With a little over a month until the PlayStation 5’s launch, Sony has provided an in-depth teardown video to show off its internal components. The teardown is performed by Sony Interactive Entertainment’s Vice President of Mechanical Design Department, Hardware Design Division; Yasuhiro Ootori, and it helps explain the console’s unconventional shape.
Ootori first showed off some external features. The PlayStation 5 measures 104mm wide x 390mm high x 260mm deep (4.1 x 15.4 x 10.2 inches) – bigger than PS4, he admits, but enabling “a dramatic improvement in performance in terms of processing power and quietness.” The front side has one SuperSpeed USB-C port, one high-speed Type-A port, and two air vents; the rear has two SuperSpeed Type A ports, LAN, HDMI, and power ports. The rest of the rear panel is one big exhaust port.
The base to stand the system vertically is impressive in itself. It is easily removed, and contains a small compartment to store its own screws, which can be closed and sealed, ensuring you never lose the specific fasteners required. The base is also used for stability when the system is laid horizontal.
Both white side panels can be removed with a simple lift-and-slide motion. Ootori specifically mentions that users can do this themselves with ease, perhaps suggesting that customizable faceplates could be available at some point down the line.
With either panel off, the large fan is prominently on display. Measuring 120mm in diameter and 45mm thick, it draws in air from both sides. Two dust catchers are built in, collecting debris to be vacuumed out – a convenience which could greatly increase the console’s longevity, if users are diligent in cleaning it out. (However the fine print at the end of the video notes the dust catcher is not guaranteed to prevent the hardware from clogging with dust anyway.)
Ootori mentioned the Ultra HD Blu-ray drive has a sheet metal case “mounted with two layers of insulators to reduce noise and vibration.”
With the fan and casing removed, the motherboard is accessible. Ootori showed off its components: the x86-64-AMD Ryzen “Zen 2” CPU (8 cores, 16 threads, 3.5GHz); the AMD Radeon RDNA 2-based GPU (2.23GHZ, 10.3 TFLOPS), and 16GB of GDDR6 memory, delivering max bandwidth of 448GB/sec.
The star of the PlayStation 5’s internal components may be the 825GB SSD and its custom SSD controller. Its max read speed of 5.5GB/sec will significantly reduce load times. A small compartment near the fan will allow users to expand the PlayStation 5’s storage with another M.2 SSD.
To help cool the system-on-chip, Sony spent two years developing a liquid metal thermal conductor for “long-term, stable, high-cooling performance.”
The heatsink is a substantially large component of the PlayStation 5’s guts. It uses a heat pipe like PS3 and PS4, but Ootori notes its unique “shape and airflow have made it possible to achieve the same performance as a vapor chamber.” The last component removed was the 350w power supply unit.
Sony appears to have taken heat and noise concerns with the PlayStation 4 to heart, as so many of the PlayStation 5’s components contribute toward cooler, quieter operation. In a blog accompanying the teardown video, Sony’s EVP, Hardware Engineering and Operation, Masayasu Ito noted the system has been in development since 2015, by a team which “values a well thought out, beautifully designed architecture.”
Judging by initial impressions from Japanese outlets like Dengeki, the PlayStation 5’s design appears to be effective, but consumers can test for themselves when the system launches November 12. All of this tech will retail for $629.99 in Canada, or $499.99 for the digital version, which does not include the Blu-ray drive.