Xbox 2 rumors feed on "leaked" spec document

The latest rumored Xbox 2 hardware specs are out and they're generating quite a bit of buzz. The specs are based on a document supposedly authored by Pete Isensee, the Development Lead of Microsoft's Xbox Advanced Technology Group. That document's authenticity hasn't been confirmed, but unnamed developers have indicated that the hardware specs jibe with what Microsoft has been telling them.

So what do these latest rumored specs include? Try a trio of 3.5+ GHz, SMT-equipped PowerPC cores built onto one silicon die. The three processor cores will apparently share a 1MB L2 cache with the console's 500+ MHz ATI graphics chip, which will be able to read from L2 cache and main memory simultaneously. The graphics chip will supposedly have 10MB of on-board memory and support shader features beyond Shader Model 3.0. It looks like the graphics chip will have a single shader unit that can process either pixel or vertex shader instructions, potentially load-balancing the two.

Again, these are unconfirmed specs. However, they don't seem out of the realm of possibility. As one developer put it: "If this is a hoax, which I doubt, it's a hoax so close to the truth that it hardly makes any odds."

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