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Tech Review: Xbox One X

When Microsoft first revealed Project Scorpio to the world, the company promised us to deliver the most powerful console ever made. It was clear from the start that this mysterious console would become the premium model of the Xbox One instead of its successor. Months have passed and if you find the right store, you’ll see Xbox One X consoles appearing everywhere. Project Scorpio transformed to the Xbox One X and it launched just in time for Christmas. Is this the console you’ll want or should you stick with one of your older Xbox One versions? Time to find out!

Meet the beast

One thing’s for sure, this Xbox One X most certainly is the most powerful console on the market at this time. Just take a look at its impressive technical specs:

CPU Custom CPU @ 2.3 GHz, 8 cores
Graphics Custom GPU @ 1.172 GHz, 40 CUs, Polaris features, 6.0 TFLOPS
Memory 12GB of GDDR5 RAM @ 6.8GHz w/ 326 GB/s bandwidth
Storage Starting at 1TB HDD
Connections and expansions HDMI-in; HDMI-out; 1x front-facing USB 3.0; 2x rear-facing USB 3.0; IR receiver/blaster; SPDIF digital audio; Ethernet (IEEE 802.3 10/100/1000)
Wireless Wireless IEEE 802.11ac dual band; (5GHz & 2.4GHz); Dedicated dual band Xbox Wireless radio
Power supply 245W, Internal
Disk drive 4K UHD Blu-ray drive
Dimensions 11.81 in x 9.45 in x 2.36 in (30cm x 24cm x 6cm)
Weight 8.4lbs (3.81 kg)
In the box Xbox One X console
Xbox Wireless Controller
HDMI cable
Power cable
1-month Xbox Game Pass trial
14-day Xbox Live Gold trial

It doesn’t take a genius to understand that this is something we haven’t seen before. Everything about the Xbox One X screams it’s ready for the future. A future where 4K is the magic word. The Xbox One X aims for native 4K support for all its games, all while running at a steady 60fps. This is something its main competitor, the PlayStation 4 Pro, is only able to do certain games and not all. Aside from that, the Xbox One X and PS4 Pro look rather similar, although the Xbox One X comes at a higher price, immediately being the console’s main weak point.

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Out of the box

First things first, the Xbox One X comes packed in a traditional Xbox-style box. It’s a big black box with the new console shining on the front and an awesome 4k setup on the back. Nothing really special but it still is a box that will grab your attention in stores. Once opened, you’ll find the console safely tucked inside the box accompanied by a smaller cardboard box containing the controller, power cable and HDMI-cable. It’s a nice box but it never gave me the feeling I acquired a premium model. Compared to how Apple or even Nintendo box their units, this was a bit of a letdown. Of course, it’s not really important how the inside of the box is arranged. What’s really important is how the console actually works. Is this truly a premium model? Is this the best Xbox One on the market? It certainly is!

The true power 

While first booting up this new console, it became clear quickly, the performance of this version is the best out there. I’m currently playing on a Day One edition of Xbox One so the difference was huge. The Xbox One X runs incredibly smooth and doesn’t make a sound while doing so. Even if I played impressive 4K games like Assassin’s Creed: Origins for hours, the console kept going without making a sound, without ever having trouble to load the content of the game. The new and improved CPU really takes gaming on your Xbox console to a new level.

RWbGIN

To see all of this in action, you’ll need to own a 4K TV and some native 4K games like the new Forza or Assassin’s Creed as mentioned before. When you’re able to play one of those, you’ll understand the power of the console. Your games never looked this good and going back to one of the older Xbox One models simply hurts after you got a taste of the Xbox One X. Don’t own a 4K television? Well, the difference in graphics is notable on a regular Full-HD television as well. Of course, keep in mind that this difference isn’t as big as jumping to 4K so you’ll have to wonder if you really need this console without owning a 4K screen. In my opinion, without a 4K television, it’s not worth the price at this moment.

Strong game support

A console like this is meant to play games and that’s what this Xbox One X does best. Microsoft is rather big on backwards compatibility and that’s not different here. You can play all your Xbox One game and backwards compatible Xbox 360 games, that library is growing each week. This best news here is that all games receive a graphical boost, even when they are not Xbox One X enhanced. Speaking of enhanced games, those truly are what makes this console so special.

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Halo 5: Guardians is the best example of an Xbox One X enhanced game done right. During the development of this enormous game, the team had to cut back on some of its graphical features in order to keep it running on your Xbox One consoles. Thanks to the extra power of the Xbox One X, the game finally looks like it was meant to be and let’s say it’s simply amazing. Halo 5 isn’t the only enhanced game but the quality of those varies from title to title. Some games look amazing while others will barely have significant differences. The main problem with most enhanced games is that they don’t enhance the gameplay, only the graphics. That being said, Microsoft is developing a lot of native 4K games for the future so you’re safe to go.

What more?

So, that’s about the most important thing you should know about this Xbox One X. It’s an amazing piece of technology that works best for native 4K games on a 4K television but what’s more? Well, it might be good to know that this console comes with a Blu-Ray drive which enables you to watch 4K Blu-Ray movies on your consoles. Doesn’t sound that good, wait until you see it in action, it’s out of this world! That’s not all, the console also supports Dolby Atmos, bringing sound to an entirely new level.

scorpio-specs

All of these extras sound good and it’s good they are included in the price. What isn’t included however, is the Xbox One Kinect. It seems like Microsoft gave up on their camera for good since there isn’t even an input on your Xbox One X console. If you want to use the camera, you’ll need to get an adapter first. We get that Microsoft isn’t investing a lot in their Kinect but since this still is a premium model of a console, it would have been nice to be able to hook up the camera without extra adapters.

Conclusion:

The Xbox One X is an amazing piece of technology but it isn’t for everybody. This console is meant for the diehard Xbox gamers who also happen to own a 4K television. If you’re looking for a cheap way to enjoy Xbox game, the Xbox One S is perhaps the better choice. If you want the best possible experience and aren’t afraid to spend some extra money for it, this Xbox One X will make you extremely happen. It runs smoothly and the enhanced and native 4K games simply look amazing. The console is ready for the future, now let’s hope for more games to show off the true potential of this beast.

 

Got interested in games since I could read. Started with Nintendo but evolved into an all-round gamer. I love all kind of games; triple A games to Indie. If the vibe is right, I'll enjoy playing it.