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New details on Xbox Series X – Full Specs, Controller Info, Demo Videos

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Microsoft has announced new details on the Xbox Series X, including providing the full specs, new info on the controller, and demo videos of some of the new features in a series of blog posts on the Xbox Wire. You can read the full details HERE.

Tech Specs

Following the AMD presentation, Technical Fellow Andrew Goossen took the reins to dive deep into the technological bells and whistles that will be powering Xbox Series X. We’ve listed the full system specs below, with handy links out to our glossary for definitions on what many of these terms mean:

CPU8x Cores @ 3.8 GHz (3.66 GHz w/ SMT) Custom Zen 2 CPU
GPU12 TFLOPS, 52 CUs @ 1.825 GHz Custom RDNA 2 GPU
Die Size360.45 mm2
Process7nm Enhanced
Memory16 GB GDDR6 w/ 320mb bus
Memory Bandwidth10GB @ 560 GB/s, 6GB @ 336 GB/s
Internal Storage1 TB Custom NVME SSD
I/O Throughput2.4 GB/s (Raw), 4.8 GB/s (Compressed, with custom hardware decompression block)
Expandable Storage1 TB Expansion Card (matches internal storage exactly)
External StorageUSB 3.2 External HDD Support
Optical Drive4K UHD Blu-Ray Drive
Performance Target4K @ 60 FPS, Up to 120 FPS

Xbox Series X Overview

DirectML – Xbox Series X supports Machine Learning for games with DirectML, a component of DirectX. DirectML leverages unprecedented hardware performance in a console, benefiting from over 24 TFLOPS of 16-bit float performance and over 97 TOPS (trillion operations per second) of 4-bit integer performance on Xbox Series X. Machine Learning can improve a wide range of areas, such as making NPCs much smarter, providing vastly more lifelike animation, and greatly improving visual quality.

DirectStorage – DirectStorage is an all new I/O system designed specifically for gaming to unleash the full performance of the SSD and hardware decompression. It is one of the components that comprise the Xbox Velocity Architecture. Modern games perform asset streaming in the background to continuously load the next parts of the world while you play, and DirectStorage can reduce the CPU overhead for these I/O operations from multiple cores to taking just a small fraction of a single core; thereby freeing considerable CPU power for the game to spend on areas like better physics or more NPCs in a scene. This newest member of the DirectX family is being introduced with Xbox Series X and we plan to bring it to Windows as well.

Dynamic Latency Input (DLI) –Another innovation we are making to reduce latency for Xbox Series X is Dynamic Latency Input (DLI). With DLI, developers can more accurately synchronize the player’s input with the game’s simulation and render loop, even further reducing input latency while playing the game.

GPU Work Creation – Xbox Series X adds hardware, firmware and shader compiler support for GPU work creation that provides powerful capabilities for the GPU to efficiently handle new workloads without any CPU assistance. This provides more flexibility and performance for developers to deliver their graphics visions.

Hardware Accelerated DirectX Raytracing (DXR) – From improved lighting, shadows and reflections as well as more realistic acoustics and spatial audio, raytracing enables developers to create more physically accurate worlds. For the very first time in a game console, Xbox Series X includes support for high performance, hardware accelerated raytracing. Xbox Series X uses a custom-designed GPU leveraging the latest innovation from our partners at AMD and built in collaboration with the same team who developed DirectX Raytracing. Developers will be able to deliver incredibly immersive visual and audio experiences using the same techniques on PC and beyond.

Hardware Decompression – Hardware decompression is a dedicated hardware component introduced with Xbox Series X to allow games to consume as little space as possible on the SSD while eliminating all CPU overhead typically associated with run-time decompression. It reduces the software overhead of decompression when operating at full SSD performance from more than three CPU cores to zero – thereby freeing considerable CPU power for the game to spend on areas like better gameplay and improved framerates. Hardware decompression is one of the components of the Xbox Velocity Architecture.

Intelligent Delivery – Microsoft’s developer facing technology to reduce the size of game installs. Intelligent Delivery empowers developers to only install the pieces of the game you need, thereby minimizing the amount of content that needs to be installed or downloaded to the SSD.

Latency – Latency refers to responsiveness of the console and controller, including the time it takes for your input to be registered by your console and then displayed on your screen. Reducing latency results in a more connected and immersive experience. Xbox Series X will be our most responsive console ever featuring ultra-low latency with advanced technology that minimizes latency at every stage of the gaming pipeline so that you instantly see the impact of your actions on the screen.

Mesh Shading – Mesh shading will enable developers to dramatically improve the performance and image quality when rendering a substantial number of complex objects in a scene. As an example, mesh shaders could enable the player to experience asteroid belts and fields of flowers in more pristine detail without seeing a loss in performance.

