PS5 vs Xbox Series X: price will be the deciding factor in a battle of power, games and services

Comparisons are hateful, but they are also inevitable . Are more when you talk about the next generation of consoles and product as expected as PS5 Sony and the Xbox Series X from Microsoft .

Both companies have already offered many details of these products, but there are also great unknowns that probably define the future of these consoles. The hardware is very similar, but the approaches of Microsoft and Sony to win the battle are (or aim to be) totally different. In fact, the price will probably be decided by the short-term winner . In the medium and long term, be careful, the result can be very different.

Round 1: the hardware

Both Microsoft and Sony have revealed many of the hardware specifications of these consoles. It was already intuited that both consoles would share many ideas and technical decisions , and that has been confirmed with the appearance of all that data.

PROCESSOR AMD Zen 2 (3.5 GHz octo-core) AMD Zen 2 (3.8 GHz octo-core)
GPU AMD RDNA 2 (10.25 TFLOPS, 36 CUs at 2.23 GHz) AMD RDNA 2 (12 TFLOPS, 52 CUs at 1,825 GHz)
STORAGE 825 GB SSD (M.2 NVMe PCIe 4.0), 5.5 GB / s (raw data)
Optional high-performance SSD
drives External USB drives
1TB SSD (M.2 NVMe PCIe 4.0), 2.4GB / s (raw data)
Optional 1TB SSD cards
External USB drives
OPTICAL UNIT Blu-ray 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray 4K Ultra HD
4K / 8K SUPPORT Yes Yes Yes Yes
PORTS Information not available. 3 x USB-A 3.0
HDMI output 2.1
Gigabit Ethernet
SSD card slot
Power input
DIMENSIONS Information not available. 301 x 151 x 151 mm
WEIGHT Information not available. 4.45 kg
PRICE Information not available. Information not available.

Both the PS5 and Xbox Series X are based on an AMD processor with Zen 2 architecture and an AMD graphics card with RDNA 2 microarchitecture. Both will also have a high-speed SSD as a fundamental pillar of the user experience and that Mark Cerny, chief architect of the development of the PS5, indicated that it was the element that “changed the game” for the PS5, as it will also foreseeably for the Xbox Series X.

The differences in power exist a priori, and the raw numbers seem to reveal that the Xbox Series X will be more powerful than the PS5 . The CPU clock frequency is higher for the Microsoft console cores, and in the GPU this console has more computing units (52 vs 36) although the working frequency of those of the PS5 is higher (2, 23 GHz vs. 1,825 GHz).

At Sony they warned that there are many factors that can influence the final performance and that comparing TFLOPS with TFLOPS or CUs with CUs was misleading . It is likely to be so, and it will be interesting to see how far one and another console can go in the future, something that we will be able to verify with support and implementation of features such as ray tracing, game support at 4K at 60 FPS (or 120 FPS, as Microsoft promised) or even the 8K support that both companies mentioned long ago.

There are also many analogies in betting on SSD drives. In Sony they promise yields that almost double that of the Microsoft unit , but the latter offers a little more storage by default and has already prepared the optional SSD cards to expand this section. Sony stated that these extensions will exist for the PS5, although we will have to wait to see how they offer a solution to that potential need of users.