The latest Xbox devices, filled with powerful cards, have arrived, filling a box-like frame more than previous generations. This article presents the latest generation of Microsoft's online gaming platforms, the $499 Xbox Series X - $1,871.59 - and the Xbox Series S, priced at $299. Series X tops the list in terms of power and premium features - 4K resolution, HDR graphics, outstanding performance, high load speeds thanks to zen two processors, RDNA 2 graphics processor, and SSD storage. This device is more expensive than its Series S for $200 - or $750.14 - but, thanks to its extra power and optical drive, it is worth the price. The Xbox Series X is excellent for electronic games, it is equal to the PlayStation 5 in that they both represent the most powerful platform for playing electronic gaming on TV, and they enjoy the Editors', Choice Medal.
The Xbox Series X may be more appropriate than any Xbox device so far, merely a large black block with 30.48- and 30.48 × 15.24 × 15.24 cm (length, width, height in order). The sides are made of sleek black plastic, and the upper side is a cell-like mesh that hides the faint green lights that evoke the original Xbox design. The device's front side has a light drive placed in the discs, vertical when the device is in a straight position, a USB port, a pair controller button, and inject button, and a power button.
The rear has two USB ports, an HDMI inlet, an Ethernet port, a power cable connector, and a slot to expand storage. The Xbox One lacks an HDMI inlet, meaning you cannot connect the device to a cable or satellite receiver.
In addition to the possibility of stopping the Xbox Series X in a straight position — which can be attributed to its side — you will still need to save at least 15.24 cm of space in this position, so finding enough space to put it in your media center can be difficult.
New control arm
Xbox Series X's new wireless control arm is no different from that available with Xbox One devices. The new arm structure is almost identical to the old one, with the same characteristics of curved shape, prominent handles, and matte plastic structure. The arm is now equipped with the Capture button between the menu and View buttons, below the incandescent Guide button in the gaming board center. This option lets you take screenshots and videos at the touch of a button, just like those in PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, and Nintendo Switch.
The new trend board, too, now has an octagonal directional panel separated by spaces to replace the marked (+) panel in the previous console. Apart from these changes, the gaming board has a USB-C port for wired and charging - if you use rechargeable batteries. The control arm uses two standard AA-type batteries instead of micro USB, that is all. The current control arm is very similar to the previous one, and this is very suitable for us, the gaming board is convenient.
The control arm has an AMD Zen 2 that is eight-core, with a speed of 3.87GHZ. The arm also contains a custom RDNA 2 containing 52 cores at 1.825GHz - for a processing power of up to 12 teraflops - with Raytracing technology support. The device's GDDR6 RAM is 16GB, most notably that of the SSD drive, which has a memory area of 1TB. The Xbox Series X can view video up to 4K and support HDR games and videos, including Dolby vision.
The additional power inherent in this device represents a significant upgrade from its Xbox One X, which features an eight-core Jaguar CPU with a speed of 2.3 GHz, and a 40-core GCN graphics processing unit with a speed of 1.172 GHz to 6 teraflops, but switching from a hard drive to an SSD represents a massive leap in-game load speeds. This power is also an upgrade from that of the Xbox Series S, which features a 40-core CPU with a speed of 3.6 GHz and a 20-core graphical processing unit with a speed of 1.565 GHz for only 4 Teraflops.
Apart from the internal storage capacity of 1TB, you can add 1TB by connecting the Seagate Storage Expansion card at the back of the device or by connecting USB or SSD via USB 3.1, although both the internal SSD engine and storage card are likely to be much faster overall.
The Xbox Series X finally features an Ultra HD Blu-ray drive with a drive-slot, to play gaming discs and Ultra HD Blu-ray discs with video resolution up to 4K on them, and Blu-ray discs that support 1080p resolution and 480p DVD; the Xbox Series S lacks a light drive.
The Series X interface is almost identical to the menu system currently used in Xbox One systems, modified and refined several times since the launch of Xbox One. The home screen has many boxes displaying game names, currently open apps, and recently used ones. Below this main row is the My Games & Apps box that displays your entire software and gaming library, with a few suggestions they advise you to try next to. Suggestions include games you can play or friends on your list of friends who have recently scored high points.
They scroll down to a series of horizontally organized tabs, each with its full-screen boxes displaying more suggestions. There are also selections organized by categories for games and media that you may already have. Tabs include Gamepass, Entertainment, Events, Community, and Pins. Gamepass, Store, and Entertainment explain themselves by name. The Events option shows online gaming events that are currently taking place. The Community option displays recently shared snapshots and clips and various Xbox Live clubs that revolve around games and genres. Pins show any specific games or apps to access easily; selected programs can also be found simply by pressing the Guide button and selecting your games and apps from My Games & Apps, which show what you selected with an additional menu item to browse your entire library.
With that, the Guide button opens the Xbox Guide menu at any time, whether you are in a game or not. This is a quick access list with multiple tabs for everyday activities and settings. Guide initially displays your latest games and apps, as well as options to go to the home screen or access your library. Scrolling to the right to access other tabs shows which of your friends is connected to the Internet, lets you start parties or chats, displays your achievement list, and provides multiple options for taking screenshots and videos. The tab at the far right finally displays the current user's profile with options to switch to other users, and it also contains the settings menu.
