Gaming Console 101

Xbox Series S Equivalent PC – Thoroughly Explained

xbox series s pc equivalent featured

Xbox Series S is technically a 9th-generation console as it was released with the Series X and the PlayStation 5, however, many are conflicted about whether it can genuinely be called a next-gen console given its inferior hardware.

The supporters of this console are of the opinion that Xbox Series S is great for console gamers who do not care much for 4K – Series S does not support 4K gaming.

But for PC gamers out there, there is an opportunity here in that Xbox Series S PC equivalent gaming setup would be very cheap and support new games at decent graphics levels.

So in other words, for budget gamers, an Xbox Series S can be the minimum equivalent to reach for.

In short, though, the two critical components i.e. CPU and GPU equivalent to Xbox Series S are AMD Ryzen 7 3700X (CPU) and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650/AMD Radeon RX 6500XT (GPU) respectively.

In the following text, I will talk in detail about the PC equivalent to Series S and how we can determine its equivalent.

Benchmarking Is the Usual Way for Determining Performance Levels

Typically, if we want to compare CPU or GPUs, their performance levels, and where they stand in comparison to the rest of their counterparts, then we look at the scores from popular benchmarks.

The popular benchmarks include Passmark, Cinebench, Geekbench, G3DMark, etc.

We use benchmarks instead of lying on the technical spec sheets because technical spec sheets can be misleading and do not truly reflect the prowess of components.

Take for instance the AMD Ryzen 5 3600X and AMD Ryzen 5 5600X, they both have the same number of cores and also a similar clock speed, however, the latter is 15% more powerful than the former.

Xbox Series X PC Equivalent
AMD Ryzen 5 5600X vs AMD Ryzen 5 3600X. Source: Passmark

As such, looking at clock speed, core counts, thread count, cache memory, etc is not a reliable metric for determining a CPU or a GPU’s performance.

UNFORTUNATELY, benchmarks can ONLY be used for GPU and GPU that are PC-based. The benchmarking utilities can ONLY be installed on a PC in order to measure the performance of the components.

Xbox Series S, like the rest of the gaming consoles, uses a CPU and GPU that are custom-made and CANNOT interface with a PC hence these benchmarks cannot be used.

Hence, we know to get a further and thorough understanding of the components and their architecture in order to determine their PC equivalent.

Xbox Series S and Its Official Specs

We know from the official specsheet, that Xbox Series S has the following CPU and GPU installed:

CPU in Xbox Series S

Make / ModelAMD / Custom
Clock Speed3.6 GHz
ArchitectureZen 2

The important bit of information in the specs above is the ARCHITECTURE the CPU belongs to.

The custom-made CPU in Series S has the Zen 2 architecture. This was the same architecture that was used with the AMD Ryzen 3000 CPUs.

Hence, when looking at the PC equivalent, the first thing to make sure of is that the architecture match.

GPU in Xbox Series S

Make / ModelAMD / Custom
ArchitectureRDNA 2
Performance4 Teraflops, 20 Compute Units (CUs)

Here the most important metric is the Teraflops (and Compute Units, CU, if looking at AMD PC GPU equivalent).

Teraflops is basically the measure of RAW GPU power.

Xbox Series S is rated at 4 Teraflops and 20 CU.

So What is Xbox Series S Equivalent PC?

So as alluded to earlier, the most important components are the CPU and the GPU for any gaming computers.

While SSD, RAM, and peripheral components are also important, the CPU and GPU (the latter in particular) determine how good of a gaming PC you have.

So let us look at the Xbox Series S equivalent for CPU and GPU:

CPU Xbox Series S Equivalent to PC

So according to the official specs below, the Xbox Series S has the following CUSTOM-made CPU:

  • Architecture: Zen 2
  • Lithography: 7nm
  • Number of Cores: 8
  • Clock Speed: 3.8 GHz
  • Release Date of Xbox Series X: November 2020

It should be noted that being a custom-made CPU, it CANNOT be bought off the shelf for a PC. Instead, we can use the clock speed, and number of cores in CONJUNCTION with the architecture in order to determine the PC equivalent.

Xbox Series S uses an AMD CPU with the Zen 2 architecture. This architecture was released in 2019 and was featured in the AMD 3000 and 4000 series CPUs.

In terms of overall prowess, the AMD CPU that closely matches the specs is the:

  • AMD Ryzen 7 3700X: 8 Cores (16 Threads) / 3.6-4.4 GHz / 7nm / Zen 2
AMD ryzen 7 3700x
AMD Ryzen 7 3700X is a Zen 2 based 8 Core processor that closely resembles the CPU in Xbox Series X. Source: AMD

Many people make the mistake of comparing the Xbox Series S processor with the AMD Ryzen 7 5700X since this too has a similar number of cores and clock speed.

However, this comparison does not hold true given the fact that AMD Ryzen 7 5700X uses the more advanced Zen 3 architecture.

AMD Ryzen 7 3700X has Passmark score of 22,663. This is similar in comparison to the Intel Core i7 10700K on the lower end and the Intel Core i7 11700K on the upper end.

