The Sony PlayStation 4 and Microsoft Xbox One are the main contenders next generation games console battle. With machines due to launch at the end of 2013, Sony has unveiled the full technical specifications of their latest console. With this first of a two-part series we please take a comprehensive look at the PS4's technical details.
In the middle of any console is the processor. The PS4 use a unit manufactured by AMD that is based on a not-yet-released PC product, codenamed Jaguar. The CPU (short for cpu) will feature eight low-power cores and can work in conjunction with the Radeon based graphics processing unit, or GPU. The GPU features 18 computing units, each running at 800MHz which, together with the CPU, provides the PS4 with 1.84 TFLOPS of computing power.
RAM (Ramdom Access Memory)
One of many standout numbers for the PlayStation 4's specification sheet is its 8GB of GDDR5 RAM. This high-end memory is costly and is rarely used in this quantity, even just in high end PC graphics cards that independently can cost as much as the PS4 will probably cost. This makes it increasingly impressive that it is within the PS4. The inclusion of this level of RAM as standard probably will future proof the console to a certain extent.
It remains to be seen what amount of the RAM is required through the PS4 operating system. Based on example of current generation consoles and end gaming PC's, we might expect a maximum of 1GB being required for this purpose, thus leaving an amazing amount free for PS4 games duties.
Internal storage also comes in the form of a 500GB 2.5-inch SATA conventional mechanical hard disk, quite an increase from that relating to the PlayStation 3 which only were built with a 20GB hard drive on launch. It needs to be said though that this PS3 has gone through several versions mainly because it was first introduced in 2006 and the latest super slim models come which computer drives ranging from 250GB to 500GB.
A bonus point for the PS4 is the hard drive is user removable and upgradeable, thus allowing larger capacity mechanical hard drives to be installed. The existing largest 2.5" hard disk available is 2TB or 2000GB (4 times the size of the standard drive) so assuming the operating system of the console allows it, the storage capacity of the system can be greatly expanded. Addititionally there is the possibility of installing an SSD or solid state drive from the PS4. Whilst capacities are less than standard hard drives, access files transfer speeds less complicated faster.
The Sony PS4 uses an integrated 6x CAV Blu-ray drive using a maximum read speed of 27 MB/s. This compares favourably with all the PS3's 2x speed Blu-ray unit which was capped at just 9MB/s. Let out of the PS3's throughput restrictions, the PS4 is going to be noticeably faster at disc to harddrive data transfer and will make initial game build much quicker, even taking into account the expected larger files sizes from the new generation games.
The drive will read and play Blu-ray discs, DVD's and CD's, even though it is unlikely to be capable of reading the modern quad-layer 100 GB capacity Blu-ray discs that are designed to support 4k resolutions. This is unlikely to be an issue as it is doubtful the PS4 will support 4k output.
This concludes the first part of our look at the PS4's technical specification. Within the second part we handle the video and sound output, connectivity, the new DualShock 4 controller and the accessories available for generation x console.