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The Benjamins

Atari VCS Pre-Orders Started, With 1 BIG Flaw

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Posted · Original PosterOP

https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/atari-vcs-game-stream-connect-like-never-before-computers-pc

 

mcduohidmoo5ehvybptx.jpg

 

Quote

Atari VCS transforms how you will engage with your TV, with a nod to Atari’s rich history of pioneering interactive entertainment and hardware innovation.

It’s from Atari, so of course there are classic arcade games, plus the latest modern and Indie PC titles from a wide variety of independent developers.

Proprietary Atari VCS User Interface with optional voice control and integrated web browser for full access to all that the internet has to offer to navigate and curate your personalized entertainment experience.

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My BIG issue is that it will be using a Bristol Ridge APU not a Raven Ridge APU and ship in Q1 2019. to me that is a HUGE let down.

Pricing starts at $200, for the onyx and its $29 for the classic joystick and $49 for the Modern Controller.

I love the fact that it will be linux based and be open for users to mess with if they so chose too.

 

Specification*

Measurement 
Unit Dimensions 14.5" x 5.3" x 1.6"
Unit Weight 3 lbs.
Materials Plastic, Metal, Wood
Operating System Linux OS based on Ubuntu (Linux Kernel 4.10)
Compatible Systems Linux
Power Low TDP architecture - Less Heat & Noise
Connections HDMI 2.0, 2.4/5GHz Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 5.0, Gigabit Ethernet, 4xUSB 3.0
External Inputs Classic Joystick, Modern Controller, Microphone
Storage 32GB eMMC, external HD, SD card 
RAM 4GB DDR4 RAM
Memory 32GB eMMC
CPU Bristol Ridge A1
GPU Radeon R7
HDCP Integration HDCP 2.2
Second Screen (Screencasting) Yes
Cloud Storage Yes. Additional Service Offering
Required Internet Connection Not for classic gaming but required to access all features 
Cross Game Chat Skype, Discord, etc.
Voice Commands 4-front facing mic array
Subscription Needed? No. Includes cloud and other services.
Live Streaming Yes with Twitch.tv
Mouse & Keyboard Support Yes

 


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bristol ridge + 4gb of ram? bye bye AAA gaming. feels like it's gonna flop tbh.


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this is arguably overkill for the type of market it's aimed for likely... (classic games)

But you can still argue that it could of been made more efficient with a newer architecture sooo


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15 minutes ago, Herman Mcpootis said:

bristol ridge + 4gb of ram? bye bye AAA gaming. feels like it's gonna flop tbh.

thats funny, it surpassed its goal in less than 30 min and the site was so overloaded that it took a while for me to get my order in

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19 minutes ago, Herman Mcpootis said:

bristol ridge + 4gb of ram? bye bye AAA gaming. feels like it's gonna flop tbh.

Expecting anything extra seems very unlikely at 200$ starting price. Its an interesting device i moght consider getting my hands on

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>$200 box to play Pong in 4K while streaming on twitch.

 

Nice.


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24 minutes ago, Herman Mcpootis said:

bristol ridge + 4gb of ram? bye bye AAA gaming. feels like it's gonna flop tbh.

Oyua 2.0?


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Ok super honesty time: I came here ready to crack a few jokes at Atari's expense.

 

But honestly....I don't think this is a bad strategy. It might end up being bad execution don't get me wrong but it's a fairly straight forward train of thought:

 

- Retro gaming is popular

- Atari consoles of yesterday are very popular with said crowd: games prior to it were too primitive it was really when the Atari came that there was enough differentiation and interactivity (Not a lot mind you, but enough)

- What else do people likely to play retro consoles like to play? Well small, indie, retro games that are 2D and with fairly low requirements.

 

Whereas Nintendo was successful with their NES and SNES iteration Nintendo being Nintendo didn't think big enough: Atari is seeking to get you in with the 2600 nostalgia factor but keep you around with games that probably very heavily overlap in the taste of people who purchase such consoles.

 

If Atari can profit from an online store and get a decent cut, move enough units, this might carve a decent niche market for itself.


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1 hour ago, Brooksie359 said:

Likely not the market they were targeting tbh. If it's arcade and indie games on android based os then it might not be an issue. 

