Ever since the ongoing coronavirus outbreak resulted in cancellation of the E3 gamers’ conference, there has been a massive build-up around the launches of Xbox Series X and Playstation 5. And while the former was announced just a while back, Sony gave us full insights on the latter. The Japanese electronics giant today unveiled the specifications for its next gaming prodigy, the PlayStation 5.
The announcement, which was scheduled to take place at the Game Developers Conference, comes after months of teases and information leaks. The latest addition to Sony’s much-acclaimed console series is driven by a custom eight-core AMD Zen 2 CPU clocked at 3.5GHz (variable frequency) and a custom GPU based on AMD’s RDNA 2 architecture hardware that promises 10.28 teraflops and 36 compute units clocked at 2.23GHz (also variable frequency). It’ll also have 16GB of GDDR6 RAM and a custom 825GB SSD that will offer “blindingly fast” loading times in gameplay, PlayStation hardware lead Mark Cerny says. Although the numbers are mesmerizing on their own, the latest PlayStation falls short of its nemesis, the Xbox Series X, which offers an eight-core processor at 3.8GHz, a GPU with 12 teraflops and 52 compute units each clocked at 1.825GHz, 16GB of GDDR6 RAM, and a 1TB SSD. Both the consoles feature similar AMD processor and graphic architecture.
The switch to an SSD, Cerny says, was done keeping in mind the needs of developers. He claims the latest PlayStation, with its SSD, will take about 0.27 seconds to load 2 GB of data (yes you read that right). In context, PlayStation 4 took 20seconds to load 1 GB of data. If the claim actually holds true, it could be a game-changer. The SSD not only reduces loading times, but it also allows freedom for developers to make bigger worlds in-game.
An ultra-fast SSD “gives the game designer freedom”, according to Cerny. That’s the primary reason for including it in the PS5. The console uses a standard NVMe SSD, hence offering scope for future upgrades, although the custom SSDs will have to match Sony high-speed standard which is only available in the steeply expensive PCIe 4.0 SSDs at the moment.
“On PS5 the SSD is more like RAM. Most of RAM is working on the game’s behalf,” says Cerny. In other words, SSDs will allow system memory to be used more effectively.
The console will also support external USB hard drives, along with support for 8K gaming and 4K gaming at 120Hz, as previously announced. The PlayStation 5 will also have a 3D audio feature that will provide an enhanced and immersive audio experience.
The console is set to launch in the coming holiday season.