After close to a year of speculation, Microsoft has finally unveiled the final specifications for Project Scorpio, its mid-generational upgrade for the Xbox One and boy is it impressive. This isn't a PS4 Pro smart GPU management and overclock. Project Scorpio is a big overhaul of the platform and it increases graphical power by huge leaps, making native 4K gaming on Scorpio a distinct possibility.
For starters, the CPU has been cranked up by close to 600Mhz to 2.3GHz, which is a big leap in its own right and should deliver around 30 percent additional central performance. The ESRAM/DDR3 combo memory solution of the Xbox One is no more and instead replaced by 12GB of GDDR5, eight of which can be used by developers - five gigabytes more than before. The added bandwidth of the GDD5 will mean bigger and fancier textures and better 4K support.
The real meat of the upgrade is in the graphics processor though. It's still built into the same die as the CPU on an AMD APU, but it packs in 40 compute units, where the Xbox One has just 12. It's also been clocked to 1172MHz, which is more than 250MHz more than the Xbox One S.
That gives Project Scorpio over six teraflops of computing power, which is more than an AMD RX 480. It equates to nearly five times the performance of the original Xbox One, which is why Digital Foundry demos saw a Forza tech demo running at 4K resolution at a steady 60 frames per second with plenty of headroom. It can even run at higher detail levels than the Xbox One.
The potential for better performance across a number of games and better-looking games in the future is very exciting and could lead to the Xbox One being the preferred gaming console of aesthetics driven gaming in years to come.