Xbox Series S is Microsoft’s new console that was recently unveiled as a smaller and cheaper version of Xbox Series X. After a dawn leak last Tuesday (8), the company confirmed the technical specifications, price, and launch date for the video game. The device should run the same games as its most powerful brother, although it will probably play more modest graphics at lower resolutions.
The Xbox Series S lands in the United States on November 10 for $299, while the Xbox Series X arrives on the same date for $499.
According to Microsoft, the Xbox Series S has the same 8-core Zen 2 processor as the Xbox Series X. However, instead of running at 3.8 GHz as its big brother, it has a 3.6 GHz frequency (or 3.4 GHz with simultaneous Multithreading on). For comparison purposes, the number is still a little higher than the PlayStation 5 (PS5) competitor, which runs at 3.5 GHz. The video game comes with 10 GB of GDDR6 RAM, while the Xbox Series X technical specifications confirm 16 GB of the same type of memory for the console.
Video Card (GPU)
The Xbox Series S review video released by Microsoft mentions that the main difference with the Xbox Series S is in the GPU. It is a different card, with some of the same capabilities of Xbox Series X, but with certain limitations. While the Xbox Series X is focused on native 4K resolution, the Xbox Series S video card is focused on offering 1440p resolution. The console is still capable of playing 4K media such as movies.
On a 4K TV, Xbox Series S can use upscaling to resize the resolution, without the same definition as the native 4K. The processing capacity of the Xbox Series S GPU is approximately 4 Teraflops, well below the 12 Teraflops set for Xbox Series X. The Series S version also features support for Ray Tracing lighting technology and frame rate up to 120 FPS. The visual difference may not be as great on TVs below 4K, as the Xbox Series X needs to spend much of its processing to achieve four times the resolution.
Differences to Xbox Series X
In the official S Series video, it is possible to notice some differences from the Xbox Series X. The most obvious is its size: the console is 60% smaller than its powerful brother. The 1 TB SSD storage has also been replaced by a 512 GB one, still of the SSD type, which offers faster loadings.
The Xbox Series S is a purely digital model, without Blu-Ray drive – technology that the Xbox Series X has. Microsoft has not yet confirmed that the Xbox Series S is less powerful than the Xbox Series X, but the difference in price and specifications suggests that it should display somewhat more modest visuals.
The design of Xbox Series S is quite simple. In white, it has a rectangular geometric shape almost half the size of the Xbox Series X. Its look is reminiscent of the Xbox One S and contrasts with the black of the Xbox Series X.
One of the most striking details is the large black gridded disc in the video game, which generated jokes about giving the console a radio or soundbox look. It’s an auxiliary ventilation outlet that should dissipate the hot air from the console both horizontally and vertically. In Xbox Series X, the ventilation is centered on the top of the device and auxiliary outputs are more hidden.
Xbox Series S brings the same backward compatibility capability as Xbox Series X to run games like the original Xbox, Xbox 360, and Xbox One – however, there is a limitation. Since Series S has no disk drive, it can only run digital versions of these games. If you want to use physical media from previous generations, you must choose Xbox Series X. On the other hand, Xbox Series S is fully compatible with Xbox One controls. According to Microsoft, any accessory that can be connected wired or wirelessly to Xbox One will be compatible with Xbox Series X and Series S.
Microsoft has sent mock-up versions of Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S to several sites in the United States. These are non-functional versions of video games, only with their housings without internal components, for photos and size comparisons. In some of them, you can see that the Xbox Series S is even smaller than an Xbox One X and should not take up much space on your shelf.
The price of $299 was confirmed by Microsoft by surprise after the unveiling of the console and led to further speculation about the price of Xbox Series X. However, in less than 24 hours after the unveiling of the Xbox Series S value, the company also revealed the price of Xbox Series X to $499.