The Xbox series is probably the best value for money in next generation games. The cheaper console costs $299.99, plays the same games as the more expensive X series and meets the needs of many gamers. It is also dramatically more affordable.
Last week we were able to play several games optimized for the Xbox Series S and Series X. We tested the Series S with an older Vizio M Series and the new Vizio OLED to see how the graphics of the Series S look on different screens and to test the new features.
The Xbox Series S costs $299.99 and will be released on November 10th. You can find it in stock at Amazon, Best Buy, Walmart, Target, GameStop and Microsoft.
Is the Xbox Series S worth it?
There are important differences between these two consoles. The less expensive Xbox Serie S is fast, delivers beautiful game graphics, supports Quick Resume so you can get back into games faster, and offers faster loading times in games.
This cheaper Xbox comes with some limitations. It doesn’t support 4K games at 60 FPS, it offers half the memory and there is no floppy drive. The developers may not always offer the same experience as the X series, but the same games will be available on both consoles.
While there is no native 4K game support, the Series S can upscale games to 4K, and it streams movies and entertainment in 4K.
Testing games optimized for the Xbox Serie S, such as Forza Horizon 4 and Gears of War 5, resulted in smooth and beautiful gaming experiences on the Serie S. Playing Xbox One games via backwards compatibility was a breeze and the games looked great.
We miss the physical drive because we bought many of our previous games on disk, but with a Game Pass Ultimate subscription we can play a number of our favorites without having to buy them all over again.
The smaller internal memory size might be a problem for some players. After quickly installing some of our favorite games, we ran out of disk space. With 379GB available, players will need to switch between installed games or consider buying external storage.
We enjoy the gaming experience that the Series S offers and the overall value compared to buying the Xbox One X or Xbox One S.
Xbox Series S Gaming & Performance
When you connect the Xbox Series S to a compatible TV, you will be prompted to activate the highest resolution and frame rate. If you connect a TV with an HDMI 2.1 port, the console will also prompt you to set the low-latency, variable frame rate auto mode. This makes it easy to get the best possible visual experience right out of the box, but you can fine-tune the settings.
Players who choose the cheaper new Xbox will not experience higher quality graphics. Note that we said graphics, not speed. The Xbox Series S is fast, and everything feels fluid.
Playing Forza Horizon 4 and Gears of War 5 with optimizations delivered super-fast load times, great looking graphics, and the S series handled the fast-paced games with ease.
The Xbox Series S improvements are in the details that fill the game. These include better lighting, better shadows and more details in the environment. Taken together, these add to the immersion, although sometimes you have to look closely to see the difference. The difference is similar to noticing how many details in the world around you are missing when you put on new glasses for the first time.
The most significant difference between the S Series and the X Series when playing games is that the resolution of the Xbox Series S is 1440P at 60 frames per second, compared to 4K at 60 frames per second on the Xbox Series X. Some gamers will notice this difference, especially when connected to a high-end screen.
Gears of War 5 can run at higher refresh rates in multiplayer mode, up to 120 frames per second on the Xbox Series S. This requires a TV or game monitor that supports 120 Hz refresh rates.
The Xbox Series S supports raytracing, which essentially provides better handling of lighting in games for a more realistic environment. This feature will make a more significant difference as more improved Series S games come to market.
We haven’t had a chance to test the Xbox Series X yet, but we have compared the Series S to the Xbox One X and found that the graphics of the Xbox Series S have the Xb