Next Gen Consoles

vegeta535

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I'm not following.. did you mean "spec the next Xbox to be twice the performance as the PS5"? Because that's not possible if they want to come in at anywhere near the price of the PS5 or anywhere near the reasonable $500 price point that most people expect both consoles to come in at at launch. Just like the current generation, I don't expect there to be much of a performance difference between both console's base versions initially. The PS4 was only slightly more powerful than the Xbone when they launched; they both used essentially the same CPU and GPU with the PS4 using a bit better memory configuration AFAIK, which is what allowed it to stay closer to 1080p in most games compared to the Xbone's 900p. I don't suspect any more of a difference between the next gen consoles either way unless MS decides to delay their console launch to be considerably longer after the launch of the PS5 in order to have newer hardware in it, which I don't expect will happen.
He is saying the performance of the next box is irrelevant since the Xbox has no worthwhile exclusives unlike Sony has.
 

Armenius

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On exclusives, we don't know how that is going to play out. Microsoft has been assimilating studios left and right specifically to close that gap. One thing Sony always had an advantage in going back to the original PlayStation, though, is the willingness to take risks. Microsoft for the most part has always been risk-averse.
 

chameleoneel

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I'm not following.. did you mean "spec the next Xbox to be twice the performance as the PS5"? Because that's not possible if they want to come in at anywhere near the price of the PS5 or anywhere near the reasonable $500 price point that most people expect both consoles to come in at at launch. Just like the current generation, I don't expect there to be much of a performance difference between both console's base versions initially.
If the rumors are true, MS has not shown the "base" version yet. It sounds like they are either going to launch with two models or launch the more powerful one first. Then later release the lower power one. Who knows at this point. But so far, the rumors suggest there are already two models planned and the weaker one is the least known about.

The PS4 was only slightly more powerful than the Xbone when they launched; they both used essentially the same CPU and GPU with the PS4 using a bit better memory configuration AFAIK, which is what allowed it to stay closer to 1080p in most games compared to the Xbone's 900p.
The Xbone is just shy of a 7790 in shader/compute units. But clocked a lot lower than a 7790. With resulting theoretical peak performance more than a 7770, but less than a 7790. Along with a tiny 32mb of EDRAM and then DDR3 RAM as a shared pool for system memory and the remaining frame buffer. IIRC, there weren't any additional customizations for the APU setup, like the PS4 had. A lot of Xbone games take noticeable cuts to image quality, at the least. But many also take a resolution hit. Even MGS5, which is a pretty easy game to run, was only 720p on Xbone. A more recent game, Soul Calibur 6 (which is also very easy to run) is only 720p on xbone, along with lower image quality.

The PS4 is a strange amalgamation where it has shader and compute unit counts between a 7850 and 7870. With clockspeeds 60mhz less than a 7850. Resulting in peak theoretical output a little higher than a 7850, but a lot less than a 7870. And the underlying compute structure is more like a 7970 than a 78** series. And then that is sharing GDDR5 RAM for frame buffer and system memory. And the APU has customizations so that there is less redundancy and wait states required between GPU and CPU, in regards to memory management. Which basically took form as an additional communication bus.

The CPU for both is the same Jaguar 8 core setup. However, Xbone is clocked a little higher. But its unclear if that has ever made a difference. Because Xbone games usually require so many cuts to image quality anyway.
 
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vegeta535

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On exclusives, we don't know how that is going to play out. Microsoft has been assimilating studios left and right specifically to close that gap. One thing Sony always had an advantage in going back to the original PlayStation, though, is the willingness to take risks. Microsoft for the most part has always been risk-averse.
MS been always buying developers and have nothing to show for it. It is nothing new. They are just like EA.
 

gamerk2

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If the rumors are true, MS has not shown the "base" version yet. It sounds like they are either going to launch with two models or launch the more powerful one first. Then later release the lower power one. Who knows at this point. But so far, the rumors suggest there are already two models planned and the weaker one is the least known about.
I note again this limits what devs can do; their games have to run on both versions, so while the more powerful version may have access to some special features, the weaker one is what determines size and scope.
 

