AMD hints at PS5 and Xbox Series X having the same ray tracing-focused graphics card

AMD hints at PS5 and Xbox Series X having the same ray tracing-focused graphics card
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Although we still lack the data and hardware details to do a direct comparison, it sounds like the PS5 and Xbox Series X will have similar ray-tracing capabilities and graphical tech under the hood thanks to AMD's new RDNA2 graphics cards.

Reported by wccftech the information comes from AMD's Financial Analyst Day presentation. Covering a whole host of PC and tech-related happenings, AMD revealed in a comment that they had "...developed an all-new hardware-accelerated ray tracing architecture as part of RDNA2," and that it "is a common architecture used in the next-generation game consoles." 

Tellingly, using the plural 'consoles' would indicate this is something that will be shared across the Sony/Microsoft divide. If true, this means that there would be not as much of a gap in graphical capability between the consoles as had been thought previously.

AMD's RDNA2 graphics cards represent the company's newest architecture for graphics cards. Both consoles having AMD-powered cards is not that new - both the PS4 and Xbox One were powered by AMD chips - but it was touted that PlayStation would cling on to older tech while Microsoft embraced the new. This would seem to put that to bed and alter the theme of the graphical showdown that is PS5 vs Xbox Series X.

(Image credit: Nvidia)

The whole quote from David Wang of AMD is as follows "We have developed an all-new hardware-accelerated ray tracing architecture as part of RDNA 2. It is a common architecture used in the next-generation game consoles. With that, you will greatly simplify the content development -- developers can develop on one platform and easily port it to the other platform. This will definitely help speed up the adoption [of ray tracing]."

As well as the plural 'consoles' giving a nod to the main next-gen players, the quote also includes a nod to developers being able to port between platforms. The latter being rather handy if you're creating content for multiple game consoles and systems. More generally this is positive news in the quest for confirming dizzying graphical heights such as the much-anticipated ray-tracing and incredible texture, world and environmental rendering - these AMD chips are set to make the games we play even better visually. The crushing reality is that we don't know how they might affect the PS5 price. Or the Xbox Series X price for that matter either.

News on PS5 specs is a bit like seeing a unicorn right now- compared to how Microsoft has been feeding us the Xbox Series X specs anyway. Sony seem intent on winning the game of chicken, barely bothered to break cover, so we'll take any hints and whiffs of information as they come, and it'll be interesting to see how this manifests itself in any further hardware breakdowns we have.

While we wait on more specific details on the inside of the PS5, you can still peruse some of the best PS4 Pro deals going to jump into all things premium PlayStation right now.

Rob Dwiar

Rob is the Deputy Editor of sister site, TechRadar Gaming, and has been in the games and tech industry for years. Prior to a recent stint as Gaming Editor at WePC, Rob was the Commissioning Editor for Hardware at GamesRadar+, and was on the hardware team for more than four years, since its inception in late 2018. He is also a writer on games and has had work published over the last six years or so at the likes of Eurogamer, RPS, PCGN, and more. He is also a qualified landscape and garden designer, so does that in his spare time, while he is also an expert on the virtual landscapes and environments of games and loves to write about them too, including in an upcoming book on the topic!