The Xbox Series X will most certainly be a beast of a console. Phil Spencer, the head of Xbox, already said that Microsoft won’t cheap out when it comes to its horsepower. And recent leak hints at a monstrous GPU, noticeably more powerful than the one found in the PlayStation 5. A few days ago, Phil Spencer changed his Twitter profile picture. The new photo features the processor chip of the upcoming console. And since we don’t have any official info regarding the hardware, aside from the SSD bit, multiple people tried to estimate just how large the chip is. Let’s see their results.
Xbox Series X silicon could be larger than 400mm²
Both Wccftech and Digital Foundry tried to guess the size of the Xbox Series X chip. Further, a Reddit user going by the name of _rogame also did an excellent job of estimating the size of the chip. Before we delve into details, a few words of warning. First of all, both images that were used are taken at an angle, without any other object that could serve for size comparison. Next, even though the end results sound quite reasonable, take them with a grain of salt.
Wccftech enhanced the image and then corrected its perspective. They then used components found around the ship as the base. These components should be of standard size. In other words, they should be of the same size as on the Xbox One X APU chip. Comparing the two chips they got a result of 401mm². This is about 11 percent larger than the one found in the Xbox One X. Since the new APU is made in a 7nm production process (compared to the 16mn process used in the current generation silicon) an 11 percent larger chip means 50 percent performance advantage, maybe more. This is in line with the leak that suggests the Xbox Series X console will come with a GPU sporting 56 CUs (compute units) with the raw power of about 12 TFLOPS.
Next, we have Richard Leadbetter from Digital Foundry. His methodology didn’t only include the size of the surrounding components but also the space between them. The result is 407 mm², quite similar to what Wccftech came up with. Finally, the third estimate found on Reddit used a different image, supplied by David Prien, Hardware Director at Xbox. _rogame used a similar technique to Richard’s, although a bit more advanced. Their final result is 407mm². This is in line with the previous two analyses and suggests that the Xbox One X features an immense SoC, larger than every other console before it.
Next-gen consoles could provide a jump in power similar to the one we saw back in 2006
Whatever is the official size of the chip it seems the leaks could be true. The next-gen Xbox console may indeed feature a monstrous, 12TF GPU. Sure, a 56CU die is extremely expensive to make. Remember, the current top of the line AMD card, the RX 5700XT features 40CUs. We could see a couple of Compute Units turned off in order for Microsoft to receive better yields, but even with that, we are seeing an immensely powerful GPU. Combined with 6 core/16 thread Ryzen CPU and a super-fast SSD, the next-gen Xbox could provide a jump in processing power similar to what we saw back in 2006. That could mean the PC could again become a second-tier gaming platform, if only for a couple of years. Until the power of an average gaming PC ties to that of next-gen consoles. All we have to do now is wait for official reveals from Microsoft and Sony. They can’t come too soon.