Tuesday, October 20th 2020

Xbox Series X External Storage Requirements Confirmed: USB 3.0, 128 GB

Microsoft is introducing some new requirements for external storage devices on the Xbox Series X/S. The new consoles feature high-speed PCIe 4.0 SSD storage which should greatly reduce loading times, with 802 GB of usable space on the Xbox Series X for games and apps. This internal SSD will allow gamers to install a handful of AAA games, for those looking to expand the storage on the new console have two options the proprietary high-speed connector or a USB based storage device.

The high-speed connector will allow for plug and play storage upgrades with high speed NVMe SSDs from Seagate however, these expansion modules will come in at a high price. For those looking to save some money, Microsoft has recently confirmed the minimum requirements for using an external storage device for game and app installations, which are USB 3.0 only and a minimum of 128 GB. This will rule out older HDDs and lower capacity USB sticks but will helpfully allow for a higher quality experience.
Source: jackfrags
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23 Comments on Xbox Series X External Storage Requirements Confirmed: USB 3.0, 128 GB

#1
londiste
External storage device USB 3.0 and 120GB?
No speed requirements?
Posted on Reply
#2
Exyvia
londiste
External storage device USB 3.0 and 120GB?
No speed requirements?
USB 3.0 protocol defines the speed. Basically 500MB/s.
Posted on Reply
#3
Camm
Exyvia
USB 3.0 protocol defines the speed. Basically 500MB/s.
It should also be noted that this is for non Series games, Series games still require high speed storage, this external storage is for backward compat essentially.
Posted on Reply
#4
kayjay010101
Exyvia
USB 3.0 protocol defines the speed. Basically 500MB/s.
The USB 3.0 protocol defines the theoretical max, yes. You can still chuck something mega-slow on a usb 3.0 connection, doesn't mean it'll be able to do 500MB/s. The speed is dictated by the slowest link in the chain, and the protocol transfer speed is just one link.

That being said, this isn't for Series games, it's for backwards compatibility, so high speed isn't required (though games will benefit from going on, say, a SATA SSD).
Posted on Reply
#5
Rei
Not only is the primary SSD speed of Xbox 4 half as fast as PS5 but uses proprietary expandable storage too with limitations on USB external storage. What a waste...
While PS5 is not only twice as fast on it's primary SSD but also has the option to use any off-the-shelf NVMe SSD for it's expandable storage as well as USB external storage. Dunno if there is any limitation on the USB external storage aspect though. Hopefully we could use any external HDD & even flash drives of any size capacity.
Posted on Reply
#6
kayjay010101
Rei
Not only is the primary SSD speed of Xbox 4 half as fast as PS5 but uses proprietary expandable storage too with limitations on USB external storage. What a waste...
The limitation is 128GB, which means no flash drives that are smaller than 128GB. While kind of annoying, I don't see many people putting games on flash drives in 2020. Most games are quite large, so dedicating a flash drive for a single game.. I don't see the point, really. Back with the PS3/Xbox 360, sure, because games were like 1-10GBs and you could put a few games on a single flash drive, but I don't think that's a common usecase at all anymore.
Rei
While PS5 is not only twice as fast on it's primary SSD but also has the option to use any off-the-shelf NVMe SSD for it's expandable storage as well as USB external storage.
Not quite right, the PS5 NVMe slot requires a drive to meet or exceed the speed of the PS5's internal drive, of which there are none on the market today. Mark Cerny said that in his talk. So not any off-the-shelf NVMe drive will work.

But yeah, PS5's implementation is more customizable, although I suspect the much easier install of Xbox's proprietary drive will make it more popular amongst casual users while more enthusiasts will obviously prefer the NVMe route PS5 is using. With the xbox offering it's just buy and plug in, while with PS5 it's a bit of an ordeal to install. Most console users just want to buy, plug in, and forget. They're not keen on having to struggle with choosing the right NVMe drive, installing it, putting the standoff in, etc., etc.

