Here’s everything about Microsoft’s final version of its new gaming console, dubbed Project Scorpio. Next-generation console arrives in the fourth quarter of 2017, as Microsoft previously revealed some Project Scorpio specifications, but today the company has revealed details about its new Xbox hardware that’s more powerful than earlier and has the ability to handle 4K gaming with ease.
Till date we’ve known that Project Scorpio will run at 6 teraflops, ahead of its main competitor the PlayStation 4 Pro with 4.2 teraflops of graphical power. Rather thought than simply introduce an upgrade console with very minor tweaks and additions, but Microsoft stayed true to its performance targets, that focuses analysis on the speeds-and-feeds of gaming PCs and consoles, has published a big overview of the graphical power of Microsoft’s next Xbox console.
Otherwise outlined at last year’s E3 by introducing a custom-design GPU which sits alongside 12GB of fast GDDR5 memory and an entirely custom eight-core CPU. In fact, Microsoft plabs to replace its 8GB of DDR3 RAM / 32MB of ESRAM with 12 gigs o memory on Project Scorpio, alos hoped Microsoft would transition to AMD’s latest Rayzen CPU architecture, as per Digital Foundry revealed that the company is sticking with a custom Jaguar-based processor.
Although those relatively recent upgrades to Microsoft’s own console in the form of Xbox One S haven’t really offered anything revolutionary, which appears to be what Microsoft is aiming for with Project Sorpio now. Sony has also introduced a new PS4 Slim and PlayStation 4 Pro console after One S, none of those upgrades really matters.
Rather what consumers feel was the case with Sony’s PlayStation 4 Pro when it transpired that it come equipped with an array of visual issues, but Microsoft seems to take console gaming to the next level with a set of new hardware specs and advancements never before witnessed in a video-gaming console. Microsoft is promising to do a lot with this power, including:
- GPU: 40 customized compute units at 1172MHz
- CPU: 8 custom x86 cores clocked at 2.3GHz
- Internal Memory: The aforementioned 12GB GDDR5
- Memory Bandwidth: 326 GB/s
- Internal Hard Drive: 1TB 2.5-inch
- Optical Drive Experience: 4K UHD Blu-ray
AMD first released Jaguar processors back in 2013, and Microsoft original Xbox One and Sony’s PS4 and Pro both use chips based on the same Jaguar microarchitecture. Even so, the new X86 cores in Scorpio are 31 percent faster than the Xbox One’s, and Microsoft’s reluctance to move to Ryzen might not actually mean much. Also reveals that Microsoft’s custom GPU engine on Project Scorpio runs at an impressive 1172Mhz, that’s a big increase over both the Xbox One’s 853Mhz and the PS4 Pro‘s 911Mhz.
The new 8 custom X86 cores found in Project Scorpio gets an increase in speed over Microsoft’s current Xbox One hardware, though. With Project Scorpio, Microsoft is looking further to wider and bigger picture, rather than purely aiming at on generating the necessary power to competently handle fluid native 4K gaming at 60fps, as Group Program Director of the Xbox Core Platform, Kevin Gammill, highlights:
To me, [4K] means a very specific set of things. It’s a lot more than delivering than those eight-million-plus pixels to the screen while playing games. It’s about delivering those pixels with 4K assets, so they look great. It’s about delivering those pixels with HDR and wide colour gamut fidelity. It’s about delivering those pixels with no loss of frame-rate compared to the 1080p version of that title – that’s super-important to us. Spatial audio adds to the immersive experience as well: to truly land that gameplay experience, it’s not just about what you see, but what you hear.
The company also believes 900p and 1080p Xbox One games should be able to run at native 4K on Project Scorpio. As per the report, all Xbox One and Xbox 360 games will see a noticeable performance boost. This however, stands in contrast with the PS4 Pro, which recently received a Boost Mode that added minor improvements to some PS4 games, and requires custom patches for significant upgrades to each game.
During the demo, the GPU utilization remained between 60 and 70 percent, suggesting the console has power to spare. While Microsoft isn’t revealing what Project Scorpio looks like, or its name or price information, but rather provided some technical info on parts. The rear of the console is based on the Xbox One S, so there’s no dedicated Kinect port, but HDMI input is still present. Microsoft is also sticking to a 4K Blu-ray drive for the optical drive.
Inside Project Scorpio, there’s also a vapor-chanber for cooling, a technology used on high-end PC gaming console like the GTX 1080. Microsoft is also unlocking a new spatial surround sound option on Scorpio, and even existing Xbox One consoles will be able to take advantage of this. Spatial surround will help in 7.1 setups, but Microsoft also adding a proprietary format called HRTF, developed by the HoloLens team.
The final form factor for Project Scorpio will be revealed at E3, suggesting that Microsoft isn’t planning anything to showcase its hardware at an event before its press conference. With all of the above in mind, it looks as though Microsoft has more than met its core deliverables with the production and capabilities of Project Scorpio. Now, we just need to see some of the games and experiences running on it to see what we are in store for.
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