ps5 vs Xbox series x
AMD is absolutely everywhere right now. Inside the new Ps5 and next-gen Xbox, absolutely. They’ve even got a GPU within the new Mac Pro and Google Stadia streaming service. The building blocks here come down to two major architectures, AMD’s Zen 2 CPU as well as their RDNA graphics. So yesterday I got a sneak peek at what AMD has in store and a really deep dive on the tech here, so based on that, I think we can make some very educated guesses on what to expect inside the PlayStation 5 and next-generation Xbox.
First of all, let’s talk about CPUs. So the two Sony and Microsoft have gone on record that they are applying the Zen 2 cores in their latest consoles, and that is a huge jump over the last generation which used the really underpowered Jaguar CPU cores. So some rough maths gives a maths? Some rough math gives us about a four times jump in the single-threaded performance and up to a 10 times jump in performance, if both Sony and Microsoft do opt to go with an eight-core design like they did with the last generation.
ps5 vs Xbox Scarlett comparison
AKA these new CPUs are going to be a huge, huge uplift. This should be a true generational leap. So the current generation of consoles, especially with the Xbox One X and the PS4 Pro, have actually had pretty solid graphics, but they have been severely handicapped by their very weak processors. While usually, AMD hasn’t been all that strong on the power side of things. This time around with their seven-nanometer process as well as the new Zen 2 architecture, it actually looks really promising Consoles, of course, are by nature limited, when it comes to both powers as well as thermals.
So if you’re building yourself a gaming PC, feel free to load up with a ton of fans, a huge power supply, it’s really not an issue, but a console must fit a very small size constraint, and usually, these things are not in great environments with lots of airflows, right?
I mean, how many consoles are, like, underneath a stack of books or underneath your TV with almost no airflow? So my best guess for the next generation of consoles is for a CPU to be roughly equivalent to the Ryzen 7 3700X, and tt’s an 8 core Zen 2 design which in its normal clock is around 3.6 gigahertz. And mind you, that’s on the desktop side at 65 watts. so we will likely see a slight underclock to meet the console specification, but even so, something in that neighborhood, I think, is very, very doable for the PS5 as well as the next Xbox.
The next fascinating aspect is on the graphics side. So the two the Xbox Series X, as well as the Ps5, are taking advantage of AMD’s Navi GPU architecture. Now, this literally is going to ship first in desktop PCs a little bit later this year, but it very much seems like, it was designed with consoles in mind as the chip itself is fairly small, perfect for a combination in an SoC like console. So the pure performance must be a pretty decent step up over the current generation. However, this is a much more difficult comparison to make. So on the graphics side of things, both Sony and Microsoft are perfectly going to customize their GPUs so it’s not going to be exactly off the shelf. However, based on a slightly conservative estimate, I’m going to say the new generation of consoles should be in the neighborhood of a Radeon RX 5700 as far as graphics go.
The graphics side is very much where there’s the most room for Sony and Microsoft to play around and make sure they’re actually making different consoles. So even though they all have the same building blocks to play with, they can do it in very different ways. For example, Sony might focus on making on a bigger GPU which is focused on high resolutions, and Microsoft might focus more on something like higher frame rates or making sure that the ray tracing is of a higher quality. There really are a lot of variables here. However, the important thing to note is that when we do see these differences in the consoles, it is very likely going to come down to things such as the amount of memory as well as the size and the overall layout of these GPUs.
Now, like I said, I think I’m being a little bit conservative assuming that, this is going to be similar to a Radeon 5700, which for the record is about on par with an RTX 2060. But we do know for sure that there are some major upgrades that go along with this Navi GPU. First of all, are the power savings we’re getting with the seven-nanometer process, which may or may not actually be even better by the time that these consoles ship the following year. We should also be looking at GDDR6 memory. Now, this is a decent step up over the last generation, and I guess that we’ll see around between 12 and 16 gigs of this stuff on these new consoles.
That’s important as, again, like that last generation, this should be an APU layout, which means that that memory is shared with the two, the CPU as well as the GPU. There’s also support for PCIe 4.0 onboard. Now this gives both Sony and Microsoft a ton of more bandwidth to play with, so some of that will come down to making the graphics a little bit faster, with the standard SSDs on both of the new consoles.
But, for the most part, this is going to come in handy Not only will this cut load times remarkably down, but it also enables bigger worlds, and Microsoft has even indicated toward a RAM disk function. So it is confirmed that both of the new consoles will support not only 8K but 4K at a full 120 Hertz. If we take a closer look at the Radeon 5700, that actually completely matches up. So this supports 8K and HDR at a full 60 frames per second, or you will go 4K HDR at that 120 Hertz.
Now, this is the initial time that we’ve seen support for such high frame rates in a console, and that could have absolutely massive implications for gaming, assuming that developers actually take advantage of that instead of aiming for, like, 30 frames per second like a lot of this generation. Now that all being said, there is the added issue that there’s as far as I’m aware of aren’t some 4K 120 Hertz TVs on the market, but if this means that we get one more shiny badge to look for when you’re buying your TV, then I am on board. The fluidity of 120 frames per second paired with FreeSync
should make a huge difference in gaming going forward.
Put all of this together, and graphics on the next generation of consoles should be roughly about twice as powerful as on the Xbox One X as well as PS4 Pro, and in the neighborhood of six times better than the base PS4 as well as the base Xbox One.
Of course, all of these estimates should be taken with a huge grain of salt as these consoles are over a year away, but based on the info that AMD has shared about the underlying architecture, I think it’s very safe to say that this is going to be the first console generation that’s actually matching a high-end PC across the board, not just in graphics, but in CPU and SSD, you name it. Definitely be sure to check out my post on the new Xbox Series X as well as PlayStation 5.