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The Microsoft Xbox Series X and Series S will be the only consoles with fully-fledged AMD RDNA 2 GPUs

Only the Xbox Series X and Series S will support all of the RDNA 2 feature set, according to Microsoft. (Image source: Microsoft)
Only the Xbox Series X and Series S will support all of the RDNA 2 feature set, according to Microsoft. (Image source: Microsoft)
Microsoft has confirmed that the Xbox Series X and Series S will be the only consoles that will support all the features of the new RDNA 2 architecture, the same one on which AMD has based its new Radeon RX 6000 cards. These features include DirectX Raytracing, Mesh Shading and Variable Rate Shading (VRS). The Xbox Series X and Series S will arrive next month.

AMD's RDNA 2 architecture is finally here, and it will be making its way to multiple platforms before the end of the year. On the PC side of things, AMD is releasing the Radeon RX 6800, RX 6800 XT and RX 6900 XT, albeit at different times. RDNA 2 is the underlying architecture of the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series consoles too, but Microsoft believes that its consoles have the edge, architecturally speaking.

According to a blog post, the Xbox Series X and Series S will be the only consoles to support all the features that AMD has baked into its RDNA 2 architecture. These, Microsoft claims, include DirectX Raytracing, Mesh Shading, Sampler Feedback and Variable Rate Shading (VRS). In summary, Mesh shaders allow you to alter the geometry of an object in real-time, while Sampler feedback optimises storage usage and provides better controls over what content needs to be loaded at a given time. Meanwhile, Variable Rate Shading (VRS) will allow the Xbox Series X and Series S to render parts of an image at different quality levels to maximise performance without visibly degrading overall image quality.

The PlayStation 5 will support may of RDNA 2's architectural features too though, including DirectX Raytracing. It is unclear whether this combination of features will give Microsoft's new consoles a performance edge over Sony's. Nonetheless, Microsoft seems happy to brag about its consoles being the only ones 'with full hardware support for all the RDNA 2 capabilities'.

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(Image source: Microsoft)

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2020 10 > The Microsoft Xbox Series X and Series S will be the only consoles with fully-fledged AMD RDNA 2 GPUs
Alex Alderson, 2020-10-30 (Update: 2020-10-31)
Alex Alderson
Alex Alderson - News Editor - @aldersonaj - 3361 articles published on Notebookcheck since 2018
Prior to writing and translating for Notebookcheck, I worked for various companies including Apple and Neowin. I have a BA in International History and Politics from the University of Leeds, which I have since converted to a Law Degree. Happy to chat on Twitter or Notebookchat.
contact me via: @aldersonaj