Release date: End of 2020.
According to the statements of Sony, the console will be released in late 2020. The official price is still unknown, according to the versions of some analysts the new console should cost about $499, which is only $100 above the initial price of the previous generation.
What is interesting is that there is a possibility of running a regular PS5 and its Pro-version simultaneously. That was suggested by Japanese journalist Senji Nishikawa, who had already correctly predicted the PS4 Pro and Nintendo Switch Lite. That’s pretty strange against the backdrop of the already well-reported characteristics.
Fresh info (January 2020)
Despite players’ expectations, there were no new console details at CES 2020. Instead, Sony presented only the official PS5 logo. It turned out to be controversial and has already generated a lot of jokes on the Internet.
The central processor is based on the third generation of the Ryzen line: an eight-core CPU with Zen 2 microarchitecture, manufactured to 7 nm process. AMD is also responsible for the graphics part. A custom variant from the Radeon Navi family with hardware support for ray tracing has been developed for the console.
In addition to the graphical part, the sound will be improved. There are no specific examples yet, but Mark Cherney confirmed to Wired that the virtual surround sound will work on the TV speakers and preferably in headphones. Perhaps it’s something like HRTF, familiar from CS: GO or binaural sound already used in Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice and Resident Evil 2.
In the new generation, SSDs will be used instead of slow hard drives. Boot time is one of the obvious problems with current consoles. Suffice it to recall the long boot times in the console versions of The Outer Worlds, which were almost completely leveled out on SSD computers.
The new generation promises to fix this. The Wired demo showed a comparison of downloads using Marvel’s Spider-Man as an example. While on the normal version, a quick move from one end of a virtual city to the other took 15 seconds, on the non-xtgen it took less than a second.
But it seems that the new generation of SSDs will work a bit differently than modern PCs. First of all, it concerns game optimization. Many developers are duplicating information in order to increase reading speed. This leads to an increase in the volume occupied by the game. With an SSD, this is no longer necessary, so developers can use the available resources as they wish, for example, to reduce the size of the game or make the game world even more detailed.
Moreover, Digital Foundry experts believe that an SSD can provide more than just fast booting. The SSD can be used as a virtual RAM, which will increase the detail of next-gen games by a factor of one. This technology is already used in the Radeon Pro SSG professional graphics card with a 2 terabyte SSD built in. This allows processing scenes that Nvidia’s analogues can’t handle due to lack of memory.
The physical carriers aren’t going anywhere yet. The console will still support optical disks which, by the way, should already hold 100 GB of data. And the drive will read Blu-ray with content in 4K resolution. But the approach to installing games will change. For example, it will be possible to independently install and remove the story campaign and multiplayer.
There are several innovations waiting for us here. One of them is adaptive hens. That is, the pressure resistance will change. In theory, this sounds interesting, but how developers will apply it in practice (and whether) is still unclear. The whole problem with such features is that the developers need to somehow adapt the unique mechanics for other platforms. That is, if the gameplay will be seriously tied to the touch panel, without which it is impossible to play, it will have to somehow adapt for PC and Xbox One, which entails additional time and cost. In other words, it is much easier to use it as an ordinary button. The same applies to adaptive triggers, which are likely to be fully revealed only in exclusive PS5 games.
By the way, the experiments with the force of pressure is not new. On the first, second and third PlayStation buttons cross, square, triangle and circle were analogue. This, of course, is not a complete change in pressure resistance, but it is very similar. For example, the harder you push a button, the faster the car goes. Unfortunately, from such mechanics quickly tired fingers and play becomes uncomfortable. Adequately used all this only in games Metal Gear Solid.
The second important innovation is tactile feedback (Haptic Feedback), which according to the SIE President Jim Ryan should replace the usual vibration.
There will also be various minor improvements such as a new USB Type-C port for charging and wired connectivity. The higher-capacity battery (probably needed to power the new technology) and adaptive trigger motors will make the controller a little heavier than its predecessor, but lighter than the battery-powered Xbox One gamepad.
More details were published on Twitter by the famous insider Tidux. He said the new gamepad feels like a premium device. He cleared up some interesting details. The improved built-in microphone will be used, among other things, for voice assistant with artificial intelligence, which has already managed to light up. In addition, the insider confirmed that there is no display on the gamepad, no top lightbar (the one on the touchpad) and no buttons on the bottom side. On the positive side, he noted longer battery life.
What the new gamepad will look like is not yet known, but we can make a guess. Its appearance can be reflected in one of Sony’s recent patents. It should be noted that light bar is absent in this patent, while Wired journalist confirmed its presence in the new gamepad. It’s not worth taking the patent as the final version. The supposed gamepad, like the Devkit, is still highlighted in several merged photos.
Since the new generation console is partly based on the PS4 architecture, it will be backwards compatible with previous generation games. In addition, there will be cross-generational projects available for both generations as part of the generation shift. An example is MGS 5, available on both PS3 and PS4.
There is no accurate information about the support for older consoles yet, but rumors have been circulating for a long time. It is clear that backwards compatibility will be implemented through emulation, which is also supported by a registered patent. Against the background of extensive support for older games on Xbox One this does not seem unusual anymore.
In addition, it is not clear how backwards compatibility will be combined with the PlayStation Now service, which also allows you to play games from previous generations.
Unfortunately, there’s not much official information on the next generation helmet yet. In addition to the expected increase in performance, developers are looking to make the helmet more mobile and lightweight. However, according to the head of R&D, the new helmet should not be expected at the launch of the console. It should take some time to not put pressure on potential customers and give them a break between the two products.
Some VR games, such as Asrtobot, require a lightbar on the controller.
The good news is that the current PSVR helmets will be compatible with the new console. Whether they will be suitable for all games in virtual reality or whether this is only done to maintain backward compatibility with the previous generation is still unknown. But, given that the new generation helmet may come out later, it would be strange for Sony to deprive players of new games.