I’m not a hardware nerd. In fact, I quit PC gaming about 10 years back because the snobby preoccupation with numbers and graphs and pixels per dick inch (or whatever) were so immensely tedious. With the recent launch of the PS4 Pro, however, I’ve definitely been a bit intrigued about Microsoft’s us-too, “most powerful console ever” Project Scorpio, and if it’s going to measure up to the hype.
I dunno, but it’s got the PS4 Pro beat.
In its exclusive, and very comprehensive preview of the console, Eurogamer’s Digital Foundry division confirms that Project Scorpio’s promised SIX TERAFLOPSTERAFLOPSTERAFLOPS of GPU power and 4K gaming is the real deal.
“Combining smart design with sheer horsepower, Project Scorpio hits the six-teraflop target set for it as E3 last year, thanks to a custom GPU that has been designed from the ground up for optimal performance on today’s game engines – and that runs at an unprecedentedly high clock speed for a console. The GPU is paired with 12GB of fast GDDR5 memory and a custom eight-core CPU, and the whole thing is housed in a compact body with integrated power supply and, for a console, state-of-the-art cooling,” Richard Leadbetter writes.
“Performance is remarkable. We saw a Forza Motorsport demo running on the machine at native 4K and Xbox One equivalent settings, and it hit 60 frames per second with a substantial performance overhead – suggesting Scorpio will hit its native 4K target across a range of content, with power to spare to spend on other visual improvements. And while 4K is the target, Microsoft is paying attention to 1080p users, promising that all modes will be available to them.”
With a GPU featuring 40 Radeon compute units clocked at 1172 MHz, plus a custom eight-core, 2.3 GHz AMD CPU, and 12 GB RAM, Scorpio’s specs are substantially bumped up not only over the Xbox One, but the PS4 Pro too.
What this means, Xbox product director Kevin Gammill explains, is that “any 900p or better title would be able to easily run at frame-rate at 4K on Scorpio”.
The console will also support all Xbox One and Xbox 360 backwards compatible games, which according to Digital Foundry’s report “theoretically allows for the full power of the new console to be deployed on older games” without developer updates – something the PS4 Pro manages only with “some games” using a special Boost Mode.
No prices yet, although Xbox boss Phil Spencer has previously claimed that “I want Scorpio to be at a console price-point” (… but probably not). It’s scheduled to ship out in the US later this year, but I wouldn’t expect to find one in South Africa until 2018.