The new generation is now also upon us for Xbox, which after conquering the public with the most powerful console in the world - Xbox One X - is ready to debut with its new technical jewel. As we all know, this is the highly anticipated one Xbox Series X, which was officially revealed on the occasion of The Game Awards 2019 on the stage of Geoff Keighley, after the various rumors concerning Project Scarlett e Lockhart. We are talking about the machine that will carry on the next generation of the Xbox, trying to remedy all the shortcomings that, unfortunately, Xbox One has not hesitated to show in its vital phase. Pending the landing of the Xbox Series X on the shelves we decided to take stock of the situation, to put together the ideas by bringing all the features of the new console and its ecosystem in black and white. It should be noted that the healthy dose of rumor that surrounds all the uncertainties about the gaming machine, given by a communication not yet completed, is certainly not lacking.
Xbox Series X price and release date
Although in the past few hours the Xbox Series X release date has been set for November 26 2020, it seems that this has not been confirmed, but denied. Subsequently, the Xbox division corrected itself by taking a step back, and returning the generic launch window with "Holiday 2020". This means that the console will probably arrive after Thanksgiving, or that the Redmond house simply wants to better evaluate the consequences of the coronavirus on its production. The price of the console is still a mystery today, since the same has not even been mentioned in the slightest.
The back of the Xbox Series X has finally been revealed, like the ports the machine will integrate into its final system - that's what it's made of.
- Port for power supply (which is not confirmed whether it is internal or external to the machine). While taking up more space, an external power supply would allow better dissipation, but given the design and weight of the Xbox Series X it is currently more likely that this is internal
- Ethernet connector
- Two rear and one front USB ports
- Audio port
- An HDMI 2.1 port with support for Low Latency Mode and Variable Refresh Rate.
- A port for the Kensington lock
- A port located near the HDMI, which is required to connect a specific 1TB Seagate external memory, which will be made available separately.
The blu-ray player has been confirmed; moreover it is clearly visible in all the official photos shown: this will fully support the resolution 4K. The Xbox division also recently announced all the internal features of the Xbox Series X.
- CPU (Processor): 8x Zen 2 Core at 3.8GHz with frequency (3.6GHz with SMT), architecture AMD ZEN 2 at 7 nanometers.
- GPU (Video Card / Graphics Card): 12 TFLOPs, 52 CUs at 1.825GHz frequency, architecture AMD RDNA 2 custom.
- RAM: 16GB GDDR6
- Basic storage memory: 1TB NVMe SSD
Xbox Series X is a rectangular parallelepiped with a perfectly square base, but it is particularly extended upwards, considering, however, that the console can also be positioned horizontally. Its dimensions are 15.1cm x 15.1cm x 30.1cm, and its total weight is 4.45kg.
Processes, functionalities and innovations
The next generation promises to bring several technical innovations on the console side. Let's talk about the Ray Tracing, a more realistic and graphically incisive lighting technique. Until now this has only been possible on PC thanks to NVidia GPUs with Turing architecture of the 2000 series (or RTX series). AMD has now also opened up to this field, allowing a hardware compatibility with Ray Tracing in the next generation.
Xbox Series X will be able to support resolutions higher than Full HD and 4K at 60fps, since we are also talking about 8K. In-game frames will be able to go up to 120 per second, effectively making competitive gaming more accessible even in the console field.
Audio seems to be a fairly in-depth theme, given that the new generation wants to emulate what is already present on PC to ensure a more realistic and immersive experience. This will also be made possible thanks to the new wireless link for the Xbox patented controller, which points to reduce input lag to a minimum in every video game.
The console promises to guarantee gods almost zero loading and ignition times thanks to the SSD integrated in the system, on which the operating system will be installed. Furthermore, it seems that it is possible to play up to 5 games without closing any, as the current title can be paused to allow the player to switch to another work, even if the console is turned off.
Last, but not least, is the VRS, or Variable Rate Shading. It is a technology designed to modify the images on the screen to make them qualitatively better, placing less details where less incisive. We talked about the topic more specifically in an in-depth article, accessible through the following link.
Xbox Series X video games
Currently the titles that point to the next-gen Xbox are only two, despite all the studies present among the ranks of Xbox Game Studios. It is Halo Infinite e Hellblade 2: Senua's Saga, which should land on the market for PC, Xbox One and Xbox Series X in a period close to day one of the new flagship.
Fortunately, backward compatibility is confirmed to be one of the main cornerstones of Xbox Series X. This is hard work that the Xbox division has been doing for years, along with support for Windows 10. Since the arrival of Gears of War 4, landed on Xbox One and PC in 2016 by the hand of The Coalition, all subsequent titles have undergone a self-compilation process leading to Xbox Play Anywhere. This made them compatible for the Windows 10 platform equipped with Xbox clients, but in some cases they also landed on Steam.
As a result, all games released thereafter, as well as the vast majority of the previous Xbox One catalog and Xbox 360, will be compatible with Xbox Series X through digital copies and physical discs. These will be automatically improved by the system, on a graphic and technical level. The Redmond house also plans to reverse the process for some time, making it the first Xbox Series X games compatible with the Xbox One family, subsequently allowing them to work only on Xbox One X, before moving on to full conversion for exclusive consoles.
It seems that the console can already boast hardware compatibility with Xbox One controllers, with the latter being compatible with the Xbox Series X controller. The new pad will be slightly smaller in size, but the addition of the dedicated share key will be implemented, along with improvements for the backbones. The directional arrows have been radically revolutionized, taking full advantage of what is seen with the keys of the elite controllers. There are no formalizations for a backward compatibility with the Kinect and its features, but this may actually be achievable.
The flagship of Xbox is given by the vast catalog of interesting services offered. Not much is known aboutXbox Live and Games With Gold, which will probably be included in the service which has always been paid for and will presumably continue to be. The Xbox Game Pass will continue to contain all Xbox exclusives starting on day one, or in some cases even before the latter, along with the many multi-platform titles. L'Xbox Game Pass Ultimate will boast - as well as a better price for the 3 services offered (Xbox Live, Xbox Game Pass, Xbox Game Pass PC) - also exclusive benefits for some particular titles. Project XCloud is in the pipeline and will be included in Xbox Game Pass subscriptions, allowing you to use the technology of the Cloud on PC, Xbox One, Xbox Series X and other compatible devices such as tablets and smartphones.
Rumors on Xbox Series X
While most of the specs on the Xbox Series X have been revealed, there are still several doubts about it. For example, we talk about compatibility with 8K, not fully confirmed. Will the console only be able to run 8K videos or will some games be able to take advantage of this resolution? There are no ads on a VR, which is certainly possible given the computing power offered by the Xbox Series X. We may also soon see a elite controller 3, due to the excellent success of the first two models on both PC and Xbox One.
Possible information on Xbox Lockhart, also called Xbox series s, which could be a console less powerful and cheaper, suitable for Project XCloud, but unfortunately there are no formalizations. The price of the Xbox Series X has not yet been confirmed, but it looks like this may be around 500$ o 600 $, with Xbox Lockart which should be much more accessible.