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Xbox One X: Specs, release date, price and latest pre-order details

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Everything you need to know about the Xbox One X

At Microsoft’s E3 briefing, the company revealed a load of new information about the Artist Formerly Known as Project Scorpio – now the Xbox One X. Here's everything we now know about the 4K UHD mini-monster of a console, includings its specs, release price, and how to pre-order it today.

The year's biggest gaming event, E3 2017, certainly didn't disappoint, with this year's gathering treating us not only to a slew of awesome new games, but fresh hardware as well.

Yes, as expected, Microsoft fully spilled the beans on the Xbox One X, and it looks like it has been worth the wait.

For starters, the Xbox One X will be fully backwards-compatible with Xbox One games – and offer improved performance on these titles to boot.

On the technical side, there was some new information about the specs, in addition to what was revealed a couple of months back. The processor is cooled using a liquid vapour chamber, a technique that’s becoming more common on more compact devices. There’s also a brand-new power-management system for the most efficient delivery of electricity seen on an Xbox console.

And finally, Microsoft revealed the Xbox One X's price and release date. Read on for full details of everything we now know about the Xbox One X.

Related: PS4 Pro vs Xbox One X

Xbox One X Specs: How powerful is the Xbox One X?

Here's a quick breakdown of all the key Xbox One X specs:

  • CPU: Eight-core 2.3GHz processor
  • GPU: 40 compute units at 1172MHz
  • RAM: 12GB GDDR5 (shared between system and GPU)
  • Bandwidth: 326GB/s
  • Storage: 1TB hard disk
  • Disc: UHD Blu-ray player
  • Video: 4K output, HDR 10 support
  • Audio: DTS 5.1, Dolby Digital 5.1 and Atmos, PCM 2.0, 5.1, 7.1
  • Wireless: Bluetooth, dual-band Wi-Fi, Wi-Fi Direct, IR blaster
  • Connectors: 2x HDMI (2.0b out, 1.4b in), 3x USB 3.0 ports, IR out, S/PDIF, Ethernet

First, let’s look at the headline Xbox One X specs before moving onto how this will affect gaming resolution and performance.

The One X uses an eight-core processor, likely from AMD although not officially stated, running at 2.3GHz. Seasoned PC gamers might not think this sounds like a lot and, indeed, it isn’t. But keep in mind console processors are packed into an incredibly tight space, and more GHz means more heat. This is still a substantial boost over the Xbox One, whose eight cores ran at 1.75GHz.

In the graphics department, the One X will get a GPU with 40 compute units running at a seriously impressive 1172MHz. Even more startling is the massive 12GB of GDDR5 memory, which is a handy combination of more and faster memory. This 12GB will be shared by the whole system, so some will be reserved for the CPU with the rest going to the GPU.

You’ll get a 1TB hard disk inside your Xbox One X, along with a UHD Blu-ray player. And that’s all we know.

Scroll down to bite your teeth in the Xbox One X's performance, but first, let's quickly address the all-important matter of its price and release date.

Related: Nintendo Switch review

Xbox One X Price and Release Date: Can I pre-order the Xbox One X?

At E3, Microsoft revealed that the Xbox One X will be released on November 7 2017 – just in time to make it this year's Christmas must-buy.

The company also divulged that it'll be relatively affordable for such a powerful new-gen console, costing £449 in the UK and $499 in the States.

That's huge news for those who bought an Xbox or PS4 back in 2013 and have been waiting to upgrade to the next 'major leap' system. That starting price also puts it close enough to the PS4 Pro, which will give potential buyers of Sony's latest console some serious pause for thought.

The only thing we weren't told is when the Xbox One X will go up for pre-order. We'd expect that to happen about two to three months prior to its release date, based on experience, so watch this space towards the end of summer as we'll be updating it with all the latest information as it becomes available.

Related: Best Xbox One deals

Xbox Scorpio Performance: How does it stack up against other consoles?

The biggest way performance has been boosted over the current-gen Xbox One S is the GPU (graphics processing unit). Up from 12 compute units at 914MHz, we now have 40 cores running at 1172MHz. Cores and clock speeds don’t mean everything, so you’re not getting ten times the performance here.

But what you are getting is impressive 4.6x performance multiplier. This opens up a huge number of possibilities for developers, with ultra-high-resolution textures and 4K resolutions now a core part of the game development process.