Native Resolution – Native Resolution is an Xbox Series X backwards compatibility enhancement for select Xbox One games that allows them to render at native 4K even if they weren’t originally designed for 4K.

Optimized for Xbox Series X – Games built using the Xbox Series X development kit and designed to take advantage of the unique capabilities of the Xbox Series X. These include new titles built natively using the Xbox Series X development environment as well as previously released titles that have been rebuilt specifically for Xbox Series X. They will showcase unparalleled load-times, visuals, responsiveness and framerates up to 120 fps.

Parallel Cooling Architecture – Parallel Cooling Architecture is the name of the innovative system design used to cool Xbox Series X. Building a console that delivers four times the processing power of Xbox One X in the most quiet and efficient way – something that is critically important with all the extra power of our next generation console – led to its unique vertical design.

Project Acoustics – Incubated over a decade by Microsoft Research, Project Acoustics accurately models sound propagation physics in mixed reality and games, employed by many AAA experiences today. It is unique in simulating wave effects like diffraction in complex scene geometries without straining CPU, enabling a much more immersive and lifelike auditory experience. Plug-in support for both the Unity and Unreal game engines empower the sound designer with expressive controls to mold reality. Developers will be able to easily leverage Project Acoustics with Xbox Series X through the addition of a new custom audio hardware block.

Quick Resume – A new feature powered by the technical capabilities and the innovative Xbox Velocity Architecture in Xbox Series X, Quick Resume enables players to seamlessly switch between multiple titles and resume instantly from where you last left off.

RDNA 2 – The custom designed processor in the Xbox Series X leverages RDNA 2, the latest next generation graphics architecture from our partners at AMD. RDNA 2 provides a significant advancement in performance and efficiency as well as next generation graphics features such as hardware accelerated raytracing and variable rate shading.

Sampler Feedback Streaming (SFS) – A component of the Xbox Velocity Architecture, SFS is a feature of the Xbox Series X hardware that allows games to load into memory, with fine granularity, only the portions of textures that the GPU needs for a scene, as it needs it. This enables far better memory utilization for textures, which is important given that every 4K texture consumes 8MB of memory. Because it avoids the wastage of loading into memory the portions of textures that are never needed, it is an effective 2x or 3x (or higher) multiplier on both amount of physical memory and SSD performance.

SDR to HDR Conversion – With Xbox Series X, existing Xbox games, including recent titles within the [email protected] program, that don’t already have native HDR support will get the next-gen treatment. Xbox Series X is able to leverage an innovative HDR reconstruction technique to enhance existing SDR games with no work from developers and no impact to available CPU, GPU or memory resources.

Smart Delivery – Smart Delivery is a new technology introduced with Xbox Series X that will ensure you always play the best version of the games you own for your console, across generations. All Xbox Game Studios titles that are optimized for Xbox Series X, including “Halo Infinite” will support Smart Delivery, providing the best available version for whichever console you choose to play on. For example, this means if you purchase the Xbox One version of a supported title, we will identify and deliver the best version of it to your Xbox One, as usual. If you decide to jump into the next generation with Xbox Series X, we will automatically provide the Xbox Series X optimized version of the game at no additional cost if and when it becomes available. Smart Delivery is available to all Xbox developers.

Spatial Audio – Spatial Audio delivers deeply immersive audio which enables the player to more accurately pinpoint objects in a 3D play space. With full support for Dolby Atmos, DTS:X and Windows Sonic, Xbox Series X has custom audio hardware to offload audio processing from the CPU, dramatically improving the accessibility, quality and performance of these immersive experiences.

TFLOPS (Teraflops) – TFLOPS (or “teraflops”) stands for Trillion Floating-point Operations Per Second and is a measure of raw mathematical performance of a GPU. While Xbox Series X delivers 12 TFLOPS of 32-bit float performance, two times that of the Xbox One X, the architectural efficiency improvements brought by AMD’s RDNA 2 architecture plus our next generation features such as Variable Rate Shading (VRS) and hardware accelerated DirectX Raytracing means that Xbox Series X will deliver well over twice the effective graphics performance of Xbox One X for games.

Variable Rate Shading (VRS) – Variable Rate Shading increases GPU efficiency by concentrating shader work where it’s most needed and reducing shader work in areas where it won’t be noticeable. With minimal developer effort, VRS significantly improves GPU performance resulting in more stable and higher resolutions and frame rates with no perceptible loss in visual quality.

Variable Refresh Rate (VRR) – Variable Refresh Rate is a new addition to HDMI 2.1 which enables capable displays to refreshed as fast as the console can render images, thereby eliminating tearing, increasing smoothness, and reducing latency. We have been working with the industry’s leading TV manufacturers to ensure the display ecosystem is ready for the features we are bringing with Xbox Series X.