Stitch1

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That's like saying a 2080ti is limited by the 1060. I think the Series X will have all the extra bells and whistles while the lockhart version might focus on playing those same games at a lower resolution. They should have very similar CPUs with just the GPUs being the main difference. So if someone doesn't care about 4k can get the cheaper lockhart box and play the same games at 1080p. I think this is a smart move as a lot of people don't want to upgrade to 4k tvs yet.
 

Verge

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That's like saying a 2080ti is limited by the 1060. I think the Series X will have all the extra bells and whistles while the lockhart version might focus on playing those same games at a lower resolution. They should have very similar CPUs with just the GPUs being the main difference. So if someone doesn't care about 4k can get the cheaper lockhart box and play the same games at 1080p. I think this is a smart move as a lot of people don't want to upgrade to 4k tvs yet.
I think most everyone has a 4k tv these days, they are basically giving them away.
 

Shoganai

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I think most everyone has a 4k tv these days, they are basically giving them away.
Pretty much. You can't even buy a 1080p TV these days. And 4K ones are dirt cheap. It's not like they're unattainable by the average person.
 

Stitch1

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Sure, I do agree that 4k is cheap and everywhere. However, there's still plenty of people who haven't upgraded yet. The same kind of people who wouldn't want to spend top dollar on a new console.

And the more I think about it, the Lockhart is probably still going to be 4k capable just not as capable. It should be comparable to the Xbox One X. Where it can do 4k but a lot of games are stuck to 30fps.
 

Stitch1

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My point being, I don't think having a weaker box available for a lower price will hold back the higher end box. It just gives people more options. The Xbox brand has been pushing for more choice for a while now. If you are a PC gamer, they have you covered. Maybe you prefer a console with the best specs. They got that for you. Or maybe you just want the cheapest option to play the newest games... They have that as well. I think they are hoping to under cut Sony in price with the Lockhart and out perform them with the higher specs of the Series X. Then add in consumer friendly options like game pass that keeps recurring revenue coming in each month. They seem to be making some smart choices.

Like others have said, they will buy a PS5 for the exclusives. I mostly agree with that idea. My only issue at this point is they haven't shown any yet. My current thoughts is to buy a Series X for multi-platform games and game pass. Then, once the PS5 has a handful of exclusives that I want to play I'll pick one up for those. I did the opposite this last gen. Xbox has at least shown Halo and HellBlade 2. Plus I really like having Game Pass. It's probably my favorite thing to happen to gaming since the Sega Channel.
 

Stitch1

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Sony has their CES press conference going on. While I wasn't expecting much they did talk about the state of Play Station and they had a real WOW moment to show off something really special for the PS5.....
upload_2020-1-6_19-26-51.png

Yep, just a logo. That's it. I think he is even looking back like, "really, thats it? We don't have a box yet? Well, there you have it... Our exciting CES announcement." Drops mic and walks off stage.
 

Derangel

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MS been always buying developers and have nothing to show for it. It is nothing new. They are just like EA.
Microsoft is not "always buying developers". Prior to the latest buying craze they hadn't bought a new studio in over a decade (at least that I can recall). As for "nothing to show". No shit. You expect new games to appear like magic just because the studios were bought? Not only did a lot of them have projects already in the works when they were bought, but its obvious MS was buying them to bolster their first party lineup for next generation so they're not going to have them rush out shit for current gen.
 

gamerk2

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That's like saying a 2080ti is limited by the 1060. I think the Series X will have all the extra bells and whistles while the lockhart version might focus on playing those same games at a lower resolution. They should have very similar CPUs with just the GPUs being the main difference. So if someone doesn't care about 4k can get the cheaper lockhart box and play the same games at 1080p. I think this is a smart move as a lot of people don't want to upgrade to 4k tvs yet.
But you need to remember: Anything devs create *must* run on the weaker console. So yes, while there will be a number of titles that offer 4k options on the more powerful console, there will be just as many that have to downgrade things in order to run acceptably on the weaker of the two.

A similar example happened years ago during the Xbox 360 days. Remember the Xbox 360 Arcade, the version that shipped without a HDD? As a result of that one SDK, *every* 360 game (except for one *Very* late title I believe) was *required* to run assuming no HDD was present, which did put some limits on what devs could do due to the limited amount of RAM they had to play with.
 

