After Sunday, we can stop calling Microsoft’s mysterious 4K console Project Scorpio. At their E3 briefing, Microsoft unveiled their Xbox One X console. Their chief competitor, the Playstation 4 Pro, has been out for nearly half a year now and will be alone in the eco-system until November 7th, when the console is released worldwide.
The console is prices at $499 and is the most expensive gaming console on the market when it is launched in five months’ time. By that time, Sony’s PS4 Pro will have been out for nearly a year now. According to their briefing, all their Xbox One accessories will work on the new console, as well as being backwards compatible with all existing Xbox 360 games. It will, also, use “super sampling” to upconvert Xbox One X to make the new games look better even on 1080p televisions.
The new console will ship with 6 teraflops of graphical power, more than the PS4 Pro, with 4.2 teraflops. Microsoft is using a custom GPU engine on Scorpio that runs at 1172MHz, a big increase over the Xbox One’s 853MHz and even Sony’s 911MHz found on the PS4 Pro. Microsoft is also shipping the Xbox One X with an Ultra HD Blu-ray drive for 4K movies and entertainment, and 1TB of storage, according to The Verge.
“Microsoft has previously promised that 900p and 1080p Xbox One games should be able to run at native 4K on the Xbox One X, and that existing Xbox One and 360 games will see a noticeable performance boost. Scorpio also features liquid-cooled vapor-chamber cooling inside, a technology that’s used on high-end PC gaming cards like the GTX 1080.
“Microsoft says the new Xbox One X is the “smallest Xbox ever,” and the black design looks very similar to the existing Xbox One S model. The rear of Microsoft’s new console is based on the Xbox One S, with a HDMI-in port and no dedicated Kinect port. There aren’t many external changes over the Xbox One S design, and the X simply gets a little smaller. For now, Microsoft is only shipping the Xbox One X with the black design and 1TB of storage.”
Microsoft promised “22 console launch exclusives” but the idea that Microsoft would make a dent in the 4K eco-system remains to be seen. The lackluster performance of the PS4 Pro is any indicator, it will be a hard sell for users that need to decide if they will upgrade to the 4K console or keep their original Xbox One. While 4K resolution is currently available on Blu-rays and video games, adoption of 4K resolution has been slow going in the content creation community.
While network television is not providing 4K resolution, much less network providers, it seems that many are holding back after they were burned by the 3D fad of a few years ago. Netflix has offered 4K streaming but with bandwidth by many providers capped, it will be hard for people to view such resolution without going over their caps. In the end, 4K is not where it needs to be for people to rush out for it. Although, people have been wrong before.