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Xbox Series X | S


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I've pre-ordered an S after failing to get a Series X vial the All Access shite train that was Smyths / Game. I'd still like an X (but have no 4k TV) but realise they may not be available until launch now / in too high a demand. 

 

Looking at previous pages it seems the next best option is an S with an external usb 3 HDD (i'm not worried about 10 minute transfer times) for dormant game storage. Does that seem about right? I'm missing GP since my 1X died a few weeks back so i'm eager to be Xbox gaming again as soon as I can.

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15 minutes ago, KartoffelKopf said:

 

Gears 5 already has pretty stupendous native HDR so not sure why they'd be showing a 'faux' HDR version. The idea of turning off the HDR and then adding in a fake version to a game built with HDR in mind kind of breaks my brain a little bit.

Hmm, maybe it was an earlier Gears then. I thought it was 5 for some reason.

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3 hours ago, Benny said:

 

Forcing HDR on something that doesn't normally have dedicated HDR will always be terrible. At best, no matter how "nice" it is, it'll still look different to the image that the art originally intended. At worst, it'll look like utter over saturated garbage.

 

3 hours ago, Benny said:

HDR really isn't something that should be brute forced. It can be a subtle and incredible looking technology when done right and with it implemented as an intentional enhancement to the originally intended image, but when it's just slapped onto things it's almost always as bad as when you see TVs displayed in shops with their brightness and contrast settings to maximum and everything looking weird.


 

The way Microsoft are doing it is by using AI to figure out where to apply extra/less luminance, as I understand it, it’s not just being slapped on without any thought put into it. 
 

The argument about the games not looking like they intended - youcould make the argument that these games were never intended to be upscaled to 4K or run at 60fps.
 

And even some modern games like RDR2, were made in SDR and the HDR version looks very different. Who’s to say what’s right?

 

I’d like them to include an option to turn it off easily, either way. 

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26 minutes ago, HarryBizzle said:

 


 

The way Microsoft are doing it is by using AI to figure out where to apply extra/less luminance, as I understand it, it’s not just being slapped on without any thought put into it. 
 

The argument about the games not looking like they intended - youcould make the argument that these games were never intended to be upscaled to 4K or run at 60fps.
 

And even some modern games like RDR2, were made in SDR and the HDR version looks very different. Who’s to say what’s right?

 

I’d like them to include an option to turn it off easily, either way. 


The HDR version of RDR2 looks very different from the SDR version because it was obviously thrown together very late in the day and basically doesn’t work.

 

Resolution and frame rate are ultimately about sampling - like the master print of a film there’s a ground truth there that you’re drawing closer and closer to as you dial those up. Maybe a ground truth that nobody but the editor was expected to see, but it’s all what was originally there. Expanding the colour space is a different kettle of fish I think, especially if you’re doing it algorithmically and therefore explicitly imposing a bias on the result. It’s not neutral, any algorithm has a particular intent to it, one that I dare say will lean more to the blazing lights and neon zaps of the first wave of HDR games than, say, Death Stranding’s quiet naturalism.

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11 minutes ago, Alex W. said:


The HDR version of RDR2 looks very different from the SDR version because it was obviously thrown together very late in the day and basically doesn’t work.

 

Resolution and frame rate are ultimately about sampling - like the master print of a film there’s a ground truth there that you’re drawing closer and closer to as you dial those up. Maybe a ground truth that nobody but the editor was expected to see, but it’s all what was originally there. Expanding the colour space is a different kettle of fish I think, especially if you’re doing it algorithmically and therefore explicitly imposing a bias on the result. It’s not neutral, any algorithm has a particular intent to it, one that I dare say will lean more to the blazing lights and neon zaps of the first wave of HDR games than, say, Death Stranding’s quiet naturalism.


Have they actually patched HDR into RDR2 now then as it didn’t have it on launch just some fake HDR they tried to pass off and got called out on as it looked crap!?

 

Would be amusing if the AI HDR was better than the fakery the devs tried to pass off!

