Xbox One X vs. PlayStation 4 Pro: Clash of the titans

Xbox One X vs. PS4 Pro: Which console is more powerful?

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Home theater support

top tech stories 03 24 2017 movie theater feat

The Xbox One X features a 4K UHD Blu-Ray optical drive, similar to the Xbox One S. Although the PlayStation 4 Pro is built specifically to support 4K gaming, it still only includes a standard Blu-Ray player, which is incapable of playing UHD Blu-Ray discs. The PS4 Pro can stream 4K video through apps such as Netflix and Hulu. Xbox One X also offers the superior home theater experience for audiophiles, thanks to bitstream audio passthrough and Dolby Atmos support.

Winner: Xbox One X

Virtual reality

5 mind blowing vr experiences oculus touch lifestyle

Providing stronger support for the PlayStation VR was one of the main selling points for the Pro. All versions of the PS4 work with VR, but the Pro is capable of sharper and more detailed rendering. Graphical upgrades don’t come automatically, however, so only games built specifically to take advantage of the Pro can do so.

Microsoft’s extant partnership with Oculus has led to rumors that Xbox One X may pair with the Rift down the line, but it doesn’t appear this is going to come to fruition during the current console generation. Microsoft has said in the past that virtual reality and “mixed reality” work best on PC.

As of now, only the PS4 Pro has a dedicated VR headset, and it’s getting better with age.

Winner: PS4 Pro

Upgraded game support

Both Xbox One X and the PlayStation 4 Pro ostensibly support all of the same titles as their standard counterparts. Developers will need to specifically build in features that take advantage of the more powerful consoles, so all titles are playable on Xbox One X and the Pro, but not all games will benefit. A current list of games known to be upgraded on Xbox One X, includes:

  • Ashen
  • Assassin’s Creed Odyssey
  • Code Vein
  • Crackdown 3
  • Dragon Ball FighterZ
  • The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
  • Fallout 4
  • Final Fantasy XV
  • Forza Horizon 4
  • Forza Motorsport 7
  • Gears of War 4
  • Halo Wars 2
  • Killer Instinct 
  • Metro: Exodus
  • Middle-Earth: Shadow of War
  • Minecraft
  • Ori and the Will of the Wisps
  • Resident Evil 7
  • Rocket League
  • Sea of Thieves
  • State of Decay 2
  • Super Lucky’s Tale
  • Titanfall 2
  • Ghost Recon: Wildlands
  • The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

You can check out the current list of titles supported by the PlayStation 4 Pro here. Being first out of the gate, you would think Sony has the clear edge here, but Microsoft has quickly narrowed the gap with a hefty lineup of supported third-party games, as well as added support for older Xbox One games.

Naturally, what matters is not just the games that have upgrades, but the number of total games. In recent years, Sony has trounced Microsoft in the exclusive games department. Microsoft is attempting to close the gap and recently purchased several major studios, including Playground Games and Ninja Theory, but Sony’s library of exclusives takes the cake as of now. Microsoft’s commitment to bringing both new and existing games to 4K, however, greatly narrows Sony’s software advantages. Right now, it’s too close to call.

Winner: Tie

Price

The Xbox One X costs around $500, about $100 more than the PS4 Pro. When you look at a detailed breakdown of the specs, it’s easy to see where the difference comes from. At the end of the day, both consoles are made for core gamers, rather than casual fans. Both price points solidify that line of thinking.

While we think that the extra $100 for the Xbox One X is reasonable given what’s in the box, we understand that $500 — given the $300 tag on the Xbox One S and PS4 — may be too much of a leap to play the same games in better fidelity. But if your choice is between the best of the best from either Microsoft or Sony, we think the Xbox One X, when all is said and done, will probably be the better value.

Still, 100 bucks more is 100 bucks more.

Winner: PS4 Pro

Conclusion

Sony beat Microsoft to the punch with the PS4 Pro, which brought 4K gaming to consoles at a reasonable price point, in addition to giving it that little bit of extra oomph to really make the PlayStation VR sing. Since launch, however, we’ve found that the console stumbled a bit, with inconsistent support for games.

With the Xbox One X, the PS4 Pro has impressive competition in the premium console market. Considering the clear hardware advantages, if you want a 4K console, the Xbox One X may very well be the way to go … unless you want VR support.

Overall winner: Xbox One X

Updated with information on virtual reality and Microsoft’s new studios

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