With Microsoft’s new console now available, the Xbox One X vs PS4 Pro comparisons will begin in earnest. The anticipation surrounding this next generation machine has been intense, and the performance of the Xbox One X will certainly be critical for Microsoft. This is essentially its last throw of the dice in resurrecting the fortunes of the corporation in the current console war…at least until the PS5 and Xbox Two arrive.

So how does the Xbox One X stack up against the PlayStation 4 Pro? Let’s take a look…

Xbox One X vs PS4 Pro
Image Source: Microsoft / Xbox.com (screenshot)

Design

Microsoft has steadily been heading in the right direction with the Xbox One series, after the original console in the range was criticized for being unnecessarily bulky. This is just another black mark against the machine in its battle with Sony’s PS4.

But this criticism cannot be made of the Xbox One X, which is only marginally bigger than the Xbox One S released from last year. With dimensions of 300 x 240 x 60mm, it is slightly wider than the PS4 Pro, but not as deep.

Another noticeable aspect of the Xbox One X is the quietness of the unit while it is in operation. Even running the most demanding titles, the noise levels produced by this console are extremely minimal. It also does an excellent job of playing Blu-ray discs, although the machine runs slightly louder with Blu-ray than gaming media.

Hardware

The key to the Xbox One X vs PS4 Pro battle is obviously hardware. And Microsoft has certainly brought the big guns out in this department. It is already well documented that the Xbox One X significantly outperforms the PS4 Pro, and now that the console is available this is all the more evident.

Although there is essentially identical technology included in both consoles, the Xbox One X is packed with more powerful variants than the PS4 Pro. Central to this is the more impressive eight-core processor, which outranks the PS4 Pro by 2.3 GHz to 2.1 GHz. Meanwhile, the Xbox One X has 50 percent more RAM memory than the PS4 Pro, with the 9GB really being rather impressive for a video games console.

There is no doubt that these specifications play a role in the performance of the Xbox One X, but the graphics processor is even more important.

Graphics

Graphics are, of course, another key aspect of the Xbox One X vs PS4 Pro comparison, and the Microsoft machine certainly excels here as well. While the PlayStation 4 Pro utilizes some innovative visual tricks in order to achieve its 4K checkerboard effect, the Xbox One is far better placed to deliver native 4K resolution.

Not all games will be 4K compatible, though. This is very much dependent on the individual developer, but Microsoft has already announced around 150 titles that will see enhancements on the Xbox One X.

Both the consoles support high dynamic range, meaning that a wider pallet of colors are available, with brighter whites creating striking visual effects. Arguably, some of the 60 frames per second 1080p games are actually more impressive and preferable to their 4K brethren.

But certainly the early impression is that the Xbox One X outperforms the PS4 Pro in its visual capacity. Stellar titles for the Xbox One X, such as Gears of War 4 and Forza 7, appear incredibly detailed, with phenomenal lighting effects and superb motion.

Of course, both consoles are still reliant upon the actual titles released for them, with the PlayStation 4 still possessing some of the most impressive visual experiences in video games, such as Uncharted: The Lost Legacy and Horizon: Zero Dawn.

Media

The user interface of the Xbox One X can still be considered a little tricky to navigate at times, which does count slightly against the console, even though Microsoft has made significant improvements. The well thought out and streamlined interface of the PS4 Pro is clearly a significant advantage for Sony.

Aside from this, though, the Xbox One X provides a variety of entertainment options, with Amazon Instant Video available in 4K resolution with HDR on the new console. This is not the case with the PS4 Pro, although both consoles support 4K Netflix streaming.

Considering that the Xbox One X also has a 4K Blu-ray drive, which was conspicuous by its absence in the PS4 Pro, and the advantages of the console do compensate for the slightly sloppy interface.

Games

If the Xbox One X vs PS4 Pro debate seems to be leaning decisively in the direction of Microsoft, this section certainly tilts the balance back towards Sony. There is no doubt that the exclusive titles available on the PS4 Pro are superior to those of the Microsoft machine, and there is actually a lack of movement with regard to new AAA titles to launch alongside the Xbox One X.

Reports indicate that Microsoft will be setting up or purchasing its own studio in order to produce exclusive AAA games, but this will not impact on the Xbox One X in the foreseeable future. Meanwhile, Sony has stellar titles such as Horizon: Zero Dawn, Uncharted 4, Lost Legacy, Bloodborne and The Last Guardian already available, with The Last of Us 2 and Detroit: Become Human on the way. Few doubt that the portfolio of games available on the PS4 is clearly superior to that of the Xbox One X.

However, it’s not all bad news for Microsoft. Forza 7 is a better racer than the somewhat disappointing Gran Turismo Sport, and the console has another big advantage as well. The Xbox One X provides a slightly superior experience for almost all games available on both systems. It doesn’t make an absolutely massive difference, and it isn’t nearly enough for existing PS4 Pro owners to jump ship.

But it is nice for Xbox fans to know that when they purchase the latest Madden or FIFA title that they will gain access to the premium console experience on Xbox One X.

Verdict

The Xbox One X vs PS4 Pro comparison is a tricky one to make. On the one hand, Microsoft must be acclaimed for producing a console that is the most advanced and impressive available on the market. Conversely, the PS4 Pro currently has the best games library, which is obviously an absolutely massive selling point.

Considering that the Microsoft machine is $100 more expensive than the Sony console, this means that Microsoft will have its work cut out to ensure that this behemoth finds a market, despite its superior technical qualities and media playback capabilities.