Yesterday the 10th the new PS4 Pro went on sale in Spain . A "vitaminized" version of the PlayStation 4 that comes to support games with 4K and HDR resolution , thus anticipating its most direct competitor, Microsoft's Xbox Scorpio . However, the PS4 Pro does not replace the PS4 Slim (the normal version redesigned), but both will coexist in the market and will have the same games. So why would I buy a more expensive PS4 Pro ? What are the differences between the PS4 Pro and the PS4 Slim? Is it worth buying either of these two consoles? We wanted to put ourselves in the shoes of a user who is thinking of acquiring or not one of the new Sony consoles , so we are going to review what each one offers us, what is the difference between them or if it is worth changing if we already have a PS4 of the "old" .
First it is necessary to talk about technical data. The PS4 Slim is technically identical to the PS4 that was released in 2013 , only improving on the docking ports. However, the PS4 Pro does offer a substantial technical improvement , especially on the graphics processor. The processor of choice for Sony is still an 8-core Jaguar , but it raises the speed up to 911 MHz . The main RAM memory remains at 8 GB DDR5 , but 1 GB DDR3 is added that will be responsible for moving the system, thus leaving the full 8 GB DDR5 free for games. In addition to the additional gig, the memory speed has been increased, going to operate at 218 GB / s compared to 176 GB / s of the Slim model . But the biggest change, as we mentioned, is found in the graphic section. The GPU is still made by AMD , but doubles the number of cores to achieve a throughput of up to 4.20 TFLOPS .
What is achieved with this increase in power? That the PS4 Pro is capable of playing games in 4K resolution and in HDR . However, it will be the developers who will have to adapt their games to this new resolution. Obviously, the big studios will adapt their games or release later patches to adapt them, but the "independent" developers will have it more complicated.
However, what many users are wondering is: will the games really have native 4K resolution? The answer is complex, and it will depend on the developer. The creator of the game will have to decide if they prefer native 4K resolution with a decrease in the game fps ; or, if you use one of the scaling techniques proposed by the Japanese company. Sony has recommended developers to use the technique known as "checkboarding" , which they claim will allow to achieve an image quality very close to 4K without penalizing performance .
But then, do you notice the graphical difference between the PS4 Slim and the PS4 Pro?
The quick answer is "Yes . " We haven't had a chance to test a PS4 Pro yet for ourselves, but there are already numerous videos and pictures on the internet that show that the difference in picture quality is there . However, we are not going to notice a spectacular leap in quality that will leave us with our mouths open. If we examine the image carefully, we will notice the difference, but it is not scandalous. With what we will notice a substantial improvement is when activating the HDR system , especially in dark images or with many shadows.
Another advantage that we will get if we opt for a PS4 Pro will be the video playback in 4K and HDR . However, this multimedia capability is limited to streaming video playback from sources such as Netflix or YouTube . The PS4 Pro does not include a UHD Blu-Ray reader , something that the new Xbox One S does .
What if we have a television with Full HD resolution ? According to the first tests carried out, it seems that the PS4 Pro adapts the image taking as a reference the higher resolution image, which is transformed into more detailed graphics than those obtained by a PS4 Slim or an original PS4 , although our TV does not be 4K.
I still have a tremendous mess in my head, what PS4 do I buy?
Of course, the final decision depends on each user, but we can tell you what we would do. If you don't have a console and want a PS4, buy a PS4 Pro . It is the most powerful console currently and has the addition of being able to play with 4K resolution and HDR . Even if you don't have a 4K TV right now or intend to buy it soon, the best decision is to opt for the Pro version to be prepared for the future.
If you already have a “old- fashioned ” PS4 and are thinking of switching, we would only recommend buying the PS4 Pro if you just bought a brand new 4K HDR TV . If this is not your case, our opinion is that you can continue for a while with your PS4 , since the change at the graphic level will not be proportional to the investment.
Finally, we would only recommend buying a PS4 Slim if you absolutely want to have a PS4 , but spending as little as possible . Currently we can find the PS4 Slim with a couple of games for less than 300 euros , an offer that could improve substantially on the next Black Friday .