Thanks to the lovely folks at Xbox New Zealand, I’ve spent the past few weeks having a play with the “world’s most powerful console”, the Xbox One X, and boy what a step up it is from my 2015 Xbox One console.
From the outset, the Xbox One X looks like a standard upgrade, with no noticeable differences to the Xbox One or Xbox One S, other than the fact that it’s relatively slimmer and has air vents at the back of the console instead of on top. Take a look under the hood, though, and what you’ll find is a beast of a machine with power which extends past the Xbox One. (Unfortunately, I’ve never owned or used the Xbox One S, so I can’t compare the Xbox One X’s performance to the Xbox One S).
With the resurgence of PC gaming, the Xbox One X aims to provide console gamers with the same (if not better) level of improved performance and a true 4K experience, providing users with stunning visuals. With 6 teraflops of processing power, the Xbox One X is by far the fastest device I own, with load times that outperform even my year old Omen by HP ‘gaming’ laptop. No longer will I have to sit and wait patiently for my games to load, which is perfect for those days when I arrive home late after work and need to jump on my console to stream.
Having a console which turns on and loads up a game within moments makes for efficient timing and takes away the stress of having to set up numerous things for my stream to get started. This doesn’t just apply to my general method of streaming, which is via my Razer Ripsaw capture card and OBS, but also directly via the Mixer app, which comes pre-installed in the Xbox One X.
I’m not especially technical so I’m not able to really delve into the nitty-gritty details of the processing power of the Xbox One X, but what I can tell you is that considering the amount of power being utilised and the demands on the console, it remains rather cool and quiet, something that I’m not quite used to as my Xbox One used to get rather heated and make a ridiculously loud noise after an hour or two of gaming and streaming. This was the case regardless of the game I played, whether it be the indie platformer, Super Lucky’s Tale or the graphically heavy Assassin’s Creed: Origins.
Graphically, games do look crisp and clear on the Xbox One X, though I’ve been using the console on my standard 32” LED TV, which made the visuals only marginally better. I can’t wait to upgrade to a 4K TV and be treated to breathtaking visuals, not only when I’m gaming but also when watching films. How cool would it be to be able to enjoy high quality cinematics at home on your own couch? Unlike the PlayStation 4 Pro, which is only able to play 4K games, the Xbox One X acts as a complete entertainment hub, able to play not only 4K games but also movies and TV at 4K as well.
The only downside of the Xbox One X is its storage capacity. Coming in at 1TB compared to the Xbox One S, which is available in a 2TB variety, the Xbox One X isn’t able to hold a whole heap of games, especially due to the fact that several of the Xbox One X enhanced games come with sizeable updates to cater for the high end graphical improvements. Therefore, I recommend getting an external hard drive to help with the lack of storage space on the console itself. Yes, this may mean an additional cost on top of the console, but definitely worth it.
Technical specs aside, the process of moving from an Xbox One to the Xbox One X is amazingly simple, especially if you do have an external hard drive. Simply copy all your content into the external hard drive, plug it into the Xbox One X, transfer the content and you’re all set. Again, being a rather impatient person at times, this simple and quick process made life so much easier for me.
The Xbox One X is certainly a huge step up from the Xbox One and is a complete overhaul of the current generation of consoles. Being a one stop shop for entertainment and being able to sit among the top dogs of PC gaming, the Xbox One X is a console that will provide endless hours of fun for many, many years. The console is worth the upgrade if you’re wanting to future proof yourself with a console that will last for the next several years. However, if I’m being honest, the $749NZD price point is a bit too pricey for many, especially those who, like me, don’t own a 4K TV and therefore will not be able to truly enjoy the Xbox One X to its fullest. Without a 4K TV, it would probably be as good to simply upgrade to an Xbox One S instead, especially the Gears of War 4 or Minecraft limited edition, both of which look absolutely brilliant.
Many thanks to Xbox New Zealand for always looking after me and for providing me with the Xbox One X console to review.