The segment of video game consoles is of very lively in recent weeks. A rumor that PlayStation Neo have joined him who also appeared a few days ago on the Xbox Scorpio.
In both cases one of the most touted features is the support 4K resolutions, but with prices likely will be between $ 500 and $ 600, can we really expect to play in 4K acceptably?
Today the answer is unequivocal: no
We should not delude ourselves in this section. The most powerful graphics cards history consumption just hit the market: is the new NVIDIA GeForce 1080 GTX and its price is $ 599 or rather will be, because the only available now are the Founders Edition, more expensive.
It is true that the 1070 GTX also offer truly spectacular yields and are much more affordable -399 dollars but is that even if the new consoles managed to integrate these graphics into their designs – something improbable, the cost of consoles would clearly greater than that $ 600 that we proposed as a theoretical limit given the past history in this sector.
In this cost must be added other equally key (and expensive) components such as the processor, memory or storage system, apart from the own cost of manufacturing and distribution. The accounts simply do not go. Or as they say in some forums: yes, it will be possible to play 4K, but only if you want to enjoy Pong or Tetris in that resolution.
But is that even if you leave, even imagining that the GPUs of the new generation of consoles (and hypothetical) manage to keep up with the new GTX 1080 or GTX 1070, is not guaranteed that most games can be played on 4K. We are also talking about NVIDIA graphics when everything points to who will be starring in graphics for consoles will be AMD, whose future architecture Polaris 14 nm promises great returns, but not miracles.
And so you know, Polaris shall not exceed Pascal. In fact AMD will first focus on the mid – range – gaming quality or PG with graphics that will reach 5.5 TFLOPs: NVIDIA 1080 GTX reach 8.9 TLOPS (6.5 TFLOPS in the case of GTX 1070).
These charts course offer scope for some games themselves can enjoy that resolution with some fluency, but things change with really demanding games and a high level of detail: play 4K maximum level of detail is something that only more powerful PCs can achieve. And usually these teams have two (or more) graphic – art working together.
The latest rumors speak of the Xbox Scorpio put it as clearly highlighted potential. However, they also appear later. If the data are true, the Xbox Scorpio come with a GPU can offer 6 TFLOPS of performance and would be 1.5 times faster than the PlayStation Neo which therefore would have a power of around 4 TFLOPS.
The jump compared to the current generation of consoles is important, of course: the Xbox One has an AMD GPU with a power of 1.31 TFLOPS, while the PS4 GPU also has an AMD but arriving at 1, 84 TFLOPS of raw performance. And despite this improved performance, thereby 4K does not seem likely to be available for a number of games for this platform. Certainly some will enjoy these modes, but not with the highest level of detail or refresh rate would wish because that also counts.
The damned 60 frames per second
It is one of the fashionable debates in the segment of video games. The promise of manufacturers consoles this generation was that these models would be able to offer games in 1080p at 60 frames per second. That was not entirely true, and only some games offer that way supported on these machines.
The problem, as pointed our fellow Joystiq, is that those 60 frames per second are not necessary, or even desirable – in all games. There are those who actually benefit from the advantages that introduce a higher rate of frames per second, and there is not.
Future consoles could provide support 4K, but 4k at 60 frames per second? That’s much more difficult to secure and poses an even greater demand for machines that have enough to offer to achieve that resolution at refresh rates of 30 Hz, which is the one that is currently supported in the HDMI 1.4a standard.
Although the HDMI 2.0 standard supports 4K resolutions 50/60 Hz will be difficult for the proposed hardware for PlayStation and Xbox Neo Scorpio can offer such experiences unless the games are not particularly demanding.
As explained in Inquisitr, may actually support 4K is made through a process of upscaling: the games tenderizer to 1080p internally, but the final output would be at 4K resolution. It is for example what commented developers ‘Trine 2’, a game running at 1080p and 60 frames per second, but indicated that its creators did not see problem technician sooprtar 4K 30 frames per second.
Here certain scenes could benefit more than others, and there comes into play the dynamic scaling resolution, which would vary between 1080p or 4K resolutions as needed so that the GPU could deal with those situations. It is a technique already used in games such as ‘The Witcher 3’ in which according to the scene changes the resolution of 900p to 1080p, and ‘Halo 5’ does the same to keep those 60 frames per second that the developers wanted to offer all times.
You have 4K TV or monitor at home?
By the way, another factor to consider: How many people have a monitor or television at home with support 4K although prices are dropping significantly in this segment, the market share is limited. A report by Strategy Analytics shows that in the US one in eight users will have a UHD TV before the end of the year.
Even more interesting, the survey reflects that publishes those responsible for Steam every month and that allows to know what types of equipment used for Steam users client from which they buy, download and play video games on this platform.
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If we look at the data for April 2016 will see the UHD (4K) resolutions do not even appear in the survey, and are part of the heading ‘Other’ which also has a minimum market share: 1.73% of all indicated. Most people (71%) playing at 1,920 x 1080 or 1366 x 768.
Clearly the adoption of monitors and televisions 4K grow significantly in the coming months, but today it seems clear that these consoles do not have to focus on that aspect because, simply, the most mortals even can use it. And the gaming world is a world of volume: You cannot succeed if you focus only on a 1% market share.
What if the real revolution is in virtual reality?
Such techniques can effectively those game modes 4K are available in certain games and in certain situations. You may support not pure and concerned a dynamic medium in which you play with resolutions and refresh rates, and can in many cases simply makes up scaling of video games that would actually rendered in 1080, albeit with a high level of detail.
But what can also be is that we are focusing the debate where it should not exist. That does not seem feasible 4K support machines $ 500 in the next generation. In fact it is logical to think that that capacity will be more suitable for the next generation consoles … if there is an additional generation in the future.
What does seem clear is that one of the clear arguments buying the PlayStation Neo will be the virtual reality: the VR PS are announced and confirmed for October, not unless we have a slightly more powerful console is likely the experience that offers current PS4 is worse than that proposed by the Oculus Rift or HTC Vive.
That, of course, is normal comparing a console that today we can find on the market for just 300 dollars with machines that have to have a GTX 970, equivalent or superior to those Rift or Live offer adequate experience No gives hard four pesetas, and it is clear that what is possible to achieve a PS4 in this area is not comparable to what can be achieved with next – generation PCs.
So both in the case of the PlayStation Neo as in future Xbox Scorpio, it seems that virtual reality could be the winning argument. The thing is somewhat confusing in the Xbox Scorpio, especially because Microsoft does not seem to have moved tab in the field of virtual reality and has focused all its efforts on augmented reality through a Hololens to still have a long way go.
Yet given the realities of which we speak, it seems much more likely that future next generation focus in this section to do so in this vaunted support 4K. But ofcourse, we may find other surprises. And if these next – generation consoles do not cost $ 500, but the double (or triple) and become exclusive models? Everything is possible. What seems difficult is that even with these prices achieve those games offer 4K with which some wants to associate.