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Xbox One S supports 4K game upscaling, Microsoft confirms

Microsoft's new Xbox One S will upscale every game to 4K, hinting that AMD's new console-centric resolution scaling tech is ready

By Derek Strickland from Jul 2, 2016 @ 5:01 CDT

Microsoft has officially confirmed the new slim $299 Xbox One S will upscale all games from 1080p to 4K, adding even more benefits to the upcoming system.


The confirmation came from Xbox exec Mike Ybarra, who Tweeted that all existing Xbox One games can be upscaled to 4K with the new Xbox One S. The upscaling capability is made possible by the Xbox One S' newly designed AMD SoC (System-on-Chip) that provides a GPU and CPU boost for the console as well as power efficiency and the 40% smaller size. It's also highly likely the Xbox One S makes use of AMD's brand new console-centric upscaling technology--the same tech that will allow Sony's new PlayStation 4 Neo to upscale to 4K.

We still have no clue what the AMD SoC is packing, and there's been no specification leaks or anything so far, but the $299 Xbox One S will directly combat Sony's new upgraded PlayStation 4K console in the 4K gaming department--at least when it comes to upscaling. Given the $299 price tag, the Xbox One S surely won't go head-to-head against the PS4 Neo's boosted specs, but it's quite interesting to see Microsoft offering 4K upscaling in its mid-tier system.

Since the Xbox One S comes out in August, and since it uses AMD's new SoC, we can then assume AMD's new dynamic upscaling technology is currently ready. This new upscaling tech is the key to enable 4K gaming on upcoming consoles like the PS4 Neo and Xbox One S, as native 4K gaming requires rather powerful dedicated desktop-grade video cards.

We just reported that AMD has acquired graphics upscaling studio HiAlgo, who's patented BOOST technology "boosts FPS, decreases lag and makes gameplay smoother."

AMD's own verision of HiAlgo's upscaling tech could be the secret sauce behind the new consoles' 4K upscaling capabilities, providing a new level of dynamic resolution upscaling for the PlayStation 4 Neo, Xbox One S, and the "monster" Project Scorpio console. Bear in mind nothing's been confirmed so far, but it adds up quite clearly.

Xbox head Phil Spencer recently said the Xbox One S would play games "identically the same" as original Xbox consoles, despite Gears of War 4 dev Rod Fergusson claiming the new Xbox allowed smoother in-game frame rates.

The Xbox One S will release in August with 4K UHD video playback, 4K upscaled gaming, and HDR support with three different price tags: $299 for the base 500GB version, $349 for the 1TB SKU, and $399 for the 2TB model.


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