So, Microsoft finally unleashed some more specific spec information about the Xbox Series X. The next generation console is going to have an AMD Zen 2-based processor and an RDNA 2-based GPU, which will theoretically be able to push out 12 teraflops of Floating Point 32 (FP32) performance. But, does that really tell us anything?
Microsoft did also state that it will be coming with a next-generation SSD – which we knew already, along with Variable Rate Shading and HDMI 2.1. Both of these latter specs weren’t confirmed, but Microsoft would be silly not to include compatibility for these technologies.
So the only real piece of news out of this spec reveal – at least as far as hardware is concerned is the GPU’s 12 Tflops of floating point performance. But that’s not as meaningful as you may think.
Let’s do some GPU digging
In its blog post, Microsoft claims that the AMD Navi GPU in the Xbox Series X will be capable of 12 teraflops of graphics performance, and that’s actually a pretty high number. For instance, the Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Founders Edition – the most powerful consumer graphics card on the market right now – is capable of 14.2 teraflops, while the RTX 2080 Super, the next step down, is capable of 11.1 teraflops.
So, if teraflops are the way we measure the best graphics cards, that would mean that the graphics chip in the Xbox Series X will end up somewhere between the two most powerful consumer graphics cards available for desktops right now. But there’s a catch.
When it comes to a modern graphics card, FP32 performance is only part of the story, especially in games. You see, if we were just talking about theoretical compute performance in scenarios like cryptocurrency mining or hardcore data workloads, pure theoretical compute performance is absolutely the most important aspect. But, it’s only a part of the…