New Xbox One Project Scorpio specs have been leaked

New Xbox One Project Scorpio specs have been leaked

New Xbox One Project Scorpio specs have been leaked

New Xbox One Project Scorpio specs have been leaked

 
 
In a recently leaked whitepaper on the Xbox One Project Scorpio, several new details have been revealed about the upcoming console, including some major design changes that make this console even more PC-like than the Original Xbox One.  
 
Firstly it confirms that Project Scorpio will lack ESRAM like the Xbox One, instead relying on faster memory to provide Project Scorpio with memory performance that can even best ESRAM. Developers will still need to optimise games to use ESRAM alongside the Xbox One's pool of DDR3 memory for the best performance, as Xbox will not be releasing any games that are Scorpio exclusive. 
 

 

ESRAM remains essential to achieving high performance on both Xbox One and Xbox One S. However, Project Scorpio and PC are not provided with ESRAM. Because developers are not allowed to ship a Project Scorpio-only SKU, optimising for ESRAM remains critical to performance on Microsoft platforms.

 

Xbox has many reasons to move away from ESRAM, as while it can offer a lot of memory performance at a low latency, it comes with some major drawbacks. Firstly the Xbox One has a mere 32MB of ESRAM, which is a tiny pool of memory by modern standards. This requires developers to work hard to minimise their ESRAM use and only use it for tasks where its high performance and low latency are crucial to game performance, creating a lot of work for developers.   

The second problem is due to how ESRAM is designed, as it is an on-die pool of storage which significantly increases the size of the Xbox One's SOC. Below are images of the PS4 and Xbox One SOCs, which are both similar in size but offer very different levels of performance.   

One the Xbox One a lot of die space is used for ESRAM, whereas the PS4 uses this die space for additional GPU cores, which is why the PS4 is more powerful than the Xbox One when it comes to GPU compute. The PS4 gets around its memory bandwidth issues by using GDDR5 RAM instead of DDR3, consuming more power but providing a lot more bandwidth (though not as much as ESRAM).  

Not using ESRAM on Project Scorpio will greatly reduce the die size of Project Scorpio's SOC, making it cheaper to produce and much more likely to have good yields when they are manufactured. 

 

New Xbox One Project Scorpio specs have been leaked

  

The Xbox One's ESRAM will need to be replaced by something that is equally fast in the Xbox Project Scorpio, which means that Microsoft will need to utilise something that is a lot faster than the Xbox One's DDR3 memory in order to build a more powerful console. In fact, Project Scorpio's new memory architecture will need to be faster than ESRAM to maintain Xbox One backwards compatibility.  

The most likely candidates here for Project Scorpio is HBM2 or GDDR5X, offering a lot more pure performance than DDR3 and GDDR5, though at this time HBM memory has never been used outside of enthusiast-grade PC gaming GPUs, making GDDR5X more likely. 

Alternatively, Microsoft could stick with proven technology and use GDDR5 memory, though they would need to use a larger memory controller and more GDDR5 memory chips than the original Xbox One. This could be an upgrade to 12GB of GDDR5 memory over the previous console's 8GB of DDR3 memory. 

It has also been confirmed that Project Scorpio will have a GPU that is 4.5x more powerful than the Xbox One, which should make the console suitable for running a lot of games at 4K, especially when combined with delta colour compression and other GPU architectural improvements from AMD.

Just like the PS4 Pro it seems like Microsoft has been able to take features from AMD's GPU roadmap to create their own custom GPU for Project Scorpio, which means that the new console will likely have some features from AMD's upcoming Vega GPUs.

On the CPU side, not much is known right now, though it has been stated that their CPU will have 4x as much L2 cache as the Xbox One, though sadly we do not know if the new console will be using a new CPU architecture in its SOC design. Some say that Project Scorpio will have Zen CPU cores, though at this time we cannot know for sure. 

