DF Weekly: What will we actually get from Microsoft’s expectations of a PS5 Slim and Pro?

DF Weekly: What will we actually get from Microsoft's expectations of a PS5 Slim and Pro?

What’s Next for PlayStation 5: Slim, Pro, and More!

Last week, the gaming world was buzzing with reports that Sony is planning to release a revised Slim model of the PlayStation 5, along with an already announced handheld codenamed Project Q. Microsoft seems to have caught wind of these rumors too, as they expect Sony to drop a Slim model and even mentioned a Pro version. While Microsoft is just speculating, it aligns with the persistent rumors surrounding Sony’s hardware line-up. So, what can we expect from the future of PlayStation?

First off, it’s unclear whether Microsoft actually has inside information or if they’re just jumping on the rumor train. These reports initially came from Insider Gaming, who accurately predicted the announcement of the new streaming-based PlayStation handheld. If their sources are correct, the PS5 Slim will feature the same components but in a new ‘d-chassis’ with a detachable (maybe optional?) optical drive. How exactly this translates into a retail product remains to be seen, but it’s definitely an interesting concept. While I find the idea of a detachable drive intriguing, my colleague John Linneman sees it as one step closer to the end of physical media in the console space.

Personally, I wouldn’t be surprised if Sony leverages a new process node to further shrink the size of the PS5’s processor. This would result in a smaller and more affordable console, with reduced packaging and shipping costs. However, the concept of making the optical drive optional is even more fascinating. Currently, Sony has to divide components between the disc and digital models, but by making the disc drive detachable, they can centralize production into a single PS5. From there, they can easily distribute units as a base model or add the drive for a pricier version. The big question is whether Sony will continue with two SKUs or make the optical drive entirely optional.

Interestingly, Microsoft’s documents mention a $399 Slim model, but no optical drive – detachable or otherwise. This suggests that it might be a cost-reduced version of the disc model or the detachable drive product predicted by Insider Gaming. Microsoft is even hinting at a price point, which is new information we haven’t seen anywhere else. The idea of a detachable PS5 BD drive is intriguing because it doesn’t completely cut off physical discs like the current Digital Edition does. If you want to access the cheaper physical games market, you can simply buy the optional drive. However, as you’ll see in this week’s DF Direct Weekly, John believes that embracing physical media as an option brings us closer to the format’s demise.

DF Direct Weekly

In this episode of DF Direct Weekly, John Linneman is joined by Rich Leadbetter and Alex Battaglia as they discuss the latest gaming news. They cover topics like the expected PS5 Slim, Final Fantasy 16’s new motion blur options, PSVR2 game roundup, Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag remake rumors, and CD Projekt’s defense of Cyberpunk’s reception. They also delve into supporter questions about real-time graphical breakthroughs, DLSS integration, going back to 60fps gaming, and the placebo effect of game updates. You can catch all the action on YouTube!

John does raise a valid point about console add-ons not always being successful. Assuming the optional drive becomes a reality, the way Sony presents it is crucial. Will they offer bundle deals with the drive included or sell it separately? And how many of these drives will Sony produce, and at what cost?

Now, let’s talk about the elusive PS5 Pro. While Microsoft seems content with their current Series X and Series S hardware, Sony might have something up their sleeves. A Pro model doesn’t necessarily mean just doubling GPU power and a larger processor, like the PS4 Pro. With a new process node, Sony has other options, such as faster clocks or enabling the disabled compute units in every PS5 processor. This could boost CPU and GPU performance, potentially bringing it closer to 14 teraflops. They could also explore innovations like machine learning accelerated upscaling. The possibilities are intriguing, but we’ll have to wait for Sony’s pitch to fully understand the need for a PS5 Pro.

During the Direct, my colleagues discuss whether AMD’s roadmap aligns with a potential Pro console. It’s worth noting that AMD has been secretive about their next-gen tech, but console makers have been working closely with them for years. This collaboration could have an impact on a potential PS5 Pro. However, as of now, the need for one isn’t apparent, and we eagerly await Sony’s official statement.

Apart from all the hardware speculation, the Direct also covers Final Fantasy 16’s new patch with motion blur customization, the ongoing Cyberpunk 2077 controversy, and rumors of an Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag remaster. Supporter Q+A brings up interesting topics like the standardization of 60fps and the placebo effect of game updates. But fear not! We have exciting content coming soon from a completely new perspective, so stay tuned. And if you want to join in on the discussion, check out the DF Supporter Program, where we just posted what might be the first external 4K 120fps capture from a games console. Intrigued? Come join us!

In conclusion, the future of PlayStation 5 is filled with possibilities. Whether it’s the anticipated Slim model, the potential Pro version, or the detachable drive concept, Sony is sure to keep us on the edge of our seats. Stay tuned for more gaming news, reviews, and humorous articles from your favorite gaming guru!