All manufacturers (Sony, Microsoft, Nintendo, to name a few) offer different ways to understand video games. They stand out according to their philosophy (graphic power, original concept, family fun, etc.), but also by their exclusivities. With this great diversity, it is often difficult to navigate. Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch or Nvidia Shield: discover our selection of the best consoles in 2019.
In 2019, there are many ways to play to suit all tastes. The smartphone in your pocket is also the perfect example with the many games available on the Play Store. However, video game consoles still take a big place in the market where each manufacturer offers a different solution with a vision of the game, which can also be. How to know which console is right for you? Are you more likely to prefer beautiful graphics in 4K, or do you prefer to simply play in multiplayer with your loved ones? The needs are diverse and varied and a whole panoply of consoles is there to answer them.
If you do not know where to go, this guide is meant to help you!
Consoles for playing in 4K
Xbox One X: Native 4K compatibility
Microsoft's Xbox One X is currently the only console on the market to offer a native 4K graphics experience. Thanks to its 6 teraflops of power and 12 GB of RAM, it is able to run compatible video games in Ultra High Definition at 60 fps constant, as is the case for Assassin's Creed Odyssey, Gears 5, Forza Motorsport 7 or Red Dead Redemption 2.
Microsoft has made great efforts to offer optimized versions for the Xbox One X. Both for old games or new ones that have just come out.
More than just a home console, it also comes with a 4K UHD Blu-Ray drive to play all your favorite movies on your TV. Obviously, it is necessary to have the necessary equipment at home to enjoy this image quality.
In the era of dematerialization, the Microsoft console offers the Xbox Game Pass subscription to have unlimited access to a selection of games. This is not the same subscription as to play online, named Xbox Live Gold, which allows to make multiplayer games on the Internet and to receive free monthly games free.
Why do we recommend Xbox One X?
A native 4K definition
A large list of games optimized for the console
4K UHD Blu-Ray Drive
Where to buy the Microsoft Xbox One X at the best price?
PlayStation 4 Pro: 4K compatibility "upscaled"
The PlayStation 4 Pro system does not offer a true 4K definition, it is upscaled to give the illusion of UHD, but without actually showing it on the screen. The result is totally bluffing and sometimes it's really hard to tell the naked eye between Xbox One X graphics and the PS4 Pro.
It is powered by 4.2 teraflops of power with 8 GB of RAM that allows it to run some games in 4K upscalée 30 fps or Full HD 60 fps, all with HDR processing.
What will especially tip the scales is the beautiful list of exclusive licenses that Sony has: The Last of Us, Spider-Man, Uncharted or Gran Turismo. Moreover, this number is growing thanks to the PlayStation VR, a virtual reality headset that only the Japanese manufacturer offers on a home console.
Like the Microsoft console, Sony also offers its PS Now subscription to access a hundred games from its console, and even on PC. Regarding the PS Plus subscription that allows you to play online, it also gives a selection of free games per month.
Why take the PS4 Pro?
A 4K upscale bluffing
The list of exclusive Sony licenses
The only console to offer experiences in virtual reality
Where to buy the Sony PlayStation 4 Pro at the best price?
Consoles for playing on a TV
PlayStation 4 Slim: all in finesse
In 2016, Sony markets the Slim version of its PlayStation 4. It has the same characteristics as its eldest (namely an octa-core x86-64 processor, a graphics processor of 1.84 teraflops and 8 GB of RAM) while being 30% thinner, 16% lighter and above all quieter. Note that the touch buttons on the front of the console have been replaced by physical buttons.
It should be known that it gives access to the same catalog of games as the PS4 Pro, but without the optimization of the graphics. It still offers image processing thanks to its HDR compatibility, but also a DVD / Blu-Ray player.
Just like the catalog of games that does not change, subscriptions to PS Plus and PS Now are also identical to enjoy the same services regardless of the platform.
Why is the PS4 Slim recommended?
Thinner and quieter than the original model of 2013
A rather successful HDR processing
The same catalog of games as the PS4 Pro
But also the same subscriptions (PS Plus and PS Now)
Where to buy the Sony PlayStation 4 Slim at the best price?
Xbox One S: the 4K Blu-ray player
Slim model requires, the Xbox One S is smaller than the first Xbox One of the name. Like the PS4 Slim version, it also keeps the same characteristics as its sister by shipping an AMD octa-core processor clocked at 1.75 GHz with 1.3 teraflops of power and 8 GB of RAM.
However, it has the merit of integrating a 4K Blu-Ray player and being compatible with HDR, Dolby Atmos, Dolby Vision and DTS: X technologies (again, provided it is equipped accordingly at home ).
In addition to the Xbox One X graphics enhancements, it also benefits from the same exclusive games and licenses from the Microsoft catalog, as do the Xbox Live Gold subscriptions for playing on the Internet and the Xbox Game Pass.
Why choose the Xbox One S?
More compact model than the original
For its 4K Blu-Ray player
HDR, Dolby Atmos, Dolby Vision and DTS compatible: X
Access to the same games catalog and the same features as the Xbox One X
Where to buy the Microsoft Xbox One S at the best price?
Nvidia Shield 2017: the multimedia box
Originally presented as a gaming console with multimedia capabilities, the Nvidia Shield TV 2017 is often used exclusively as a TV decoder and multimedia player on Android TV. It is also compatible with 4K UHD and with different HDR formats for reading content, as well as the Xiaomi Mi Box, for example.
Nevertheless, it remains a very good game console. It opens access to the immense catalog of the Play Store, but also has exclusives appreciated by all like Portal, Doom 3 or Half Life 1 and 2. In addition, you can also take advantage of Nvidia GameStream which makes it possible to stream your favorite games from your PC to your Shield (much like the Steam Link does).
