Xbox Series X vs. PlayStation 5 (PS5) specs list

Xbox Series X Board
Xbox Series X Board (Image credit: Microsoft)

Xbox Series X Chip

Source: Microsoft (Image credit: Source: Microsoft)

Sony has finally broken the silence on PlayStation 5, unveiling a tease of its next-generation console, and providing our first hardware specifications. It outlines a highly capable system over double the graphical capability of the PlayStation 4 Pro, and tailing Microsoft's rival Xbox Series X. The first talk of system specifications also comes just two days after similar details broke on Xbox Series X, providing our first opportunity for a head-to-head comparison between the next-generation titans.

The Xbox Series X is scheduled to top the next-generation console lineup in terms of raw processing power, outpacing Sony's CPU and GPU combo, and extending to other components of the system. And while the base storage also provided additional storage to Xbox Series X users, the option for standard PC NVMe SSDs for expansion provides flexibility over Microsoft's proprietary memory card. However, with pricing still unconfirmed for both systems, it's unclear how hardware differences will translate to assumedly high costs.

We've wrapped up the full PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X specifications below, as unveiled via Sony's March preview stream.

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CategoryXbox Series XPlayStation 5
Processor8x Cores @ 3.8 GHz Custom Zen 2 CPU8x Cores @ 3.5GHz Custom Zen 2 CPU
Graphics12.155 TFLOPS, 52 CUs @ 1.825 GHz Custom RDNA 210.28 TFLOPS, 36 CUs @ 2.23 GHz Custom RDNA 2
Memory16 GB GDDR6, 320mb bus16 GB GDDR6, 256-bit
Memory Bandwidth10 GB @ 560 GB/s, 6GB @ 336 GB/s448GB/s
Internal Storage1 TB Custom NVME SSD825GB Custom NVME SSD
I/O Throughput2.4 GB/s (Raw), 4.8 GB/s (Compressed)5.5GB/s (Raw), 8-9GB/s (Compressed)
Expandable Storage1 TB Custom SSD expansion cardNVMe SSD slot
External StorageUSB external HDD supportUSB external HDD support
Optical Drive4K UHD Blu-Ray drive4K UHD Blu-Ray drive
Size301mm x 151mm x 151mm (estimate)Unknown
Release dateHoliday 2020Holiday 2020

We still have a ton of details to learn about both Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5, with information on pricing and availability yet to be confirmed. Similarly, the full lineup of games at launch remains a mystery for both consoles, with more expected on both throughout 2020.

Matt Brown was formerly a Windows Central's Senior Editor, Xbox & PC, at Future. Following over seven years of professional consumer technology and gaming coverage, he’s focused on the world of Microsoft's gaming efforts. You can follow him on Twitter @mattjbrown.

  • The PS5 10.28 tflops is in boost mode. Not sustainable indefinately. SSD can't be used as direct virtual memory for the CPU. 3rd party SSD storage means variable speeds for the external drive depending on what people purchase. (5 gbs SSD are so so expensive) Ram bandwidth is considerably low for a console to have for thr next 5 years. Compared to Series X and PC over the next 5 or so years. Ray Tracing looks to be an after thought. It probably hasn't helped Sony that MS and AMD designed RDNA 2 Ray Tracing together alongside Direct X Ray Tracing. Which will be on all RDNA 2 PC GPUs and Series X. The fact they boost clocked the GPU to 2. 23 screams they panicked and went back and gave it a boost. Which may be why they had to change their cooling system and reports suggested their cooling system is expensive. It all sounds like a total screw up IMO. It's a really unbalanced system. And boost ocks always cause bottlenecks. Especially with lower bandwidth.
  • I sort of hope you're right. I'd like similar performance from them. Not techy enough to know which combination will win the performance battle, if the differences are so marked. That SSD though, after the OS, what's left for games? Can see that being a major issue for them, particularly as there is not a mature market yet for the type of external drive needed.
  • But Cerny said all those things are just what developers wanted
  • Cerny is neither a console design engineer nor game developer.
    If Cerny says those things are just what developers wanted, then use simple logic this way, both Sony and MSFT have Game development franchises, they both have been doing this for a long time, somehow, are we saying only Sony knew those things that developers wanted?
  • Did they mention VRR? I haven't heard anyone say it was covered. Gonna be a very interesting generation. One note of caution, this wasn't the same type of reveal that MS did, not by a long shot. Sony have way more to share. This was all dev stuff. The MS reveal was very much more directed at consumers. MS talked about pad latency, TV latency, showed the internals. Showed some simply jaw dropping achievements in terms of add HDR to older titles. Sony is still sitting on all the consumer aimed details.
  • That all looks like a pretty plain-jane AMD PC.
    Nothing really custom in it, save for a boosted SSD interface (that the CPU probably supports native anyway.)
    Why such a small memory bus?
    The inclusion of a standard User-accessable NVMe slot is guaranteed to cause them tech-support NIGHTMARES with all the highly-variable NVMe SSDs out there (not to mention all the people who will purchase a standard M.2 (not NMVe) drive and try to install it (as it WILL fit in the slot.) Plus, what about all the cheap'o only NVMex2 drives out there? Horrible decision on their part. It WILL come back to bit them in the ass.
    This is why MS went with a fully-custom solution they can control 100%. No surprises.
    I hope to GOD they don't go with that awful "jet-pack laying on the table" case design we keep seeing. It's about as ugly as they could have made it, and I bet it sounds like a Jet-Pack when it's running too.
    No word about the OS they are going to use? Too much song-and-dance about "backwards compatibility" and Lots of mealy-mouth platitudes about Ray-Tracing too.
    Still, I HOPE they produce something good. MS needs the competition to keep the fire lit under them so we all benefit.
  • Yeah could be an issue. Though Sony have said that the drives have to be approved by them, and they'll check for and performance.
  • The key to a good gaming rig or console performance have not changed.
    it is these GPU core specs.
    CU (processing cores Multiplied by number of ALUs per processing core), processing power (It's speed), memory size & Speed, Total Processing prowess in TF (TF is a unit of computing speed equal to one million million (1012) floating-point operations per second), Amount of power used (Voltage and), operating Temperature leading to heat dissipation consideration.
    As seen in the spec, MSFT and Sony have approached this differently. MSFT loaded the GPU with boat load of CU(52 of them), reduced power voltage to achieve 1.8GHz speed yielding 12.1 TF of GPU processing prowess
    They made heat dissipation almost primary deciding factor in the console's shape and design. One can argue that they do not want this console to struggle at all.
    I will not be surprised if at a point, the GPU voltage can be raised slightly to further increase the speed and TF Sony is using ~2/3 of MSFT CU count, in order not to lag too much behind in GPU processing prowess (TF), they increased the power voltage of the GPU to achieve 2.3GHz speed for 10.2 TF processing prowess
    There is always a price to pay for this type of design - Cooling, Throttling, possible performance stability.
    This console will have potentials to struggle.
    I will doubt if you can make those Sony's 36 guys (CU) do more as is down the line compared to MSFT's 52 guys (CU) who potentially still have room to do more. A good fast fetching SSD or any HardDrive is also important in console or game PC performance, but not as important as GPU, you can not fetch faster than what is needed, else it will be queued. 2.5Gb/s (raw) is plenty and by no means a bottleneck. Look at it from this point of view, Servers, Crypto mining, Cloud computing, some specialized AI and most scientific super computers performances are heavily weighted on their GPU performances and not storage drives. Game consoles are a mini scientific super computers, you and me see game rig, those games uses serious mathematically models best crunched by GPU as in scientific super computers.