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HD Report | August 22, 2017

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Xbox One X: Great Price, Terrible Value

Xbox One X: Great Price, Terrible Value
Matthew Byrd

Despite opening their E3 2017 showcase with the formal reveal of the Xbox One X, Microsoft decided to not reveal the console’s price until the end of the show.

Their logic behind this move was simple enough. Instead of just dropping the price tag on the world, why not show them all the games that they’ll be able to play on the most powerful game console ever made?

When Microsoft did finally reveal the Xbox One X’s $499 price point, they did so to a mostly silent room. Sure there were a few claps here and there that most likely came from Microsoft employees, but it’s safe to say that few people were overly thrilled about spending $500 on a new game console this November.

Of course, their tepid reaction may have less to do with the price of the Xbox One X and more to do with the value of the console.

Is the Xbox One X’s $499 price appropriate for the technology the system offers? Absolutely. A group of PC experts recently attempted to build a PC as powerful as the Xbox One X from scratch while matching its $499 price tag. The closest they could get was around $900, and that build did not replicate the One X’s UHD Blu-Ray playback functionality and featured a few “close enough” part choices. They even found it would cost around $600 to upgrade an existing PC with some of the X’s core components.

So yes, while the X’s $499 price point may cause some to suffer from sticker shock, it is an appropriately priced console.

However, neither that price point nor a pure price comparison to an equivalent PC really answers the question, “Is the Xbox One X a good value?”

That seems to be the question that was lingering in the air at the end of Microsoft’s E3 conference, and the question that has caused many people to relay a rather modest reaction to the console ever since its debut.

It may cost around $900 to built a PC as powerful as the Xbox One X, but that PC will be able to do much more than play games, can be upgraded for much less than the price of a new console a few years down the line, and allows a user to play a substantial library of existing PC games as well as some current and upcoming Xbox One titles.

The Xbox One X, on the other hand, is just a powerful game console. Despite Microsoft’s promises that they were interested in ending gaming generations and ushering in a new future for the industry, the Xbox One X won’t feature anything more impressive than some pure processing power.

As impressive as that power is, it’s less impressive when you factor in an Xbox library where most of the upcoming exclusives are indie titles that won’t utilize the X’s power, and it’s less impressive when you consider that Microsoft will indeed release a brand new console at some point in the possibly near future.

The Xbox One X is a powerful console for the price. It is not, however, a good value for many.

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