When Microsoft announced the Xbox One S would be replacing the Xbox One at their 2016 E3 panel, excitement rushed through Microsoft fans everywhere. The promise of better resolution and faster speed intrigued many. Some people needed some convincing, though. Many had just bought the Xbox One no more than three years before. However, with the advancements made to video games, serious console players had to consider the upgrade.
Let's see if the One S lived up to the hype, and if it is the right machine for you.
Xbox One S
When the Xbox One S was released, a lot of people didn't understand what was different about it. It looked just like the Xbox One but seemed to be a smaller version. So, people had a lot of questions about the Xbox S's new features.
Besides being a smaller console, the Xbox One S has 4K capabilities. The HDMI output was upgraded from 1.4a to 2.0, meaning it supports 4K at a smooth 60Hz. The Kinect port has been removed, unsurprisingly since not many people were using that feature in the original Xbox One since Microsoft discontinued its production.
The Xbox One S has an IR blaster added to the front of the console. This addition allows you to control other systems, like your TV, using your Xbox instead of a remote. Storage has been upgraded in the Xbox S, reaching an astounding 2TB of storage. Added room is significant since the Xbox One games are downloads. There are also 1TB and 500GB options for storage.
How We Reviewed
As an owner of both the Xbox One and Xbox One S, I will include my personal opinion and review. However, to gain a better understanding of the communities thoughts, reviews from seller sites will also be taken into consideration. YouTube reviews from more advanced technical examiners are also crucial to the reviewing process.
How the Consoles Compare
The Xbox One S is not a wildly significant upgrade from the Xbox One. If you already own the original Xbox One console, you don't really need to upgrade. It also won't benefit you much if you don't have a TV capable of 4K resolution, missing out on most of the different features the Xbox S provides.
The Xbox One S has become significantly cheaper than the Xbox One at this point. It is less expensive because the Xbox One has been discontinued, with the production of the Xbox S. The Xbox S retails for roughly $250, where the Xbox One is still close to $350.
Reviews claim that the Xbox One S's Blu-Ray is better than the Xbox One's, making movies a better experience. It is also essential that the Blu-Ray capabilities can fulfill the real resolution of an HD Blu-Ray movie completely. In this case, however, moves are in 4K Blu-Ray resolution.
Though the Xbox One is technically capable of supporting 4K resolution games and videos, the output is only at 1.4a. This difference means that the 4k output is only capable of 4K at 30Hz; whereas the Xbox S 4k output is capable of 4K at 60Hz because of the 2.0a HDMI.
The Xbox One S does have a slight gaming performance upgrade. Due to the additional power, games receive minor performance stability over the Xbox One.
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Games That Work Better on Xbox One S
Though the Xbox One S claims not to have extreme performance differences when it comes to gaming, it runs some games much better than the Xbox One. With the popularity of Battle Royal games rising, the Xbox One struggles to render everything at once. Because of the Xbox One S's faster power and rendering, loading into these games able to see everything is possible.
A prime personal example is the game PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds, or PUBG. The game is a Battle Royal game that runs very poorly on the Xbox One. With a significantly delayed start and buildings and trees not even loading in for players, many users struggle to play this game. However, the Xbox One S is capable of loading in players faster and rendering their surroundings instantaneously.
This difference isn't the same for everyone, as some Xbox S users still have trouble loading in some buildings and specific maps. Some people prefer the extra detail and better resolution they gain from the Xbox One S. However, it is unclear if the Xbox S makes a significant difference to the overall performance of the game. With many users claiming that there isn't much difference at all. Some users seem to think the Xbox One S makes all the difference in the world to their gaming performance.
Overall, the Xbox One S isn't a necessary upgrade from the Xbox One in ways of gaming. However, the Xbox S makes a difference to streaming movies with the improved video quality. Without a 4K compatible TV, though, the Xbox S isn't necessarily an essential upgrade for those just playing games. For those who already own an Xbox One, the update to an Xbox One S is likely unnecessary. However, if buying a new Xbox console, the Xbox S is an excellent price point for those who would like better resolution and slightly enhanced gameplay.
As an upgrade from the Xbox One, the Xbox One S isn't a huge step forward. For those lacking a 4K TV or monitor, you won't see much difference from the Xbox S at all. The Xbox S is only capable of enhancing the visual of a game or movie on a screen that can output the difference.
Though some games are faster and run smoother on the Xbox One S than the Xbox One, it isn't worth buying a new system outright.