The PlayStation 4 Pro is a pretty big jump in power.
The PlayStation 4 Pro is slightly different internally from the current PS4. It’s not a gigantic jump in power, but it is a notable lift. Here’s the full rundown:
— Support for 4K resolution and high dynamic range (or HDR) on TVs that support them.
— More graphics processing power so traditional and virtual reality games can look and perform better.
Here’s how Sony describes it:
“PS4 Pro’s advanced graphics processor unit incorporates many features from AMD’s latest ‘Polaris’ architecture, as well as some fully custom hardware innovations, and is considerably more powerful than the GPU included in the standard PS4.”
But the PlayStation 5 this is not.
If you already own a PlayStation 4: Relax! You don’t need to run out and buy a PS4 Pro. Again, every game that comes out for the Pro will also work on the regular PS4.
While there may be something called the PlayStation 5 someday, that’s not what this is. This is an upgrade to the current PS4 that will allow developers to do a little more than they could before because technology moves quickly.
Even though the PS4 Pro is more powerful, it’s not getting any exclusive games. This is a technical upgrade.
Let’s be totally clear: The PlayStation 4 Pro is intended for people who own 4K televisions (the next step after HD). Functionally, it’s identical to the original PlayStation 4 (2013) and the newer, slimmer PlayStation 4 (2016).
Here’s how Sony describes the point of the PS4 Pro’s upped processing power:
“All in all, this increase in processing power enables developers to tap into far more demanding visual features for PS4 Pro owners, including smoother or more stable framerates, support for 4K rendering, advanced graphics features, and more.”
That said, even if you don’t own a 4K TV, there are some benefits to the PlayStation 4 Pro.
Due to the processing power of the PlayStation 4 Pro being used for more than upping the resolution, games on your standard high-definition TV will run smoother and faster than on a standard PlayStation 4.
Simply put: The power can be used for other things, and many of those things have a major impact.
Being able to lock the framerate of a game — the number of image frames that a game is able to render per second — is really meaningful. Ever play a game and, when a lot of stuff is happening on the screen, the game slows down? That’s because it’s “dropping frames”— the hardware is having a hard time processing all the information on the screen, and so it compensates by pulling away processing horsepower from other stuff (like how many frames are being rendered on screen per second, for instance). With the PlayStation 4 Pro, there’s more than enough power to go around.
A variety of games on the PlayStation 4, pretty as they are, don’t get rendered in 1080p — so-called “true” HD. Instead, they’re slightly smaller (think: 900p). The PlayStation 4 “upscales” the games to 1080p instead of them being produced in 1080p. Essentially, the image is stretched as a result.
Not on the PS4 Pro, though — it can take your close-to-but-not-quite HD game and make sure it’s running in full 1080p.
Going forward, all PlayStation 4 games will look better on Pro.
Every PlayStation 4 game is going to work on every PlayStation 4 console. How each game works depends on which console you have.
Going forward, developers will be expected to build games for “base” PS4 consoles as well as Pro consoles. You won’t have to buy separate versions of each game; it will automatically switch depending on which kind of console you play it on.
The Pro versions of games should look and perform better than their base counterparts, but it will be different from game to game. Here’s how Sony puts it:
“It’s important to note that PS4 Pro is not another generation of console. It won’t make your current PS4 games obsolete, and it won’t split the PS4 player base. PS4 Pro is very much a part of the PS4 family.”
BEWARE: The PlayStation 4 Pro is not the same as the newer, slimmer PlayStation 4.
You may have noticed that Sony recently released another new device, the PlayStation 4 Slim. This is not the same as the PlayStation 4 Pro.
The new PlayStation 4 released this year is a smaller version of the original PS4. The same thing happened to the PS2 and PS3 a few years after those consoles came out. The PlayStation 4 Pro, however, is a new development. Never before has a major game console maker created and released an updated version of an existing console before.
Microsoft is also taking this step with a new console currently codenamed Project Scorpio — it’s expected to launch in fall 2017.
The PlayStation 4 Pro launches on November 10 for $399.
That puts it just $100 above the price of the standard PlayStation 4, and at the same price point as Sony’s recently released PlayStation VR headset. As you might expect, the PlayStation VR headset also works with the PlayStation 4 Pro — notably, HDR support for non-VR games will be lost on your television when the headset’s plugged in.
At launch, Sony says a few dozen games will be “enhanced” for use on the PlayStation 4 Pro.
Sony says, in total, “more than 45″ games will appear on the Pro in updated form by the end of 2016, including (still unreleased) games like “Watch Dogs 2,”“Killing Floor 2,” “The Last Guardian,” and “Final Fantasy XV.”
For the second time in 2016, Sony’s on the verge of releasing a brand new version of its wildly successful PlayStation 4 game console.
The console, which is set to launch on November 10 for $399, is a serious upgrade from the original PS4 in terms of horsepower. With some games, it’s capable of producing much higher resolutions — prettier graphics — in addition to stuff like faster load times.
There is, of course, much more to know about the new PlayStation 4 Pro. And you want to be a pro on the Pro, right? Right.