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Probably obvious and stupid question about backwards compatibility to the original xbox:

 

I've seen a list of what games are compatible, it's got panzer dragoon orta and a few other things. It just dawned on me that my discs will around somewhere. Is the compatibility thing more like "we've tested these ones and are definitely fine, but your other discs might work, give them a go if you like"

 

or

 

"we've only patched these ones, the others will not run it's not an emulator"? 

 

Not that fussed, but digging out a few old discs for some nostalgia would be fun. 

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3 minutes ago, Shimmyhill said:


Have they actually patched HDR into RDR2 now then as it didn’t have it on launch just some fake HDR they tried to pass off and got called out on as it looked crap!?

 

Would be amusing if the AI HDR was better than the fakery the devs tried to pass off!


They added a more conventional HDR implementation called “Game HDR” in to it that works better, but it’s still all kind of off. You can tell the game was designed and lit with SDR in mind.

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5 minutes ago, cowfields said:

Probably obvious and stupid question about backwards compatibility to the original xbox:

 

I've seen a list of what games are compatible, it's got panzer dragoon orta and a few other things. It just dawned on me that my discs will around somewhere. Is the compatibility thing more like "we've tested these ones and are definitely fine, but your other discs might work, give them a go if you like"

 

or

 

"we've only patched these ones, the others will not run it's not an emulator"? 

 

Not that fussed, but digging out a few old discs for some nostalgia would be fun. 

 

Assuming it's like the Xbox One BC, it'll be just the ones they've specifically announced. But those have pretty significant improvements. It's not just a basic emulator.

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15 minutes ago, cowfields said:

Probably obvious and stupid question about backwards compatibility to the original xbox:

 

I've seen a list of what games are compatible, it's got panzer dragoon orta and a few other things. It just dawned on me that my discs will around somewhere. Is the compatibility thing more like "we've tested these ones and are definitely fine, but your other discs might work, give them a go if you like"

 

or

 

"we've only patched these ones, the others will not run it's not an emulator"? 

 

Not that fussed, but digging out a few old discs for some nostalgia would be fun. 

They’re only used as a key for a digital download: it isn’t an emulator as such.

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1 hour ago, KartoffelKopf said:

 

Gears 5 already has pretty stupendous native HDR so not sure why they'd be showing a 'faux' HDR version. The idea of turning off the HDR and then adding in a fake version to a game built with HDR in mind kind of breaks my brain a little bit.

 

I assumed there was no HDR in the PC version because apparently you have to turn it on in Windows before the option will appear.

 

I could have twin 3090s but it's little things like this that will have me sighing with comfort when my XSX arrives and I'm back in console land. I know all the advantages and disadvantages of both, but it's the little things.

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57 minutes ago, Alex W. said:

Resolution and frame rate are ultimately about sampling - like the master print of a film there’s a ground truth there that you’re drawing closer and closer to as you dial those up. Maybe a ground truth that nobody but the editor was expected to see, but it’s all what was originally there. 

 

If no one but the editor was supposed to see it, then your point doesn't make any sense. You're still deviating from what was originally intended for the audience.

 

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4 hours ago, JPL said:

I wonder why they’re bothering with it then. I can understand them trying it out, but if it gives results as bad as you say, then why didn’t they just shelve it?

 

It's something people will repeat as a positive because they don't know any better. 

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6 minutes ago, Marlew said:

 

It's something people will repeat as a positive because they don't know any better. 

Why would people repeat it as a positive if, as Benny says, it’ll be a complete mess? Even if they don’t know any better, if it looks bad, it isn’t something you need any specialist knowledge to understand.

 

I’ll reserve judgement until I see it in action I think. 

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24 minutes ago, HarryBizzle said:

 

 

If no one but the editor was supposed to see it, then your point doesn't make any sense. You're still deviating from what was originally intended for the audience.

 


I didn’t say “wasn’t supposed to”. And my point is that it’s a matter of degrees.

 

As someone pointed out elsewhere on the forum, when you watch an old Bond movie in 4K you’re watching it at a higher level of quality than any cinema print because of the limited technology of the time; it’s likely as good as the master copy itself.

