During its E3 2017 press conference, Microsoft unveiled Xbox One X, a high-end version of Xbox One with upgraded hardware and a further-streamlined form factor. First teased at E3 2016 under the codename “Project Scorpio”, Xbox One X was released on November 7, 2017, with a 1 TB model priced at US$499, and a limited, pre-order exclusive “Project Scorpio Edition”, with a dark gradient finish, vertical stand brace and green “Project Scorpio” inscriptions on the console and bundled controller.
Xbox One X features upgraded hardware that is designed primarily to render games at 4K resolution, and provide performance improvements for existing games; they can be displayed at full resolution on 4K displays, or supersampled for lower resolutions displays. It uses a system-on-chip (SoC) known as Scorpio Engine, which incorporates a 2.3 GHz octa-core CPU, and a Radeon GPU with 40 Compute Units clocked at 1172 MHz, generating 6 teraflops of graphical computing performance. It also includes 12 GB of GDDR5 RAM, 9 GB of which is allocated to games. Scorpio Engine’s CPU utilizes a custom platform designed to maintain compatibility with the Jaguar CPU of the original Xbox One, but with a 31% increase in performance; the custom platform is unrelated to AMD’s current Ryzen architecture. The console uses a vapor chamber method of cooling for the SoC, and motherboards are tailored to the exact voltage needs of each individual Scorpio SoC to optimize their output and energy usage. The console also supports AMD’s FreeSync technology on compatible displays.
Xbox One X is compatible with all existing Xbox One software and accessories. To assist in optimizing the new hardware to run existing games at 4K resolution, Microsoft developers used internal debugging software to collect GPU traces from major titles that did not run at full 1080p resolution on the original Xbox One. Halo 5: Guardians, which uses a scaling system that dynamically lowers the game’s resolution when needed to maintain a consistent frame rate, was able to run at its native resolution with no scaling on Xbox One X hardware. Phil Spencer also touted that Xbox One X’s hardware could also be used to support virtual reality, due to its power, price point, and convenience. At the 2017 Game Developers Conference, Microsoft announced plans to support Windows Mixed Reality VR headsets on Xbox One in 2018, but the company later stated that it was initially focusing on PC platforms first, and that it wanted to focus on wireless VR solutions for consoles.