Stitch1

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And yet 360 games played fine. There were a few examples where you had to swap discs for larger titles as well as loading times. But not being able to install to the internal drive a whole different beast from having a weaker gpu. If everything else is on par then just having a lower spec gpu shouldn't hold back the higher end model.
 
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Viper87227

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That's like saying a 2080ti is limited by the 1060.
Well, technically it is. Console games are super optimized to the hardware they run on. The more hardware configurations you have, the less optimized games become, and thus performance or visuals suffer on all platforms. If the 2080ti were the only GPU on the market... if developers knew exactly what GPU every person running their game had... they could take advantage of every ounce of power that card can produce. Games would look better and/or run better if that were true. Obviously it's not, and the wide array of hardware configurations that developers have to cater to on PC absolutely holds them back. There is a reason a ~$300 Xbox can run RDR2 at native 4K, 30fps, but you'd need to drop a minimum of $1,000 on a PC that could do that.

And yet 360 games played fine. There were a few examples where you had to swap discs for larger titles as well as loading times. But not being able to install to the internal drive a whole different beast from having a weaker gpu. If everything else is on par then just having a lower spec gpu shouldn't hold back the higher end model.
Just because 360 games worked fine does not mean they couldn't have been better. The same argument could be made for a multi-SKU release on the next Xbox. What if the GPU is not the only difference? What if they axe things like an SSD (an easy cost saving measure)? That's a pretty valuable resource if devs can count on it's guaranteed presence, and thus something that could limit how far devs can push the hardware if they can't count on it. Even in the current generation we see this. Many games, even new releases, don't improve upon anything on the higher tier consoles. Particularly indie and lower budget titles, it's easier to just cater to the lowest common denominator and tell people to deal with it. Even with AAA games, you'll notice that typically first party titles push the higher tier consoles farther than third party titles.. because MS and Sony benefit from showing off what their premium SKU's are capable of. Ubisoft and EA don't. And for third party games that do push these platforms to their extreme, it's likely that money changed hands to make that happen. Like my RDR2 example above, I'd be shocked if MS didn't pay Rockstar and/or assist in development to get the game looking as good as they did.

There is no doubt in my mind that when you have two differently performing SKUs on one console generation, the more powerful platform suffers.
 

Stitch1

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While nothing is certain yet I am pretty sure all next gen systems will use SSDs. Let's look at Sony for a second. God of War on PS4 vs the Pro. The game's textures look about the same. The main difference is resolution. Although, the Pro's hardware is holding itself back and they used checkerboard rendering in order to get a "4k" image. Also, this gen started with base consoles as the target and then the Pro/X versions came along later. Next gen looks to have the focus on the beefier boxes from the start. Now, there are other games that up the textures and have more enhancements between the base and pro models but it's not like the base is holding the pro version back. Even your example of Red Dead shows how much more power the X has compared to the base XBO.

Your point about third parties makes sense but I don't see that so much in practice. Most third parties do take advantage of the higher end hardware. Sure you can make the case for indie games but is that really fair to do? We are talking about games that typically have less than a handful of people working on them that aren't trying to push the envelope of gpu power. But Ubisoft, EA, and Activision all seem pretty committed to the enhancements the higher end consoles enable. For example Jedi Fallen order. Looks and plays best on the higher end consoles compared to the base models. How about Capcom with RE2? Or how about COD or Metro Exodus or name any current multi-plat game. I just don't see where these companies are aren't trying to push the higher end SKUs.

At this point worrying over the lower specs of an unannounced console seems pretty silly to me.
 

