Xbox 'Scorpio' will have 4K, HDR & UHD Blu-ray - specs revealed

07 Apr 2017 | Rasmus Larsen |

Microsoft has revealed to Digital Foundry the final technical specifications for its next game console that is built ground up for 4K gaming. Xbox ’Scorpio’ will be over 40% more powerful than PS4 Pro. It will also improve graphics in some previously-released games.

Xbox Project Scorpio: Specs

When Microsoft launched Xbox One S in late 2016, the company also decided to pre-announced a much more powerful console. Under codename ’Project Scorpio’ Microsoft wants to take console gaming to new heights.

Microsoft has now revealed technical specifications.

Xbox Scorpio

The company confirms that Scorpio will be capable of outputting games in 4K resolution and HDR (High Dynamic Range). It will also feature an UHD Blu-ray drive. Of course, none of this is particularly surprising seeing that Xbox One S already delivers all of the above, except games in native 4K.

And native is the key word here. Xbox One S can upscale games from HD to 4K whereas PS4 Pro can theoretically deliver native 4K but most often render games at resolutions between HD and 4K. With Xbox Scorpio, Microsoft is aiming for true 4K at 60 frames per second, meaning that all elements of the game – textures, animations etc. – are rendered in 4K resolution.

Digital Foundry got a sneak peak at Forza running at 4K and 60fps. The console’s GPU utilization was just 60-70%, meaning that developers can push the system even further.

Forza Motorsport on Xbox Scorpio

The console will make good on the promise of 6 teraflops graphical performance, which will make it over 40% more powerful than PlayStation 4 Pro and no less than 330% more powerful than Xbox One S. For the task, Microsoft has equipped it with a GPU with 40 compute units, 12GB RAM, a 1TB hard drive, and HDMI 2.0. The power supply is still integrated so it will likely match the elegant look of the Xbox One S.

The console will also deliver object-based audio such as Dolby Atmos and DTS:X, just like Xbox One that has received the update this week. Microsoft adds that it will furthermore support at proprietary HRTF format for Hololens, suggesting an increased focus on virtual an augmented reality (VR and AR).

Will improve Xbox One & 360 games

Scorpio will be compatible with every Xbox One game and will furthermore support all converted Xbox 360 games.

And it will not only be compatible, Microsoft explains to Digital Foundry. It will improve loading times, improve textures, and deliver more stable frame rates. However, if a game is locked to 30fps on Xbox One it will still be locked to 30fps on Scorpio – unless the game developer issues a patch. If a game utilizes dynamic resolution, such as The Witcher 3, the console will be able to utilize its muscles to increase the pixel count. It will also improve graphics in games if you connect the console to a HD TV.

Microsoft will unveil Project Scorpio at the E3 conference in June. The price has yet to be revealed.

- Source: Digital Foundry

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