Recommended PC System Requirements for when Xbox Series X and PS5 launch

Written by Chad Norton on Sat, Feb 29, 2020 4:00 PM

It’s not always the most welcome news but at the start of every new generation of consoles, comes a new generation of graphical upgrades, which means that minimum system requirements go up and everyone has to upgrade. But in all honesty if consoles didn’t innovate with their technology then PC system requirements would start to stagnate, at least this way it gives everyone a massive push to start upgrading.

And now is the perfect time, because upgrading your rig as a new generation comes out will mean that you have a more powerful PC that will last longer. We can call back to an article we wrote in 2014, roughly a year after the PlayStation 4 was released. In it we said: “Almost all of these high requirement games are available on console and more often than not we call out “bad optimisation” and “terrible console port” to explain why the developer/publisher requests certain high requirements. But in reality we all knew that these high system requirements would come, as this hardware upturn represents a technological shift in gaming.

I would highly recommend going back to that article since it’s absolutely relevant today with the transition to the next generation of consoles. 

So now I’d like to bring your attention to this: what hardware are you going to need in order to comfortably play the next-gen games at mid-range graphics. Theoretically these components should get you the same experience you would have on the next-gen consoles. Obviously these are just our predictions compared to the hardware currently announced for them, but nevertheless this is roughly what we’re looking at:

Next Gen Recommended System Requirements

  • OS: Windows 10 64-bit
  • CPU: Intel Core i5-9600K 6-Core 3.7 GHz or AMD Ryzen 7 3700X 8-Core 3.6 GHz
  • RAM: 16GB System Memory
  • GPU RAM: 8GB GDDR6 Video Memory
  • GPU: GeForce RTX 2080
  • STORAGE: 1TB SSD
  • DX: DirectX 12

It may be quite daunting looking at these specs right now. But trust us when we say that this configuration will undoubtedly keep you going until inevitably the next-next generation of consoles is announced in 6-10 years time.

Consoles bring technological leaps in gaming, and unfortunately that means splashing cash in order to upgrade your rig, but it also means outstanding achievements in graphics options. Take ray tracing for example, without the push for it on next-gen consoles we would be seeing a much slower introduction into the gaming scene. But now we have Control with ray tracing, hell we even have Minecraft and the original DOOM with ray tracing. Those kinds of things wouldn’t happen if the consoles weren’t pressured into including the capability for it, or at least, they wouldn’t happen so soon.

Currently, only Nvidia has ray tracing capable graphics cards, but AMD will inevitably have their own version soon to keep up. So we can safely say to replace the RTX 2080 with whatever equivalent AMD announces that supports ray tracing.

Obviously upgrading your rig depends on your own situation like income or budget etc. But if you are one of those lucky few who can fully upgrade your system as soon as possible, you will benefit the most in value and longevity from those upgrades. Again, what we listed above is just a guess as to the equivalent PC hardware required compared to the next-gen consoles. But PC components are always improving, Nvidia and AMD are always bringing out new stuff that’s better than the last and much pricier, which inevitably brings the price down of previous components. So wait a while or buy everything now, it’s all up to you. But in our opinion, now is absolutely the best time to upgrade as much as you possibly can.

What are your thoughts? Do you think we got the specs right? Or did we get something wrong? Will you be upgrading your rig soon? Or are you going to wait a while for prices to drop? The comments are open for discussion, and it’s a really important topic to talk about since we all care a lot about PC gaming and the relevant hardware required.

Our favourite comments:

Does anyone else remember when they were overhyping the PS4/Xbox One? Because I do. This will be more of the same. I have extremely strong doubts about suggesting that an RTX 2080 and 16gb of RAM will be what you'd need to "keep up" with the next console release. In fact I'm quite certain the consoles would be put to absolute shame by the setup being suggested. Their only saving grace will be the same as always, uniform specs that allow devs to use unique opitimization.

phat71

This is the worst time to upgrade. Wait for the next gen consoles to release then upgrade your PC a few months after.

medfreak

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18:03 Mar-07-2020

I don't know about the final optimization, but what i do know, i had my hand on a "dev kit", is that my backup pc that is listed near my nickname, aside for the ray tracing, overshadow the next gen consoles. The card suggested in the GD build is a "safe card" meaning they tell you that from London to Manchester you could arrive even with a normal car but if you buy a plane you are sure you'll get there

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18:20 Mar-07-2020

I don't think it's a safe card, the RX 5700xt is already almost at RTX 2080 level of performance, it's only 10% slower. This is first going to be 20% faster FLOP-wise by the sheer amount of CUs alone and second due to being RDNA2 which means that it will get higher IPC and better gaming performance per FLOP.

