Microsoft has dropped ann early look at its next-generation Xbox console, paving the underpinnings of the future of Xbox. The mysterious Xbox Series X saw its unveiling throughout 2020, pitching a console surpassing early expectations, bundling a ton of high-performance hardware. While Redmond is keeping hardware specifics under wraps, here's what we know so far.
Xbox Series X Full Tech Specs
Xbox Series X is a central component of Microsoft's future-facing gaming efforts, positioned as its flagship console headed into the next generation. Tailing the 4K-brandished Xbox One X, the elusive successor promises a generational shift akin to the original Xbox One debut in 2013. Development on the high-horsepower box remains underway, set to rival the Sony PlayStation 5 in 2020.
While early reports alluded to tiered Xbox consoles dubbed "Anaconda" and "Lockhart," Microsoft's public-facing efforts currently focus on one device. The console aims to achieve 8K resolutions, or 4K at up to 120 frames-per-second (FPS), complemented by ray-tracing, variable refresh rate (VRR) support, and more. While it appears reluctant to share firm specifications, here's what we know so far from Microsoft, and our own sources.
Updated January 6, 2020: According to a statement by Microsoft, the video used in the AMD presentation isn't accurate and is instead from a 3D rendering website.
|Category||Xbox Series X|
|Processor||Custom AMD Zen 2-based CPU (8x @ 3.6 GHz)|
|Graphics||Custom AMD Navi-based GPU (12 TF RDNA)|
|Memory||16GB GDDR6 RAM (13GB guaranteed for game developers)|
|Storage||NVMe SSD (we've heard read speeds of anywhere up to 2GB/s)|
|Video output||8K, 4K @ 120Hz|
|Optical drive||4K Blu-ray|
|Ports||One front-facing USB Type-A; Unknown|
|Size||30cm x 16cm x 16cm (estimate)|
|Release date||Holiday 2020|
Expect the Xbox Series X full specifications to stay under wraps for the months ahead, likely ahead of a full 2020 debut.
What do the Xbox Series X specs mean?
At the heart of Xbox Series X lies a custom-designed CPU founded on AMD's Zen 2 architecture. Previously behind chipsets fueling the Xbox One family, the leading U.S. manufacturer extends efforts via its latest processor technology. The Zen 2 family touts improved performance and efficiency, with Xbox Series X poised to deliver four times the CPU power of Xbox One X. With the current Xbox flagship heavily reliant on its GPU advancements, Scarlett's revamped system-on-chip (SoC) helps alleviate a primary bottleneck.
A Navi-based GPU flanks the Zen 2 brains, powered by AMD's latest wave of graphics technologies. It assembles a formidable SoC for next-generation gaming, with the added capabilities of "hardware-accelerated" ray tracing. NVIDIA has already drawn eyes with its GeForce RTX GPU lineup's real-time ray tracing capabilities, and both Microsoft and Sony are set to follow suit. We also expect the Project Scarlett to embrace HDMI 2.1 to output its promised 8K resolution or 4K at 120 Hz.
High-bandwidth GDDR6 RAM also makes the cut, an expected but welcomed addition to bolster horsepower. Digital Foundry unearthed traces of Samsung-fabricated 14gbps modules in the Project Scarlett reveal, despite efforts to otherwise shroud specifications.
Microsoft's added commitment to NVMe solid-state drive (SSD) storage is an understated and vital final inclusion under Series X. Microsoft details "a new generation of SSDs," alluding to a form of proprietary setup tailored to the console. Early testing has seen a 40 times performance increase over existing Xbox One family, attributed to improved read and write times. Faster overall storage brings huge gains, drastically slicing load times and installations.
The result is a future-facing console build on strong foundations, already boasting 8K 120 FPS gaming with variable refresh rate (VRR) support. Paired with the benefits of SSD storage, Xbox Series X establishes promising foundations for the next generation of consoles.
Xbox Series X is slated to launch in the 2020 holiday season, with pricing still to be confirmed.
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