Xbox One S 500GB Console – Battlefield 1 Bundle Review

Xbox One S 500GB Console - Battlefield 1 Bundle Review

Microsoft’s Xbox One S isn’t exactly the new kid on the block because it isn’t a new console per se. Instead of being the proper successor to its predecessor, the 2013 Xbox One, it’s a subtle upgrade that Xbox fans may think is either a must-have or a can-skip game console.

But if you’re the Xbox fan who simply must have every Xbox release because Microsoft has a way of surprising people, either for the better or worse, then we suggest getting it. Be prepared, nonetheless, for the common observations that the Xbox One and the Xbox One S share the same name for a reason.

Both are the same console deep down in its heart, so to speak, but there are a few significant changes in aesthetics and capability. Slimmer, sleeker and lighter are the words used by reviewers to describe the One S—and we definitely agree— aside from its new capacity for high dynamic range (HDR) and 4K television compatibility.

Features of The Xbox One S 500GB Console

This Xbox One S bundle we will be reviewing comes with the following components and features:

  • Xbox One S 500GB console
  • 4K-capable HDMI cable
  • Power cable
  • Xbox wireless controller
  • Battlefield 1 full game download
  • A month of EA Access
  • Xbox Live Gold Trial

With this bundle, you have such a world of entertainment to discover. You can engage in epic multi-player battles, watch content from Amazon Video and Netflix, and enjoy 4K Blu-ray movies, among others.

You also have at your fingertips more than 100 exclusive console games along with an increasing number of Xbox 360 games available on the Xbox One series. If you already have the Xbox One, then you’re already familiar with many of the abovementioned capabilities.

But there are also a few things that distinguishes the One S from its predecessor. As we previously pointed out, the One S has a slimmer and sleeker profile—and we’re guessing that it’s what the “S” stands for. The console is at least 40% slimmer and its overall impression is sleeker so it’s essentially the chic cousin of the Xbox One.

Plus, there’s no large power brick because of the integrated power supply, which means it’s easier to carry in your messenger bag or backpack.We also like the discreet pinhole design for the ventilation, which replaced the Xbox One’s chunky grills, and the matte white plastic instead of the older version’s glossy black plastic.

Star Wars fans may even daresay that it was inspired by the Stormtroopers’ uniform with its white-and-black theme. But there may be other colors to be released, such as red, so we’re also looking forward to it.

Other tweaks that we are compelled to feature in bullet form because of their significance are:

  • Physical button for the power switch
  • Controller-pairing button and USB port at the front
  • More grip on the controller
  • More durable material used on the thumb sticks
  • Controller has Bluetooth functionality (i.e., no more buying the Xbox USB Wireless Controller Adapter for PC gamers)

The connections are nearly identical between the Xbox One and One S—HDMI in and out, IR out, Ethernet, two USB ports, and Ethernet—but the Kinect port is gone on the latter. We’re not surprised because Microsoft appears to be going away from Kinect capability in the last few years.

With the new HDMI 2.0, the One S can be used for watching 4K at 60 Hz, a significant improvement from the 30Hz capability of Xbox One’s HDMI 1.4 capability.

The IR blaster also increases the upgrade’s multimedia capabilities, such as setting the console to turn on your home cinema amplifier and television, among other devices. But if you’re looking for predictability, you may well stick to the dedicated remotes instead of the IR blaster.

Did the games’ performance improve with these upgrades? Not by much, if you ask us, because the loading times, frame rates, and games selections are practically indistinguishable between the Xbox One and the One S. But there’s a big difference between the two consoles—the ultra-high-definition video output on the latter beats the former by a long shot!

Avid gamers will love the finer details and sharper images on the screen because it amps up the gaming experience. If you already have a 4K television, your One S console will automatically detect it. You have to choose the 4K resolution on booting up.

Pros

  • Smaller and sexier than the older version
  • 4K game upscale capability
  • With UHD Blue-ray capability
  • HDR compatible
  • No large power brick
  • Bluetooth compatibility

Cons

  • HDR, ultra HD Blue-ray, and 4K settings only work with new-release televisions
  • Installation of new capabilities mentioned above takes trial and error, especially for non-techs

Verdict

The Xbox One S 500GB Console is a subtle upgrade from the Xbox One—and we must emphasize the “subtle” part since the changes mainly focused on the aesthetics and viewing capabilities. There is no significant boost in its horsepower, in a manner of speaking, which will make it a next-gen console—we’re all waiting for the release of the Xbox Scorpio in late 2017 for it.

There are good reasons to buy it, nonetheless. It’s the most affordable UHD Blu-ray player we have seen so far! In fact, it’s the only console we know with a decent 4K Blu-ray capability so we suggest buying it if you’re a movie fan on a tight budget for such entertainment.

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