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23:53 Mar-06-2020

This is the worst time to upgrade. Wait for the next gen consoles to release then upgrade your PC a few months after.

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13:02 Mar-07-2020

I gotta fully agree!

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01:19 Mar-03-2020

Does anyone else remember when they were overhyping the PS4/Xbox One? Because I do. This will be more of the same. I have extremely strong doubts about suggesting that an RTX 2080 and 16gb of RAM will be what you'd need to "keep up" with the next console release. In fact I'm quite certain the consoles would be put to absolute shame by the setup being suggested. Their only saving grace will be the same as always, uniform specs that allow devs to use unique opitimization.

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01:33 Mar-03-2020

It would be sad if it isn't.

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17:57 Mar-02-2020

sees 9600k as a next gen facepalm...

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13:05 Mar-01-2020

the 9600k is already suffering in some new AAA games. A 6c/6t CPU is most definitely not future proof.

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12:20 Mar-01-2020

hmm looks like I'm safe for now

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14:48 Mar-01-2020

Very much so. XD

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19:05 Mar-01-2020

Still i think im quite safe too, especially keeping in mind i will upgrade this system next year or the year therafter.

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09:48 Mar-01-2020

I think it's the worst time to upgrade, because:



  1. For at least a year everything will still be cross-gen and playeble with what you have

  2. Next-gen proof PC (which you predicted well) is expenssive AF, but in a year and a half it (1/2)

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09:50 Mar-01-2020

(2/2) will be your regular mid range PC.
Therefore I believe that the best time to upgrade will come when the first PC graphic card series AFTER consoles launches.

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10:20 Mar-01-2020

Yes, indeed. Lower prices as well. Next-gen consoles use RDNA 2 GPUs, we don't even have those yet on PC. Curious to see AMD's ray-tracing solution.

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09:46 Mar-01-2020

Have comment earlier on this page: But my setup will do for 2 years or more when i upgrade my GPU mid next year will extends my setup. And staying at 1080P is not a shame right? The CPU gonna upgrade over 2 or 3 years. Have not the money to game at 4K 1440P might not that difficult.

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16:15 Mar-01-2020

It's not a shame to stay at 1080p, as long as you like it, everything is good. Just as in my case, I don't care about 1440p or 4k lol

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19:02 Mar-01-2020

Yup "improved" visuals are pointless and overrated. Gameplay, mechanics, level design, story and sound is what matters most.

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07:50 Mar-03-2020

Exacty. And I'd rather play at High settings 1080p 60fps than 4k medium settings 30fps. I'd rather not spend a stupid amount of money on a PC that's not even mandatory to enjoy the games

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13:16 Mar-03-2020

Oh it's not just resolution, it's just improvements in visuals that are pointless.


The reason AAA games cost 75-200 million dollars to develop is because 95% of that budget is thrown for visuals... just think about that. IF a dev team is of 1000 people, about 900 will be in the animation, 3d, motion capture, texture, lighting and just overall VISUAL department, and 100 will be spread among programmers, level designers, game designers and other non-Visual jobs like voice acting and such.

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13:17 Mar-03-2020

If we go back to 2004-2008 visuals, the budget of games will drop back to 5-25 million dollars and they can easily sell full games with tons of content and gameplay and mechanic improvements with each new IP or sequel for 60$ without any DLC, micro-transactions and loot boxes AND ON TOP OF THAT, Games will be BETTER than they are now.

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08:52 Mar-01-2020

I disagree with the 9600K you've chosen there. Games will inevitably require far more than 6 threads going forward into next-gen. Not every game will, but those akin to Shadow of the Tomb Raider, a semi-open world or open-world like Watch Dogs 2 next-gen will definitely make use of 8 threads and more on PS5/XSX. That means the same number of threads will be used on PC as well for those kinds of games. A 9600K with just 6 cores and 6 threads will be extremely limited in comparison and it's surely not going to "keep you going until inevitably the next-next generation of consoles". A 6-core with HT/SMT (R5 3600 or similar from Intel) is the way to go as minimum going forward if you want 60fps

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03:11 Mar-01-2020

I don't think this is the right time to upgrade. If you think about it consoles are gonna have -12 teraflops of power, which paired with the console optimization makes a huge difference versus a 2080. I suppose the right time is the next series of graphics cards after the consoles launch, this way you'll be already ahead of consoles and keep up much longer with nextgen hardware

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00:43 Mar-01-2020

Just like everyone else I'm baffled as to why the 9600K and the 3700X are being compared here. If the 3700X is what is needed to run these Next-Gen games then put a 9700K as recommended or even a 9900K. If the 9600K is what you need then just put a 3600 as recommended.

