PlayStation 4 Pro Review
The PlayStation 4 Pro is Sony’s powerhouse machine that can deliver a 4K experience on their platform. While it may not be as powerful as Microsoft Xbox One X, it definitely can hold its head up high and show PS4 gamers something special!
It is capable of playing games with resolutions up to 4K and with high dynamic range visuals. Your favourite games like Uncharted 4, Horizon Zero Dawn and God of War, all showcase what the console can do as well as give these games the platform they deserve. If you love to have your games at the best quality possible, then upgrading or buying a PS4 for the first is the right move for you. While having a 4K HDR TV in your home is a must have item for these powerful consoles, its not the be all and end all. If your TV is not capable of outputting at 4K resolution and high dynamic range (HDR) content, then the standard PS4/Slim would be sufficient enough. There would be no real need for an upgrade. If you are lucky enough to have a TV that gives you 4K HDR resolution, then you will want the best machine to accompany it.
The PS4 Pro follows the similar design of its smaller Slim counterpart. The Pro has an extra stack to it, which is to house all the extra tech inside and for the airflow to dissipate the heat they’ll generate. What is new to the design is the cool light strip at the front of the console, which is missing on the standard PS4 – and the latest DualShock 4 comes bundled, the one with the additional light bar on the touchpad. Inside the Pro a lot of the specs have changed too which gives it the massive difference you get from it.
The Pro’s CPU is like the one in the standard PS4 but has been clocked at 2.1GHz (over the PS4’s 1.6GHz) so is around a third faster. The RAM is also faster – there is 8GB of GDDR5 RAM, as before, but it had a bandwidth of 218GB/s. There’s also an additional 1GB RAM for system applications to not interfere. This basically gives the PS4 Pro more power at processing the information that appears on screen. The biggest upgrade of all is the GPU which pumps out 4.20 teraflops and is considerably more than double the power of the standard PS4. This would be the highlight feature of the console and gives off higher fidelity graphics and better image representation full stop. It plays all your PS4 games, using the exact same UI and control system, but runs them smoother and much better due to these upgrades.
Since the release of the PlayStation 4 Pro, more and more games have been patched to offer the enhanced graphics and the difference in quality is night and day. You even get different options in the same games thanks to what the Pro offers. For example, you can play some titles in 4K at 30 frames per second or opt to stick to the original 1080p at a higher frame rate of 60fps. The latter is smoother, but the former is crisper and has more detail. The HDR element is generally constant regardless. Adding in HDR with the 4K resolution on your Pro, you will see your games graphics pop and explode with colour and tantalise your senses.
For PS4 gamers who don’t have a 4K TV, is it still worth grabbing the PlayStation 4 Pro console? I would say yes, thanks to a recent update earlier this year, the Pro received a new option for those who don’t own a 4K TV. The Super-Sampling option is a welcomed edition for PS4 Pro owners who want better image quality from their console without having a 4K screen. This mode shows games at a 4K resolution and with four times the amount of visual and color than normal. It then downscales the image and with anti-aliasing processing, it can improve the image quality. This helps reduce jagged edges and to ultimately make the images on your TV look sharper and clearer than before.
By enabling super-sampling in firmware 5.5, the game believes you have a 4K screen connected and the system takes over from there, downscaling the image and producing beautiful anti-aliasing in the process. The improvement to image quality is clear; jagged edges are smoothed over
With everything that the Pro has to offer, it is a bit of a shame that the Blu-ray play is not on par with the rest of the console. The PS4 Pro is not capable of playing 4K Ultra HD Blu-rays, which is a shame, since the Xbox One X is capable of doing it. I found this to be a little strange of Sony as well, since they are the main driver of 4K video content. What is also a bit of a down point too is the size of the hard drive. While a 1TB HDD is fine as is, the drawback for gamers is that most games nowadays for the Pro are about 60GB or more. You will start to notice that your HDD fills up pretty quickly when you start to amass some games in your collection. Thankfully, this can be rectified by grab a 2TB/4TB drive and upgraded it yourself. But you would think Sony could have easily dropped in a 2TB for good measure. Hopefully in future consoles these are something that can be added, as it would complete the overall package of the console and definitely stand out above the rest.
The PlayStation 4 Pro is the best games console out on the market for PlayStation fans. While it may not always match the Xbox One X for sheer power, it’s definitely getting the support from developers and is less expensive than Microsoft’s machine too. Add these with all the amazing exclusive titles coming out this year, there is a lot to be excited about! So, do yourself a favour and grab yourself a 4K TV, plug this beast in and enjoy some of the best games of this generation! You will not be disappointed…