
 
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lollipoppizza

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I think this post is wishful thinking for the most part. I have a Pandora and I just got a $56 JXD and the snes and n64 with the 1ghz arm9 is a hell of a lot better than Pandora. I really didn't buy Pandora for n64 and while these cheap handhelds don't directly complete there is no denying that a JXD can now do a lot of emulation really really well. So this crap hardware is cheap and no so crap an more. I'd say it's about time to consider a serious upgrade for the Pandora when a $56 handheld can compete in most areas
Can I ask what JXD you have? I'd love to have a pandora but it's simply too expensive. This sounds interesting.
 

Solstar

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"Emus wouldn't get a significant boost from dual-core"


what about nintendo ds or dreamcast emu which would be sooo demanding in terms of.power?
 

craigix

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"Emus wouldn't get a significant boost from dual-core"


what about nintendo ds or dreamcast emu which would be sooo demanding in terms of.power?

There isn't a simple way (ie a way that can be ported quickly) to run the CPU emulation over two cores, it's unlikely anyone is going to rewrite such a task to make use of dual/quad cores. Has anyone done that on Android or on a PC emulator yet?


Even tying multiple CPU emulation over multiple cores is tricky and again it's unlikely anyone is going to spend the time doing it for no reward.


Our only realistic solution is just much more power to do it with one core.
 
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WizardStan

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I have a Pandora and I just got a $56 JXD and the snes and n64 with the 1ghz arm9 is a hell of a lot better than Pandora.
I can't imagine SNES being any better than on the Pandora, it seems absolutely flawless to me.


But regardless, you are correct: if you look at the Pandora strictly as a game machine (which you seem to based on your point about SNES and N64 being much better) then you're going to be disappointed. That's not what this thread has been about. When there exists another device which I can pull out of my pocket and comfortably ssh into a server to admin it that can also play games and emulators, then we'll talk about the Pandora being outdated; until then, it's the only thing we've got and therefore can't be considered outdated.
 

_wb_

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The second (or third, or fourth) core doesn't help emulation much at all, unless you figure out a way to parallelize emulation effectively. It is probably either impossible to do, or significantly more work than to re-implement all games for those platforms so they don't need to be emulated anymore.


More than one core is nice for multi-tasking and for things that can be parallelized effectively. Alas, most of the easy targets for parallelization can already be done by the GPU anyway.


The extra cores are nice, but in practice you're way better off with a single 2GHz core than with, say, four 1GHz cores. Of course in terms of marketing, it works nicely: people tend to assume that 4 times a 1 GHz core equals one 4 GHz core. That's not how it works at all: even with things that are parallelizable, linear parallelization is nearly never obtainable.
 

rohezal

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I think it depends. Sound emulation can be done by an extra core pretty easy. Graphic emulation is done by the gpu today i think. Recompiling the game code... not sure normal compiler can use more then 1 core. Executing the game code... i think this is for single core console nearly impossible.
 

Binky

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Wouldn't a second core help by handling background tasks (and give the emu a whole core to itself) ?
 

craigix

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I think it depends. Sound emulation can be done by an extra core pretty easy. Graphic emulation is done by the gpu today i think. Recompiling the game code... not sure normal compiler can use more then 1 core. Executing the game code... i think this is for single core console nearly impossible.

It's the syncing it all up that no one wants to do - and these days it seems no one writes emulators from scratch. As we have seen with the Pandora people are not very willing to do this much work for no benefit.


Even on Android where there is major money to be made by good emulators few people are willing to take the challenge.
 
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Exophase

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There isn't a simple way (ie a way that can be ported quickly) to run the CPU emulation over two cores, it's unlikely anyone is going to rewrite such a task to make use of dual/quad cores. Has anyone done that on Android or on a PC emulator yet?

It's relatively trivial to thread software 3D rendering for something like DS emulation (which is what he asked about). Even for emulators that prefer to use hardware 3D there's a lot of wasted CPU time in driver overhead that can be dumped on another core.
 

EvilDragon

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Even on Android where there is major money to be made by good emulators few people are willing to take the challenge.

Is there even a single emulator that's a lot more than a port with a GUI thrown in and some few optimizations?
 

Exophase

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Is there even a single emulator that's a lot more than a port with a GUI thrown in and some few optimizations?

Yes, there are actual emulator authors that release directly on Android. For instance VGBA, ePSXe, and FPSE. While they didn't start on Android it is the actual emulator authors releasing new versions with a lot of new work for it.
 

Loonie

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Taking advantage of multiple cores for emulation becomes exponentially more difficult when the hardware you are emulating (and by extension the software for that emulated platform) is itself built around a single core design. Apart from any parallel systems the platform may have, such as a dedicated GPU that could be emulated separately, how is one to split such a workload?


Even multicore X86/X64 CPUs still need the software to be able to take advantage of multiple cores. If a piece of software you have runs using a single core, it isn't going to suddenly use multiple cores and run faster just because more cores have appeared.
 
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