Xbox One S review – Is Microsoft’s slimmer video game console worth buying?

Since I was a teenager I’ve always wanted a video game console and I can’t begin to tell you the joy I had finally owning my first console which was a Playstation One. Afterwards I had all the popular ones like the Playstation 2, the original Xbox, Dreamcast and Game Cube.

Then in November 22 2005 the Xbox 360 came out and there was a shortage of consoles nationwide. Nonetheless I managed to get my hands on one before Christmas. This console truly brought things to the next level because it was the first console that could output High Definition video game resolutions such 720P and 1080P, the online capability was robust and the home dashboard was outstanding. Additionally some of my biggest wishes for a console came true such as the ability to turn it on and off via the controller and playing background music while competing online. In 2007 I was so in love with my Xbox 360 console because of Call of Duty 4 and later Call of Duty Black Ops 2 that I told myself that I was never going let it go.

So in November 2013, the Xbox One came out and I did not buy it. I kept true to my words because I was so comfortable with my Xbox 360 and furthermore there was no real good games that was enticing me to get one. I was still very much enjoying Call of Duty Black Ops 2 on my Xbox 360.

Then around E3 2016 I’ve heard that the remastered version of Call of Duty 4 was coming out bundled with Call Of Duty Infinite Warfare. Even more exciting was the fact that Microsoft was coming out with a refined Xbox One called Xbox One S (the S stand for slim) which had additional features such as a 4k Blu-Ray player, High Dynamic Range (HDR), 4k video streaming via Netflix, Youtube and others, a 40% slimmer design, 4k upscaling and much more.

microsoft-xbox-one-s-consoleSo I had the Xbox One S for about 3 months and oh boy after playing with it I can’t believe what I was missing. It is such an amazing upgrade that I’ve pushed aside my Xbox 360 (the console I loved so much). I am not going into technical specifications but know that the Xbox One S is much more powerful than the Xbox 360. So these are the things I liked about the Xbox One S:

1) I am now able to play over 200 songs in my background music compared to 67 on the Xbox 360.

Update May 2017: The new Background Music Player (BMP) app allows me to play an unlimited number of songs

2) Everything loads faster because the Xbox One S has a quad-core processor with 8 gigs of DDR3 rams compared to the 500 megabits of the Xbox 360.

3) The games looks even more amazing compared to the Xbox 360 graphics, especially on my 55 inch 4k OLED LG TV. That is because it is 5.5 time more powerful than the Xbox 360!

4) Since I’ve own many consoles I can say without any doubt that the Xbox One S controller has been refined close to perfection. It fit great in my hands and is even an improvement over the Xbox 360 controller which I though was a perfect controller. Hence it is the best controller even if some other online polls revealed otherwise (sorry Playstation 4).

5) I can now connect an external hard drive to expand the storage in case I run out of room to save games.

6) More files format are now supported so there is no need to convert my music and video files like I had to do with my Xbox 360.

7) The Xbox One S disc drive is way much quieter compared to the Xbox 360.

8) It is backward compatible with some Xbox 360 games and the list of games in the backward compability list gets updated every few months.

Now the Xbox One S is not perfect hence these are the few things that I did not like:

1) Every time you put in a new game you have to install a patch on the hard drive which takes around half an hour.

2) If you are buying popular games via Xbox live some of the titles with their more current updates with season pass DLC are nearly 100 gigs such as Halo 5 Guardians and Call Of Duty Black Ops 3. So for people with slow internet connection this can be problematic. Just to give you an idea I have an high speed internet connection of 15 megabits per second download and 1 megabit per second upload. With that speed I manage to download around 5 gigabits of data per hour from the marketplace. So it took me around 20 hours to download Call Of Duty Black Ops 3 and another 20 hours for Halo 5 Guardians. The good news is that you do not have to keep your Xbox One S on while downloading. Just make sure you change the energy setting mode and your downloads will keep on going while your Xbox One S is off.

3) The Xbox One S is not backward compatible with the games from the original Xbox which came out back in November 15, 2001.

Should you buy the Xbox One S?

A) If you have a new 4k TV, want a good console to have fun and want to enjoy some 4k HDR Blu-Ray movies this Christmas than the Xbox One S offers some great performance with the best bang for your buck. 299$ for the 500 gig version with a 4k Blu-Ray player is a good deal because a standalone 4k Blu-Ray player is more expensive. That being said if you are going to play a lot of games you should definitively get the 2 terabit version because you will run out of room very quick with the 500 gigabit version.

B) If you don’t have a 4k TV and have no intention to get one than the regular Xbox One will do fine. But a note of caution make sure that you should get the Xbox One with the 1 terabit hard drive if you are going to play a lot of games. I have 5 games on my 500 gig Xbox One S and I only have around 6 gig left. Nonetheless you can always buy an external Xbox One hard drive to expand your storage.

C) One other thing that need to be noted is that Microsoft will launch a new console next year called Project Scorpio which is even much more powerful than the Xbox One S. Additionally all the Xbox One games will be backward compatible on the Project Scorpio. So if you are patient you should wait for that one but be aware that Microsoft has called the Project Scorpio a premium console so it will surely be more than double the price of the Xbox One S when it launch.

D) One last thing is that all Xbox One games can be played on your PC with Windows 10. Nonetheless your PC must meet minimum requirements and some games like Gears of War 4 demands a minimum of 8 gigs of rams and a decent graphic card. And even if you build a new PC yourself to be as powerful as the Xbox One S you will not be able to buy all the new components for a total of 300$.


So with all that being said the advantages of owing an Xbox One S far outweighs the disadvantages. So if you do not have one already it will be worth every penny!

Click Here To Buy The Xbox One S On Amazon