For PC gamers who want a rough comparison to a GPU currently in the wild, the 6TFLOPs (trillion floating point operations per second) figure bandied around when the Scorpio was announced is roughly akin to Nvidia’s GTX 1070, a card that can handle 1440p and UHD gaming at a push. But there’s much more to graphics power than TFLOPs, and consoles are always much more efficient at making use of hardware than PCs.

Digital Foundry was shown a single stress test running on One X hardware, so we don’t have any information on how real games will actually run, but Microsoft has revealed a lot of details on how it will support different resolutions and graphics settings.

Related: Xbox One X vs Xbox One S

Still, the stress test, which is based on Forza Motorsport, ran at Ultra HD resolution at 60fps, which is an enticing prospect when you consider the One X, apparently, was only using 70% of its graphical might to do this. Microsoft then turned up the heat to higher graphics settings, and DF says the console ‘didn’t break a sweat’. What this means in reality we don’t quite know, but it all sounds very promising.

This isn’t just a console for 4K TV owners, though. Games developed for Xbox One X will have customisable graphics settings for all types of displays, so even if you only have a 1080p TV you’ll still be able to ask your One X to render everything in UHD and then downscale it to 1080p for the sharpest gaming experience you’ve ever seen. Or, for better performance, you could just amp up the graphics settings but keep the resolution at 1080p.

In other words, this is a PC in console’s clothing.

The One X will run all current Xbox One games and should improve performance, whether or not they have been updated for the new console. It runs on the same software as Xbox One, so you won’t have to buy all your games again.

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What does it mean for console generations?

The One X represents a shift in Microsoft’s Xbox strategy. Like Windows 10 being the ‘last version of Windows’, being updated constantly as new demands arise, expect Xbox consoles from now on to gradually flow into one another, with several ‘generations’ active at once before the oldest models have support for them dropped.

In an interview, Xbox head of games marketing Aaron Greenberg said that the Xbox One X marks the beginning of the end of traditional console life-cycles for Microsoft.

"We think the future is without console generations," Greenberg said. "We think that the ability to build a library, a community, to be able to iterate with the hardware – we're making a pretty big bet on that with Project Scorpio.

"We're basically saying, 'This isn't a new generation; everything you have continues forward and it works.' We think of this as a family of devices."

Greenberg goes on to say that, if the One X is a success then it will "change the way we think about the future of console gaming."

Related: Xbox One X games round-up

Xbox One X is VR-capable, but...

The Xbox One X is capable of running games in virtual reality, but Xbox boss Phil Spencer isn't yet sold on the technology.

Speaking to Stevivor, Spencer says that while he's a fan, he doesn't feel the tech or games are quite there yet, and that will affect its availability on One X.

"I love the technology behind VR. I have an HTC Vive; I have an Oculus Rift. I’ve used the PlayStation [VR] device a lot in demos and stuff," he said.

"I think VR will find its spot in gaming; I would make that bet,” he continued. “We designed Scorpio as a VR-capable console. Whether that happens this year, next year or the year after… like I said, I still think the creative community has to get its arms around what are these new tools, and this new feeling – this new immersion.

“What experiences do you put in people’s hands to have a long-term engagement? Most of these things I’m playing now feel like demos and experiments, which I actually think it’s absolutely the right thing to have happened. That’s not a criticism at all. But I think it will take time.”

Related: PSVR review

Spencer believes that in order for VR to become a mainstream success, it needs to be wireless.

"In the long run, we need untethered solutions. You need to have the compute capability to not be wired to the display that’s on my head. That means I either have some kind of high-bandwidth wireless HDMI or I have compute here.

"With the HoloLens we’ve chosen to put compute in the HMD itself, so it’s right there. The other thing I think most people who look along in this technology is a mixed reality world, where I have a head-mounted display that can go from a fully enclosed, opaque world that is VR to a fully transparent one where I’m seeing augmentation in my world. I should have one device that spans both."

One major VR title we're expecting to see on Project One X is Fallout 4, which is currently in development at Bethesda. Due to launch in 2017 for HTC Vive. Pete Hines recently gave Hip Hop Gamer an update on the project, and it sounds pretty damn exciting.

"Fallout 4 VR is the most incredible thing you've ever seen in your life. You can't even imagine what it's like, playing in VR and how realistic it looks and everywhere you turn your head. It is going to blow your mind. It is the craziest thing you've ever seen," game director Todd Howard told Hines.

No mention of this game was made during Microsoft's 2017 E3 event though, so we're not sure exactly what's going on.

Will you be waiting to buy an Xbox One X? Let us know in the comments below.

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