What are the different Xbox One models?

What are the different Xbox One models?

View all advice guides


There are currently two different Xbox One models, the Xbox One and the Xbox One S, with another, Project Scorpio, soon to be released. The original Xbox One, though still available, is generally being phased out and replaced by the Xbox One S. The S is slightly smaller, has slightly quicker processing power, is capable of playing games in HDR and also offers 4K output for Blu-Ray films.

Xbox One and Project Scorpio logos

Stuck for which Xbox One is the right one for you? With two core versions released (and with various differences between them and alternate iterations available) and a third on the way, it’s completely understandable to be confused about the differences.

In this article, we’ll break down which Xbox One model does what, and which is the one for you.

What is Project Scorpio?

Not yet released and with details currently thin on the ground, Project Scorpio is widely expected to be Microsoft’s attempt to rival Sony’s PlayStation 4 Pro, which came out last year. The Scorpio will become the flagship version of the Xbox One, capable of 4K, HDR gaming.

While we don’t currently know a great deal about Project Scorpio, here are some FAQs and the best answers we have currently:

  • When is the Scorpio released? – Microsoft have stated the Scorpio will be out in the fourth quarter of 2017. We believe it will be before Black Friday to give people plenty of time to buy one for Christmas. However, you’re much more likely to find a good deal on a One S or PS4 Pro than the newly-released Scorpio.
  • Is the Scorpio a completely new console? – No. Microsoft have stated that the Scorpio will continue to run the current catalogue of Xbox One games (as well as backwards compatible Xbox 360 games), so it’s an upgrade rather than a completely new system.
  • How much more powerful is the Scorpio over the One and One S? – Although we don’t know all the details yet, we know the Scorpio has around 4.5 times the graphical capability of the original Xbox One.
  • Is the Scorpio backwards compatible with the two current Xbox One models? – Yes, with both games and accessories such as Kinect and wireless controllers.
  • Doesn’t the One S already support 4K? – Yes, but only on Blu-ray DVD playback. It can’t do it on games, which is the big difference between the One S and the Scorpio.
  • Is it worth getting the Scorpio if I don’t have a 4K TV? – It depends on your budget. If you’re determined to have the best Xbox money can buy, or see yourself buying a 4K TV in the future, then yes. Otherwise, the difference in quality might not justify the cost.
  • How much will the Scorpio cost? – This is one of the big unknowns about the Scorpio currently. Estimates are suggesting a figure of around $700 – or about £550 – could be possible. The PS4 Pro – the Scorpio’s main competitor – currently retails for less than £350.

What is the Xbox One S?

Released in 2016, the Xbox One S was an upgrade to the original Xbox One console. It is now by far the most popular version of the console. Unless the Project Scorpio ends up costing far less than expected, the One S will likely remain as the most popular version of the Xbox One.

  • Has the One S replaced the original console? – Not entirely, however it is becoming harder and harder to find original consoles. Most bundles we compare now include the One S.
  • Will the Scorpio replace the One S? – No. The Scorpio is intended to compete with the PS4 Pro version, and will likely cater to hardcore gamers who are willing to spend more on their gaming setup. The One S will likely continue as the most popular version of the One for the remainder of the console’s lifespan.
  • How much smaller is the One S compared to the One? – It’s around 40% smaller.
  • What can the One S do that the original One can’t? – As well as being slightly more powerful, the big advantage of the One S is that it supports HDR gaming. It can also play Blu-rays in 4K, but not games. Oh, and it can stand on its side, too.
  • What storage options can you get the One S in? – The One S is available in 500GB, 1TB and 2TB versions. It also supports external hard-drives to expand the memory.

What is the original Xbox One?

First released in 2014 as Microsoft’s entry for the eighth console generation, the original Xbox One remains a powerful piece of kit.

However, since the introduction of the One S in 2016, the original console is becoming harder to find as retailers run through their stock. Interestingly, although the original console has largely been replaced, you’re still likely to get a better deal on a One S.

  • Can the original One do anything the One S can’t? – In a word, no. There’s no real reason to buy an original One unless you find an exceptional deal. With stock running low of the original, that’s becoming increasingly unlikely.
  • Should I upgrade my One to a One S? – This is a tough one. While an improvement in multiple departments, the One S isn’t so much of an leap forward that it necessitates upgrading. Both systems play the same games, so you won’t miss out there. If you upgraded to an HDR TV and wanted to enjoy the difference it makes to your graphics, it would perhaps justify upgrading to a One S.

Which Xbox One should I buy?

Now you’re armed with all the knowledge you need, which Xbox should you opt for?

“I want the best of the best, no expense spared” – Wait for the Scorpio. The ability to play games in 4K and the added graphical ability will set it apart from the One and One S. Microsoft have claimed it will be the most powerful games console ever.

“I want a good deal” – The One S is your best bet. While you may think that the original One would be the cheapest, this isn’t generally the case. Stock is running low, and most retailers have moved on to using the One S in most of their high profile bundles. Of course, there will always be exceptions to the rule.

“I play a lot of games, so I need the storage space” – The original One went up to a 1TB hard-drive, while the One S offers both 1 and 2TB options. We’re not sure how much the Scorpio will offer yet. As it will play the same games, the file sizes won’t be different, however Microsoft may want to make a statement with the console by including a bigger hard-drive.

“I’m limited on space, so I need a console that fits my TV stand” – If in doubt, go for the One S. It’s 40% smaller than the original One, and the power supply is internal, meaning you won’t have an ungainly “brick” plug to worry about. Although we don’t know how big the Scorpio will be, it’s likely to be a similar size (or possibly bigger) than the original Xbox One.