After months and months of waiting, Sony has finally revealed some hardware specifications for the upcoming PlayStation 5 during a live stream on the official PlayStation blog.
Right off the bat, let me clarify that the company still didn’t give us any sort of a sneak-peek at the design of the console so if you were waiting with bated breath for that sort of thing and are now extremely disappointed, well, join the club.
Speaking of the hardware though, PlayStation 5 lead system architect Mark Cerny was on the stage taking us through every little detail about the PS5, and how the team behind the console took all of those decisions, and it was pretty interesting.
The console will feature, as expected, a custom AMD CPU based on the Zen 2 architecture, and with its frequency capped at 3.5GHz. In comparison, the Xbox Series X has a custom AMD CPU based on the Zen 2 architecture that runs at 3.8GHz.
In terms of memory, the PlayStation 5 will have an SSD for storage, which is another thing we pretty much knew. However, there were two surprises here as well. The first, not that great one, was that the PS5 will have an 825GB SSD, which is not only considerably lower than the 1TB SSD in the Xbox Series X, but is also just a weird amount of storage.
The good surprise however, is that Sony will support M.2 SSDs from the open market if players want to expand storage. However, they will need to support the fast 5.5Gb/s bandwidth that Sony’s internal SSD is working on, and Mark Cerny said that the company will be testing these new PCIe 4.0 based M.2 SSDs and will release a list of recommended SSDs for the PlayStation 5.
Personally I think this is probably a better solution than what Xbox has done with its “Xbox Series X Storage Expansion Card”, but we’ll have to wait and see until we get more details around what Sony has in mind, and this Xbox expansion card.
What’s more, the PlayStation 5 will also pack in a custom AMD GPU using the RDNA 2 architecture. The GPU has 36CUs, and a total performance of 10.3TFLOPS — a number that seems dwarfed by the Xbox Series X’s 12TFLOPS; at least on paper.
Clearly, in terms of numbers on a sheet, the Xbox Series X seems to be easily beating out the PlayStation 5. But numbers can often just be numbers, and the console wars will be fought on more grounds than raw performance, including services, launch exclusives, and more — let’s see what both these companies have in store for us all.