The Xbox Scorpio specs are officially revealed: Microsoft wants a seat on the throne

Cal Jeffrey

Posts: 2,864   +746
Staff member

The specs for Microsoft’s Project Scorpio have been officially revealed. Microsoft invited Eurogamer subsidiary, Digital Foundry to Redmond to take a peek under the hood of the Scorpio. What they revealed was the most powerful gaming console on the planet.

Hyperbole aside, Eurogamer still only describes Project Scorpio as “a mid-generation refresh design.” But Kotaku says, "Scorpio appears more like a new console generation."

We already knew that the Scorpio would operate at six teraflops, 1.8 above the PlayStation Pro. And despite the fact that it will hit shelves a year or more after the PS Pro, the truth is that both the PS Pro and the Scorpio have and will be released in the middle of the typical lifespans of the PlayStation 4 and the Xbox One. Furthermore, although the power of both consoles surpasses the previous iterations, the goal for both companies was not to create the next generation of hardware but to upgrade the current-gen boxes for 4K displays.

No doubt the debate will rage on and on, but what we now know for certain is that Microsoft has one-upped Sony with Project Scorpio. It did not blow the PlayStation Pro completely out of the water, but there are significant improvements.

However, console races are not solely about the hardware, and Kaz Hirai and crew currently have a big lead in the numbers and with exclusive titles. The Gates team needs to bring it, if they want to catch up and looking at the stats, it does look like they are bringing it.

  Project Scorpio Xbox One PS4 Pro
CPU Eight custom x86 cores clocked at 2.3GHz Eight custom Jaguar cores clocked at 1.75GHz Eight Jaguar cores
clocked at 2.1GHz
GPU 40 customized compute units at 1172MHz 12 GCN compute units at 853MHz (Xbox One S: 914MHz) 36 improved GCN compute units at 911MHz
Memory 12GB GDDR5 8GB DDR3/32MB ESRAM 8GB GDDR5
Memory Bandwidth 326GB/s DDR3: 68GB/s, ESRAM at max
204GB/s (Xbox One S: 219GB/s)
218GB/s
Hard Drive 1TB 2.5-inch 500GB / 1TB / 2TB 2.5-inch 1TB 2.5-inch
Optical Drive 4K UHD Blu-ray Blu-ray (Xbox One S: 4K UHD) Blu-ray

The soon to be “new Xbox” has eight custom x86 cores that run at 2.3 GHz. The PS Pro uses eight Jaguar cores running at 2.1 GHz. Slight increase in processing speed, but pretty much the same architecture. While CPU performance is important, after all, it is the engine that drives the machine; gamers care more about the GPU.

The GPU in the Scorpio is “40 customized compute units at 1172 MHz.” Compared to the Pro’s 36 GCN units chugging along at 911 MHz, you can begin to see why the Scorpio is going to be pushing six teraflops.

Microsoft is also upping the ante in the RAM department by including 4 GB more GDDR5 than the PS Pro’s 8GB. The extra RAM is probably not necessary for most 4K applications, but having extra RAM never hurts, and it gives developers more room to play.

Memory bandwidth is actually more relevant than the amount of RAM, but Project Scorpio has that covered too. The folks in Redmond told Digital Foundry that they would be capable of 326 GB/s memory transfer. Compared to Sony’s best offering of 218 GB/s, this is a significant edge for the console.

The hard drive is going to be 1 TB, just like the PlayStation Pro, but the Scorpio will have a 4K UHD Blu-ray optical drive, which is obviously better than Sony’s standard Blu-ray used in the Pro. Why Sony did not spend a few extra bucks for a 4K drive is anybody’s guess.

Looking at the specs is all fine and good, but all anyone cares about in any gaming console is how well it runs. In this case, the Scorpio operates pretty well, as you can see above. According to Eurogamer, the box is capable of running Forza 6 in 4K at 60 frames per second without a hiccup and still has cycles to spare.

While Project Scorpio certainly packs more horsepower than anything else on the market and does have some significant improvements over the PlayStation Pro, it still being called “a mid-generation refresh” by some. It is sure to make some sales, but like Sony customers, many will probably wait for the “real” next-gen hardware to come out.

How about you? Are you going to stand in line for the Scorpio when it is released? Let us know in the comments.

Permalink to story.

 

Skjetne

Posts: 36   +13
I'd be interested in knowing how much these will cost before I rush out and line up for one. It will have to be competitive to get me away from the PS game titles.
Rumors say $499

Now, if only Sony can come up with similar specs at that price, put a display port on it, and support for a mouse and keyboard. Better yet, port some of my PC games to it. :p

Wouldnt you rather just have a PC at that point?
 

m4a4

Posts: 2,251   +2,372
TechSpot Elite
Wow! Time for a Playstation Pro Pro?
Naw, PS4 super mega hyper
uWiLzWU.jpg
 

Teko03

Posts: 621   +329
I'd be interested in knowing how much these will cost before I rush out and line up for one. It will have to be competitive to get me away from the PS game titles.
Rumors say $499

That's my guess --- $499 is a bit higher than most would like to see, but it makes the most sense for a launch price though, that way it can eventually be reduced to $449 & $399 and still be priced well above the $249 One S.

That being said, Microsoft would do way better in the long run pricing it at $399 and simply not doing any price reductions for the first 1-2 years. They'd sell way more units and gain momentum early on with the $399 pricing than they would if they sold at $499.
 

amstech

Posts: 2,643   +1,807
I've b!tched about the HDD size before and I will do it again.
It's a cash cow bullshit limitation that utterly p!sses me off...seriously I want to walk into a corporate xbox meeting and punch everyone in the face with honey mustard packets taped to my knuckles.

