Shadow is on the verge of implementing some impressive upgrades to their Cloud Gaming servers. These upgrades will start rolling out on June 1st, but we expect this to be a gradual release. Find out more after the break!
We can expect CPU and GPU upgrades in addition to software updates in the coming month. USB over IP is coming out of beta and will be available to all applications. They are also implementing better controller support and will be further cutting down on latency.
What Will the Storage Upgrades Do?
The new storage systems will provide faster loading and will be more consistent during peak usage times. In addition, Shadow has mentioned that there is a possibility of upgraded storage capacity. Outside of mentioning the possibility, no further details have been released at this time, so pricing remains a mystery. This is great news for heavy gamers that switch between games often, and also for people considering Shadow as a full replacement for their desktop.
What Will the CPU Upgrades Do?
We don’t have top-secret access to Shadow’s test servers, so we really don’t know. However, we do know the models of the current CPU and their Future CPU, so some we can make some healthy speculation. The current CPU in our shadow machines is the Xeon E5-2620 v4. The CPU being installed in the upgrade process is the Xeon E5-2667 v4. Both chips feature 8 cores and 16 threads, so no changes are in store for users in this regard. Where we’ll really notice the upgrade is in the base and boost clock of these chips. The base clock will go from 2.1 GHz to 3.2 GHz which is a whopping 52% increase! We’ll also see a nice improvement in the boost clock, going from 3.0 GHz to 3.6 GHz.
What do these improvements actually mean? Without performing real-world tests, it is hard to say. Games are moving towards being more friendly to multi-threading and are focusing less on clock frequency. With that said, there are plenty of older games (and even some newer games) that aren’t well optimized. They still stand to benefit heavily from higher clock frequencies. The fact that the base clock of the new CPU is higher than the boost clock of our current CPU is awesome news. Achieving the boost clock will be affected by the cooling solution that Shadow uses for the each CPU along with the usage of the cores and how many are fully optimized. Remember that since you are sharing the CPU with another user, it is possible that they are maxing out their cores by running a more demanding application or game. This will reduce the possibility of your CPU reaching the max boost clock. With this knowledge, we can see why having a higher base clock will be a great improvement!
I’ve been testing cloud gaming since late 2016, when I first discovered LiquidSky. It had it’s issues but it was an experience that completely changed my outlook on the power of cloud computing. Sure I had certainly used cloud computing before to perform different heavy cpu workloads such as rendering, but experiencing real-time gameplay with virtually no lag was a completely different experience. The rest, as they say, is history.