Now that E3 is over, news is starting to surface about Nintendo's newest console and its specs. The company was pretty hush-hush during the press convention last week concerning any hardware specifics beyond what was being shown with the controller. Now, official word of the graphics processing unit built inside the Wii U has supposedly surfaced.

Word has it that the Radeon GPU inside the Wii U is actually last gen technology. However, as Engadget explained, this particular GPU is capable of doing technically morethan both the Xbox 360 and PS3. It's also capable of running Direct X 10. The GPU in question is similar to the Radeon R770 found in video cards starting in late 2008 and early 2009.

Engadget was quick to point out that some developers are already making the most of the GPU. The company behind the Crysis franchise and the often praised CryEngine apparently have their tools mostly running on the new Wii U.

Those among us that are readying their pitchforks and crying foul at the supposed graphical potential of the upcoming Wii U may want to consider their stances. While it may be a bummer that we could be looking at last gen tech in the new console, understand that Nintendo's working from a different perspective. They always try to keep their hardware priced reasonably, first of all, and they may be attempting shorter console lifespans than Sony and Microsoft. When this new GPU starts showing age when compared to the newest from Sony and MS, Nintendo might be ready to move on.

Of course, all of this is fluid until more official news and actual in-game proof of what the new Wii U has to offer becomes available. That said, in this writer's opinion the new system is already shaping up to be a worthy contender. The early demo "experiences" shown off at E3 show a lot of potential in the graphical prowess department. The HD Zelda experience in particular had me stunned. And, any fan of gaming knows that the games launched in the early lifespan of a console don't normally stand up to those that see release towards the end.

We'll have more about the Wii U as it starts to drain out over the internet. Until then, take solace in the fact that this system may be more powerful than either the PS3 or the Xbox 360.

[via Engadget]