they're no supercomputers but they sure get the job done, seems to be the message coming from the Department of Defense, as the announcement of purchasing 2,200 PS3 consoles has hit the news
The new 2,200 units will nicely complement the existing batch of 336 Linux based PS3 in the United States Air Force, not to mention that it offers much better bang per buck. In fact, one 1U server with two 3.2GHz cell processors can cost up to $8,000, whereas two PS3 units go for about $600.
As far as performance goes, one 3.2GHz cell CPU churns out over 200 GFLOPS whereas a PS3 is good enough for about 150 GFLOPS, which is a difference of about 25%. On the other hand, for the price of a rig based on two 3.2GHz cell CPUs, you can buy as much as 13 PS3s, so the value for the money invested is clearly on Sony's side.
At least it's comforting to know that it's not only the users who are anxiously waiting for price drops.