As you probably already know, both Sony and Microsoft have talked about releasing new consoles much earlier than the usual 6-8 years we are used to. And as it currently stands, Microsoft has officially announced two consoles the Xbox One S and Project Scorpio, a much more powerful device. And Sony, which is yet to officially announce its console, has decided to take a much more cautious approach by waiting until it has the launch titles ready before making any kind of announcement. But, how will the top end Scorpio and what is being called the PlayStation Neo compare? In this article, I will attempt to answer that.
Xbox Project Scorpio Vs. PlayStation Neo
Before I begin comparing each device, You may have asked the question, “Why?” “Why do we need new consoles now?” Well. it looks as though there could be a relatively simple answer for that. And that is the threat of Virtual Reality. It seems as though both Microsoft and Sony have been pushed into a corner, by what many industry analysts are calling the “Rapid Rise of VR” and 4K televisions. And like any business, they both saw this as something that they could not ignore.
However, it looks as though it may be Microsoft that got itself caught with its proverbial trousers down with regards to VR. As of the two companies, it is the one without a dedicated headset, instead, it opted to invest in augmented reality with the Hololens. Whilst, the PS4 is considered to be somewhat VR compatible and will be useable with the upcoming PlayStation VR headset.
Now, I have been writing about the PlayStation Neo a little longer than I have the Xbox Project Scorpio device. And for all intensive purposes, the Neo is an overclocked PS4, it’s that simple! However, here is the detail: The Neo is rumored (Nothing official has been released) to have a 2.1Ghz CPU, which is more than likely going to be an 8-core processor and probably made by AMD.
As for the Project Scorpio CPU, it will also have an 8-core thing going on, however, from what I have read it could have the incredible computing power of 6-terraflops! But that’s a reference to its graphics card, not the actual processor! So, as it stands, there is little information about it. Rumors suggest that along with its 8 jaguar cores it could be massively overclocked, but as I said that is a rumor.
Starting with the PlayStation Neo (again this is unconfirmed) it is rumored to be getting 8GB of graphics memory, but I would assume this would be a bare minimum to enable it to deal with 4K and VR comfortably. As for the all-important memory bandwidth, which is important for clean and unstuttering visuals, it will have a relatively modest 218GBs.
As for the Xbox Project Scorpio, this too has nothing officially confirmed however, I expect this to eclipse what’s on offer with the NEO. 12GB of graphics memory is being touted as the minimum on the Scorpio, which is huge, but not completely overwhelming personally, I would have been happy with at least 16GB. As for its memory bandwidth, this too will eclipse what will be on offer with the NEO at 320GBs.
Actually, the previously mentioned bandwidth figure is exactly the same as can be found on the GeForce GTX 1080 graphics card for a PC. And that device uses GDDR5X memory instead of GDDR5. This means that it could be possible for there to be a huge performance gulf between the two consoles, with regard to memory performance. As the PlayStation Neo has been rumored to be getting GDDR5 memory, which if these rumors are correct is much slower than that, which could be found on the Xbox Project Scorpio.
Operations Per Second
One other spec that I can compare between the PlayStation Neo and the Xbox Project Scorpio is their GPU’s and floating point or operations per second. What this means in layman’s terms is the outright pure performance of each device.
Starting with the Xbox Scorpio, you’ve probably come across the term 6-Terraflops quite often since it was announced. Basically, this is 6-trillion floating point operations per second, and yes it is a huge number and until you and I both learn more about this device from Microsoft that is basically all that is known.
Moving on to the PlayStation Neo, it will be super quick but not Scorpio quick. At 4.14-terraflops, it is quite the slouch compared to the Microsoft device. However, yet again no-one yet knows what the true specifications will be, so take this with a pinch of salt.
Virtual Reality and 4K
It goes almost without saying that both devices will be 4K compatible, Microsoft with its stop gap Xbox One S is offering an improved 4K ability with a 4K Blu-ray player and faster USB ports for connecting to 4K televisions.
As for Virtual reality, again no-one knows what Microsoft has planned for the Xbox Project Scorpio. Just a week ago, it was being rumored that it had already struck a deal to make its device compatible with the Oculus Rift, but rumors since have suggested that the Xbox Scorpio could be compatible with both the Rift and the HTC Vive.
Sony has already taken great strides to try and usurp the likes of Oculus and HTC to make a name for itself within the VR space. Thanks to the huge amount of PlayStation 4 owners, it has found itself to be in an enviable position, and it has quickly taken advantage of that with its PlayStation VR headset, which will be available in the USA on October the 13th.
As for the PlayStation Neo, it will undoubtedly be compatible with the PlayStation VR, which by the time of its arrival could have 100’s of titles of which all will be compatible with the new console. With regard to 4K, it is also clear, even though there is little information available that this new PlayStation with offer a true 4K High-Def experience, as Sony does not intend to be left behind.
As it stands, it looks as though the Xbox Project Scorpio console, is going to be the all new superpowered device and will blow the Neo out of the sky on almost / actually all specification counts. However, Sony is yet to officially release any information about the device and its specs it does beg the question, couldn’t all of this have been a ruse, just to have gotten the information out of Microsoft?
Why else would a company, which at this moment in time rules the console market actively be producing a console that it already knows will be inferior to its main rivals? Seriously, that is bad business, I personally think that no matter how good the Xbox Project Scorpio device will be Sony will with the PlayStation Neo surprise many in the gaming world with something more powerful than is currently being rumored.