The next gen consoles came on the market in 2020 and are still in the news. The XBOX Series X from Microsoft and the PS5 from Sony are equipped with extraordinary technical features. Since the two consoles are of the same generation, the choice for buyers is complicated. This article will simplify the equation for you.
XBOX Series X: Full Spec Sheet
The Xbox Series X features an AMD Zen 2 processor engraved in 7nm with 8 cores clocked at 3.6GHz-3.8GHz. The GPU uses AMD RDNA 2 architecture and has 52 CUs operating at a frequency of 1.825 GHz. The announced computing power is 12 Tflops. The Series X supports 8K games and 4K titles at 60 FPS. This native frequency can reach up to 120 FPS.
It features a 1TB NVMe SSD, 16TB GDDR6 RAM and 4K Blu-ray support. The internal drive has an input/output speed of 2.4 GB/s in Raw and 4.8 GB/s in compression mode. The RAM of the Xbox Series X has two bandwidths of 560 GB/s for 10 GB and 336 GB/s for 6 GB.
To expand the storage, players can use the expansion card slot. The console’s USB 3.2 connectors also support external drives as simple storage devices. The X Series is compatible with Dolby Vision, Dolby Atmos and cloud gaming. It is equipped with an HDMI 2.1 port, 3 USB 3.2 ports and an Ethernet port. The console’s wireless connectivity is handled by Wi-Fi 5 (ac) and Bluetooth. she weighs 4.45kg for a width of 151 mm, a height of 301 mm and a length of 151 mm.
PS5: Full tech sheet
We find in the PS5 the Zen 2 octa-core processor engraved in 7 nm with an estimated clock frequency of 3.5 GHz. The AMD RDNA 2 graphics architecture uses 36 CUs clocked at 2.23 GHz for a compute speed of 10.28 Tflops.
It has a maximum frame rate of 120 Hz and can theoretically support 8K or 4K performance at 60 FPS. The PS5 is equipped with an 825 GB NVMe SSD whose input/output speed is 5.45 GB/s in Raw and 8 to 9 GB/s in compression. It includes a 256-bit GDDR6 RAM of 16 GB for a bandwidth of 448 GB/s. The PS5 has a slot reserved for an additional 1TB NVMe SSD.
This console has a 4K Blu-ray drive for physical copies of games and supports external drives. It is equipped with Tempest Engine technology for surround support and HDR10 for playback. The PS5 has 3 USB 3.1 Gen 2 ports, 1 Ethernet port, 1 USB-C connector, and an HDMI 2.1 port. It integrates Wi-Fi 6 (ax) and Bluetooth for connectivity. Sony’s next-gen console is 390mm wide, 260mm long and 104mm high and weighs 4.5kg.
Understanding technical terms
In order to better understand these datasheets and make a difference, it is necessary to understand certain technical terms that can be confusing. It is essentially the Tpflos measurement that estimates the computation speed and number of CUs.
The condition Tflops (Terra Flops) indicates the number of floating point operations per second that each console’s graphics card can perform. The floating point is a term that refers to the method of writing certain computer components. The CUs represent computing units organized in clusters of cores containing different components. This proprietary AMD technology processes millions of instructions.
The common points between the two consoles
On paper, PS5 and Xbox Series X have many things in common. They are both equipped with the latest generation of components. The PS5 and Xbox One X ship the AMD Zen 2 processor even if the Microsoft console keeps a slight edge in terms of clock frequency.
Graphic Architecture remains the same from one console to another, as does the RAM. They give the users the option to expand the internal storage even if the methods are different. Theoretical 8K support and maximum frame rate at 120Hz are a few more of their similarities. On paper, we can note many other similarities between the two next-gen consoles, but they also have some key differences.
The differences between the two consoles
The differences are theoretical and practical.
At a theoretical level
The most notable difference is the computer power. Indeed, the PS5 is stagnating on 10.28 Tflops while the Xbox Series X excels in 12 Tflops. The latter’s processor also takes the upper hand when it comes to speed. It is credited with a clock frequency of 3.8GHz versus 3.5GHz for the PS5.
There are also differences at the GPU level. At this point, the PS5 takes the lead at a frequency of 2.23 GHz vs 1.825 GHz for the Xbox One X. The two RAMs also have different bandwidths. The PS5 has a single speed of 448 GB/s when the Xbox One X is displayed 560 GB/s for 10 GB and 336 GB/s for 6 GB.
Still on paper, the PS5’s SSD is more efficient than the Xbox Series X’s at 5.45 GB/s versus 2.4 GB/s. But these theoretical differences alone cannot determine choice. In practice, the components complement each other for nearly identical performance.
At display level
The rendering of the two consoles essentially depends on the optimization of the title being played. Some games support next-generation technologies better than others. Users notice slight differences between the two consoles in relation to Ray Tracing in 4k, the frame rate dropping a few times and the graphics.
There has even been a test done by the Digital Foundry media with a certain number of games. The results confirm that the differences between the PS5 and Xbox One X are minimal. They compete with a few details on all fronts. A choice based on performance would therefore be difficult to make. However, there are other criteria that can help you decide.
What are the other selection criteria?
It’s actually hard to say based on next-gen console performance. These three other criteria could determine the final choice.
Each platform has an exclusive catalog of flagship titles. Overall, through its PlayStation Plus subscription, Sony offers about 700 games while Microsoft’s Xbox Game Pass entitles you to nearly 464 games. The difference is significant in terms of the depth of the catalogs, but the biggest titles are the ones that attract.
Microsoft and Sony partner with major development studios to have exclusive products. They sometimes do takeovers, as was the case with the takeover recently by Activision Blizzard by Microsoft. Ultimately, both platforms offer interesting games that are compatible with their next-gen consoles. To make a choice, it’s best to go by your game preferences and then check the current and future exclusives on both consoles.
Playstation 5 adopts a flat design with a predominantly white color and black borders. The Xbox Series X has the appearance of a rectangular parallelepiped and is completely black. The two plastic consoles are often considered sturdy compared to previous generation devices. But the PS5 is undoubtedly the least compact.
To install it you definitely need a larger space than with an Xbox Series X. There is also a mobility problem. Moving them obviously requires more attention. To justify this design, Sony’s mechanical and thermal design manager had to go a step further.
Yatsushiro Otori made one fan’s argument. Due to the location and the combination with the other components, the manufacturer was forced to opt for a wider frame. It would be necessary to check your installations before making a choice.
Both manufacturers offer a wide range of accessories for you to enjoy the consoles. The minimum is provided for purchase, but the user has to pay a few euros more to better equip himself. The PS5 has a slight advantage over the Xbox One when it comes to equipment.
The dual sense which is the official controller of the PlayStation console, integrates haptic feedback. But this technology is deliberately neglected on the Xbox controller. The PS5 is also compatible with virtual reality headsets whose PSVR and especially the PSVR 2 which will be available shortly. On the Xbox side, VR is not yet supported.
According to the latest information, Microsoft has applied for a patent for a VR glove, but its release remains a hypothesis. If you’re more tempted by immersive console adventures, the PS5 is the one for you.
The PS5 and Xbox Series X perform well and have some minor advantages. The base price is also estimated at 499 euros for both next-gen consoles. But with the shortage they sell for almost 700 euros. To make a final choice, your requirements as a player are the most reliable criteria.