A few days ago, the specs for Microsoft’s Project Scorpio were revealed for the first time by the fine folks at Digital Foundry. It showed that Microsoft has reached its target of having the most powerful console ever created, made possible with some cutting-edge engineering.
Project Scorpio was beefed up in the usual manner, housing an incredibly powerful SoC (System on a Chip) and a boatload of memory. However, there are a plethora of custom touches throughout the design of the console that make it stand out.
It will have a vapor chamber cooler to ensure the SoC stays nice and cool. There’s a hardware based solution for Direct X12 that will drastically improve the rendering efficiency. To top things off every one of these machines that comes off the assembly line will be balanced individually to maximize cooling.
This machine is an absolute beast on paper, and looks to be on par with an Nvidia GTX 1080 in terms of graphics performance. Right now, the GTX 1080 is one of the most powerful graphics cards that can be had in PC gaming. Only supplanted by the GTX 1080 Ti and the GTX Titan XP.
If all of this sounds expensive, it’s because it is. A group of analysts were asked about their thoughts on pricing and they delivered a range of answers, going from $500 to as high as $700! Judging by the high-end parts Microsoft put inside Project Scorpio these estimates seem accurate.
As for my prediction? I see a $699 price point, because it’s important to take the costs of not just the hardware but the research and development into consideration. Microsoft has stated that they are eyeing the mobile phone market as inspiration for their current track. A flagship phone costs about $700, so it makes sense that the “flagship console” be placed in that price bracket.
By comparison the PS4 Pro is a “measely” $399. Yes, Project Scorpio will be a lot more powerful under the hood, but will casual gamers be able to tell the difference? Richard Leadbetter has explained that the techniques employed by the PS4 Pro look good to his eye, and if this incredibly technical person is pushed trying to pick out the difference between native 4K and faux-4K, will casual gamers shell out extra cash for Project Scorpio?
To get the nitty gritty on Microsoft’s new console check out the video below.