Xbox Series X Storage Expansion Card –  Built in partnership with Seagate, this 1 TB custom storage solution expands storage capacity of Xbox Series X with the full speed and performance of the Xbox Velocity Architecture Previous generation Xbox titles can still be played directly from external USB 3.2 hard drives. However, to receive all the benefits of the Xbox Velocity Architecture and optimal performance, Xbox Series X, optimized games should be played from the internal SSD or Xbox Series X Storage Expansion Card.

Xbox Velocity Architecture – The Xbox Velocity Architecture is the new architecture we’ve created for the Xbox Series X to unlock new capabilities never-before seen in console development. It consists of four components: our custom NVMe SSD, a dedicated hardware decompression block, the all new DirectStorage API, and Sampler Feedback Streaming (SFS). This combination of custom hardware and deep software integration allows developers to radically improve asset streaming and effectively multiply available memory. It will enable richer and more dynamic living worlds unlike anything ever seen before. It also effectively eliminates loading times, and makes fast travel systems just that: fast.

Xbox Wireless Protocol – One of the first points to reduce latency is within the communication between your controller and your console. By bringing our existing high-bandwidth, low-latency wireless protocol on the Xbox One family of devices to Xbox Series X, we’re able to not only reduce latency in your gaming experience but also ensure all of your existing Xbox One gaming accessories will be compatible with Xbox Series X.  

Zen 2 – The custom designed processor in the Xbox Series X leverages AMD’s latest Zen 2 CPU architecture. Zen 2 provides a significant advancement in CPU performance delivering more than 4 times the performance of an Xbox One X.

120 FPS – With support for up to 120 frames per second (FPS), Xbox Series X allows developers to exceed the more traditional 60 FPS in favor of heightened realism and more precise controls for fast-paced action.

Xbox Series X Demo Videos

SOURCE: Xbox Wire

Consoles

How to play Hell Let Loose console Open Beta on PlayStation 5

Hell Let Loose, the highly-realistic WW2 FPS, will soon be coming to consoles. Here’s how to access the upcoming PlayStation 5 Open Beta.

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Hell Let Loose console beta

Hell Let Loose, the realistic 50v50 World War 2 shooter, is soon coming to the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X/S so here’s how to play the upcoming Open Beta.

Hell Let Loose instantly became popular amongst PC FPS fans for its hardcore gameplay, massive-scale 50v50 action, extremely realistic depiction of key World War II battles, and a strong emphasis on teamwork.

The Second World War action will soon be coming to the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X|S and developers Black Matter have shared info on its upcoming console beta, so here’s everything you need to know.

How to play Hell Let Loose Open Beta on PlayStation: Time & date

US Soldier in Hell Let Loose

With Hell Let Loose’s popularity on PC, console players have been desperately awaiting its arrival on Xbox and PlayStation. We’re one step closer to that being a reality with devs Black Matter announcing the Open Beta for PlayStation 5.

Following August’s closed Beta, it has now been confirmed that Hell Let Loose’s Open Beta will be from September 16 to September 20, 2021. It will begin at 3 AM PT / 6 AM ET / 11 AM BST.

As this is an Open Beta, you don’t need to register or get a code to play the game. Simply:

  1. Search for Hell Let Loose on the PlayStation Store (once the Open Beta goes live)
  2. Download Hell Let Loose’s Open Beta
  3. Launch the game from your downloads or library

When is the Xbox beta?

Hell Let Loose Beta

As the first console beta is only on PlayStation 5, Xbox fans are keen to learn when they’ll get early access to Hell Let Loose.

Xbox players will have to wait a while longer as they’re “taking it one beta at a time,” but confirmed that “As more things get locked in, we’ll share them with the community” on their Twitter account.

Keep an eye on Charlie INTEL for any updates on the Hell Let Loose Xbox beta.

Does Hell Let Loose have crossplay and cross-progression?

Hell Let Loose players fighting in Carentan

Hell Let Loose’s crossplay will be between Xbox Series and PlayStation 5 consoles only.

As for cross-progression, Black Matter confirmed Hell Let Loose won’t feature it as “the plan is to keep console and PC as entirely separate ecosystems.”

So, Xbox and PlayStation players will be able to queue into the same servers and squad up, but PC players will be playing their own separate version of the game.

Hell Let Loose isn’t the only WW2 FPS game coming to consoles this year, as Call of Duty: Vanguard’s Open Beta also goes live on September 16 ahead of its November release.

Image Credit: Black Matter

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Consoles

When does GTA V release on PS5 & Xbox Series X?

GTA 5 will be releasing on the PS5 and Xbox Series X marking three generations of GTA V – here’s what we know about its release date so far.

