Everything we know about the PlayStation 5
Sony’s next-generation gaming console, the PlayStation 5, is almost here. New Atlas rounds up everything we know about the PS5’s hardware, games, controllers, features and services.
Updated September 17, 2020.
- What: Sony’s fifth generation games console
- Release date:
- November 12, 2020 (US, Canada, Japan, Mexico, Australia, New Zealand, South Korea)
- November 19, 2020 (rest of the world)
- Standard – includes Ultra HD Blu-ray slot, uses 100-GB optical discs for games
- Digital Edition – no disc slot, game downloads only, slimmer profile
- Price (US$):
- $499 (Standard)
- $399 (Digital Edition)
- 390 x 260 x 104 mm (Standard)
- 390 x 260 x 92 mm (Digital Edition)
- CPU: Custom AMD Ryzen Zen 2, 8 cores @ 3.5 GHz
- GPU: Custom AMD Radeon RDNA 2, 10.3 TFLOPS, 36 CUs @ 2.23 GHz
- Storage: 825 GB Solid-state drive (SSD), 5.5 GB/s raw read speed, 9 GB/s compressed
- RAM: 16 GB GDDR6 RAM
- Connection: HDMI 2.1
Resolution options: HD, Full HD, 4K, 8K
Frame rate: Up to 120 fps
This technique involves tracing the path of light and rendering its interaction with objects in real time. That makes for far more realistic shadows, reflections, and other lighting effects.
Tempest 3D AudioTech
Applies the same ray tracing concept to audio. Sound waves are traced as they move through the environment, bouncing off objects.
Speed and efficiency
With a read speed of up to a tremendous 9 GB per second, the SSD can be written to and read from almost instantly, which drastically cuts loading times. This should also mean that developers can reduce duplicated assets in game files (a trick commonly used to cut load times), which should shrink the on-disk size of games and updates.
Rather than waiting for an entire game to install onto the SSD, players can choose which sections they want. So for example, if you’re not playing online multiplayer you can just install the single player campaign, saving space and letting you jump into the game sooner.
The storage can be expanded with third-party SSDs – but these need to be certified by Sony, and the company says they probably won't be ready on launch day.
Power-saving rest mode
The PS5 is designed to be very energy-efficient. While in rest mode, the console will only consume about 0.5 W of power, marking a massive drop from the 8.5 W that a PS4 consumes in standby.
The DualSense controller marks a bit of a change compared to Sony's previous four generations. The main new additions are the advanced haptics and adaptive triggers.
An advanced haptic feedback system creates unique tactile feedback for different actions in-game. Developers can precisely program the two motors in the grip to vibrate in various patterns, simulating specific sensations, such as the shock of a car crash or the jolt of a tackle in football. It can reportedly even recreate different terrains and textures – running across a concrete floor feels very different to sloshing through mud.
The L2 and R2 buttons on the top of the controller, which function like triggers, are also programmable now. Game developers can adjust the resistance the triggers have for different actions, so that drawing a bow and arrow, for example, feels very different to firing a gun.
- More ergonomic, two-tone design
- Improved speaker
- Built-in microphone (still has the option to plug one in)
- Share button now called Create, but no details on what that means as of yet
- Light bar moved from top of controller to beside the touchpad
- DualSense Charging Station
- HD Camera
- Pulse 3D Wireless Headset
- Media Remote
Games confirmed so far for PlayStation 5.
These games will only be available on the PlayStation 5.
- Astro's Playroom
- Demon's Souls
- Destruction All Stars
- Gran Turismo 7
- Horizon Forbidden West
- Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales
- Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart
- Sackboy A Big Adventure
These games may also appear on PC, but won't be available on Xbox Series X.
- Ghostwire: Tokyo
Other major games
These are games coming to PlayStation 5 that will also be available on other platforms.
- Assassin's Creed Valhalla
- The Lord of the Rings: Gollum
- Resident Evil 8: Village
- Hitman 3
- Cyberpunk 2077
- NBA 2K21
- FIFA 21
- Grand Theft Auto V
- Gods and Monsters
- Oddworld Soulstorm
- Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six: Quarantine
- Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Siege
- Watch Dogs: Legion
- Quantum Error
- Dirt 5
- WRC 9
- Ultimate Fishing Simulator 2
The PlayStation 5 will support around 100 of the top PS4 games at launch, with more to follow later. In the long run, Sony says that the "overwhelming majority" of PS4 titles should be compatible with the new machine, and may benefit from higher resolutions and higher and more stable frame rates. The PS4’s virtual reality headset, PSVR, will also be compatible with the PS5 but will require a special adapter to use a PS4 camera with the new console as the PS5 HD camera accessory isn't compatible with PSVR. Thankfully Sony is providing the camera adapter free of charge and PSVR owners can request one here.
Streamlined user interface
Individual missions, activities, or multiplayer sessions from within games will be displayed on the PS5’s main menu, letting players jump straight into that activity without having to boot up the game and check what’s happening.
Confirmed to be returning is Sony's subscription service, PlayStation Plus. That gives players access to online gaming, as well as extra discounts on purchases on the digital store.
A new feature for PS5's PlayStation Plus is access to what Sony calls the PlayStation Plus Collection, a library of PS4 games that can be downloaded and played at no extra cost. The selection includes Batman Arkham Knight, Bloodborne, Fallout 4, God of War, Monster Hunter: World, Detroit: Become Human, The Last of Us Remastered, and a few others.
Further reading: Everything we know about the Xbox Series X
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