You and I are not the target audience for 99% of console sales.
Rei
Dunno if there is any limitation on the USB external storage aspect though. Hopefully we could use any external HDD & even flash drives of any size capacity.
I assume it's the same for PS5 as for XSX, where external USB drives can play backcompat titles but not "made for PS5" titles. But no clue on the size limitation, if there is any. We'll have to see.
Posted on Reply
#7
Valantar
Camm
It should also be noted that this is for non Series games, Series games still require high speed storage, this external storage is for backward compat essentially.
Back compat and archiving of Series titles - you can shuffle them over to older, slower storage if you don't want to play them right now but don't want to re-download them when you want to. You will of course then need enough free space on your internal/expansion SSD to move the game over for when you want to play it.
Rei
Not only is the primary SSD speed of Xbox 4 half as fast as PS5 but uses proprietary expandable storage too with limitations on USB external storage. What a waste...
While PS5 is not only twice as fast on it's primary SSD but also has the option to use any off-the-shelf NVMe SSD for it's expandable storage as well as USB external storage. Dunno if there is any limitation on the USB external storage aspect though. Hopefully we could use any external HDD & even flash drives of any size capacity.
While the (current) limitation to one option for expansion is pretty bad (hopefully there will be more options down the line), the PS5 option really isn't any better, as you definitely can't use "any off-the-shelf NVMe SSD" - it needs to be a very high performance PCIe 4.0 one, and reportedly only ones certified by Sony. For now, there are two possible options: the new WD Black drive, and the Samsung 980 Pro. Nothing else is fast enough. And both of those cost the same as or more than the XSX expansion card.

As for USB limitations - there would really be no point in anything smaller than 128GB anyhow. Besides, this is down from the previous generation where both the PS4 and XO(S/X) mandated ~250GB minimums.
Posted on Reply
#8
AnarchoPrimitiv
Rei
Dunno if there is any limitation on the USB external storage aspect though. Hopefully we could use any external HDD & even flash drives of any size capacity.
Sata SSDs are so cheap now and it's beyond easy to just buy a $10 USB 3.0 with UASP enclosure, why would you want to use super slow spinning rust? And why would you want to use a flash drive when for less money you can use a SATAIII SSD in an enclosure and get 3x to 5x times the speed? I'm just confused by how you're basically advertising for the PS5's fast SSD and then implying you want to use a ridiculous off the shelf WD spinning rust external drive or a USB stick....
Posted on Reply
#9
Rei
kayjay010101
The limitation is 128GB, which means no flash drives that are smaller than 128GB. While kind of annoying, I don't see many people putting games on flash drives in 2020. Most games are quite large, so dedicating a flash drive for a single game.. I don't see the point, really. Back with the PS3/Xbox 360, sure, because games were like 1-10GBs and you could put a few games on a single flash drive, but I don't think that's a common usecase at all anymore.
Valantar
As for USB limitations - there would really be no point in anything smaller than 128GB anyhow. Besides, this is down from the previous generation where both the PS4 and XO(S/X) mandated ~250GB minimums.
Well, USB flash drive can store other things such as save games, recorded footage, media files, etc. Not to mention that the PS5 allows for fine-tuning what to install & how much (e.g. just the multi-player portion of a game). Dunno if Xbox 4 allows for that.
kayjay010101
Not quite right, the PS5 NVMe slot requires a drive to meet or exceed the speed of the PS5's internal drive, of which there are none on the market today. Mark Cerny said that in his talk. So not any off-the-shelf NVMe drive will work.