 

That’s what higher resolutions and frame rates on BC do, where they’re not actively interfering with the game systems. They just get you closer to the internal ground truth.

 

And maybe in both cases that’s too good?

 

But colourising black and white movies and adding AI-painted HDR on top of SDR games are a different thing. They’re much more active and editorial.

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6 minutes ago, Alex W. said:


I didn’t say “wasn’t supposed to”. And my point is that it’s a matter of degrees.

 

As someone pointed out elsewhere on the forum, when you watch an old Bond movie in 4K you’re watching it at a higher level of quality than any cinema print because of the limited technology of the time; it’s likely as good as the master copy itself.

 

That’s what higher resolutions and frame rates on BC do, where they’re not actively interfering with the game systems. They just get you closer to the internal ground truth.

 

And maybe in both cases that’s too good?

 

But colourising black and white movies and adding AI-painted HDR on top of SDR games are a different thing. They’re much more active and editorial.

 

I'd argue framerate alters the feel of a game way more than auto HDR will.

 

I struggle to care about colour because games designed to be played mostly on a CRT look nothing like they did when viewed on my OLED, not in terms of colour, clarity, or even pixel size in some cases, so getting upset about a bit of AI HDR at this stage seems a bit like the horse has long bolted.

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2 hours ago, JPL said:

Hmm, maybe it was an earlier Gears then. I thought it was 5 for some reason.

It was the remastered version of Gears 1. Confusingly called Gears Ultimate not to be confused with Gears 5 Ultimate Edition. 

 

I'm definitely interested in the feature, enough games this gen with hdr support have botched it that if nothing else it would be nice for someone to establish standards of a sort. I'm playing ff7 remake just now, cracking game but the hdr is worse than sdr. 

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Guys we auto-map content to HDR all the time. It’s literally how the majority HDR content is made, we only tend to adjust it if something looks a bit off. There’s no need to freak out about games looking overly saturated and different, they won’t. I doubt they’re doing much to simulate the wider gamut at all, just mapping the luminance.
 

5 hours ago, KartoffelKopf said:

 

Gears 5 already has pretty stupendous native HDR so not sure why they'd be showing a 'faux' HDR version. The idea of turning off the HDR and then adding in a fake version to a game built with HDR in mind kind of breaks my brain a little bit.

 

That ‘stupendous native HDR’ in Gears 5 was made using the exact same AI algorithm that MS are using here for their BC system (or an earlier version of it). They did an interview about it a while back, Gears 5 was the guinea pig for this tech iirc. As you say, it looked flawless in HDR, so I’m not worried.

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3 hours ago, HarryBizzle said:

 

I'd argue framerate alters the feel of a game way more than auto HDR will.

 

I struggle to care about colour because games designed to be played mostly on a CRT look nothing like they did when viewed on my OLED, not in terms of colour, clarity, or even pixel size in some cases, so getting upset about a bit of AI HDR at this stage seems a bit like the horse has long bolted.


But auto frame rate improvements in BC are typically just stabilisation so they actually stably reach the games intended rate.

 

Just doubling the frame rate without intent I’m less sure I want across the board.

 

To be fair as long as there’s a toggle on the AI HDR or system level frame rate doubling then fine. Have at it and the user can decide.

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15 minutes ago, CarloOos said:

Guys we auto-map content to HDR all the time. It’s literally how the majority HDR content is made, we only tend to adjust it if something looks a bit off. There’s no need to freak out about games looking overly saturated and different, they won’t. I doubt they’re doing much to simulate the wider gamut at all, just mapping the luminance.
 

 

That ‘stupendous native HDR’ in Gears 5 was made using the exact same AI algorithm that MS are using here for their BC system (or an earlier version of it). They did an interview about it a while back, Gears 5 was the guinea pig for this tech iirc. As you say, it looked flawless in HDR, so I’m not worried.

So Benny was talking nonsense then?

 

I did wonder why they’d tout something as a feature, if it was a terrible as he made out. I suppose some people want to look for negatives even where there aren’t any.

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