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Re: [Discuss-gnuradio] PS3/Cell BE platform

From: Jason
Subject: Re: [Discuss-gnuradio] PS3/Cell BE platform
Date: Thu, 16 Nov 2006 10:22:20 -0500
User-agent: Thunderbird (X11/20061109)

Robert McGwier wrote:
Jason wrote:
has anyone been looking at the Cell BE processor as a gnuradio backend platform?

For US$600 you get a Playstation 3 that boots linux, and has 7 128bit RISC processors, each with 256k local memory, all moving at ~3.4GHz. Each RISC processor is optimized for vector math / stream processing... :)

There is already an SDK (modified GNU toolchain) from IBM. It seems to use a standard toolchain and apps that run on a 64bit ppc, but the toolchain is modified to compile special threads (different exec type) for the RISC processors (called SPEs). threads are written in C against a provided library.

My thought for GnuRadio was to make near realtime mod/demod of ATSC a possibility. As well as speeding up most other stream processing.
> Yes.  For a work project my group is purchasing two Mercury 1U Cell
> servers.  This will make ATSC and HDTV a real possibility.  These
> Mercury servers have a high bandwidth PCI express connection for getting
> data in and out of the world.    Another fellow and I will be porting
> GnuRadio to the Cell BE ont he Mercury.   It is not for consumers in
> this form.  These things are over $10,000 a piece with PPC Linux
> installed.  I cannot wait until we get the PS3's hacked to be Linux
> desktops.

Already been done. [1], [2] Hell, it's not even a hack. The PS3 supports installing Yellow Dog out of the box. So your CellBE mods to GnuRadio will be of interest as soon as the Christmas rush is over. :)


[1] http://www.powerdeveloper.org/playstation.php
[2] http://ps3.ign.com/articles/739/739688p1.html

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