Valantar
While the (current) limitation to one option for expansion is pretty bad (hopefully there will be more options down the line), the PS5 option really isn't any better, as you definitely can't use "any off-the-shelf NVMe SSD" - it needs to be a very high performance PCIe 4.0 one, and reportedly only ones certified by Sony. For now, there are two possible options: the new WD Black drive, and the Samsung 980 Pro. Nothing else is fast enough. And both of those cost the same as or more than the XSX expansion card.
Isn't that such a tall & (currently) unrealistic requirement to meet given the PS5's 5.5 GB/s SSD speed?
While I don't have any citation, this is only something I read from Eurogamer, though to be fair they might've not mentioned "off-the-shielf".
kayjay010101
With the xbox offering it's just buy and plug in, while with PS5 it's a bit of an ordeal to install. Most console users just want to buy, plug in, and forget. They're not keen on having to struggle with choosing the right NVMe drive, installing it, putting the standoff in, etc., etc.
I can imagine that the installation of NVMe drives would/could be simplified on PS5. Maybe something like opening a small cover/compartment slotting in the drive, latch the standoff & done.... Oh, don't forget to close the cover/compartment again.
kayjay010101
You and I are not the target audience for 99% of console sales.
Yeah, I know.... I only ever owned the PS2 Slim & PS3 Superslim.
AnarchoPrimitiv
Sata SSDs are so cheap now and it's beyond easy to just buy a $10 USB 3.0 with UASP enclosure, why would you want to use super slow spinning rust? And why would you want to use a flash drive when for less money you can use a SATAIII SSD in an enclosure and get 3x to 5x times the speed? I'm just confused by how you're basically advertising for the PS5's fast SSD and then implying you want to use a ridiculous off the shelf WD spinning rust external drive or a USB stick....
I'm just stating this as something for the average joe out there. Sure mechanical HDD are much slower but they have more capacity for cheaper. Not everybody is amped for speed. Having USB flash drives as extra storage is good to have. For example, I have a few idle flash drives doing nothing for the foreseeable future & wanna make good use of em as game/stuff storage.
Posted on Reply
#10
Valantar
Rei
Well, USB flash drive can store other things such as save games, recorded footage, media files, etc. Not to mention that the PS5 allows for fine-tuning what to install & how much (e.g. just the multi-player portion of a game). Dunno if Xbox 4 allows for that.
Look up Xbox Smart Delivery - it seems a lot of your arguments for the PS5 come from having paid more attention to it. AFAIK the XO(S/X) allows for other/smaller storage devices for non-game storage (recordings etc.), no idea about the PS4 here or how/if this will change for the upcoming generation.
Rei
Isn't that such a tall & (currently) unrealistic requirement to meet given the PS5's 5.5 GB/s SSD speed?
While I don't have any citation, this is only something I read from Eurogamer, though to be fair they might've not mentioned "off-the-shielf".
From Mark Cerny's presentation of the PS5's storage system, you'll need an SSD that at minimum matches the speed of the internal one, so yes, that is the basis of the requirement. That doesn't change the fact that you currently have to pay (potentially a lot) more than the XSX's storage card for such an SSD.
Rei
I'm just stating this as something for the average joe out there. Sure mechanical HDD are much slower but they have more capacity for cheaper. Not everybody is amped for speed. Having USB flash drives as extra storage is good to have. For example, I have a few idle flash drives doing nothing for the foreseeable future & wanna make good use of em as game/stuff storage.
You don't seem to be spotting how you are twisting this up. Here's the currently known realities:

