Xbox Project Scarlett gets Zen 2 CPU with Navi GPU, coming in 2020

Microsoft has announced the successor to the current Xbox generation, called Project Scarlett. Halo Infinite will be the first title to be released for the new game console. In addition, the Zen CPU console will “play all games from all previous Xbox consoles.”

Xbox boss Phil Spencer made the announcement during Microsoft’s E3 press conference in Los Angeles, and AMD announced the news simultaneously on its site. The console was developed entirely for gaming, according to Spencer, by the team that is also responsible for the design of the Xbox One X.

In a video, the team says that the console will get a custom AMD Zen 2 CPU and a Radeon Navi GPU with gddr6. It is a Navi GPU based on AMD’s next-generation RDNA architecture, with hardware support for ray tracing. This is the successor to the RDNA architecture that forms the basis of the RX 5700 video cards. The system will support 120fps playback and 8k resolutions, as well as variable refresh rates.

In addition, Microsoft emphasized the presence of an SSD, which also serves as ‘virtual working memory’. The company talks about ‘a new generation of SSDs’ without giving much details. During the presentation, the speakers repeatedly mentioned the drastically shortened, ‘almost non-existent’ loading times.

In terms of features, Project Scarlett is very similar to the PlayStation 5 that Sony announced in April. That console also gets a Zen 2 CPU, Navi GPU and Sony also emphasized the SSD. In addition, Sony also talked about support for ray tracing, although little is known about its implementation for both Project Scarlett and the PS5.

It is clear that the console will appear in 2020 and will then be released together with Halo Infinite. The new Master Chief game picks up where Halo 5: Guardians left off. A new trailer of Halo Infinite has also been shown to coincide with the unveiling.