PS5 vs PS4: Is it worth upgrading to next-gen at launch?

Are the PS5 specs worth investing in? Should we box up our PS4 now?

by Daryl Baxter

We already have so many questions about the PS5. What will the specs be? Will backwards compatibility exist? Will the PS5 work with all four previous generations of PlayStation games? Will it look like a pizza oven?

Only the following information has been confirmed by Sony; through articles, presentations to board members, and the rare social media post.

  • The PS5 work with current PSVR model
  • SSD will be a big focus
  • The new DualShock 5 controller has better triggers
  • 4K Graphics at 120FPS as a standard, Support for 8K
  • 100GB BluRay
  • 3RD Gen Ryzen 8 CPU
  • AMD Radeon Navi

There are a few features there that we can safely say will be better than PS4.

And with that, we wanted to explain a bit more of some of the above points, and how they could already justify a purchase for a PS5 while boxing up your PS4 to give to your future grandchildren.

SSD – Super, Sonic, Drive?

The PS5 speeds could leave your PS4 in the dust.

SSD is something that the architect of the PS5 console, Mark Cerny, says is a big focus for this generation. They want to essentially be rid of loading times, and transitions between worlds to be as seamless as possible.

Granted, Solid-state drives are nothing new; you can buy a drive for a PC for as low as £30 in 2020, but what sets it apart for the PlayStation 5, is how intertwined it will be with the console, the CPU, and the games.

This isn’t the standard SSD you buy in a shop. It will be designed by Sony in order to fully optimise the bandwidth of the read/write speeds, so the only loading times you will see, will be when you’re in a multiplayer lobby, waiting for people to join the match.

The rise of the DualSense

Are your PS4 controllers destined for the bin?

The DualShock 4 is well-regarded as one of the best controllers out there. It’s now compatible with Apple’s iPad, iPhone and Apple TV devices for the games available there, and it works on PC for Steam and other vendors.

It’s not been confirmed yet whether it will work with PS5, but the controller looks to be overshadowed by its successor, the DualSense.

The new DualSense controller shakes up the DualShock design, morphing the PlayStation controller design with a more conventional (and ergonomic) controller design. It is also available in a two-tone black and white.

The DualSense will get rid of the basic rumble, something that’s been a feature since the first PlayStation, and will instead replace it with ‘Haptic Rumble’.

This will be a much better experience, as different gameplay aspects, such as wading through a river, or climbing a rope, will feature different kinds of feedback, much more accurate than what rumble offers now.

The DualSense will have ‘adaptive triggers’. Say that you’re playing a new THIEF game on PS5, and firing a bow, you ‘feel’ the sensation of it being fired on the triggers.

Think of it like the taptic engine from the iPhone models when you have a phone-call come in, or when you long-press on something in an app. It all helps towards the immersion of being in a game, and it will surely be a basis for PSVR on PS5 as well.

Aside from the new rumble, the DualSense will use motion controls. While no games have confirmed they will use this feature yet, it’s likely we’ll see this used in a similar way to how the Nintendo Switch’s Joy-Cons work.

READ MORE: DualSense explained: PS5 controller design, specs & more

CPU & Graphics from AMD

AMD makes high-end products like the Radeon range.

It’s a given that with any new piece of hardware, be it a phone, a console, even a watch, it will feature a CPU and GPU that will offer a certain percentage of improvement.

But for a console that has a lifespan of 7 years compared to 1 with other devices, it’s important that both of these components can at least last half of the console’s lifecycle, until a ‘Pro’ variant arrives, similar to last time.

60FPS and 1080 was the aim of the last generation, but Sony has confirmed that the next level of 4K and 120FPS will be met, and not only that, but a new standard. 120FPS is a speed that you will never want to change back to 60FPS for.

After seeing this framerate run on Halo MCC on the PC, anything less feels like a slog. To have this on a console in your front room will be a fantastic feature. The question is whether the standard will be the same in multiplayer.

And it seems safe to expect 8K visuals, too, if your telly can handle them!

Exclusive Games

“We’ll let our games do the talking” is how PlayStation’s CEO Jim Ryan started the PS5 reveal event. New, exclusive games are one of the main reasons to buy a new console, and the PS5 already has some great exclusives confirmed for 2020 and beyond.

Spider-Man: Miles Morales, Horizon 2: Forbidden West, and Demon Souls are just some of the exclusives shown off yesterday.

If you’re worried about missing out on PlayStation 4 games like, all PS4 games from July are required to work on the PS5.

Overall

With the console now announced in full, you can be sure that in a year’s time, your PS4 will feel irrelevant, especially if the rumoured Backwards Compatibility with all past consoles rings true on the PS5.

For now though, we set aside our Monzo Pots to save for the console, and to justify its place in the living room to our partners and parents.

Begun, the 8K wars have.

Daryl Baxter