The New Microsoft Xbox One S – Sleeker – Slimmer – Sharper

Written by Delta Computers on July 22, 2016

Xbox One S – Rent then Buy with Delta

So we are now at the point in the Xbox One’s life cycle that they have reinvented the wheel so to speak. With every iteration of the console, every “next generation”, there is always improvements to be made on the first released version. Think along the lines of the PS3 -> PS3 Slim, or even hardware changes like Hard Drive upgrades etc. 
 
Microsoft has promised that the Xbox One S  will address the issues that fans have complained about since release, and this means a lot of changes! Some changes were seriously called for by the console gaming community, and other just seem to be a bit of a face lift to give it a bit more style and a more modern look. The Xbox One S certainly achieves this as it now delivers what people hoped would have come out on release with the original Xbox One . Microsoft has introduced features we needed, and also ones that come as a bit of a welcome surprise. This article is going to detail these changes one by one and show you why the new Xbox One S is the console you want!

When this Console hits shelves for the people who Pre-Ordered, you can be sure that Delta will have them!

We do Rent then Buys with a bundle on these with a couple of games and controllers! Check it out here: http://www.deltacomputers.net.au/rent-hire-gaming/

Console Design.

The Xbox One S now comes in white, with a matching controller which has also been redesigned (but we’ll get to that later). The textured surface to me is quite aesthetically pleasing. While we are yet to get hands on with the Console the crisp gloss white is very stylish. It is sure to fit in with more home’s interior themes than the old black (x)box. The circular “venting” around the console also adds a nice touch to the exterior’s theme. Whether this adds to the noise or the temperature control of the console also remains to be seen. Personally I like it.

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The Xbox One S has also been touted as being 40% smaller than its Older Brother, and while on paper it’s like “oh yeah, 40% smaller…. great I guess…. did I need it to be smaller?” The answer is yes, yes you did. It is now a much more elegant console that will fit in many more entertainment units without being an obtrusive eye-sore. When you see the theoretical sketch that Microsoft put out comparing the size of the two you can really get a sense of scale about just how much smaller it is.  Given how big the original Xbox One is – at 333mm x 276mm x 78mm, it dominates the comparatively slight PS4 – it’s an important change that could entice potential buyers.

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A final note on the design. I like white. It’s fresh. Next Gen Consoles in 2016 need to look different. The Xbox One S does….Or does it!? It also comes standard with a Vertical Console Stand which makes the device look very slim and neat. Or maybe it actually kind of looks like a Nintendo Wii when vertical….

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Controller Design.

The Controller is also redesigned. Usually when manufacturers re-do the controllers people do not take this lightly. People get used to how the controller feels in hand and often dislike the immediate change. However, this controller re-design really encapsulates what Gamers wanted… not much more! The Xbox Controller is one of the most well respected devices with even the most hardcore PC Elite Master Race fanatics succumbing to the fact that it is preferable for certain games. This is going to divide opinion (yes, call me a console scrub) but the design of the controller for Xbox is pretty much flawless since the days of the Xbox 360. That’s why not much has changed.

There are 3 main adaptations of the controller.

  1. The Textured Grip, which for me is a welcome feature. When you’re 3 hours into that gaming sesh and there’s a critical moment you don’t want your hands slipping resulting in a couple of choice words and a rage quit. 
  2. The Controller has improved Wireless and now comes with Bluetooth Functionality. Connect it to your PC Wirelessly!
  3. INCREASED RANGE! Controllers wont disconnect while you absent mindedly go to the fridge to get that Red Bull with the controller. Hell, if you can see the TV from your toilet you could even consider gaming while you poop!

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Console Hardware:

The Console now comes with a 2TB hard Drive, which in this day and age should be the new standard. If we’re supposed to be using this like Microsoft wants as an all in one Home Entertainment Station, then we need a larger hard drive to support this. 2TB of Storage is just about enough for the games and movie downloads for the foreseeable future. Its a pretty worthwhile upgrade. The “Xbone S” also has an Internal Power Supply which is nice.