Both PS4 and XO(S/X) require a minimum of 250GB (IIRC one of them requires 256GB) for any external storage device for game storage. USB 3.0 is also required, as USB 2.0 would lead to dreadful loading speeds. AFAIK the Xbox allows for other storage devices for non-game storage (recordings etc.), no idea about the PS4 here.

The XSX has a 1TB (802GB usable after formatting and OS) ~2.4GB/s SSD and has a proprietary expansion port with $229 1TB (920GB usable after formatting) ~2.4GB/s SSD cards for now, and a vague promise of more options down the line. This is a simple, plug-and-play solution that anyone can use, requiring zero tools, but it's also more expensive.

The PS5 has a 825GB (~611GB rumored usable after formatting and OS) ~5.5GB/s SSD, and allows for m.2 expansion with certified drives matching or exceeding the performance of the internal SSD. So far there are two options fulfilling this requirement (though none are certified as of now), and both are more expensive than the XSX expansion card. This also requires the user to remove the side panel of the PS5 (requiring a risky-looking bending of a corner, which IMO definitely will lead to breakage) and screwing in a small, fragile bare-PCB SSD into a fragile m.2 slot. This is definitely not for the non-tech-savvy. It's potentially cheaper and has more choice, but is it better? Arguably not.

As for external USB storage, we know that neither console supports using that for next-gen titles, as these games will be built around the assumption of being able to stream in assets at the speed of the internal SSD. We're not talking slower loading speeds in other words, we're talking major, multi-second in-game freezes if these games were run from slower external storage. Playing them off USB-based storage is simply not feasible, even with an USB 3.2G1-connected NVMe SSD (those top out at ~1GB/s). MS has committed to allowing storage (archiving) of games on external storage (you need to transfer them to the internal/expansion drive to play them), with no word from Sony on this yet AFAIK. MS has apparently lowered the minimum requirement for external game storage since the previous generation, to 128GB. Sony might do the same, or they might keep their current 250GB minimum, or they might do away with it entirely - though the latter is unlikely, as using a <=64GB USB stick to store games will work very poorly.
Posted on Reply
#11
kayjay010101
Rei
Well, USB flash drive can store other things such as save games, recorded footage, media files, etc.
Pretty sure that's all stored in the cloud now. My Xbox One didn't store any save games/media files/recordings locally.
Rei
Not to mention that the PS5 allows for fine-tuning what to install & how much (e.g. just the multi-player portion of a game). Dunno if Xbox 4 allows for that.
That required the dev to support it, not all games did. But yes, Xbox One had that too.
Rei
Isn't that such a tall & (currently) unrealistic requirement to meet given the PS5's 5.5 GB/s SSD speed?
While I don't have any citation, this is only something I read from Eurogamer, though to be fair they might've not mentioned "off-the-shielf".
Exactly. It is a tall order. Only newer PCIe 4.0 drives will be able to qualify. Hence why it's not really a pro even though it's not proprietary.
Rei
I can imagine that the installation of NVMe drives would/could be simplified on PS5. Maybe something like opening a small cover/compartment slotting in the drive, latch the standoff & done.... Oh, don't forget to close the cover/compartment again.
Looking at the teardown they posted a week or so ago, that's exactly what it is, but that's still more complicated than "plug this stick in the back".
Posted on Reply
#12
Camm
Regarding the discussion above, PS5 storage expansion is kind of a moot point until Sony clarifies m.2 requirements.

Is it throughput? Does it have to be certified by Sony? Does it need a Sony customised memory controller on the m.2?

