Since PlayStation 4 and Xbox One premiered, game consoles have enjoyed a gaming and high-resolution graphics heyday. However, the advent of PlayStation 5 will put a welcome end to that era as console graphics come into their own in a way that has never been seen. In fact, the extent of the console evolution is unheard of and offers the following amazing upgrades:
- 8K resolution
- much faster speed
- better audio
- backwards compatibility
- virtual reality
In addition to getting an 8K upgrade, the resolution will be powered by a graphics processor based on the Radeon Navi GPU. This combination of resolution and rendering capability will allow for greater texturing and faster ray tracing. Since you are a gamer and you are still reading this, you know very well what this means: near photo-realism.
Many games already look realistic — sort of. However, 8K-resolution capability and greater texturing will allow for deeper, richer, more convincing skin, materials, and landscapes. In the Playstation 4, landscapes are already very convincing. However, skin and materials can often seem flat. This flatness results from the computer’s inherent inability to render a wide color gamut and deep textures. Additionally, more complex textures slow game play. 8K resolution capability will largely solve these problems.
For instance, the true benefit of 8K resolution capability comes from the infrastructure capable of running such high resolutions, and this infrastructure will allow developers to focus on 4K-resolution and standard hi-definition games that will look simply amazing. The reason is that 4K games with greater texturing will run very well on a console capable of handling 8K graphics. Since developers will be able to stack on greater realism at today’s resolution, tomorrow’s games will offer a more realistic look.
Of course, the ability to churn over hi-resolution frames at speeds capable of sustaining quality game play requires seriously upgraded processing and graphics card capabilities.
In terms of processing, the CPU will be based on AMD’s “Zen” architecture. Specifically, it will be based on the Ryzen CPUs, which provide a premium balance of performance and cost. In terms of graphics processing, the new console will be powered by the upcoming Radeon Navi graphics cards, which are purported to be able to keep up with NVIDIA’s RTX series while also offering serious price advantages.
Finally, the console will get an added boost in speed because it will take advantage of SSD technology, which is up to 19 times faster than the technology behind mechanical drives.
Graphics and speed do not mean much in a silent room. Because sound can make or break a game, it is no surprise that PlayStation 5 will bring hard-hitting, deep sound. However, the key to the sound quality will also rest on its three-dimensionality, which will offer a greater sense of immersion, especially in virtual reality.
For instance, the console’s ability for faster ray tracing will enhance audio. Although ray tracing usually is thought of in terms of rendering light and shadow, the faster ray tracing also makes possible better sound directionality. With the proper headset, a player will have a much easier time understanding such things as where an enemy’s shots are coming from or how far away an enemy’s footsteps are.
Resurrection of your favorite hits
With new platforms, backwards compatibility is always an issue. Customers want to play their old games, but new technology is not always compatible with old. Technology constraints notwithstanding, PS5 will be backwards compatible for PlayStation 4 games.
Although virtual reality has not quite taken off with the average consumer, PlayStation hopes to change that with PlayStation 5. For instance, players will no longer have to purchase a separate VR console to enjoy immersive games and experiences. Since PlayStation already enjoys a top spot in the virtual-reality market, players can look forward to experiencing new worlds and rich, immersive game play alongside the ability to play traditional console games.
Just as important, these immersive experiences will be less “cartoony” as the console’s core infrastructure will be able to handle much more complicated textures and graphics.
Of course, owners of previous PlayStation VR will be able to use their headset with the new console. However, newer headsets will offer a wider range of features.