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23:58 Feb-29-2020

Graphical upgrades are always welcome, I think i will change my GPU once i find a game i cant even play on low settings 1080p 30 fps, either that or until my GPU dies, my CPU should be fine trough the entire generation, or at least i hope so.

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22:45 Feb-29-2020

Was comparing the i5-9600k to Ryzen 7 3700X a typo?

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22:28 Feb-29-2020

Right, because i5 9600k is totally equal performance as R7 3700X, I definitely dare to call that out as Intel biased. If i5 9600k is fine, Ryzen 5 3600 is more than fine and there is no need for R7 3700X. Yes consoles will have 8c 16t, but they will highly likely be clocked lower than desktop parts, like Athlon with a lot of cores. So R5 3600 with higher frequency will totally make up for it.

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22:30 Feb-29-2020

Plus i5 9600k with 2080Ti already struggles with 80%+ utilization and lower 1% low performance in so me titles today, not next gen. This is exact repeat when people said how you should buy i5 7600k instead of Ryzen 1600... oh, how badly that aged. Nowdays R5 1600 can comfortably game while 7600k struggles to keep up with 1% low performance and stuttering. Just saying.

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22:33 Feb-29-2020

I mean if you want proof of what happened when media was jumping on how Intel gives you more FPS with 7600k, just check this video from Hardware Unboxed:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=97sDKvMHd8c

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22:44 Feb-29-2020

Also I would touch on RTX2080 another thing that makes this list just look bad. RTX2070 Super is both cheaper and just little slower and it will be plenty. Same goes with even cheaper RX5700XT. Plus if you want to argue about raytracing, I would dare to say that current nVidia cards are terrible at futureproofing, because they will be left behind in dust with new stuff.

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22:46 Feb-29-2020

Saying buy current generation of raytracing for futureproofing is like some company coming out with a car which has wings, so when you drive off the cliff you glide a bit before falling and reviewers looking at other car being like "but it doesn't have wings". If you want raytracing, wait for upcoming stuff from nVidia and AMD.

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19:08 Mar-01-2020

Completely correct. Good point mate

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22:30 Feb-29-2020

Well an 8 core/16 thread Zen2 at 3.5Ghz it's only 20% lower than the r5 3600(X) at 4.2Ghz all core boost(assuming you hit it), so no it won't make up for it in theory, but games will always perform better on fewer strong cores(up to a point fewer) than on more weaker ones.

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22:37 Feb-29-2020

Exactly, this is dependent on workload. Games just don't hammer all cores as hard as productivity stuff. Hence why 3600 can make up to it with frequency, even though obviously in productivity it will lose to 3700X any day with core heavy work.

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13:09 Mar-01-2020

Well next gen games are bound to add an Ai engine which will run on the cpu, so games will now be comprised of 5 different programs.

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21:46 Feb-29-2020

I'm hoping my i7 8700k at 4.8Ghz will stay relevant for the next few years, but I'm pretty much set on everything else. The only thing I'm currently lacking is PCIe 4.0 support, which seems to be more important for NVME storage speeds right now, but it's possible that upcoming games might take advantage of 4.0's bandwidth for compatible GPUs. But most games today don't take full advantage of even PCIe 3.0's bandwidth, from what I understand, so maybe it won't be a huge deal with 4.0, either.

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18:05 Mar-02-2020

I feel like pcie 4.0 is more for power users with loads of addon cards and nvme hard drives, however if you plan to keep your cpu/mobo/ram combo for 6+ years than it might be useful for graphics as well.

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06:58 Mar-03-2020

I've had my current CPU/mobo/RAM combo for 2 years now, hoping to keep it going for another 4-5 years at least, just upgrading the GPU and/or storage when I feel like I need to. But if PCIe 4.0 for GPUs does start showing a lot of progress over 3.0, I'll be really tempted to have a mobo with 4.0 support..

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21:50 Mar-04-2020

Yeah i think thats good approach to this, i know sli/crossfire is dying nowadays but its nice to know that if you have 2 slots of pcie x8 at 4.0 version its the same bandwidth as dual pcie x16 3.0 version and most motherboards have this setup.

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21:29 Feb-29-2020

RTX 2080 being recommended is not that unrealistic given that 3080 is out this year(?). Anyway the 2080 won't be the universally recommended GPU (and whatever AMD will be top end) as the 2060 or 2070 will do just fine.

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22:31 Feb-29-2020

The RTX 2070 Super and RX 5700xt is only 5-10% slower than the rtx 2080 non-super, so yeah they are already there.

