Consoles Gaming

PlayStation 5 vs Xbox 2020 specs: anything to get excited about?

PlayStation 5 vs Xbox 2020
New generation: the console wars are hotting up again

We finally have the barebones specs of both the next-generation consoles: the PlayStation 5 and the Xbox 2020 (that’s just a working title, it’s currently codenamed Scarlett).

Although there was speculation that at least one of the next-gen consoles might become a streaming device – where all the processing is done on a remote server and the player simply streams the action to a device in their home – that doesn’t appear to be the case for now. Both will have reasonably high-end hardware contained within the console, much like previous generations.

So what’s inside the next generation consoles?

PlayStation 5 vs Xbox 2020 specs

PlayStation 5SPECXbox 2020
Eight-core AMD Ryzen (7nm Zen 2 process)ProcessorAMD Ryzen (7nm Zen 2 process)
GDDR6 RAM (unspecificed amount)MemoryGDDR6 RAM (unspecified amount)
AMD Radeon NaviGraphicsAMD Radeon RDNA
8K resolution, 4K @ 120fps, ray tracingGraphic capabilities8K resolution, 4K @120fps, ray tracing

What’s there to get excited about?

As you can see from the specs table, there’s barely any difference between the PlayStation 5 and the Xbox 2020 specs. Both are likely to deliver near identical performance, which is good news for games developers targeting both of the new consoles.

Both are a big leap over current generation hardware, with support for 8K screens and ray tracing being the two standout features.

Equally important could be the use of SSDs for storage. Both are claiming this will massively reduce load times, resulting in fewer of those thinly disguised loading screens, where your player mysteriously has to enter an elevator for 30 seconds to get to the next level. Microsoft says it’s also using the SSD as virtual RAM, extending the memory available to the console. (My colleague David Artiss wrote more about the impact of SSD storage in the new PlayStation here.)

However, with consoles, it’s not the raw specs that give gamers an adrenaline rush, but the games themselves.

For the Xbox, that inevitably means a new Halo title, this time Halo Infinite. It was first announced last year, but Microsoft has revealed it will now launch next autumn, alongside the Xbox 2020. It will also appear on PC and Xbox One.

Sony is remaining tight-lipped on games for now, save to say that the console will be backwards compatible with PlayStation 4 games and that a number of the releases next autumn will be for both PS4 and PS5.

So which – if either – will likely be on your 2020 Christmas list? Let us know on comments below.

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About the author

Barry Collins

Barry has scribbled about tech for almost 20 years for The Sunday Times, PC Pro, WebUser, Which? and many others. He was once Deputy Editor of Mail Online and remains in therapy to this day. Email Barry at

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