Furthermore, the Xbox's expansion is roughly in line with a similar spec m.2 drive. With most irregular connectors, I do expect these to cost more than equivalent m.2 drive eventually, but the connector standard is thankfully open, so who knows.
Posted on Reply
#13
Rei
I agree with @Camm on this.
I do not intend to further argue in regards to my foresight on storage expansion until further clarification as both @Valantar & @kayjay010101 have correctly pointed out some errors on my observation. I'm just more interested in the tech of the consoles themselves rather than the consoles itself as I have no real interest in them.
Posted on Reply
#14
Selaya
When will people stop caring about sequential speeds when it comes to game/application loading :banghead:
If you but could get the PS5 to accept an Optane, it will assuredly improve its performance.
Posted on Reply
#15
londiste
Selaya
When will people stop caring about sequential speeds when it comes to game/application loading :banghead:
If you but could get the PS5 to accept an Optane, it will assuredly improve its performance.
Optane reviews had some load time tests. Except for Final Fantasy XIV (that was used in a number of Optane 905p reviews for some reason) where it showed a noticeable but still relatively small improvement, it sometimes wins and sometimes loses to a set of SSDs that are now a generation (or two) old. It probably comes down to how game files are created and optimized - random access probably benefits Optane while SSDs are able to overpower when it comes to sequential access.
Posted on Reply
#16
Valantar
londiste
Optane reviews had some load time tests. Except for Final Fantasy XIV (that was used in a number of Optane 905p reviews for some reason) where it showed a noticeable but still relatively small improvement, it sometimes wins and sometimes loses to a set of SSDs that are now a generation (or two) old. It probably comes down to how game files are created and optimized - random access probably benefits Optane while SSDs are able to overpower when it comes to sequential access.
That's where Optane would shine with games made for SSDs (and the storage architectures of these consoles) though, as games developed for HDDs are very optimized towards sequential access (hence the massive duplication of frequently re-used assets etc.).
Posted on Reply
#17
c1979h4life
AnarchoPrimitiv
Sata SSDs are so cheap now and it's beyond easy to just buy a $10 USB 3.0 with UASP enclosure, why would you want to use super slow spinning rust? And why would you want to use a flash drive when for less money you can use a SATAIII SSD in an enclosure and get 3x to 5x times the speed? I'm just confused by how you're basically advertising for the PS5's fast SSD and then implying you want to use a ridiculous off the shelf WD spinning rust external drive or a USB stick....
If its just for holding data, an HDD is always the best value, when prices is a factor. A 12 TB can be had for as low as 180 bucks, go look and see how much a 2TB SATA or PCIE3.0 or 4.0 M.2 drive sales for. 512 and 256GB drives a cheap compared to a USB thumb drive, but not in comparison to a HDD. A 3TB HDD drive still costs a low 50-70 bucks. If its being used to hold images of games until you need to use them in case of no internet or taking them over a friends house. I'm just saying that this can be done on both systems instead of buying the new memory the xbox is using. I'm just going to basically use the 4tb I use with my current xbox one x (will be 8tb since I just got two 12TB to replace the 8's I had. I hope that someone can come up with an retro engineered adapter that allows any PCIE4.0 to work in the future.
Valantar
That's where Optane would shine with games made for SSDs (and the storage architectures of these consoles) though, as games developed for HDDs are very optimized towards sequential access (hence the massive duplication of frequently re-used assets etc.).
These consoles would have to use AMD's StoreMI, due to them having AMD Hardware in them. Intel Optane only works on Intel hardware due to licensing . I'm sure the Xbox one X used some form of it to increase its HDD speeds.
Posted on Reply
#18
Valantar
c1979h4life
These consoles would have to use AMD's StoreMI, due to them having AMD Hardware in them. Intel Optane only works on Intel hardware due to licensing . I'm sure the Xbox one X used some form of it to increase its HDD speeds.
That's not true. Any optane drive inserted into any PCIe m.2 slot appears to the system as a regular SSD. What is limited to Intel systems is their caching/tiered storage software and drivers, which is what StoreMI replaces, but you don't need that whatsoever if you're using the Optane drive as a plain SSD.
Posted on Reply
#19
c1979h4life
Valantar
That's not true. Any Optane drive inserted into any PCIe m.2 slot appears to the system as a regular SSD. What is limited to Intel systems is their caching/tiered storage software and drivers, which is what StoreMI replaces, but you don't need that whatsoever if you're using the Optane drive as a plain SSD.
The original poster said that he wanted to use an Optane memory to take advantage of it features, If you put an Optane drive in a non intel system, what would you gain gain over AMD's StoreMI? Using the drive as a normal SSD is an expensive SSD, you could get a 970 Pro for cheaper and have faster sequential read\write speeds. The base requirements to run Intel Optane memory include Windows 10 x64, a 7th Generation (or newer) Intel Core processor, and an Intel 200 Series chipset (or newer). All the consoles are missing all three. The xbox series x memory (CFXpress) is also DRAM-less It would be better and cheaper to go with a 960 Pro or higher m.2 drive, Optane memory\ssd combo, excels at random 4K reads and writes. Sequential reads and writes are what PC users need. Please check out some reviews and benchmarks of the Optane vs a Sammy 9xx Pro. Getting a PCIE3.0 or PCIE4.0 TB m.2 is a better value, if you are using it as a plain SSD.
