Xbox Series S Lockhart to share the same CPU spec as the Xbox Series X to target 1080p 60 fps or 1440p 30 fps; console likely to be officially unveiled in August
There have been several references to Xbox Series S or Lockhart in the past, but its more powerful cousin, the Xbox Series X, has always been the cynosure for Xbox fans. We've previously heard rumors that Lockhart may feature a weaker GPU and less RAM. While Microsoft is yet to officially acknowledge the existence of Lockhart, references to this console are now being seen in the Xbox Series X Developer Kit giving us an indication of the kind of specs we can expect.
The Xbox Series X Developer Kit, codenamed Dante, comes with a special Lockhart mode. The Verge cites sources at Microsoft, who say that Lockhart mode allows developers to target a performance profile that would mimic the actual Lockhart console. Lockhart was originally thought to have 7.5 GB of usable RAM (against the 13.5 GB in the Xbox Series X), a slightly underclocked CPU, and about 4 TFLOPs of GPU performance.
Following this report, The Verge's Tom Warren has now learnt that while Lockhart's CPU speed would be the same as that of the Xbox Series X, the GPU would have a different clock and compute unit (CU) count. Lockhart is expected to target 1080p and 1440p gamers — the most commonly used resolutions for gaming on the PC side of things with 1080p making up the bulk of the HDTV market.
Warren also said that Microsoft is leaving the choice to developers whether to offer 1080p at 60 fps or 1440p at 30 fps on Lockhart. This makes sense as it offers a prominent performance differentiator from the Series X that targets 4K 60 fps. With such specs, Lockhart can be expected to be fairly cheap to make gaming more accessible to all, but Microsoft's pricing strategy is anyone's guess at this point.
Meanwhile, Venturebeat believes that Lockhart will have an official unveiling sometime in August. Apparently, the original plan was to showcase both the Xbox Series X and Series S at E3 2020 running the same next-gen games side-by-side. Now that E3 2020 stands cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic and due to various other reasons, Microsoft opted for staggered monthly reveals called Xbox 20/20.
With June closing out without any major Xbox 20/20 event, it is likely that we may see some first-party and third-party title demos in a digital event in July followed by an official unveiling of the Xbox Series S Lockhart in August.
I’ve been reporting on Xbox Lockhart having a slightly underclocked CPU, but I now believe it’s the same speed as Series X. Just different GPU frequencies and CU counts ????— Tom Warren (@tomwarren) June 27, 2020