The headline feature for the Xbox One S is 4K. They literally couldn’t have made this a bigger selling point if they tried. They have plastered it across every single bit of advertising I’ve seen. But in truth…. it’s a pretty big deal. 

4K ULTRA HD, 4K BLU-RAY AND HIGH DYNAMIC RANGE SUPPORT

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Not only does the Xbox One S support 4K video playback from streaming services like Netflix ( I stream 4K Netflix at home and it is awesome, so definitely check it out when you can. PS How good is House of Cards! I know i’m playing catch-up but wow). It also has a 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray built-in. In Australia it makes it a pretty good competitor for similarly priced dedicated Ultra HD players currently on the market. Why not get the Xbox One S! In fact, if you have a 4K TV, I’d argue it’s a must-have to enjoy the full potential of your TV.

While the original Xbox One is technically capable of supporting 4K gaming and video, it comes with an HDMI 1.4a port, which means it can only output 4K at 30Hz, which is useless for games and problematic for some video. The Xbox One adds support for HDMI 2.0a, so it now supports proper 4K 60Hz output. The HDMI 2.0a with its capacity for a deeper colour space, also allows for High Dynamic Range (HDR). 

The HDR is an important feature to note, with Microsoft claiming it will greatly enhance the colour depth of Games like Gears of War 4 and Forza Horizon 3. These games and many more newly designed Titles will without doubt take advantage of the new Console’s hardware and make games look better than ever before. 

The Coalition (the studio behind Gears of War 4) head Rod Fergusson revealed that his team had taken advantage of additional raw GPU and CPU power for the forthcoming game, which runs in HDR. This was apparently just to improve frame rates and not to improve the graphics in any other way.

The console does have a bit more Raw power as Fergussson mentioned but it seems for now the extra processing power is simply to assist games that want to run in HDR. Other than that, the Xbox One S isn’t more powerful than a standard Xbox One, unlike the rumoured PlayStation Neo or Xbox Scorpio coming next year. So, while it adds support for 4K video and Blu-ray, games won’t get any other graphical boost outside of the HDR capabilities. It is said though that the GPU power is equivalent to a GTX1070 in PC terms, which is quite impressive for Console. 

HOWEVER – On a less happy note, Microsoft revealed plans to release a ‘4K’ console at the end of 2017, which should make you ponder whether an Xbox One S upgrade is worth it. But then again, the end of 2017 is a long way away. 

IR Blaster – You can now configure your Xbox One S to turn on other devices, like your TV, audio/video receiver and cable/satellite receiver. Whether you’re playing a game or watching a movie, the integrated IR blaster will get you to the action faster, allowing you to leave your remotes behind.

No KINECT Port – We’re not disappointed to see this go because honestly, how many of us use Kinect. But if you are that way inclined you’ll need a USB adaptor that will need to be purchased separately. 

backwards compat.

BACKWARDS COMPATIBILITY! – We saved the best for last. 

Finally! How long have we had to wait on this. Geometry Wars, Halo 3, Gears of War 2, Left 4 Dead, Forza Motorsport 3…. these are just a few of my favourites that got left behind when Xbox One came out because it wasn’t backwards compatible. You can rest assured that I will be blowing off a fine layer of dust from these disks and smashing them as soon as I get the Xbox One S. Sometimes there is just no substitute for the classics.

Conclusion. Wow.

Last time I was presented with the option to upgrade from my Release day PS3 to a newer model I didn’t bother. Granted it did break down and I opted for the slim one to replace it. My point is, it just wasn’t worth upgrading as there weren’t that many more new features that I could take advantage of. 

This is not the case here. Xbox One S will be a revolution in Gaming and is set to deliver big things. In my opinion it has set in motion the beginnings of something big…. very big. We are about to see the real birth of 4K Gaming and Virtual Reality Gaming, whether on this console or on future ones. This is the opportunity to get in on the ground floor of this new gaming experience. 

With this many new features and also a really pleasing design face lift, this is the time to upgrade. Or even the time to get into the Console Gaming! The Xbox One S is the real deal and is due to arrive in August this year.