Posted on Reply
#20
kayjay010101
c1979h4life
The original poster said that he wanted to use an Optane memory to take advantage of it features, If you put an Optane drive in a non intel system, what would you gain gain over AMD's StoreMI?
What? The answer was to use StoreMI with an Optane drive. Optane drives have incredible 4K random read write performance which is why it could be beneficial over using another non-optane SSD
c1979h4life
Using the drive as a normal SSD is an expensive SSD, you could get a 970 Pro for cheaper and have faster sequential read\write speeds.
If your entire usecase is to run benchmarks or transfer large files all day, then more sequential speed is good, but if you're a normal user then random 4k read write is what's actually important.
c1979h4life
The base requirements to run Intel Optane memory include Windows 10 x64, a 7th Generation (or newer) Intel Core processor, and an Intel 200 Series chipset (or newer). All the consoles are missing all three.
That's the requirement to use Optane's tiering specifically, the requirement doesn't apply to just using the drive as a normal ssd.
c1979h4life
The xbox series x memory (CFXpress) is also DRAM-less It would be better and cheaper to go with a 960 Pro or higher m.2 drive, Optane memory\ssd combo, excels at random 4K reads and writes.
Yeah? But now you've got 2 drives instead of one.. I don't understand this.
c1979h4life
Sequential reads and writes are what PC users need.
That applies to a very small demographic. 99%+ have no use for high sequential and would be much better off with higher random 4k read write performance.
c1979h4life
Please check out some reviews and benchmarks of the Optane vs a Sammy 9xx Pro. Getting a PCIE3.0 or PCIE4.0 TB m.2 is a better value, if you are using it as a plain SSD.
Again, not for 4k random read write. For raw storage capacity with only sequential speeds in mind, Optane is TERRIBLE value. But for general usage, 4k random read write is where it's at, not sequential.
Posted on Reply
#21
Valantar
c1979h4life
The original poster said that he wanted to use an Optane memory to take advantage of it features, If you put an Optane drive in a non intel system, what would you gain gain over AMD's StoreMI? Using the drive as a normal SSD is an expensive SSD, you could get a 970 Pro for cheaper and have faster sequential read\write speeds. The base requirements to run Intel Optane memory include Windows 10 x64, a 7th Generation (or newer) Intel Core processor, and an Intel 200 Series chipset (or newer). All the consoles are missing all three. The xbox series x memory (CFXpress) is also DRAM-less It would be better and cheaper to go with a 960 Pro or higher m.2 drive, Optane memory\ssd combo, excels at random 4K reads and writes. Sequential reads and writes are what PC users need. Please check out some reviews and benchmarks of the Optane vs a Sammy 9xx Pro. Getting a PCIE3.0 or PCIE4.0 TB m.2 is a better value, if you are using it as a plain SSD.
@kayjay010101 summarized everything pretty clearly above. But since it bears repeating: Optane (or 3D Xpoint) is much faster than NAND in any type of random access operation - which are by far the most common operations on any PC (or console). Sequential speeds matter, but only up to a point, as beyond that you're looking at whether a read operation takes .01 or .02 seconds ant the like - which isn't actually noticeable. The superior 4k qd1 speeds of Optane make them the fastest real-world drives out there even if they lose out in pure sequential read tests. This is especially true at low capacities, as NAND needs lots of parallelism to not be downright terrible at random loads, while Optane is good at it no matter the capacity. In other words you need to buy the highest capacity NAND SSD to get the best random performance, while on Optane it's pretty much the same no matter the capacity. Speaking of reviews: have a look at some real-world test data rather than (wildly unrealistic) canned benchmarks, such as AnandTech's Storage Bench. The Intel 905P is still the fastest drive around, especially as the drive starts filling up (NAND SSDs lose a lot of performance as they fill). And the system requirements you mention are only for the system to recognize the drive in a way that allows Intel's tiering software to be activated - any system with an m.2 slot will recognize the drive as a bog-standard SSD. Intel has mainly marketed Optane for tiered storage due to low capacities (32-64GB) and high prices (those drives cost the same as 250GB SSDs if not more), not because that's the only thing they can do.
Posted on Reply
#22
c1979h4life
Valantar