Its basically a more price appropriate steam machine. Down a bit is an FAQ section stating ""Why should I use it?" "Atari VCS brings PC power and flexibility, voice-control, games and entertainment, and open platform creativity of a Linux OS to the TV."" Also according to forbes they had borderlands 2 running, and while there is no commitment from gearbox they are working on getting developers on board.

 

They didn't give us a model, but I believe bristol ridge is quite behind raven ridge so I'd imaging it'll perform poorly on more recent titles and require more setting tweaks. Same goes for the 4gb ram possibly being a bottleneck. I honestly feel they're not fully committed to this idea and playing it safe with the hardware, and holding back the device they want to make.

 

I just noticed it says on the campaign "All product specifications are subject to change. Final specifications may differ." Could mean an change to raven ridge is possible, or a lower tier bristol ridge too I suppose.

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I laugh at anyone who thought this would be a direct competitor to the PS4/XBO. This is definitely going to be a Retro Games/Mobile Games type of console. You'll get your classic Atari games, and you'll probably get ported games from iOS/Android. It's basically an Ouya/Shield.

 

It definitely has the potential to be very successful, but I think it'll largely come down to which licenses Atari can even use anymore (aside from first party ones).


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7 minutes ago, CyanideInsanity said:

Its basically a more price appropriate steam machine. Down a bit is an FAQ section stating ""Why should I use it?" "Atari VCS brings PC power and flexibility, voice-control, games and entertainment, and open platform creativity of a Linux OS to the TV."" Also according to forbes they had borderlands 2 running, and while there is no commitment from gearbox they are working on getting developers on board.

 

They didn't give us a model, but I believe bristol ridge is quite behind raven ridge so I'd imaging it'll perform poorly on more recent titles and require more setting tweaks. Same goes for the 4gb ram possibly being a bottleneck. I honestly feel they're not fully committed to this idea and playing it safe with the hardware, and holding back the device they want to make.

Bristol Ridge is the last gen of the Excavator design, but the iGPU isn't quite Polaris. It should be from the same branch as Fiji (Fury series). So the iGPU is pretty solid, it's the interior to the CMT bottlenecks that are generally the main problem.

 

Still, even at a low wattage configuration, with an optimized Linux build, this'll be pretty quick. This is a semi-custom product, so there is likely some GPU IP improvements on it as well.

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2 minutes ago, Taf the Ghost said:

Bristol Ridge is the last gen of the Excavator design, but the iGPU isn't quite Polaris. It should be from the same branch as Fiji (Fury series). So the iGPU is pretty solid, it's the interior to the CMT bottlenecks that are generally the main problem.

 

Still, even at a low wattage configuration, with an optimized Linux build, this'll be pretty quick. This is a semi-custom product, so there is likely some GPU IP improvements on it as well.

Bristol Ridge isn't even that terrible - they were able to optimize Excavator pretty well near the end. Certainly not in the same ballpark as Raven Ridge, but it's not absolute garbage.


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$200 is cheaper than I expected tbh


I spent $2500 on building my PC and all i do with it is play no games atm & watch anime at 1080p(finally)...

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13 minutes ago, dalekphalm said:

Bristol Ridge isn't even that terrible - they were able to optimize Excavator pretty well near the end. Certainly not in the same ballpark as Raven Ridge, but it's not absolute garbage.

Depending on what they have the power limit set to, it should be able to play nearly all pre-2010 games at 1080p/60Hz without much issue.

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8 minutes ago, Taf the Ghost said:

Depending on what they have the power limit set to, it should be able to play nearly all pre-2010 games at 1080p/60Hz without much issue.

Could be possible, yes.


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Atari milking their dead cows


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1 hour ago, The Benjamins said:

My BIG issue is that it will be using a Bristol Ridge APU not a Raven Ridge APU and ship in Q1 2019. to me that is a HUGE let down.

They've said it's going to be a "Custom Bristol Ridge A10" at every step so why is it a disappointment? Why would you expect it to be Raven Ridge when they've said multiple times in the past that it would be Bristol Ridge?

 

1 hour ago, Brooksie359 said:

I wonder if raven ridge was too expensive to implement. All I know is that I am excited for when consoles actually get Zen based cpus in them. It should make for some serious improvements. 