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21:06 Feb-29-2020

Or you know.. put the pressure on the API development. Theoretically, the GPUs today are much more powerful than they appear to be. The biggest bottleneck being the API. The specs you put on display here are for the filthy rich only.Argument: DOOM Vulcan vs DX11
By the looks of it, future games will be all graphics, no gameplay. And for the end... who the hell even notices a difference between ultra/high/medium. The only contender in the difference department would be DRAW DISTANCE (+ maybe shadows). Unless you take a good look at a static picture and compare detail levels, you can't really notice anything between Ultra and High.

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20:34 Feb-29-2020

A big change needs to happen for PC hardware in order for this to become some sort of reality. Either big price drops for hardware, or consoles will have to be insanely high priced at launch.


Because there is no way you would have to build a $2000 PC (on next-gen launch) to keep up with what consoles can do.

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20:27 Feb-29-2020

Usually when new hardware comes games try to make it as minimal req. If 1650 is the weakest of 16 series then this GPU might be the minimal for games. Or at least minimal video ram 4 GB with 8GB ram with CPU around mine +

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20:25 Feb-29-2020

Not upgrading this and next year cause I'm moving with GF to a new apartment. Besides till now I can play almost every game I want on medium/high @1440p, so I'm not in a hurry.

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Can They Run... |

| 60FPS, Ultra, 1080p
Core i7-6800K 6-Core 3.4GHz GeForce GTX 1080 Asus ROG Strix Gaming OC 8GB Edition 32GB
| 60FPS, High, 1080p
Core i7-10700 8-Core 2.90GHz GeForce GTX 1050 Gigabyte D5 2GB 8GB
0% No [1 votes]
Ryzen 5 3600 6-Core 3.6GHz GeForce RTX 2070 Gigabyte Windforce 8GB 16GB
100% Yes [4 votes]
Ryzen 7 5800H 8-Core 3.2GHz GeForce RTX 3060 Mobile 16GB
100% Yes [2 votes]
| 60FPS, Ultra, 1440p
Ryzen 9 3900X 12-Core 3.8GHz GeForce RTX 3070 EVGA FTW3 Ultra Gaming 8GB 32GB
80% Yes [5 votes]
| 60FPS, Low, 720p
APU A8-7410 Quad-Core Radeon R5 7410 8GB
100% Yes [4 votes]
| 60FPS, Ultra, 1080p
Core i5-11400 6-Core 2.7GHz GeForce RTX 3050 Ti Mobile 8GB
0% No [1 votes]
| 60FPS, Ultra, 1080p
Ryzen 5 3600 6-Core 3.6GHz GeForce GTX 1080 MSI Gaming X 8GB Edition 16GB
100% Yes [3 votes]
| 30FPS, Low, 720p
Ryzen 5 3400G 4-Core 3.7GHz Radeon RX Vega 11 6GB
0% No [1 votes]
| 30FPS, High, 1080p
Core i5-11400 6-Core 2.7GHz GeForce RTX 3050 Ti Mobile 8GB
50% Yes [2 votes]
| 60FPS, Medium,
Ryzen 5 3500U 4-Core 2.1 GHz Radeon RX Vega 8 8GB
| 30FPS, Low,
Ryzen 5 3500U 4-Core 2.1 GHz Radeon RX Vega 8 8GB
50% Yes [2 votes]
| 60FPS, High, 1080p
Core i5-10400 6-Core 2.90GHz GeForce GTX 1650 16GB
0% No [2 votes]
| 60FPS, Ultra, 1080p
Core i7-7700K 4-Core 4.2GHz GeForce RTX 2080 Super 8GB 16GB
100% Yes [2 votes]
| 60FPS, Ultra, 1080p
Core i7-7700K 4-Core 4.2GHz GeForce RTX 2080 Super 8GB 16GB
100% Yes [1 votes]
| 60FPS, Medium, 1080p
Core i5-10300H 4-Core 2.50GHz GeForce RTX 3060 Mobile 16GB
0% No [1 votes]
| 30FPS, Low, 720p
Athlon II X2 245 GeForce GTS 250 4GB
| 60FPS, Ultra, 1080p
Core i9-10900X 10-Core 3.7GHz GeForce RTX 2070 Super Gigabyte Gaming OC 3X 8GB 32GB
100% Yes [1 votes]
| 30FPS, Medium, 1080p
Ryzen 5 3500U 4-Core 2.1 GHz Radeon RX 540X 2GB Mobile 8GB
100% Yes [3 votes]
| 30FPS, Low, 1080p
Core i5-4670 3.4GHz GeForce GTX 1050 Ti EVGA Gaming 4GB 8GB
100% Yes [3 votes]