As for its features, it ships a SoC Nvidia Tegra X1 clocked at 2 GHz, 3 GB of RAM, a storage of 16 GB, 2 USB 3.0 ports, an HDMI port and an Ethernet port. Note that it is now running under the latest version of Android Oreo for Android TV.
Why buy Nvidia Shield TV 2017?
For the excluded NVIDIA on games like Portal, Doom 3 or Half Life 2
Access to Play Store Games, and more with Nvidia GameStream
4K UHD compatible and different HDR formats
Where to buy the Nvidia Shield TV (2017) at the best price?
THE console to play where you want
Nintendo Switch: the hybrid console
The Nintendo Switch is a machine that offers an interesting concept: it can be used in both portable mode and home console mode on a TV. A detail that makes it particularly attractive, but especially different from its competitors (that's why it has its own category).
Nintendo has always put forward a certain robustness for its consoles and the Switch is no exception to the rule (note: the Game Boy works even 20 years later). It is a console that is suitable for young and old, especially with a catalog of well-supplied games that now reaches more than 1,000 titles available on the eShop. There's something for everyone, from famous Big N productions with licenses like Zelda, Mario and Pokémon, to third-party titles such as Dark Souls, FIFA and more.
Regarding its raw features, it includes a 6.2-inch HD screen, a chip Nvidia Tegra X1 associated with 4 GB of RAM that can be found for example in the NVIDIA Shield 2017, a battery of 4,310 mAh which provides it a range of 2 to 3 hours depending on use and a storage capacity of 32 GB (expandable via micro SD).
Why take the Nintendo Switch?
Its solid design
Its innovative side of hybrid console
Its detachable lever to play 2
Its varied catalog of more than 1000 games available
Where to buy the Nintendo Switch at the best price?
Consoles for the nostalgic of the pixel
PlayStation Classic: the first 3D games on CD
Like Nintendo, Sony has decided to pull the rope of nostalgia by releasing a miniature version of its first home console: the PlayStation. It is 45% smaller than the original console (even smaller than the PS One) and embeds a list of 20 cult games through Final Fantasy VII, Metal Gear Solid, CoolBoarders 2, or Tekken 3.
However, it is important to note that all games are in English. Sony apparently did not find it necessary to give free access to translated versions for different countries. However, note that the menus of the console are in French.
Of course, Sony has adapted its console with the standards and technologies of our time. No more RGB or SCART cord and AC adapter, the PlayStation Classic connects with a micro USB port for power, and HDMI for picture and sound. Be aware that it is not possible to use your old accessories (the two joysticks that come with are USB) or your old games since the cover does not open.
Why choose the PlayStation Classic?
An even smaller version than the PS One
Cult games of the 90s
Connectivity in USB and HDMI
It is found in dealers less than 100 euros.
Find the PlayStation Classic on Amazon
Super NES Classic Mini: the miniature replica
Although the 3D of the PS1 has aged rather badly, the finding is not the same for the 2D of the 90s. This miniaturized version of the Super Nintendo is primarily for collectors and nostalgic who wish to relive their childhood memories with games like Super Mario World, Final Fanatsy VI, Street Fighter II, Super Metroid or Mario Kart. The games appearing in the 4: 3 format of the time, Nintendo has still filled the void of big black borders leaving the opportunity for players to choose themed frames.
Like the Sony mini console, the console menus are in French, but the games are not translated into the language of Molière. If your children want to discover the cult games that have shaped your gamer profile today, it is better to accompany them in this process.
It has a list of 21 built-in games and comes with two game controllers. It also adapts to the standards and technologies of our time with a micro USB port for power and HDMI for image and sound.
Why choose the Super NES Classic Mini?
The 21 pre-installed games
It's a retrogaming icon
In-game display is customizable (we can apply frames)
It is found in dealers for more or less 80 euros.
Find the Super NES Classic Mini on Amazon
Raspberry Pi 3: the retrogaming console of the little handyman
The Raspberry Pi 3 is a nano computer that embeds a quad-core ARM Cortex-A53 processor clocked at 1.2 GHz supported by 1 GB of RAM, a GPU dual-core videocore, a microSD card reader, HDMI ports and USB, a touch screen and APN connector, Bluetooth and WiFi. With the Recalbox software, you can transform your Raspberry Pi into a retrogaming console. Our confreres in Numerama have written a guide to accompany you step by step in this adventure.
It is possible to acquire it for thirty euros on Gearbest. We advise you to recover on the same site this Super NES box to give it a great look.
Why go on a Raspberry Pi 3?
Its low price
Lets make your console "yourself"
Find the Raspberry Pi 3 on GearBest
How to choose your console?
The console market is dominated by three giants: Nintendo who owns the Switch and the 3DS. Sony who is known for its PlayStation and Microsoft for its Xbox. Other consoles and less known / expected manufacturers are presented in the following of this buying guide.
It is important to think about the games you want to play before buying a console, because the catalog can vary greatly from one machine to another. For example, we find the most popular games on home consoles belonging to Sony and Microsoft rather than Nintendo (Call Of Duty, Assassin 's Creed, Grand Theft Auto). Conversely, the latter enjoys many exclusives from its home licenses (Mario, Pokémon, Zelda) that you will not find anywhere else (if we forget the games released on smartphone).
Want to play online with your friends? In this case, you will probably need to play on the same machine as your loved ones, because the cross-platform is extremely rare today … too bad.
Finally, it will pay attention to the features of the consoles. Some allow to play in 4K, others to play Blu-ray or to act as a multimedia hub.
Which console do you prefer?
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If you're looking for even more mobility, there are many accessories available to enjoy a gaming experience on smartphones and tablets.
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