Reverse compatibility with previous versions
Reverse compatibility with previous versions of the Xbox Series X is powerful but barely complete. The device can play all Xbox One games except Kinect-enabled games and can also play hundreds of Xbox 360 and Xbox games, though the system cannot play all the two or three generations preceding it. I tried to play two versions of The Sneak King game for the Xbox 360.
The Xbox Series X or S generation does not have any exclusive games of their own yet. Microsoft has insisted that its versions of first-party games be compatible with Xbox Series X/S and Xbox One for these releases' expected future, namely, that these games will reach computers via the Xbox desktop app.
Currently, third-party games can be played on multiple platforms; not only does it mean you will not get any benefit from playing games on Xbox Series X/S - on the contrary - any improved game to be displayed on Xbox Series X/ S. Developed, to take advantage of the features of the new device, with graphics resolutions up to 4K, with more visual effects, and high download speed thanks to SSD. Most enhanced games feature Smart Delivery, which means Xbox One and Xbox Series X/S support your version, and the best version of the game will be installed on your device's operating system.
Some games, such as Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War, and Control Ultimate Edition, are dual-generation games, which means they provide you with two versions, one supported by Xbox 1 and the other supported by Xbox Series X/S. Check Microsoft's improved gaming menu — or the game box, if you are buying a physical version — to see how it works with the new device.
Some improved games were played on Xbox Series X, including Yakuza: Like a Dragon and Dirt 5. Both look excellent and offer vibrant HDR and original 4K images. Yakuza's open urban worlds are exquisitely designed to reflect their realistic counterparts in Yokohama and Shinjuku, and the facial animation looks as vibrant as ever but still embellished and consistent with the artistic design of the Yakuza series. The battles are filled with striking effects, many of which are a lot of particles and lights. Yakuza's motion rate is 30 frames per second, and there are no noticeable reductions in frames.
Dirt 5, on the other hand, is more realistic in its images and shows many textures that are placed above the basic blocks of the 3D environment and reflections for rally racers. Off-road debris builds upon vehicles' backs with a realistic amount of dust and dirt, turning their glossy appearance into a dirty one. The race appears at a rate of 60 fps, consistently and smoothly.
While Dirt 5 animations appear at a rate of up to 60fps, those of Yakuza appears at half that rate, and it is unlikely that many games will still display 4K visuals at 60 fps. Even with this latest generation of control arms, processing power cannot reach this point, and the more complicated or detailed the game in its texture, animation, and effects, it becomes difficult to get a very smooth tire rate. Some games will sacrifice the rate of frames to show detail, and others may use a dynamic gradient to show less resolution to maintain a high frame rate. You may have a choice between these settlements if a game offers you a list of options that allows you to detail performance. However, both toys, Yakuza and Dirt 5, work great on your Xbox Series X.
Games are loaded very quickly, thanks to SSD. It rarely takes more than six to ten seconds to navigate Yakuza saved games quickly, and Dirt 5 races are loaded in less time. If you want to increase your storage while maintaining quick download times, you can add 1TB of 920GB of usable storage by installing the Seagate Storage Expansion Card for $219 - $821.38 - on the back of the device. This price is much higher than a standard 1TB SSD engine, but the proprietary connection means super-transmission speeds compete with the internal installation. Xbox Series X/S devices also accept USB 3.1 storage.
This is a substantial jump in overall performance from Xbox One, including Xbox One X. Improved Xbox Series X/S games can display original 4K visuals as the default setting. This means that the SSD engine has higher download speeds, especially for improved games, to take advantage of the speed. It is not a spectacular jump in graphics like the 8-16 bit jump or the 2D to 3D jump, but it is a powerful pump in processing power that looks like replacing your gaming computer with the latest and fastest, with a fraction of the price, and without pc functions of course.
The Xbox Series X is an excellent platform with power and speed to play the latest games. Lacking its exclusive games, the device does not have the same PlayStation features when it comes to its few games, but this point will be discussed when more Xbox games - Halo, Gears, and Forza - appear with much better graphics and performance than their Xbox One counterparts.
Although the Xbox Series S is slightly above half the Xbox Series X price, it is generally worse. To save $200 - i.e., 750.12 Saudi Riyals - you have to sacrifice the optical drive, half the storage space - which is a big problem, especially if you cannot use disc games - and you will have much less processing power than the Xbox Series X. Although the Xbox Series X is much more expensive, it is best to buy all the features you will enjoy.
In the end, series X against PlayStation 5 stands competitively, which means that, as always, you should check the games available on each device to choose the game that suits your tastes. Both are premium platforms, and while the Xbox Series X is better in reverse compatibility with previous versions, PS5 contains many touch feedback tricks in the new DualSense gaming board, as well as more exclusive benefits to entice you to buy at launch, but if you prefer games you can play on Xbox Series X, make sure they deserve the editors' choice medal.
Advantages Microsoft Xbox Series X
- Great graphics in 4K and HDR
- Smooth performance
- Incredibly fast download times, thanks to the SSD
- Full support for reverse compatibility, including accessories
Disadvantages Microsoft Xbox Series X
- 4K/60 resolution is not available in many games yet
- The reverse compatibility list with previous versions of original Xbox and Xbox 360 games is incomplete.