The PlayStation 3 hardware used at E3 last month was running at only 75 per cent of the final system speed, according to reports which have emerged this week - confirming comments made by SCEE development boss Phil Harrison at the show.
"It only gets better from here on in," Harrison told our sister site GamesIndustry.biz at the time, referring to the performance of the system. "As you get closer and closer to production hardware, you're using more and more like the final silicon, which will be more and more like the final clock speed."
Now Japanese website ITmedia has revealed that the development kits used to run demos including Epic Games' stunning Unreal Tournament 2007 demo were running on hardware clocked at just 75 per cent of the final projected speed.
The Cell chip in the development kits runs at 2.4GHz, according to ITmedia, while the final chip will be at 3.2GHz; and the graphics part used for the demos wasn't the final RSX chip, but rather a different NVIDIA GPU which may not have been optimised for the PS3's high-speed RAMBUS memory interface.
Of course, Sony wasn't the only company showing off titles on unfinished hardware at E3. Microsoft claims that the Xbox 360 titles it showed off weren't representative of the final games, since they were running on alpha-version development kits which have as little as 25 per cent of the power of the final system.