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michael looking at GTA v PS5 Xbox Series X

We’ve known for months that GTA V is getting a PS5 and Xbox Series X remaster, and Rockstar Games has finally confirmed when exactly the next-gen editions will arrive.

Rockstar is continuing to deliver constant weekly updates to GTA Online, and there is plenty of anticipation among players about all the planned GTA V content that will be arriving soon.

A next-gen upgrade of the popular game will be arriving on the PS5 and Xbox Series X|S, and we now know what kind of changes to expect from it, including the official release date.

GTA V on PS5 & Xbox Series X|S release date

michael running in gta v

Rockstar Games finally gave us an update on Grand Theft Auto V’s remaster through a new trailer at the PlayStation Showcase 2021. We also got a closer look at what new features will be in the enhanced edition.

While it was initially thought the game would arrive on the PlayStation 5 on November 11, 2021, the trailer confirms that the actual release date is sometime during March 2022. We expect the same date applies to Xbox as well.

They have confirmed that the game will release with “new features and more,” which lines up with their previous statement that GTA V remastered won’t be a “simple port.”

vinewood sign in gta v

While GTA V has been out for eight years, GTA Online remains insanely popular and continues to receive continuous support. The trailer confirms that the online multiplayer will also be releasing as a separate game in March 2022.

As previously announced by Rockstar, although GTA Online standalone will be available for both consoles, PlayStation 5 players will receive GTA Online standalone for free “during the first three months.”

Will my GTA Online data carry over?

GTA Online Diamond Casino

Lots of players have invested lots of real cash to fund their GTA Online antics such as buying fast cars and properties, but will they get to continue this on next-gen?

Early leaks have suggested that players will be able to carry over their data and progress from GTA 5 on the PS4 and Xbox One. But given that there’s an opportunity for Rockstar to make more money, we’ll see if this remains the case.

Grand Theft Auto V Remastered trailer

The new trailer at PlayStation Showcase 2021 highlighted many of the new improvements that will be in the next-gen edition of GTA V. The changes included improved graphics and enhanced gameplay.

Rockstar Games also seem to have updated the character switching feature so that the process is seamless. There will also be many other additions that have yet to be revealed.

For more GTA, stay tuned to Charlie INTEL, and check out how to make $600k in an hour with GTA Online Contract mission.

Image Credit: Rockstar Games

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Call of Duty: Warzone

How to play Warzone at 120 FPS on PS5

PlayStation 5 owners can bump their Warzone settings up to 120 FPS by changing some system settings on their console.

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Warzone Season 4 character firing weapon

Warzone players on PlayStation 5 can now boost their FPS, with the game’s Season 4 update adding 120Hz support for anyone with the right monitor and equipment.

Warzone Season 5 has introduced various changes to the Warzone, including a new Look for Party feature, which improves the game’s quality of life, and will be getting even more new additions like The Numbers Event and a Judge Dredd skin in Warzone Season 5 Reloaded.

As well as this, Warzone also has the ability to perform 120Hz on PS5, a nice upgrade for those lucky enough to have the console.

This was introduced in the Season 4 patch and means that players who use the PS5 console can now play at 120 Frames-per-Second as long as your monitor is capable.

Satellites in Warzone Season 4

How to enable 120Hz Warzone on PS5

If you’ve already set up your PS5 to allow for 120Hz output in other games, then the good news is Warzone should automatically play at 120 FPS once you install the update. If this isn’t the case for your console, you’ll have to head into your PS5 system settings and make a few simple changes.

  1. Go to your PS5 system settings screen, and select the ‘Screen and Video’ Section.
  2. Scroll to the bottom of this page and select ‘Video Output.’
  3. Set ‘Enable 120Hz Output’ to automatic.
  4. Go back to the main system settings menu and select ‘Saved Data and Game/App Settings.’
  5. Change ‘Game Presets’ to Performance Mode.

By turning these settings on, your PS5 will automatically play games at 120 FPS if it is supported. One thing to note is that some players have reported that games will occasionally still run at 60 FPS if HDR is turned on, so you may need to disable it to ensure top performance.

If you don’t have HDMI 2.1 on your monitor, you will need to change your resolution to get 120 FPS. Make sure your monitor is set to 1080p resolution, as it will not work at 2160p on monitors without HDMI 2.1.

PS5 Screen and Video settings page

Of course, this is only possible if your monitor supports 120 Hz output, so make sure you check the refresh rate on your screen before attempting this. Otherwise, you will be wasting your time.

If you play Warzone on PC and want to get the best possible FPS on your machine, we have everything you need to boost your gameplay with our Warzone best PC settings guide.

Image Credit: Activision / Sony

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