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PS4 vs Xbox One review: Next-gen games console comparison

£349 inc VAT

Manufacturer: Sony

Sony and Microsoft have both launched their next-gen games consoles, the PS4 and Xbox One. Here's where we put the two up against one another in our Xbox One vs PS4 comparison review.

PS4 vs Xbox One review

Next-gen games consoles have arrived so here's our PS4 vs Xbox One review where we will be comparing the two consoles' specs, price, controllers and confirmed games. Read our Xbox One vs PS4 comparison review to find out more. See also: UK gamers disappointed with PS4 launch

PS4 vs Xbox One review: Price

As usual, price is an important area and Microsoft and Sony have announced different prices for their rival consoles. The PS4 is the cheaper at £349 and the Xbox One costs £80 more at £429. See also: PlayStation 4 goes up for pre-order in the UK.

It's worth pointing out that the Xbox One price includes the new Kinect sensor but the PS4 price does not include the PlayStation Camera. Add the price on and the PS4 adds up to £393. See also: Xbox One price: Pre-order the new Xbox console.

Overclockers dramatically dropped its price for the Xbox One down to £310 and had bundles including FIFA 14 from £329. However, the firm is now simply saying the 'product is currently not available'.

That Xbox One price of £429 is now history and the console can be purchased for under £400 at most retailers. Amazon's price at the time of writing is £369 which isn't bad.

Since you need the camera for a lot of functions on the PS4, there's little in it. See also: PS3 vs PS4 comparison review.

Xbox One vs PS4 comparison

PS4 vs Xbox One review: Specs

The two consoles are similar in their hardware specifications, especially when it comes to the CPU and GPU which we'll tackle first. See also: Xbox One vs PS: what readers say.

Processor and graphics

AMD is the chip maker of choice for the PS4 and Xbox One. Each uses a SoC (System on a chip) which combines the CPU and GPU. The processor is an x86 64-bit chip with 8 'Jaguar' cores and an estimated clock speed of 1.6GHz. Read: New Xbox One release date, features, UK price and specs.

On the surface, it appears as if the PS4 and Xbox One have the same AMD Radeon GPU. However, the PS4's is more powerful with 1152 cores compared to the Xbox One's 768 – 50 percent more, according to Anandtech. It also has a higher peak shader throughput of 1.84 TFLOPS against 1.23 TFLOPS of the Xbox One – although this is less important.

Whether these differences will be noticeable when then console is hooked up to your TV in your lounge is another question, but on paper the PS4 is the more impressive.

PS4 vs Xbox One comparison

RAM and storage

Both systems have 8GB of RAM inside but Sony wins marginally in this area using faster GDDR5 memory compared to GDDR3 offered by the Xbox One. Luckily for the Xbox One, it has 32MB of eSRAM embedded memory expected to be used by developers as a cache.

Microsoft says the combination of the CPU, GPU and eSRAM is like 'having a supercomputer in your living room'.

It's a tie when it comes to storage because both have a 500GB hard drive. The amount available to the user will be less because some of the space will be used for the system software.

Optical drive

It's another tie when it comes to the optical drive since both Xbox One and PS4 have a Blu-ray/DVD drive as standard.

Connectivity

Things are once again pretty similar when it comes to connectivity with the PS4 and Xbox One offering Wi-Fi, Ethernet, optical out and USB 3.0. If it bothers you, the PS4 has Bluetooth 2.1 which the Xbox One does not.

As you would expect there is HDMI on each console and they both support 4K output, but the Xbox One also has an HDMI in port for throughput.

Xbox One controller

Xbox One vs PS4 comparison review: Controllers

The Xbox controller remains largely the same as previous generations. It has a number of changes but they are subtle such as the redesigned D-pad and thumb stick. The main new feature is the new Impulse Triggers for better feedback.

The PS4 DualShock 4 controller is quite different to the PS3's. It has a trackpad in the middle and integrated 'Move' motion control. Unfortunately we've found the PS4 controller showing signs of wear on the sticks after just a couple of weeks of use.

Sony PS4 controller wear

PS4 vs Xbox One review: Features

There are plenty of features which these consoles offer; they are more all-round entertainment devices now than just devices for playing games. We're going to stick to pointing out two of the key differences about which you need to know.

