Both Sony and Microsoft are going at each other with their all-new next-generation consoles. Both are coming in by the end of 2020.
Microsoft is releasing the Xbox Series X at the projected timeline of late 2020, and Sony is looking at the same timeframe for its PS5. Of course, they are not merely competing just because they nearly have similar release dates. There are no exact release dates either, just a general estimated time frame.
With both Sony and Microsoft already revealing the details of each console, it is easier to see where they will be going head-to-head against each other. The companies have not revealed everything that console gamers will want to know, though, but this is where rumors fill in the blanks.
Here we will try to compare them according to major specs and design categories. First in line is their looks.
Design and Console Appearance
Based on the images (officially released for the Xbox Series X and leaked for the PS5), the two could not look more different.
The Sony PS5 will look like a spaceship. This, according to the analysts of the pictures rendered by different concept artists of what this console will look like, at least. Concept artists make these illustrations of the PS5 Devkit that were included in an official Sony patent application.
While some will definitely dig that, some will also be definitely put off with it. The spaceship look is not just for a conversation starter, though. The artists claimed that this might really be out of necessity as Sony needs to put in the fins and ventilation holes to ensure the powerful CPU and GPU will have enough cooling air. One can remember how noisy the PS4 Pro, and it is nice to note that Sony must have addressed this issue with the PS5.
On the other hand, Microsoft significantly deviated from how they designed their past engines with the Series X. The Xbox Series X now looks like a mini-tower PC instead of a gaming console. Like the Sony PS5, however, the design could be the result of the need to dissipate heat.
Processing Hardware and Graphics
Both the Sony PS5 and the Xbox Series X are going to be more powerful than their predecessors. This is stated as much as it is assumed, especially since these are the next-gen offerings. But by how much is what gamers want to know.
Sony is yet to mention how much the PS5 will be more powerful than the predecessors, but the Xbox already claimed that specifically. The Series X would already become four times more powerful compared to the Xbox One X. But, it can essentially be also assumed with the PS5 given its specs.
Sony already said that the PS5 would run on an eight-core AMD CPU. It will also run on AMD hardware, revealed mainly with its Radeon Navi architecture. Microsoft is much more straightforward with what its specifics concerning how powerful the Series X is compared to Xbox One. But one can see that it will also be utilizing the latest chipsets and architecture from the AMD, too. This means having relatively similar hardware specs and graphical capacities. The Series X will also feature 6GB of GDDR6 RAM.
Both claim that they can reach and support up to 8K resolution for gaming. They both, too, can support 120fps frame rates. Some critics claimed that before truly delivering effective 8k resolutions, both should have HDMI 2.1 outputs.
This implies that regardless of which console you will get, you might also get a new TV for it, to maximize the image quality, they are both offerings. Very limited of the television sets that most people have in their houses support HDMI 2.1.
Storage and Memory
The two are also the same about storage and memory. Both will be having Solid State Drives for their storage. Both promise faster loading times.
According to Sony PlayStation’s Mark Cerny, the SSD inside the PS5 Devkit makes it capable of taking only 0.8 seconds to load something from Marvel’s Spider-Man. This normally takes 15 seconds with the PS4. The test was undertaken back in May and recorded by Wall Street Journal’s Takashi Mochizuki. The video has then spread through Twitter.
Xbox engineers, however, claimed that the SSD is a game-changer for its Series X. In the E3 2019 reveal video, they claimed that the SSD storage solution could act as a virtual RAM. This essentially means speeding up data access when games are running even without the gamers knowing. This means that they will not see slight stutters during open-world games.
What is not yet known about their respective storage is the actual storage space. SSD technology can be very expensive, especially at the large sizes of 1Tb and 2TB. Analysts claimed that it is highly likely that both Sony and Microsoft will utilize a hybrid drive system. Both will utilize the SSD for improved speed and better caching. At the same time, they will use the more traditional HDD to beef up the storage space.
Optimal Disc Drives
Both will still have the physical disc drive. Neither will be ditching it, even if they will come with 4k Blu-ray capability.
Cerny claimed that the PS5 would be the first of its consoles to adopt the 4k Ultra HD Blu-Ray. This, will, therefore, be a “finally!” moment for Sony console lovers. But they might also consider the Series X, given how Phil Spencer also said that this newest console would also have the 4k Blue-Ray capacity, even as the physical disc remains.
So far, specs-wise, one can already say that the two are almost identical. However, the two are apparently different with regard to cloud gaming capacities.
The Xbox Series X will be able to utilize Microsoft’s upcoming cloud gaming platform called the Project X cloud. Essentially, this means the ability to access the thousands of Xbox One, PC, as well as older Xbox games streaming online.
The PS5 will, on the other hand, support PS Now. This cloud gaming service of Sony has long been available, already accessible for PlayStation 4 users. Project X Cloud, since it is new and upcoming, is likely to be a better platform. But Sony did already say that it is investing time and money to build the PS Now further.
Price and Release Date
Both have not announced the prices. One can only make speculations based on the prices of the previous consoles. As such, relatively, both machines can be priced, at least $500.
In terms of release date, the two are clashing it out in the market on “Holiday 2020.” The specific dates are unknown, but if they are going to come out one after another, in just a matter of weeks or days, console gamers are likely to think hard which one to get because they do not want to feel like they made the wrong decision.