The rumours of a downgrade began when an anonymous inside source claimed that "The current designs, despite having vents all over the place, apparently still can't dissipate the heat to sufficient levels." The source also noted that the Cell processor could have its clock speed reduced from 3.2GHz to 2.8GHz, enabling Sony to manufacture a greater number of the next-gen processors.
Today, the rumour has been called "ridiculous" by Sony spokesperson Jonathan Fargher. Speaking to Eurogamer, Fargher said: "The PS3 downgrade story is categorically not true."
"Developers have been working with PS3 dev kits for anywhere between eight and 12 months, and to suggest that we'd now take the decision to downgrade the hardware at such a late stage, is, well, ridiculous," said Fargher.
In a somewhat amusing response to the claims that Sony was unable to fit all the components of the PS3 inside its case, Fargher said: "Granted, whilst all products are not perfect, we do have over 40 years of experience making consumer electronics equipment, and therefore, extensive experience in making things fit - PSone and Slimline PS2 being just two examples of that."
There you have it - reassurance that the people at Sony are experts at making things fit.