The 1TB drive for these consoles is a joke.
The 500GB drive on my X1 is good for about 6-7 games.
I had to remove a few games to make room for FF15 for the lady, because when you have the game disc it doesn't matter, it still downloads 60GB to the console AND requires the disc.
For the 360 250GB or so was enough as those games aren't as massive, but IMO 1TB should be the minimum for these consoles, especially considering you are dropping good money for these things and what a 2TB drive costs now.
 

Puiu

Posts: 4,415   +3,227
TechSpot Elite
I'd be interested in knowing how much these will cost before I rush out and line up for one. It will have to be competitive to get me away from the PS game titles.
Rumors say $499

That's my guess --- $499 is a bit higher than most would like to see, but it makes the most sense for a launch price though, that way it can eventually be reduced to $449 & $399 and still be priced well above the $249 One S.

That being said, Microsoft would do way better in the long run pricing it at $399 and simply not doing any price reductions for the first 1-2 years. They'd sell way more units and gain momentum early on with the $399 pricing than they would if they sold at $499.
399$ would be way too low for what Scorpio has inside according to this reveal. It's most likely going to be around 499$, the price the original Xbox One launched at.
With that being said, the PS4 Pro is not in a bad spot. 2017 is a great year for Sony in terms of games (something MS has been having problems with) and they can most definitely cut the price of the Pro by at least 50$ to better compete with Scorpio.
 

Kibaruk

Posts: 3,836   +1,186
I'd be interested in knowing how much these will cost before I rush out and line up for one. It will have to be competitive to get me away from the PS game titles.
Rumors say $499

Now, if only Sony can come up with similar specs at that price, put a display port on it, and support for a mouse and keyboard. Better yet, port some of my PC games to it. :p
Oh boy... I would probably say computer... but at that price point... console peasants...
 

Nero7

Posts: 498   +236
Lets not forget we're all still waiting for that performance boost of DX12 with true DX12 games. I really doubt that we can compare the consoles to a PC anymore. Tbh I am quite sad about my rather strong PC with a 1070 struggling in some games far more than it should. The port just being nasty is the main problem really.

Quite interested into the scorpio tbh.
 

OneSpeed

Posts: 432   +229
I'd be interested in knowing how much these will cost before I rush out and line up for one. It will have to be competitive to get me away from the PS game titles.
Rumors say $499

Now, if only Sony can come up with similar specs at that price, put a display port on it, and support for a mouse and keyboard. Better yet, port some of my PC games to it. :p

Wouldnt you rather just have a PC at that point?
I can't build one that's going to give me that kind of graphics performance at that price. I like gaming with a keyboard and mouse.
 

OneSpeed

Posts: 432   +229
I'd be interested in knowing how much these will cost before I rush out and line up for one. It will have to be competitive to get me away from the PS game titles.
Rumors say $499

That's my guess --- $499 is a bit higher than most would like to see, but it makes the most sense for a launch price though, that way it can eventually be reduced to $449 & $399 and still be priced well above the $249 One S.

That being said, Microsoft would do way better in the long run pricing it at $399 and simply not doing any price reductions for the first 1-2 years. They'd sell way more units and gain momentum early on with the $399 pricing than they would if they sold at $499.
marketing genius.
 

Puiu

Posts: 4,415   +3,227
TechSpot Elite
Lets not forget we're all still waiting for that performance boost of DX12 with true DX12 games. I really doubt that we can compare the consoles to a PC anymore. Tbh I am quite sad about my rather strong PC with a 1070 struggling in some games far more than it should. The port just being nasty is the main problem really.

Quite interested into the scorpio tbh.
you won't see any magical "boost" on consoles beyond the regular small API changes and optimisations that you see during the lifespan of a console. the promise of better performance when using DX12/Vulkan is mostly reserved for PCs since it tries to imitate the "closer to the metal" style of programming that consoles already have.
FYI xbox one already had most of the newer APIs in place when it launched and "official" DX12 update only added a few things.
 

Cal Jeffrey

Posts: 2,864   +746
Staff member
The 1TB drive for these consoles is a joke.
The 500GB drive on my X1 is good for about 6-7 games.
I had to remove a few games to make room for FF15 for the lady, because when you have the game disc it doesn't matter, it still downloads 60GB to the console AND requires the disc.

I hear you, man. that is one of my peeves with the consoles these days. Disc or digital. They need to make up their mind. It's BS that GTA 5 (in my case) or FF15 (in yours) has to take up nearly a tenth of the HD space. I mean WTF? what is the point of buy the physical game if it eats up as much storage as the digital version?
 

Evernessince

Posts: 5,464   +6,145
So it says custom CPU and GPU but it retains complete backwards compatibility. These consoles really are essentially PCs at this point, because switching architectures like this requires abstraction, same as on the PC.
 

Masaad

Posts: 13   +10
Unless developers make different versions of games for Scorpio and regular xbone this is pointless.
If the game has to run on the regular then you know it's compromised to do that, and if they have to develop a different version of the game to take advantage of Scorpio then you might as well release it as a new console.
 

oranuro

Posts: 49   +13
I've b!tched about the HDD size before and I will do it again.
It's a cash cow bullshit limitation that utterly p!sses me off...seriously I want to walk into a corporate xbox meeting and punch everyone in the face with honey mustard packets taped to my knuckles.

The 1TB drive for these consoles is a joke.
The 500GB drive on my X1 is good for about 6-7 games.
I had to remove a few games to make room for FF15 for the lady, because when you have the game disc it doesn't matter, it still downloads 60GB to the console AND requires the disc.
For the 360 250GB or so was enough as those games aren't as massive, but IMO 1TB should be the minimum for these consoles, especially considering you are dropping good money for these things and what a 2TB drive costs now.

Yep. I had to log in, /Like and say I loved that comment.