For starters, the dev kit has two additional USB ports on the front along with five programmable buttons. There is also an OLED display mounted low on the console that can give developers critical information at a glance, like frames per second. There’s even an extra network card which can be used for debugging purposes while testing multiplayer games.
To make developers’ lives much easier, Microsoft is also bundling in a super high-speed data capable which can offload 100GB of data in roughly four minutes. "It takes a hell of a long time to transfer a full build to a kit," Gears of War 4 Technica Director Mike Rayner told Gamasutra. "Something that would have taken 3-45 minutes now takes a couple of minutes. So that's pretty huge for us."
- Eight custom AMD x86 CPU cores clocked at 2.3GHz with 4MB L2 cache
- 40 custom AMD Radeon “Polaris” GPU compute units operating at 1172MHz
- 12GB of GDDR5 memory over a 384-bit interface with maximum memory bandwidth of 326GB/sec
- 1TB HDD
However, the Project Scorpio dev kits have 44 compute units, taking peak compute performance from 6 TFLOPs to 6.6 TFLOPs. System memory has been doubled from 12GB GDDR5 to 24GB GDDR5 and the 1TB HDD has been joined by a 1TB SSD. The internal power supply is also beefier, swelling from 245W to 330W. But why the brawnier specs?
“At a high level, it's much easier for a game developer to come in higher and tune down, than come in lower and tune up. Or nail it. That just rarely happens,” said Kevin Gammill, Microsoft group program manager for the Xbox Core Platform. “Our overarching design principle was to make it easy for devs to hit our goals: 4K, 4K textures, rocksteady framerates, HDR, wide color gamut, and spatial audio.”
Project Scorpio will likely get its full unveil at this year’s E3 conference at Microsoft’s June 11th media briefing. At that time, we will mostly likely learn the console’s name, price and official release date.
(Top Image Courtesy: Gamasutra)