Viper87227

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Your point about third parties makes sense but I don't see that so much in practice. Most third parties do take advantage of the higher end hardware. Sure you can make the case for indie games but is that really fair to do? We are talking about games that typically have less than a handful of people working on them that aren't trying to push the envelope of gpu power. But Ubisoft, EA, and Activision all seem pretty committed to the enhancements the higher end consoles enable. For example Jedi Fallen order. Looks and plays best on the higher end consoles compared to the base models. How about Capcom with RE2? Or how about COD or Metro Exodus or name any current multi-plat game. I just don't see where these companies are aren't trying to push the higher end SKUs.
I know that most third parties, particularly in their AAA titles, utilize the better hardware. What I meant was, look at how they utilize it. Look at the difference in their lesser version vs. their better version. Sometimes it's not significant. Sometimes it's just a simple resolution or framerate boost without any improvement to assets or other visual effects. When I think of the games that best make use of the higher end consoles, they are rarely third party titles. Do a google search for the best looking PS4 Pro titles, you'll consistently see the same answers: Uncharted, God of War, Horizon Zero Dawn, Detroit Become Human, Shadow of the Colossus, GT Sport, and Wipeout -- all Sony published titles. You won't see many people throwing out third party titles as examples. Sure, they still look good, but they just don't push the hardware as far. There is less incentive to spend the extra time and money doing so. This is admittedly less evident on Xbox, which I think is particularly due to their significantly smaller list of AAA exclusives... which is why I brought up RDR2. I've no doubt that in the absence of their own killer app, Microsoft went to Rockstar and greased the wheels a bit to make sure the game showcased what the X was capable of. It looks substantially better on X that PS4 Pro, probably the widest gap of any multi platform game. This isn't by accident.

At this point worrying over the lower specs of an unannounced console seems pretty silly to me.
I'm not worried. As long as Microsoft continues with their renewed interest in PC, i'll never own another Xbox. I don't really care what they do. That doesn't mean I don't agree with the mindset that higher end consoles get held back by their lesser counterparts.
 

Armenius

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I hope it can be upgraded like current consoles unless they decide to use some proprietary interface or even solder it to the board.
 

vegeta535

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I hope it can be upgraded like current consoles unless they decide to use some proprietary interface or even solder it to the board.
MS always had the internal HDD locked down to the point of banning people with different drives on Xbox live I believe. Unless Sony getting arrogant like they did with the PS3 they still should support easy swapping.
 

Armenius

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MS always had the internal HDD locked down to the point of banning people with different drives on Xbox live I believe. Unless Sony getting arrogant like they did with the PS3 they still should support easy swapping.
People have been swapping in SSD or SSD hybrid drives into their Xbox One without issue. The Xbox One uses a standard SATA connection, though. I know that they did ban people who modded their Xbox 360 to fit larger drives prior to them adding external drive support.
 

vegeta535

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People have been swapping in SSD or SSD hybrid drives into their Xbox One without issue. The Xbox One uses a standard SATA connection, though. I know that they did ban people who modded their Xbox 360 to fit larger drives prior to them adding external drive support.
Ah didn't know about the Xbone. I though I read they were locked also. They still not as user upgradable as the Sony systems were.
 

Viper87227

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MS always had the internal HDD locked down to the point of banning people with different drives on Xbox live I believe. Unless Sony getting arrogant like they did with the PS3 they still should support easy swapping.
Neither of the new consoles will have a SATA HDD, which is what made swapping easy on PS4. Both these consoles are going to be NVME drives, which will potentially be right on the motherboard themselves. The only way we'd see internal drive upgrades is if they give us an accessible M.2 slot, and I'm not sure either party will see that as a priority. Much easier to just allow USB storage and call it good.
 

Archaea

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The NVME drives will likely be soldered in. They are to be PCI-E 4th gen NVME drives, and i'll be surprised if they are on a standard m.2 slot -- since they are mass producing these boards and trying to keep manufacturing costs low. And like Vier87227 says - MS isn't going to make it a priority to put a m.2 slot on the board when only a few percent of the population would use it. USB 3 based proprietary storage with their proprietary FAT file system they've used in the past (so that it can't be used on PC) is most likely.
 

Derangel

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The NVME drives will likely be soldered in. They are to be PCI-E 4th gen NVME drives, and i'll be surprised if they are on a standard m.2 slot -- since they are mass producing these boards and trying to keep manufacturing costs low. And like Vier87227 says - MS isn't going to make it a priority to put a m.2 slot on the board when only a few percent of the population would use it. USB 3 based proprietary storage with their proprietary FAT file system they've used in the past (so that it can't be used on PC) is most likely.
I wouldn’t count on them being PCIe 4. PCIe 4 controllers are notably more expensive compared to Gen 3 and they run hotter. Both are concerns for consoles. Let’s not forgot that the base models for current consoles were still using SATA2 and they were only upgraded to 3 with the higher priced models. And all consoles still ship with 5400 RPM hard drive. So they’re not terribly concerned with getting the latest and fastest storage tech.
 