@kayjay010101 summarized everything pretty clearly above. But since it bears repeating: Optane (or 3D Xpoint) is much faster than NAND in any type of random access operation - which are by far the most common operations on any PC (or console). Sequential speeds matter, but only up to a point, as beyond that you're looking at whether a read operation takes .01 or .02 seconds ant the like - which isn't actually noticeable. The superior 4k qd1 speeds of Optane make them the fastest real-world drives out there even if they lose out in pure sequential read tests. This is especially true at low capacities, as NAND needs lots of parallelism to not be downright terrible at random loads, while Optane is good at it no matter the capacity. In other words you need to buy the highest capacity NAND SSD to get the best random performance, while on Optane it's pretty much the same no matter the capacity. Speaking of reviews: have a look at some real-world test data rather than (wildly unrealistic) canned benchmarks, such as AnandTech's Storage Bench. The Intel 905P is still the fastest drive around, especially as the drive starts filling up (NAND SSDs lose a lot of performance as they fill). And the system requirements you mention are only for the system to recognize the drive in a way that allows Intel's tiering software to be activated - any system with an m.2 slot will recognize the drive as a bog-standard SSD. Intel has mainly marketed Optane for tiered storage due to low capacities (32-64GB) and high prices (those drives cost the same as 250GB SSDs if not more), not because that's the only thing they can do.
You didn't have to repeat, since I stated that the software version that AMD created is likely already in the systems, adding on even more expensive part put its out of most people price point in retail.The 1TB Optane costs more than the price of an next gen console (the smaller versions of it costs 1/3 the cost of a new console, why would they put this in the console if the system cant fully take advantage of all the features. From a engineering standpoint if would not make it past the brainstorming session. Even with this drive in a PC, games don't load faster than the new consoles. Obviously there are better (and less costly) techniques that can produce Optane like loading when it comes to custom hardware. An Optane drive is not needed to get the results that they already exceeded vs a modern PC in game loading and switching situations. The purpose of the reply was to state that an Optane drive is not needed and overpriced for consoles, since the games already switch and load like or faster than an Optane drive in a PC. with none of the extra cost. Optane is nice, but I don't want an extra 60-500+ bucks added to a system that already costs 500 bucks, its overkill for most of the casual gamers. PC Gamers usually don't buy the lowest capacity drives, they buy the 1TB or 2TB, but they don't want to spend 500+ bucks on a Optane SSD instead of spending that money on upgrading their GPU in most cases. Again, its good tech if you got money to throw at it, but I think most gamers spend their money on GPU, CPU, motherboard, RAM (SSD in last place), if your on a budget.
Posted on Reply
#23
Valantar
c1979h4life
You didn't have to repeat, since I stated that the software version that AMD created is likely already in the systems, adding on even more expensive part put its out of most people price point in retail.The 1TB Optane costs more than the price of an next gen console (the smaller versions of it costs 1/3 the cost of a new console, why would they put this in the console if the system cant fully take advantage of all the features. From a engineering standpoint if would not make it past the brainstorming session. Even with this drive in a PC, games don't load faster than the new consoles. Obviously there are better (and less costly) techniques that can produce Optane like loading when it comes to custom hardware. An Optane drive is not needed to get the results that they already exceeded vs a modern PC in game loading and switching situations. The purpose of the reply was to state that an Optane drive is not needed and overpriced for consoles, since the games already switch and load like or faster than an Optane drive in a PC. with none of the extra cost. Optane is nice, but I don't want an extra 60-500+ bucks added to a system that already costs 500 bucks, its overkill for most of the casual gamers. PC Gamers usually don't buy the lowest capacity drives, they buy the 1TB or 2TB, but they don't want to spend 500+ bucks on a Optane SSD instead of spending that money on upgrading their GPU in most cases. Again, its good tech if you got money to throw at it, but I think most gamers spend their money on GPU, CPU, motherboard, RAM (SSD in last place), if your on a budget.
I don't think anyone here was actually suggesting that consoles ought to come with Optane or that buying an Optane SSD for a console was a good idea. Besides, the biggest m.2 Optane SSD is AFAIK 128GB, which would be quite useless. But the technology is nonetheless far faster than NAND.

More to the point though: with the architectural improvements in these consoles, there's reason to believe they would make better use of an Optane drive than PCs can, simply because the games will be designed with the expectation of solid state storage and high random read performance, while PC games are still designed around HDDs with abysmal seek times and barely acceptable sequential performance (meaning that, like current gen consoles, game files are laid out in ways designed to accommodate these slow loading times). Would the difference be noticeable? Very likely not, as we're already talking very fast loading speeds. But in terms of % improvements, I would expect Optane to perform better on a next-gen console than on PC.

Oh, and there is no way on earth the new consoles have StoreMI. StoreMI is a system for accelerating tiered storage. These are SSD-only consoles. They support external drives, but only for archiving or playing older games, and there has been no mention of any automatic shuffling of data between external and internal drives.
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