Microsoft are pitching Series S as a low resolution version of X. But obviously with the X's GPU having about 3x more performance, there should be more differences than that. And I don't think MS are communicating all the differences very well, maybe intentionally.
For instance, my TV is a bit rubbish considering it's only last year's model. HDMI 1.4 means that with the Series X, if I force 4k (+ downsampling) I'm limited to 30fps - not an option. So I'd rather settle for 1080p + 60fps.
However... it's not just frame rate or resolution that will be affected. Polygon count, texture detail, amount of raytracing, amount of effects should all be more complex and higher processed on the X vs the S. In other words, if you have a 1080p - whether capable of supersampling or not - you're still better off with the X because of the extra GPU grunt doing so much more than just resolution/frame rate improvements. Unless I'm missing something?
In many cases lower resolution will be enough, but there will inevitably be games using lower quality assets or effects as well. It seems to me MS has already admitted games will use lower quality assets by saying games will be smaller on Series S.
There will be flexibility. I mean games probably won't need LOD reduction or other effects lowered if there is enough resolution compromise.
Like I've said before, there won't be a standard. I think developers will have to decide what compromises they want to make with each demanding title. In many titles, reducing the resolution should be enough. But if they want a higher resolution, then maybe other aspects could be reduced.
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