Raven Ridge wasn't released when they started development on it. Also power and thermal constraints, there isn't currently a 35W embedded device variant of Raven Ridge that could fit their needs. With a custom chip they could have maybe gotten it down to the level they wanted, but a custom mod of an already unreleased design is a really bad design decision.

 

1 hour ago, Brooksie359 said:

Likely not the market they were targeting tbh. If it's arcade and indie games on android based os then it might not be an issue. 

It's Ubuntu Linux with a custom window manager/ui shell. You can install Steam on it and play any games from your steam library that support Linux. So yeah, pretty much just indie titles but still.

 

1 hour ago, mynameisjuan said:

ELI5 why Bristol vs Raven would make that big of an impact on retro games?

 

Or is this even just for retro games?

This is a full modern console and can run both retro Atari games and any modern games that support Linux. This includes installing Steam on it to get access to any steam games supporting Linux/SteamOS.

 

But they've also said you can access the desktop and install your own software that supports Linux, even adding your own apps like Steam, Discord, VLC, Kodi, and others into their UI to quickly launch it from the "console experience".

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11 minutes ago, Sniperfox47 said:

and any modern games that support Linux. This includes installing Steam on it to get access to any steam games supporting Linux/SteamOS.

Ah...make sense then. I thought it was purely retro games.

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27 minutes ago, Sniperfox47 said:

They've said it's going to be a "Custom Bristol Ridge A10" at every step so why is it a disappointment? Why would you expect it to be Raven Ridge when they've said multiple times in the past that it would be Bristol Ridge?

 

Raven Ridge wasn't released when they started development on it. Also power and thermal constraints, there isn't currently a 35W embedded device variant of Raven Ridge that could fit their needs. With a custom chip they could have maybe gotten it down to the level they wanted, but a custom mod of an already unreleased design is a really bad design decision.

 

It's Ubuntu Linux with a custom window manager/ui shell. You can install Steam on it and play any games from your steam library that support Linux. So yeah, pretty much just indie titles but still.

 

This is a full modern console and can run both retro Atari games and any modern games that support Linux. This includes installing Steam on it to get access to any steam games supporting Linux/SteamOS.

 

But they've also said you can access the desktop and install your own software that supports Linux, even adding your own apps like Steam, Discord, VLC, Kodi, and others into their UI to quickly launch it from the "console experience".

Raven ridge has laptop variants so it wouldn't be hard to get a raven ridge gpu that is in the 35w range. Also laptops with these mobile chips were released awhile ago so if those companies had enough time to design a laptop around those chips then Atari likely had time as well. I think Bristol ridge was a decision based on cost but that's just me. 

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Posted · Original PosterOP
1 hour ago, Sniperfox47 said:

They've said it's going to be a "Custom Bristol Ridge A10" at every step so why is it a disappointment? Why would you expect it to be Raven Ridge when they've said multiple times in the past that it would be Bristol Ridge?

 

Raven Ridge wasn't released when they started development on it. Also power and thermal constraints, there isn't currently a 35W embedded device variant of Raven Ridge that could fit their needs. With a custom chip they could have maybe gotten it down to the level they wanted, but a custom mod of an already unreleased design is a really bad design decision.

 

I have never seen them say that, so I was hoping for a Raven Ridge CPU due to now knowing.

 

Also AMD has Raven Ridge dies of TDP from 15w to 95w, all of their APU's use the same die. Ryzen Mobile, Ryzen desktop APU, Ryzen embedded.


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For Raven Ridge, somebody leaked on r/amd about a new Kickstarter which would use either V1202B or V1605B in a small form factor about the size of nano-ITX.

Cheapest tier was little over 200$ iirc. Link no longer works :(

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I'm honestly confused by this product.  What does it really offer that you couldn't just throw on teh Android store and have accessible to phones, set top boxes and even some Smart TVs?  It doesn't even LOOK like an Atari, it just VAGUELY resembles one and has wood grain.  Nintendo's 'Mini' offerings fed well into nostalgia by offering what was a scaled down replica of their childhood game console where as this only vaguely invokes the styling.  It just kinda seems like a wood grain NUC.

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