Archaea

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I wouldn’t count on them being PCIe 4. PCIe 4 controllers are notably more expensive compared to Gen 3 and they run hotter. Both are concerns for consoles. Let’s not forgot that the base models for current consoles were still using SATA2 and they were only upgraded to 3 with the higher priced models. And all consoles still ship with 5400 RPM hard drive. So they’re not terribly concerned with getting the latest and fastest storage tech.
They've said many times it will use PCI-E 4.0 storage. If they don't they are backing down on multiple pressers and slide decks.
 

Viper87227

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So they’re not terribly concerned with getting the latest and fastest storage tech.
Previous generations, no. This upcoming generation though... both camps have had a major hard on for SSD speed. It's the first thing Sony showed off when they acknowledged that PS5 existed. Microsoft made a point to talk about it at their unveiling. The NVME SSDs are one of the few details both seem really eager to talk about. I've never seen an upcoming console generation talk so much about storage. For whatever reason, they've decided this is important this time.
 

Derangel

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They've said many times it will use PCI-E 4.0 storage. If they don't they are backing down on multiple pressers and slide decks.
I don’t recall either of them specifically talking about PCIe generation for their SSDs. Mind linking me to some?
 

Archaea

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I don’t recall either of them specifically talking about PCIe generation for their SSDs. Mind linking me to some?
Search xbox series x + pci-e 4. You'll find your fill. Ps5 + pci-e 4

this isn’t hard to find. Both companies have promosed 4th gen pci-e nvme

theres a leak out today that says Xbox may be moving towards a handicapped nvme that is fourth gen but runs at third gen speeds
Lame if true.
 

Derangel

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Search xbox series x + pci-e 4. You'll find your fill. Ps5 + pci-e 4

this isn’t hard to find. Both companies have promosed 4th gen pci-e nvme

theres a leak out today that says Xbox may be moving towards a handicapped nvme that is fourth gen but runs at third gen speeds
Lame if true.
“Look it up yourself” is not proper way to respond when someone politely asks for proof. If I had time to look it up while at work I would have before replying.

Even if that rumor is true it doesn’t really matter that much. While Gen 4 drives are a lot faster on paper and in canned benchmarks the speed difference really isn’t going to make much difference in a console. Installing and loading aren’t exactly complex, high queue depth, operations. Choice of memory will have a bigger effect. If they go QLC and have a small SLC cache that will cause issues when installing very large games that go over the cache amount and even when loading games when the drive is full.
 

Nolan7689

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Well I went ahead and googled PS5 NVME and nothing except rumors pop up. So, until we hear it from Sony or Microsoft treat them as rumors not facts Archaea
 

Derangel

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Search xbox series x + pci-e 4. You'll find your fill. Ps5 + pci-e 4

this isn’t hard to find. Both companies have promosed 4th gen pci-e nvme

theres a leak out today that says Xbox may be moving towards a handicapped nvme that is fourth gen but runs at third gen speeds
Lame if true.
I did what you suggested: There has been exactly ZERO official mention of PCIe 4 from either company. They've both made incredibly vague comments like "next generation SSD" (MS) and it being something not available to customers (Sony). Both statements could speak to PCIe 4 connections, but they're still very vague and noncommittal.
 

Stitch1

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The twice as fast claim is interesting. So one will load in 2seconds vs 4? Like if these are as fast as they are claiming then load times should be next to non-existent, right?
 

IdiotInCharge

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The use of PCIe 4.0 NVMe would make sense if one of the development priorities is a significant increase in assets, particularly textures. Load times would likely be unaffected, but the ability to fetch assets as or just before they're needed at say ~7GB/s would be something that game developers could use to really up the quality consistently, given that the baseline is static, vs. PCs where it'd be much harder to pull off.
 

funkydmunky

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Years ago AMD hyped a SSD tech for pro use that used a high-speed drive for massive texture loading or such. I wonder if there is some sort of advancement in these regards. Maybe lower GPU memory to save money while being supplemented by the PCIe 4.0 drive.
 
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