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PlayStation 5 v Xbox Series X: how will the rival consoles compare?

Guardian Technology 19 Jun 2020 07:00
Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5 games consoles. Composite: Xbox, PlayStation

Last week, in a livestream watched by millions, Sony revealed the first games coming to its PlayStation 5 console. Due out this winter, the machine will be competing with Microsoft’s Xbox Series X in the first major console war since 2013. But what will these new devices offer that Xbox One and PlayStation 4 do not – and will this finally get the kids off Fortnite?

Technology

Like the Xbox One and PS4, the two new machines have quite similar tech, much of it provided by leading semiconductor manufacturer AMD. This is where things get a bit technical. Both machines use versions of AMD’s Ryzen series of central processing units, which are built around the company’s Zen 2 core architecture. This technology is designed to bring efficient processing to desktop PCs and mobile devices but the console companies have worked with AMD to produce custom versions. The PS5 CPU operates at up to 3.5GHz, while the Xbox Series X CPU can run at a peak speed of 3.8GHz, suggesting a raw processing advantage for Microsoft’s machine.

Storage

Microsoft has also announced a list of Xbox Series X games, but only three first-party titles so far – Gears 5, Halo Infinite and Senua’s Saga: Hellblade II. Its own recent livestream was not as well received as Sony’s, relying heavily on unfamiliar indie titles and optimised versions of games available elsewhere. The company has stated that all 15 of its own studios are working on Series X games, however, so we can expect more announcements.

Price and launch details

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AMDMicrosoftSonyHalo InfiniteMiles Morales
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