Touted as a massive generational leap, the PlayStation 5 (PS5) is characterized by incredibly fast load times and a cutting-edge controller. Sony’s recently unveiled console enables players to experience a level of immersion that wasn’t possible on the previous generation of consoles.
The system’s lightning-fast SSD enables PS5 to load games in a matter of a few seconds. During this review, however, it was found that Sony’s speedy console has its drawbacks, such as its inelegant, massive chassis that occupies a lot of space. Although the interface is fast and beautiful, it feels little barebones. Moreover, a considerable number of PS5’s key games are also available on PS4, leaving consumers confused about whether or not to upgrade.
Release date and price
The PS5 was made available to Americans on Nov. 12, arriving in the U.K.and the rest of the world on Nov. 19. Equipped with a 4K-Blu-ray drive, the standard PS5 will set you back $499, and the PS5 Digital Edition carries a slightly more affordable price tag of $399, provided you don’t mind going disc-less.
The PS5 is a gargantuan piece of machinery with dimensions of 15.4 x 10.2 x 4.1-inch, making it bigger than the next-gen rival including the Xbox Series X and the Xbox Series S. In other words, the size of the PS5 could prove to be an issue to those with restricted entertainment areas.
You can position the PS4 vertically or horizontally using the console’s detachable stand, which screws into the bottom of the console in vertical mode, and clamps to its rear port area when placed in a horizontal mode. The console stands up securely in vertical mode, but the base is relatively more finicky when kept in a horizontal orientation.
When standing vertically, the console appears to be an oversized cable modem due to its pointy white side panels, as well as the asymmetrical bulk that the Blu-ray drive adds. The console features appealing LED status lights on each side of the interior, which is slicker as compared to the status light on its predecessor, the PS4.
Aside from that, the tiny hidden PlayStation controller icons within the inner panels add a great touch. The system is packed with attention to detail, and its outward appearance is unlike any other console we have seen before.
Ports and expansion
The PS5 boasts a standard array of ports, coupled with some modern conveniences. Upfront, it houses a Hi-Speed USB Type-A port and a USB Type-C SuperSpeed port. In the back, there are two SuperSpeed USB-A ports, an Ethernet jack, an HDMI 2.1 port, and an AC adapter, but the PS4’s optical audio port has been ousted. Some companies are now offering optical-to-HDMI splitters, such as Astro and its Astro A20 headset.
There is a PCIe 4.0 M.2 expansion slot for those who fancy expanding the PS5’s built-in 825GB of SSD storage. It is worth mentioning here that you’d need to use certain PS5-certified SSDs that meet Sony’s bandwidth requirements, such as the Western Digital SN850.
The interface of the PS5 can be described as a clean, highly appealing upgrade of the PS4 software. Switching in and out of games and navigating menus is smooth. The home screen is similar to the PS4, featuring a horizontal row of tiles that includes your most recent games.
The news and updates show up on a handy Explore tab. Aside from that, there’s a Game Library tab that allows you to instantly start downloading your collection of PS4 titles. You can click on the Create button to capture videos and screenshots, or even stream to Twitch or YouTube.
You can perform multiple functions such as monitoring your controller’s battery life, check notifications, view your friends, switch apps, and more simply by tapping the PlayStation button. You can also customize the center to quickly access features such as broadcast controls, accessibility options, and network settings.
The PS5 DualSense controller’s built-in speaker, adaptive triggers, and haptic feedback combine to offer a never before experienced level of tactile immersion. The adaptive triggers are designed to become harder based on what is happening in-game.
The new controller comes with a built-in microphone, which allows you to chat with friends when you do not have a gaming headset. The DualSense is only as good as the game that takes advantage of it. For instance, Sony’s gamepad does some exciting stuff with games like Sackboy, Godfall, Spider-Man, and Astro’s Playroom.
The PS5 works with almost all PS4 games, which is a noteworthy improvement from Sony\s lack of backwards compatibility last generation. The PS4 enables you to use any PS4 Pro enhancements offered by a game, meaning, games that have higher resolution or frame rate modes can take the most advantage of Sony’s new console.
The PS5 can be touted as a leap forward as far as console gaming is concerned. It delivers an awe-inspiring 4K performance, impressively fast load times, and a truly game-changing controller that makes the game more immersive. On top of that, it plays nearly all PS4 games.
On the downside, the PS5’s launch lineup offers limited must-have exclusives. The console’s massive size may also be an issue for those with limited space, and the DualSense controller could turn out to be a little big for folks with smaller hands.
As with most consoles, the newfangled PS5 is likely to get better over time. You can alternatively consider Microsoft’s $499 Xbox Series X, which offers relatively more power and works with 4 generations of Xbox games. If you have already picked the PS5 up, you are in for a true next-gen experience complete with beautiful graphics and advanced haptics. Watch this space for more reviews.