The Nintendo Switch is desperately in need of a refresh, and the Big N has plans for exactly that with a Switch 2 console. Unfortunately, based on a recent report, it sounds as though its anticipated Deep Learning Accelerator (DLA) technology isn’t a feature. That means no 4K gaming amid a market in which that’s very much a standard expectation.
DLSS, a feature exclusive to Nvidia graphics cards, is renowned for its ability to upscale the resolution of games using AI, allowing for enhanced graphical settings and better frame rates on less powerful hardware. However, a crucial component of some of Nvidia’s DLSS solutions is the DLA, a standalone engine designed specifically to accelerate AI calculations, thereby reducing the computational load on other parts of the system.
In the latest episode of Digital Foundry’s DF Direct show, founder Richard Leadbetter shared insights from his sources, suggesting that while the successor to the Switch will feature DLSS, it will lack the accompanying DLA. This absence could significantly impact the console’s upscaling capabilities. Leadbetter speculated that without DLA, the new console might not achieve 4K upscaling, potentially limiting it to 1080p or, at best, 1440p depending on the game.
This news comes in the wake of Nintendo’s closed-door demonstrations at Gamescom, where the company reportedly showcased tech demos of its next console, including Epic’s The Matrix Awakens Unreal Engine 5 demo using Nvidia’s DLSS tech. Contradicting these reports, Nintendo president Shuntaro Furukawa denied the existence of such tech demos, calling media claims “untrue”.
Nintendo’s history of denying press reports only to have them confirmed later adds a layer of intrigue to this development. The company has not yet officially commented on its plans for the next console.