In the golden age of video games, it was all about the console wars. Sony versus Nintendo. Sega versus Nintendo. The gaming war has now turned to Microsoft and Sony, with Nintendo focusing on providing a unique experience. PCs have also joined the fray and are competing with consoles on a different level. The battle is now PC gaming versus console gaming.
In this post, we are going to discuss the differences between PC and console gaming.
Types of PCs and Consoles
PCs run on one of the three operating systems: Windows, macOS, and Linux. Windows is the most popular but there are loads of games that have been released on Linux and macOS operating systems. However, the limited selection makes Windows a favored choice for gamers. With PC, gamers have two choices; desktop and laptops. Gaming laptops are very expensive when compared to desktops and do not offer the same quality and performance as desktops.
As for consoles, there many different types to choose from. These include home video game consoles, handheld game consoles, and dedicated consoles. Mainstream consoles include Microsoft’s Xbox and Sony’s PlayStation. Casual consoles offer family-friendly entertainment and include the likes of Nintendo’s handheld 3DS and the Switch.
A PC with gaming performance on par with the Xbox One X goes for £600. A new PC with performance similar to that of Xbox One and PS4 will cost you about £400. A high-end PC goes for £800 and can reach over £2,000. These machines are powerful and can run games in 2K and 4K. It is important to note that, apart from the PC itself, you’ll also need other peripherals such as the handset, mouse, keyboard, and speakers which can significantly increase the total price of a gaming PC. Consoles are way cheaper than PCs and can cost from £200 to about £500. For example, Xbox One, Nintendo 3DS, and PlayStation Vita go for £200, Nintendo Switch sells for £300 and Xbox One X goes for £500.
When you factor in electricity costs, PCs are very expensive as they consume a lot of energy. They use about 1,500 kWh per year which is a lot and can significantly add up to your gaming expenses. To cut on these costs, consider looking for an electricity supplier with affordable rates. You can switch energy online easily by using energy and electricity comparison websites.
Many games are created primarily for consoles and then made available to PC. Therefore, players can expect a larger library of games for the modern console than PC. However, there do exist console-exclusive games, the best ones being Sony’s first-party titles, as well as PC-exclusive games.
PCs are great when it comes to backward compatibility. You can play games that were released in the ’90s on about any PC. Additionally, with the installation of emulation and a few accessories, players can emulate just about any old console.
Unfortunately, consoles do not offer backward compatibility.
The Quest for Real Savings
A typical gaming PC consumes the largest amount of electricity in gaming entertainment. According to a study conducted by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, a high-performance gaming computer consumes about 1,500 kWh per year which is equivalent to approximately three refrigerators, ten consoles, and six conventional PCs.
Gaming PCs account for about 75 terawatt hours or 20%, of the total electricity consumed by gaming machines. The power bill for these gaming desktops and laptops comes to £10 billion a year. However, savings of about 75% can be trimmed through strategic operational settings, component changes and retrofits that don’t affect the overall performance. This could save up to £18 billion or 120 terawatt hours of power.