Sony PS4 and Microsoft Xbox One do battle with eight-core AMD technology
The first shots have been fired in the PS4 vs Xbox One console war now that both Sony and Microsoft have announced their next-generation systems.
While Sony confirmed the PlayStation 4 specs back in February, Microsoft is only now drawing its line in the sand by unveiling the Xbox One specs.
To its credit, though, Microsoft did show the video game press the official Xbox One console body.
Sony, in contrast, is waiting until E3 2013 to announce what the PS4 looks like.
For now, we can take a look at what’s inside the mystery system and the newly revealed Xbox One with confirmed specs.
Agreeing on an AMD CPU
As much as the two warring systems are different, the heart of the Xbox One and the PS4 remain very similar.
That’s because they’re both running x86 octa-core CPUs, and these eight-core processors are built by the same chipmaker, AMD.
The use of AMD in the Xbox One and PS4 is certainly a switch for both companies.
Previously, Microsoft had used an IBM PowerPC processor, while Sony partnered with Toshiba and IBM on its own complicated Cell processor.
While the Xbox One will run a heavily modified eight-core AMD processor, PS4 will utilize a x86-64 “Jaguar” CPU.
AMD’s Graphics Core Next
Both console makers are also relying on AMD to design their next graphics processors that will produce the next-generation visuals that differentiate console games from the emerging smartphone market.
The Xbox One marries its GPU to the CPU in a system-on-a-chip design, according to Wired, with Direct 11.1 support.
The single 40-nanometer SoC really contrasts with the two dedicated 90-nm chips found in the Xbox 360.
However, it only marginally contrasts with the PS4, which also combines its AMD CPU with the chip maker’s GPU.
In the case of PS4, the graphics processor is described as semi-custom AMD Radeon that runs at 1.8 TFLOPS.
Sony scores with 8GB DDR5 RAM
One of the most impressive things about the PS4 specs has been its use of 8GB GDDR5 RAM.
Microsoft unveiled the Xbox One to have 8GB RAM as well, but it’s GDDR3 memory variety.
That may mean more to game developers in the long run as opposed to gamers themselves right now, but it’s still an interesting choice for the Xbox One.
Which has the better controller?
The Xbox One controller vs the PS4 DualShock 4 controller is a debate that won’t be won anytime soon, mostly because gamers’ already have a locked-in preference.
The reason for this is that neither Sony nor Microsoft have radically changed their respective controllers over the years – they’re more like evolutions 2000 and 2001.
The DualShock 4 is a little bigger in the next-generation thanks to its unique front-and-center touchpad. Sony stuck with the dual analog sticks down in front, but at least have a central divot recess for easier gripping.
Microsoft also didn’t mess with success, only slightly modifying its controller in the jump to the Xbox One. It’s 40 design innovations are subtle, including the tweaked D-Pad on the bottom-left of the game pad.
Xbox One Kinect vs PS4 Eye
While Xbox One and PlayStation 4 will appeal to “core” gamers with mature launch titles, Microsoft and Sony are charging forward with motion-sensing devices.
The Xbox One Kinect was unveiled along with the system during the May 21 announcement, when Microsoft refered to to the advanced camera as “human control for a human experience.”
Expanding on that motto, the packed-in 1080p Kinect 2.0 will be able to process 2GB of data per second, analyzing more joints, the slight rotation of a wrist or shoulder and your heartbeat.
Less is known about the PlayStation 4 Eye, but Sony did state that its similarly shaped camera bar contains two two 1280×800px cameras.
The PS4 DualShock 4 controller will come into play with the PS4 Eye thanks to its multi-colored light bar. It will also be compatible with those PS4 Move motion controllers that have gone unused.