PlayStation 4 Pro vs. Xbox One S: A Videogame Console Comparison
The PlayStation 4 Pro and the Xbox One S are two of the best choices in high-powered videogame consoles in the market today. Both have the most advanced graphics, an important aspect when choosing from consoles among hardcore gamers. But there are also differences between the two that will tip the balance whether you purchase one over the other.
Keep in mind that the PS4 Pro is a major upgrade from the original PS4 while the Xbox One S is a subtle upgrade from its original Xbox One. In case of the latter, it’s slimmer, sleeker and even sexier than its older version, as well as designed with UHD Blu-ray and 4K upscaling capabilities.
We also acknowledge that there will be objections about making the comparison between the PS4 Pro and the Xbox One S. Many will say that the better comparison will be between the Slim PS4 and the Xbox One S at present since the PS4 Pro is best compared with the X Box One X, the official name for Microsoft’s Project Scorpio.
But here’s the thing: Why compare two things when the other’s actual performance isn’t known yet? Since we already know the hardware and software performance of the PS4 Pro and the Xbox One S, we are confident that we can make objective comparisons based on actual experience.
Video and audio quality: PlayStation 4 Pro vs. Xbox One S
Both consoles provide their users with 4K output, the highest resolution images we have today. But the manner in which their manufacturers went about it is slightly different.
On one hand, the One S generates 4K graphics by upscaling, a process whereby the games are created in the 1080p resolution (i.e., Full HD) before these are stretched, so to speak. The games’ graphics then fill the entire 4k-enabled television screen.
But there’s a downside to it. Emphasis must be made that 4K resolution is four times higher than Full HD resolution so the pixels are being stretched. The result: The images are less defined, less crisp, and less sharp than what you can get with true 4K capability. Then again, when the graphics have a big boost in quality, it’s an acceptable compromise.
On the other hand, the PS4 Pro isn’t also 100% capable of native 4K content, but the upscaling process used by PlayStation game developers is a bit cleverer than Microsoft’s way. PlayStation uses the checkerboard rendering process for its upscaling, which results in images that have nearly identical video quality as native 4K content.
In terms of HDR, the PS4 Pro supports more games in HDR than the Xbox One S. But don’t fret Xbox One S fans, because when it comes to audio quality, your beloved game console wins the battle, hands down. Dolby Atmos, among other surround sound technologies, make for a premium audio setup.
Games selection and quality
Both game consoles are in a neck-and-neck battle for supremacy in the games selection and quality battlefield. These consoles offer their gamers excellent exclusive games so it’s no wonder that each one has its own cult following. These also offer an increasing number of outstanding games that can be played on several platforms (i.e., multi-platform compatibility).
We love Xbox One’s exclusive games, particularly Gears of War, Halo, and Forza Horizon, which are available in newer versions with more challenges coming your way. We also like the console’s backward compatibility, especially since more Xbox 360 games can actually be played on the Xbox One S.
We also love the PS4’s exclusive games selection, such as the Uncharted 4 and Horizon: Zero Dawn games. But PS4 is weaker in terms of backward compatibility, although it usually isn’t an issue if you’re the type who likes to play new games anyway.
The bottom line: You will find great games that will keep you entertained and challenged for hours on end with both game consoles. You have to consider other factors in deciding between the two, factors of which can include your budget, your preferences in games (e.g., shooter or racing games), and your desired compatibility with other devices.
Aside from the games, we must also mention the films and media capabilities of these consoles, albeit only briefly. The Xbox One S features a UHD Blu-ray player and, in fact, it’s the most affordable nowadays. The PS4 Pro doesn’t have it, which can be a bummer when you want it.
Both, however, are on equal footing in terms of 4K content streaming. These two consoles can do so but here’s the caveat: Your Internet connection must be fast enough to do so.
Which is better? We have to say that the Xbox One S wins in terms of its multiple capabilities as a game console and media player. But we also want to emphasize that PS4 Pro’s games perform better.
The bottom line: You have to decide which features and functions are most important in addressing your entertainment needs and wants.