It’s pretty clear that the script has been flipped this generation where Xbox 360 managed to gain and hold a big lead against the WiiU and PS3, Sony has managed to do the same this time with the PS4.
After a rough first year, Microsoft has managed to turn the fortunes of the Xbox One around, thanks in large part to Phil Spencer and the team’s focus on consumers rather than policies and procedure. While the system has recovered a lot of ground since 2013, a large gap remains between their console and Sony’s PS4. Interestingly enough, this perceived loss of dominance is not something that has been lost on the company.
Part of the effort to reclaim that status comes with their mysterious new hardware called Project Scorpio. The new system is expected out this year and while we have not yet seen any games running on it, the hardware specs were finally released and detailed by Digital Foundry, a site that specializes in analyzing performance and hardware. The short version is that they came away impressed with what Microsoft is doing.
I’m by no means a specs guy, so I couldn’t tell you what 6 teraflops can accomplish. From what I’ve read however, it seems to be a pretty big deal. Instead of trying to throw numbers at you, I’ll let the good folks at Digital Foundry do that for me. The following data comes right from them, so if you want to know more, head over and check out their massive coverage.
|Project Scorpio||Xbox One||PS4 Pro|
|CPU||Eight custom x86 cores clocked at 2.3GHz||Eight custom Jaguar cores clocked at 1.75GHz||Eight Jaguar cores clocked at 2.1GHz|
|GPU||40 customised compute units at 1172MHz||12 GCN compute units at 853MHz (Xbox One S: 914MHz)||36 improved GCN compute units at 911MHz|
|Memory||12GB GDDR5||8GB DDR3/32MB ESRAM||8GB GDDR5|
|Memory Bandwidth||326GB/s||DDR3: 68GB/s, ESRAM at max 204GB/s (Xbox One S: 219GB/s)||218GB/s|
|Hard Drive||1TB 2.5-inch||500GB/1TB/2TB 2.5-inch||1TB 2.5-inch|
|Optical Drive||4K UHD Blu-ray||Blu-ray (Xbox One S: 4K UHD)||Blu-ray|
In addition, they put together a neat little video as well, which I’ve included below for you.
Obviously, there are still some big questions left lingering such as what the machine actually looks like and how it impacts upcoming games compared to the standard Xbox One versions. The biggest question of all may be the price however. Sure, the specs are impressive, but the console does represent the best of the best (for right now) so a machine with all that detail and tech is surely going to run a higher price. Reports I’ve heard have all centered around $500, which to me sounds like a pretty good deal for something this powerful. Again, we’ll see.
Ultimately this is a very cool and promising start to what will undoubtedly be a powerful system. Still, the end all be all of any console is the software that supports it, so on that end, it looks like E3 2017 will be our first look at the console in action. I’m sure we’ll revisit this topic sometime in June.
What are your initial thoughts on the upcoming console? Are you interested or in a wait and see sort of mode?