GPU Xbox Series S Equivalent to PC

We have two metrics that we can use the determine the performance level of GPU in Series S for comparison purposes:

  • Teraflops: This can be used for any GPU
  • CU: Compute Units – this is used by AMD GPUs (it is kind of similar to NVIDIA Cuda Cores).

As far as the Teraflops are concerned, the following table shows the teraflops of the Xbox Series S as well as of some of the popular PC graphics cards:

Xbox Series S4
PS4 Pro4.2
AMD RX 5500XT5.2
NVIDIA GTX 1660Ti5.4
AMD RX 6500 XT5.76
Xbox One X6
AMD RX 5600 XT7.19
AMD RX 66008.93
NVIDIA RTX 30509.1
AMD RX 5700 XT9.75
AMD RX 6600XT10.6
NVIDIA RTX 208010.6
NVIDIA GTX 1080Ti11.3
AMD Radeon RX 670011.29
Xbox Series X12
NVIDIA RTX 306012.7
AMD RX 6700XT13.21
NVIDIA RTX 2080Ti14.2
NVIDIA RTX 308029.8
NVIDIA RTX 4090100
Power Overwhelming

This is usually where Series S fans drop their heads in shame. In terms of raw power, Series S is in fact less powerful than the older Gen PS4 Pro gaming console.

While it does have a better CPU, offers SSD, has better software, and even offers Ray tracing, in terms of RAW GPU power it is on par or just marginally better than the older-gen consoles.

BUT, then again, the hardware is optimized enough to support most of the next gaming games at FHD or 1440P resolution at 60 FPS. It will certainly not do 4K though.

So as far as the equivalent GPU for Series S, goes, the most direct comparison can be made with the AMD RX 6500XT.

While the 6500XT has a higher Teraflops as compared to Series, it has a lower number of compute units (16 vs 20), but both the RX 6500XT and the GPU in Series S use the RDNA2 architecture.

And The Rest of The Components

Xbox Series S Equivalent PC
Xbox Series S memory and storage specs. Note this console does not offer a blu-ray drive.

Of course, the CPU and GPU will take the brunt of your investment. However, in order to build a PC, you also need to have other critical components as well

Xbox Series S features:

  • Memory: 10 GB GDDR6

Unlike with PC where system and GPU memory are separate, with Series S, this memory is shared. The 6500XT has 4GB GDDR6 VRAM and also comes in the 8 GB variant.

But you also need to have system memory for a PC build. It is recommended for gaming PCs to have 12-16GB DDR4 or DDR5 as a minimum.

  • Storage: 512GB Custom NVMe SSD

Xbox Series S uses PCIe 4.0-based Gen 4 NVMe SSD.

  • Recommended PSU: 400W Minimum

The PSU recommendation is based on the GPU you have. 400W PSU is the MINUMIM recommended rating for AMD RX 6500XT. A more powerful GPU would require a more powerful PSU.

A Sample Custom PC Xbox Series S PC and Its Cost

With a sample PC as suggested below, you can get an idea regarding how much it would COST you to build an equivalent gaming PC to Xbox Series S.

For starters, we know that Series S has an MSRP of $299. The MSRP value is generally what the market follows.

Based on the information above, the following is a sample custom PC equivalent to Xbox Series S:

ComponentMake/ModelTypical Market Price
MotherboardGIGABYTE X570S AORUS Elite AX (1)$189
CPUAMD Ryzen 7 5700X
3700X is more expensive (2)
GPUAMD RX 6500XT$150
PSUThermaltake Smart 430W 80+ White$41
RAMCorsair Vengeance LPX
16 GB DDR 4
StorageWD Black 1 TB SN770 (3)$50
ChassisZalman S2 ATX Mid Tower
3X Pre-Installed 120mm Fan

A few important points to note :

  1. While there are much cheaper motherboards out there, I have chosen the X570-based motherboard here because it supports Gen 4 SSD. The inferior B550 or the A520 motherboards DO NOT support Gen 4 SSD.
  2. I have chosen AMD Ryzen 7 5700X because the older 3700X is in fact more expensive.
  3. I have chosen a 1 TB SSD (instead of the equivalent 512 GB) because the difference in cost is only about $2-$5. So it is absolutely worth it to go for 1 TB.

So in the end, you end with a total cost of $787. This does not take into consideration the cost of the peripherals. You can buy a cheap keyboard and mouse combo for $30-$50.

While you do get a better CPU as well as a higher storage drive in the PC build, the custom PC will still cost you more than twice that of the Xbox Series S.

Also Read: Xbox Series X PC Equivalent

Final Words

If you do not wish to go through the hassle of building a PC yourself, you can always get a prebuilt one with the above components in mind.

But in all cases, the Xbox Series S equivalent PC will cost you far more than the console itself.

Hence, you have to weigh the pros and cons. While the monetary factor does NOT go in favor of a PC equivalent at all, PCs do have an edge in the flexibility of work and gaming as well as in terms of expandability.

Atif Qazi

Atif Qazi is the founder of and a huge gaming nerd. Thanks to the vast gaming experience under his belt, you can often find him writing detailed pieces of content on gaming hardware and console. But in all honesty, nothing gives him more pleasure than 'one-shotting' everyone as a stealth archer in ESO: Skyrim.

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