Stuck for which Xbox One console is the right one for you? It's not all that surprising! With three separate iterations now on the market it’s completely understandable to be confused about the differences between each. It used to be the case that only one Xbox One model existed back when it first launched in 2013. Now, though, Microsoft offers up multiple options to let Xbox gamers play in their preferred way.
In this handy advice guide, we’ll break down which Xbox One model does what and analyse all their different features, all in the hopes of highlighting which one might be the best for your Xbox gaming needs. We’ll also include the three cheapest deals for all three of the available Xbox One models (the original launch Xbox One is no longer in production) – and you can always hit the ‘view deals’ button to see the cheapest deals available now in the UK.
Want to compare everything we’ve found across all models? Head over to our dedicated Xbox One deals page for up-to-date comparisons on all.
The Xbox One X
Previously known as Project Scorpio, the Xbox One X was formally announced at the 2017 E3 conference. 40% more powerful than any other console on the market, the Xbox One X is designed as a competitor to Sony's benchmark console, the PS4 Pro. Capable of playing games in stunning 4K resolution at a staggering 60fps, the One X is the console of choice for those who want only the best when it comes to performance and graphics.
When was the Xbox One X released?
The One X was released on November 7th, 2017. However, if you're hoping for a deal on the Black Friday weekend which follows a few days later, you're not likely to have much luck. You’re much more likely to find a good deal on a One S or PS4 Pro than the newly-released One X.
What is the Xbox One X Scorpio edition?
The Scorpio edition of the One X is a special version, designed for early adopters. It comes with various cosmetic differences, including a printed pattern and serial number on the console and the Scorpio name on the controller. There are no differences in the spec between the two versions of the console.
How much more powerful is the Xbox One X compared to the Xbox One and Xbox One S?
The One X has around 4.5 times the graphical capability of the original Xbox One. Though the One S is capable of upscaling certain games to 4K, the One X can display games at this resolution natively, with processor power to spare that means some games will also play at 60fps.
Is the One X backwards compatible with the two current Xbox One models?
The Xbox One X is backwards compatible with both games, and accessories such as Kinect (via an adaptor) and wireless controllers. The One X is an upgrade to the existing software found in the Xbox One and One S consoles, and it will continue to play the same catalogue of games with the same accessories. Currently, there are no plans for any games to play exclusively on the One X.
Is it worth getting the One X if I don’t have a 4K TV?
If you’re determined to have the best Xbox money can buy, or see yourself buying a 4K TV in the future, then it's worth buying the Xbox One X but it depends on your budget. Otherwise, the difference in quality might not justify the cost.
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 as it has a budget price tag compared to the pro model, the Xbox One X. Even with the One X surpassing it technically, the price difference will likely ensure the S remains the most popular One model. Unless you are a hardcore gamer, the Xbox One S will likely be the Xbox console of choice for you too.
Has the Xbox 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 Xbox One X replace the Xbox One S?
The Xbox One X 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. Therefore it's extremely unlikely that the Xbox One X will replace the Xbox One S any time soon.
How much smaller is the Xbox One S compared to the Xbox One?
The Xbox One S is a smaller console compared to the original Xbox One by approximately 40%, making it a much neater looking console to own.
What can the Xbox One S do that the original Xbox 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 with the Xbox One S?
The One S is available in 500GB, 1TB and 2TB versions. It also supports external hard-drives to expand the memory.
The Xbox One S All-Digital Edition
Scheduled to released on 7th May 2019, the Xbox One S All-Digital Edition looks and works just like the original Xbox One S hardware revision released in 2016. It differs in that it completely removes the optical disc drive included with all prior Xbox One models, being the perfect console variant for anyone looking to subtract physical games from their lives and prefer to store them digitally.
Will the All-Digital Edition replace the One S?
No. The Xbox One S All-Digital Edition will sit alongside the standard Xbox One S, giving players the option to play games exclusively via download or digitally as well as physically.
How much does the Xbox One S All-Digital Edition cost?
The current retail price in the UK is £199.99, and that includes three games – Minecraft, Forza Horizon 3 and Sea of Thieves – bundled in.
What storage options can you get Xbox One S All-Digital Edition in?
The Xbox One S All-Digital Edition isn’t available with anything less than 1TB of storage. This is important considering that all games played on it will need to be installed natively on the hard drive.
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” - Buy the One X. 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. Only a 1TB version of the One X is available currently, but don't be surprised if a larger capacity launches in 2018. 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. If you're planning to go all digital the Xbox One S All-Digital Edition has a 1TB hard-drive and will keep you covered for quite some time.
“I’m limited on space, so I need a console that fits my TV stand” - Go for the One S or the X. The S is 40% smaller than the original One, and the power supply is internal, meaning you won’t have an ungainly “brick” plug to worry about. The X, remarkably, is even smaller than the One S, although not by the same margin as the One S to the One.
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