Read Xbox One could spy on your living room: watch for rewards.

'Always online' has been a major subject around the PS4 and Xbox One leading up to the launches and it's the Xbox One that requires an internet connection for you to be able to play – although it needs only to validate every 24 hours which isn't half as bad as requiring a constant connection. See: Microsoft Xbox One could get Windows 8 apps.

Update: After much pressure from the public and the media, Microsoft has done a U-turn on this saying that the Xbox One will no longer need a net connection.

Don Mattrick, President, Interactive Entertainment Business at Xbox said: "An internet connection will not be required to play offline Xbox One games – After a one-time system set-up with a new Xbox One, you can play any disc based game without ever connecting online again."

See also: Microsoft changes mind on Xbox One internet and DRM.

Microsoft Xbox One console

A second issue is being able to use second hand (pre-owned) games. Again the PS4 is the console with no restriction (see video below). However, it's a different story for Microsoft's console. Xbox One users can lend games to friends who they have had on their Xbox Live list for at least 30 days but you can only lend them once.

Microsoft said: "Today, some gamers choose to sell their old disc-based games back for cash and credit. We designed Xbox One so game publishers can enable you to trade in your games at participating retailers.  Microsoft does not charge a platform fee to retailers, publishers, or consumers for enabling transfer of these games."

Update: Microsoft has also changed it mind on this element, saying that there will be no restrictions.

"Trade-in, lend, resell, gift, and rent disc based games just like you do today – There will be no limitations to using and sharing games, it will work just as it does today on Xbox 360." added Mattrick.

PS4 vs Xbox One review: Games

Pivotal to a games console's success is what games you can actually play on it. Which games you want to own and play is, of course, down to personal opinion. So, we've put together a list of the games which will be available on the PS4 and Xbox One. It's not a definitive list as titles will be confirmed over the coming weeks and months.

We've separated it into games for the PS4, games for the Xbox One and games that will launch on both consoles.

PS4

Both

Xbox One

Blacklight: Retribution

Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag

Below

Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn

Battlefield 4

Crimson Dragon

Daylight

Call of Duty: Ghosts

D4

DC Universe Online

The Crew

Dead Rising 3

Deep Down

Destiny

Forza Motorsport 5

Don't Starve

The Division

Halo

#DriveClub

Dragon Age Inquisition

Killer Instinct

Gran Turismo

Dying Light

Kinect Sports Rivals

Infamous: Second Son

EA Sports UFC

LocoCycle

Killzone: Shadow Fall

Elder Scrolls Online

Minecraft: Xbox One Edition

Knack

FIFA 14

Quantum Break

Mercenary Kings

Final Fantasxy XV

Project Spark

Oddworld: New n' Tasty

Just Dance 2014

Rabbids Invasion

The Order: 1866

Kingdom Hearts 3

Ryse: Son of Rome

Outlast

Mad Max

Sunset Overdrive

PlanetSide 2

Madden 25

Titanfall

Primal Carnage: Genesis

Metal Gear Solid V

Zumba Party Fitness

Ray's The Dead

Mirror's Edge 2

Zoo Tycoon

Transistor

NBA 2K14

Untitled Black Tusk game

War Thunder

NBA Live 14

Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare

Warframe

Need for Speed: Rivals

Fantasia: Music Evolved

 

Skylanders Swap Force

 
 

Sniper Elite 3

 
 

Star Wars Battlefront

 
 

Thief

 
 

Watch Dogs

 
 

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

 
 

The Witness

 
 

Wolfenstein: The New Order

 
 

The Evil Within

 
 

Trials Fusion

 

Follow Chris Martin and @PCAdvisor on Twitter.   

Sony PS4 Expert Verdict »
Sony PlayStation 4 Scores 8.4 out of 10 based on 50 reviews

There are currently no technical specifications recorded for this product.

After an initial lead for the PS4, things are much more even since Microsoft announced its U-turn on internet connectivity and DRM. While the PS4 is cheaper, the Xbox One price has come down and includes the Kinect camera. This choice largely depends on where your loyalties lie and which games you really want to play.

Price comparison powered by Reevoo

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