Sony PlayStation 4 (PS4) Technical Details

Sony PlayStation 4 (PS4) Technical Details

The Sony PlayStation 4 and Microsoft Xbox One will be the main contenders next generation games console battle. With machines due to launch in late 2013, Sony has unveiled the full technical specifications of the company's latest console. With this first of a two-part series we take a comprehensive look at the PS4's technical details.


Processor (Main and Graphics)

The hub of any console will be the processor. The PS4 uses a unit manufactured by AMD that's based on a not-yet-released PC product, codenamed Jaguar. The CPU (short for central processing unit) will feature eight low-power cores and will work in conjunction with the Radeon based graphics processing unit, or GPU. The GPU features 18 computing units, each running at 800MHz which, combined with the CPU, provides the PS4 with 1.84 TFLOPS of computing power.

RAM (Ramdom Access Memory)

Among the standout numbers on the PlayStation 4's specification sheet is its 8GB of GDDR5 RAM. This high-end memory is dear and is rarely utilized in this quantity, even in high end PC graphics cards that automatically can cost as much as the PS4 is likely to cost. This makes it even more impressive that it is in the PS4. The inclusion of this level of RAM as standard is likely to future proof the console to some degree.

It remains to be seen how much of the RAM is required through the PS4 operating system. Based on experience of current generation consoles and high end gaming PC's, we'd expect a maximum of 1GB being required for this purpose, thus leaving a considerable amount free for PS4 game playing duties.

Internal Storage

Internal storage will come in the form of a 500GB 2.5-inch SATA conventional mechanical hard drive, quite an increase from those of the PlayStation 3 which only a 20GB hard drive on launch. It must be said though that this PS3 has gone through several versions mainly because it was first introduced in the year 2006 and the latest super slim models come which computer drives ranging from 250GB to 500GB.

A plus point for the PS4 would be that the hard drive is user removable and upgradeable, thus allowing larger capacity mechanical hard drives to be installed. The current largest 2.5" hard disk available is 2TB or 2000GB (4 times the size of the standard drive) so assuming the main system of the console allows it, the storage capacity in the system can be greatly expanded. Addititionally there is the possibility of installing an SSD or solid state drive within the PS4. Whilst capacities are less than standard hard drives, access information transfer speeds tend to be faster.

Optical Drive

The Sony PS4 use an integrated 6x CAV Blu-ray drive with a maximum read speed of 27 MB/s. This compares favourably using the PS3's 2x speed Blu-ray unit that's capped at just 9MB/s. Let loose of the PS3's throughput restrictions, the PS4 will likely be noticeably faster at disc to hard disk drive data transfer and will make initial game setup much quicker, even looking at the expected larger files sizes with the new generation games.

The drive will read and play Blu-ray discs, DVD's and CD's, eventhough it is unlikely to be capable of reading the newest quad-layer 100 GB capacity Blu-ray discs that can support 4k resolutions. This really is unlikely to be a worry as it is doubtful that this PS4 will support 4k output.

This concludes the first part of our look at the PS4's technical specification. In the second part we deal with the video and sound output, connectivity, the new DualShock 4 controller as well as the accessories available for generation x console.