Xbox Series X: The GPU Must Be More Powerful and Complex Than the 2019 AMD Navi, Says Digital Foundry

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As for the hardware features of the Xbox Series X we are still largely groping in the dark, but it is possible to start doing some possible accounts, as done by Digital Foundry in particular on the GPU of the new Microsoft console, which obviously must be more powerful and articulated of the standard AMD Navi released in 2019.

In a new analysis article on Xbox Series X, still largely based on assumptions, Digital Foundry analyzes first of all the dimensions of the new console, concluding that they are designed to ensure the cooling of a system extremely powerful.

With the limitations of the 7nm production process and the need to keep the size in console hardware, according to the journalist Richard Leadbetter, the Xbox Series X is likely to push particularly on the clock speed, which involves a greater absorption of power and also the need for superior cooling. This also has rather unprecedented consequences: the first is a sort of overclocking policy for consoles compared to what is seen on similar hardware (AMD Zen and Navi) for PC, the second is the possibility that the new console may consume one large amount of energy going to touch 300w.

There is also another question that clearly emerges: if it is true, as reported by Microsoft and it seems to be confirmed by some internal sources that the console points to 12 Teraflops, then the GPU inside the Xbox Series X will have to be more powerful and different from the AMD Navi seen in 2019. Even if the processor were to clock at 2.0GHz, it would require about 48 compute units to reach the 12 required teraflops or an increase of 20% compared to what is possible with a Radeon 5700 XT which is currently the most powerful AMD Navi GPU on the market. To these should be added at least four CUs deactivated to ensure redundancy and increase performance according to the standard rules of chip production.

So the chip behind the Xbox Series X should be larger, have greater complexity and with a higher clock speed than what has been seen so far with AMD Navi, as well as having the hardware acceleration elements dedicated to ray tracing, all features new compared to the Ships exited during 2019.