If Project Scorpio were to release with 8 Zen CPU cores it would surely have an astronomical price tag, as that would be on the same performance level as AMD's upcoming flagship consumer CPUs, which are not exactly suitable to console gaming. It is likely that Project Scorpio will be using an updated version of AMD's Jaguar CPU cores, with some key tweaks that come requested by Microsoft. 

It is likely that Project Scorpio will be using an updated version of AMD's Jaguar CPU cores, with some key tweaks that come requested by Microsoft.  

 

     There are other clues as to Scorpio’s final hardware set-up within the whitepaper. The six teraflop GPU is once again confirmed, with the GPU’s compute power rated at around 4.5 times the capabilities of Xbox One. Four times more L2 cache is also confirmed – a new detail that does not tell us that much, except that that the GPU architecture in Scorpio is at least as modern as AMD’s Polaris line.

Based on our discussions with Mark Cerny on PS4 Pro, we can reasonably assume that Microsoft can customise its GPU core just as Sony did, with access to Radeon roadmap features up to – and perhaps beyond – AMD’s upcoming Vega architecture. Microsoft gives away little here, other than to confirm that delta colour compression (DCC) is a part of the Scorpio GPU feature set, just as it is in PS4 Pro.

 

 

Microsoft say that Project Scorpio will release in late 2017 in all regions, likely having an official reveal event at E3 2017.  

  

You can join the discussion on Xbox One's Project Scorpio specifications on the OC3D Forums

 

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Most Recent Comments

24-01-2017, 12:37:14

AngryGoldfish
Interesting stuff. And a good read, even with the usual repetitions. :P

12GB of VRAM is a lot to tap into. I wonder whether they will go this route or 8GB of GDDR5X. I skipped the Xbox One and PS4. It offered very little reason to upgrade over the PS3, despite some excellent games. This new Scorpio project looks great, though. I'd rather play Uncharted 4 and the ilk on that (PS4 Pro, obviously, for Uncharted).Quote

24-01-2017, 12:58:34

g0ggles1994
Quote:
Originally Posted by AngryGoldfish View Post
I skipped the Xbox One and PS4. It offered very little reason to upgrade over the PS3
That's exactly what I thought when the consoles got unveiled, this Project Scorpio and PS4 Pro are what the original Xbox One and PS4 should have been the whole time.Quote

24-01-2017, 13:15:36

AngryGoldfish
Quote:
Originally Posted by g0ggles1994 View Post
That's exactly what I thought when the consoles got unveiled, this Project Scorpio and PS4 Pro are what the original Xbox One and PS4 should have been the whole time.
With the performance of Polaris 10 (or potentially more)? I doubt that would have been possible at the time. The console would have cost £600 or more. Back in 2013 when the consoles were released, we didn't even have the GTX 970 yet and the RX 480 is more powerful than a 970. The problem, I think, was in part due to the huge lifespan of the 360 and PS3.Quote

24-01-2017, 13:50:59

WYP
Quote:
Originally Posted by AngryGoldfish View Post
12GB of VRAM is a lot to tap into. I wonder whether they will go this route or 8GB of GDDR5X. I skipped the Xbox One and PS4. It offered very little reason to upgrade over the PS3, despite some excellent games. This new Scorpio project looks great, though. I'd rather play Uncharted 4 and the ilk on that (PS4 Pro, obviously, for Uncharted).
To play games at 4K with higher resolution texture more VRAM is needed. Even the PS4 Pro has extra memory, though this comes in the form of DDR3.

On the PS4 Pro a lot of OS stuff is moved to the new DDR3, allowing an extra gigabyte of GDDR5 to be used for games.

It will be interesting to see what Microsoft have done, as the PS4 Pro has already been used very well for some games.

That being said I think it is a waste to go 4K crazy, as nobody owns 4K screens right now. That will change in time, though to me it seems like a push too far ATM.Quote

24-01-2017, 13:54:15

AngryGoldfish
Are they aiming for 4K/30FPS?

A friend has a good 4K TV and it does look nice. It's definitely the future of sitting room entertainment, but it's not part of my personal agenda.Quote
Reply
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