We're beginning to find out more concrete details on the technical specifications of Sony's upcoming PS4 Pro console, with PlayStation Chief Architect Mark Cerny explaining some of what Sony has done inside of their new console.
Cerny said there are two chips in the PS4 Pro, which lets it play older PS4 games - but when you install the PS4 Pro game, both of the chips work together. Since Sony tapped AMD's new Polaris architecture for the PS4 Pro, is there some CrossFire magic going on?
He explains: "We doubled the GPU size by essentially placing it next to a mirrored version of itself, sort of like the wings of a butterfly. That gives us an extremely clean way to support the existing 700 titles. We just turn off half the GPU and run it at something quite close to the original GPU".
Cerny continued, saying that the team behind the PS4 Pro said games needed "about 10% more memory", which is why they added the 1GB of slower DRAM into the console, joining the much faster 8GB GDDR5. Cerny continued: "On a PS4 standard model, if you're switching between an application, such as Netflix, and a game, Netflix is still in system memory even when you're playing the game. We use that architecture because it allows for a very quick swap between applications. Nothing needs to be loaded, it's already in memory".
"On PS4 Pro, we do things differently, when you stop using Netflix, we move it to the slow, conventional gigabyte of DRAM. Using that strategy frees up almost one gigabyte of the eight gigabytes of GDDR5. We use 512MB of that freed up space for games, which is to say that games can use 5.5GB instead of the five and we use most of the rest to make the PS4 Pro interface - meaning what you see when you hit the PS button - at 4K rather than the 1080p it is today".
Cerny reiterated that the PS4 Pro is not the start of a new generation PlayStation family, adding: "We don't believe that generations are going away. They are truly healthy for the industry, and for the gaming community. It's just that the objectives for PS4 Pro are quite different".
Original PS4 Specs
- CPU: 8 Jaguar Cores at 1.6GHz
- GPU: AMD GCN, 18 CUs at 800MHz (equivalent to Radeon HD 7850)
- Memory: 8 GB GDDR5, 176 GB/s
PS4 Pro Specs
- CPU: 8 Jaguar Cores at 2.1GHz
- GPU: 4.20 TFLOPs Polaris GPU
- Memory: 8 GB GDDR5, 218 GB/s
PS4 Pro: What we know so far:
- Double GPU power over existing PS4 models (roughly 2x AMD Radeon HD 7850)
- AMD Polaris GPU support
- 16nm FinFET APU likely
- CPU with boosted clock rate
- Higher memory bandwidth
- No 4K UHD Blu-ray player
- Launches November 10 for $399
- 4K resolution upscaling
- HDR support
- Higher frame rates, improved in-game performance across the board
- Plays all existing PS4 games, but not every PS4 game will leverage the new hardware for improved performance
- 1TB hard drive
Read more about Sony's PS4 Pro:
- Here's why Sony nixed PS4 Pro's 4K Blu-ray player
- PS4 Pro uses AMD Polaris GPU, sits below RX 470
- PS4 Pro FAQ: Sony explains the new $399 4K PS4 console
- 14 games have PS4 Pro support built-in so far
- Here's all the PS4 Pro upgraded games so far
- PS4 Pro won't play all PS4 games at 1080p 60FPS
- Mass Effect: Andromeda runs at 4K 30FPS on PS4 Pro
- Sony's new PS4 Pro rocks double GPU power, 4K and HDR
- Sony's high-end PS4 Pro costs $399, launches November 10
- Devs have final say on PS4 Pro's Forward Compatibility
- PS4 Pro specs: 4.2 TFLOPs, Jaguar CPU, 310W power draw
- Microsoft trolls PS4 Pro's lack of a 4K Blu-ray player
- Sony's PS4 Pro doesn't hit native 4K gaming